(Click on the above graphic for an explanation of the FBN skill ratings.)

This tutorial written by Cathy on November 9, 2003.


For this tutorial you will need:

Paint Shop Pro, which you can get at the Jasc site.

This tutorial was written using Paint Shop Pro 8.1, but should work in earlier versions as well.

Here are the icons for the tools we will be using for this tutorial. If you don't have these icons in your toolbar, you will find them under the various drop-down menus in your standard toolbar.

  New (image)
  Paintbrush (PSP8)
  Mirror Image (PSP8)
  Add Raster Layer (PSP8)
  Select All
  Contract Selection
  Invert Selection
Flood Fill (PSP8)
  Animation Wizard
  View Animation

This tutorial will teach you to make a transparent sig tag with a "blinkie" border.  However; once you learn the method, you can use it to "frame" any graphic.

The best advice I can give you is to SAVE, SAVE, SAVE!!!  There's not much worse than losing all your hard work due to a program or computer lock up or melt down!!!  So...save your work often...I will be putting reminders throughout the tutorial:


As with any of my tutorials, please feel free to use any colors you like to create you own unique image.

Okay, let's get started...




Before you create your name, choose two colors that you would like for your image.  We will make our blinkies in these same colors so they will compliment our name. For my header graphic I used #F37FC0 for my foreground and #FDFF0F for my background. I'm going to use these same colors for this tutorial. Set your colors to your liking.

1. Open a new image: 150x60. Save as "my_blinkie.pspimage" (PSP8) or "my_blinkie.psp" (earlier versions). To use your image in Animation Shop, you need to save as PSP7 compatible. You can find this under the Options button in the Save As box.

2. Zoom in on your canvas for easy viewing. I have mine set to 250%.

3. Click on the text tool and choose a font of your liking, size will vary according to your font. Here are my settings:

4. Type your name and click "Apply" in your Text Entry box:

5. I now have this:

6. Click on Objects/Align/Center in Canvas and your name will be centered.




1. Open a new image 6x6. Save as "my_blinkie_fill.pspimage" (PSP8) or "my_blinkie_fill.psp" (earlier versions).

2. Click on your Paintbrush Tool and use the following settings:

3. Zoom in on your image (I have mine set to 4000%) so you can see where you are placing your paint.

4. With your left mouse button click once in the upper left corner and once again in the lower right.  With your right mouse button click once in the upper right corner and once again in the lower left:





1. Make "my_blinkie.pspimage" active.

2. You should have two layers: Raster 1 (which is blank) and Vector 1 (your text layer).

3. Make Raster 1 your active layer and add a new raster layer.

4. Click on Raster 1 again to make this your active layer.

5. Click on Selections/Select All.

6. Click on Selections/Modify/Contract and enter 6 for the number of pixels.

7. Click on Selections/Invert.

8. Click on your Flood Fill Tool.

9. Change your foreground color to pattern by clicking on the color button in your Materials Palette to open the Materials box:



10. Click on the Pattern tab and then click on the arrow next to the pattern box to find the pattern you just created for your blinkie. Then hit OK.

11. Flood fill the selected area of your image:


12. Make your fill pattern active and click on Image/Mirror.

13. Change your pattern again to this image. (PSP doesn't know we changed our fill image, so we have to tell it by changing our pattern again.)

14. Make your blinkie image active and click on your Raster 2 layer to make it active.

15. Flood fill your selected area with your new pattern:

16. Your fill pattern should be reversed. Notice that in the first screenshot (Step 11) the upper left corner was pink and that in the above screenshot (Step 15) the upper left corner is yellow? You can check by turning the visibility for your Raster 2 layer on and off.  If your colors aren't reversed click undo and check the above steps to make sure you followed them correctly.

17. Selections/Select None.




1. Since we left our text layer in vector format we can adjust the text if needed. If your text is too close to the border, make your adjustments now.

2. Once you have your text the size you want, convert this layer to raster, then duplicate this layer. Your Layer Palette should look like this:

3. Turn off the visibility for Raster 2 and Copy of Raster 3 layers by clicking on the eye next to the layer.

4. Right click on Raster 1 layer and choose Merge/Merge Visible.

5. Turn off the visibility for your Merged layer and turn on the visibility for your Raster 2 and Copy of Raster 3 layers.

6. Right click on Raster 2 layer and choose Merge/Merge Visible.

7. Turn on the visibility for both Merged layers.




1. Click on File/Jasc Software Products/Launch Animation Shop.

2. When Animation Shop opens click on the Animation Wizard button (top left button on your tool bar).

3. When the Animation Wizard starts, enter the following settings:

  • Same size as the first image frame, NEXT

  • Transparent, NEXT

  • Upper left corner of the frame, With the canvas color, Scale frames to fit, NEXT

  • Yes, repeat the animation indefinitely, 20, NEXT

  • Add image (browse to the folder where you saved your blinkie image, click on the file and choose OPEN), NEXT


4. Click on the View Animation button to see your animation.

5. Click the Save button, browse to a folder on your hard drive and type in a name for your animation and choose .gif as your file extension.

6. Click NEXT, NEXT, NEXT, and FINISH to save your animation:

7. That's it...you've created a blinkie sig tag.

8. Now that you've made a tag, try using different graphics and colors and see where your imagination will take you...



*** NOTES ***

You can use the above method to add blinkies to any image, but you may have to adjust your sizes.

For this tutorial, our original canvas size was 150x60. Both numbers are divisible by 6, so our fill image was 6x6.

You can use almost any size you'd like as long as you make your fill a relative size:


Image Size Fill Size Brush Size Both divisible by:
192x80 16 8 16
200x60 10 5 10
160x40 8 4 8
150x60 6 3 6

Pick your width and fill size, then decide the height and you can use any image size you'd like.

To add a blinkie to an existing image:

1. First make sure that your image is divisible by the number you wish to make your frame. You can resize or crop if needed.

2. Add a border to your image using a contrasting color, choosing an even number of pixels.

3. Create a fill pattern the same size as the border you added to your image.

4. Use your magic wand to select the border and fill with your pattern.

5. Duplicate your layer.

6. Mirror your fill pattern and fill the selected area on your second layer. 

The above image was created following
Country Courtney Tutorial which is no longer available.

Click here to see some other samples.





All Art Work & Graphics Designed by Cathy
This tutorial originally posted on November 9, 2003
Copyright © 1999 - 2003 by Cathy.
All rights reserved.
Revised: April 06, 2008.