Cathy's Dolphin

 

Cathy's Corner Dolphin Tutorial II


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

WARNING - AS WITH MOST OF MY TUTORIALS, THIS ONE IS GRAPHIC INTENSIVE.  I HAVE USED MANY SCREEN SHOTS ALONG THE WAY. PLEASE BE PATIENT AND ALLOW THE PAGES TIME TO LOAD.

For anyone who prefers working with vectors, you can find my original dolphin tutorial (using vectors) here.

I wrote this tutorial after I completed my first dolphin tutorial, which is made using vectors.  For the benefit of those who do not care to work with vectors, I wrote this tutorial, which uses selections.  I hope you can enjoy making a dolphin with or without vectors.

Create a new folder on your hard drive named "dolphin". Click on the folder below to download the zip file for all the selections you will need for this tutorial. Unzip to the "dolphin" folder you just created.

TIP: You can load selections from any folder, so I keep all my selection files in separate folders. This saves a lot of confusion; especially when you may download selection files with the same name. PSP will default to the last folder you loaded selections from, so once you load the first selection for this tutorial, PSP will automatically go to this folder until you choose another one.  

Open a new image: 600x400, transparent background, 16 million  colors.

Save this new image to your hard drive as dolphin.psp. Now you can hit CTRL+S at any point during the tutorial to save your image. Remember to save often - I'll be giving you reminders along the way.

We will be creating the different parts of our dolphin on separate layers. I find it easier to create all my layers at once. (This makes it easier on the tutorial writer, also. Do you know how many times I would have had to type "Add a new layer and name it..." without this step?

Add and name layers now, so that your layer palette looks like the following: 



Right click on the following color swatch and save to your hard drive. Open in Paint Shop Pro. (If you'd like to use your own colors, please feel free to do so.) 

Make body 1 layer active and go to Selections/Load From Disk and browse to the folder you unzipped your selections to.  Click the file named body.sel and choose OK. 

DO NOT DESELECT - WE WILL KEEP THIS SELECTION ACTIVE UNTIL WE GET TO THE STEP FOR MERGING LAYERS. 

Change your foreground color to the darkest blue. Activate "body darkest blue" layer. Flood fill your selection with the darkest blue.

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate "body dark blue" layer. Click on your airbrush tool and use the following settings:

Change your foreground color to dark blue and paint a slight arc across the top portion of your dolphin, leaving a small amount of darkest blue showing at the top, slightly to the left of center:


Continue to spray the bottom portion of your dolphin with dark blue, below the arc you just painted. (You don't need each color to completely cover the bottom portion of your dolphin, but it's much easier on the tutorial writer this way!)

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate "body medium blue" layer. Change your foreground color to medium blue and spray another arc across your dolphin, leaving slightly more of the dark blue than you did for the darkest blue. Continue to spray the bottom portion of your dolphin with medium dark, below the arc you just painted.

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate "body green" layer. Change your foreground color to green and spray another arc across your dolphin, leaving some of the medium blue showing. The only difference on this layer, is that I have added a small "hump" where my eye will be. Continue to spray the bottom portion of your dolphin with green, below the arc you just painted:


Save your image: CTRL+S

Repeat the above steps for each of your different "color" layers,
ending each color a little further away from the end of your beak, 
ending with white just in the "belly" area:

Save your image: CTRL+S

I ended up with a little too much light color in my "tail" area. Since each color is on a separate layer, we can adjust this using our eraser. Click on your eraser tool and use the following settings: 

Starting with the lighter colors, click on your canvas away from your color and work your way to the color, erasing a little at a time until your have narrowed your colors in the tail area. (You can also add color if you think you need it.) Don't try to be perfect, these are just minor adjustments:

Save your image: CTRL+S

We are going to merge all of our color layers EXCEPT "body darkest blue". Change the visibility on your layers as follows:

Right click on any of the visible layers and choose Merge/Merge Visible.

Your body should still be selected. If it isn't load your body.sel from your disk now. If you have any color outside your selected area, invert selection and hit delete; then invert again.

Apply a Guassian blur with a radius of 6.0 and turn on the visibility for your "body darkest blue" layer:

WOW - isn't that pretty?

Save your image: CTRL+S

Right click on your merged layer and choose Merge/Merge Visible. Rename this layer "color". DESELECT.

Activate your "inner flipper" layer. Go to Selections/Load From Disk and load the inner_flipper.sel file. (This selection has already been feathered for you.) Flood fill with darkest blue and apply a cutout with the following settings:


Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate your "lower flipper" layer. Go to Selections/Load From Disk and load the lower_flipper.sel file. Flood fill with darkest blue. Apply a cutout with the same settings as before.

Move this layer below your "color" layer.

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate your "fin" layer. Go to Selections/Load From Disk and load the fin.sel file. Flood fill with darkest blue. Apply a cutout with the same settings as before. 

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate your "mouth" layer. Go to Selections/Load From Disk and load the mouth.sel file. Flood fill with green. Deselect and apply an inner bevel with the following settings:

Apply a Guassian blur with a radius of .50.

Save your image: CTRL+S

Activate your "eye" layer. Go to Selections/Load From Disk and load the eye.sel file. Flood fill with green. Deselect and apply an inner bevel with the same settings you used on your mouth. Apply a Guassian blur with a radius of .50.

If you are using PSP7, you can add an eye using the preset shapes:
Activate your "mouth" layer and click on your Preset shapes tool. Browse to your eye shape and, using the following settings, add your eye. Since you have Create as Vector checked, your eye will be created on a new layer:


Adjust your eye so that most of it is inside your eye "outline". Convert your layer to raster and erase any stray pixels which fall outside your outline. Click on Colors/Colorize, with the following settings: Hue: 150; Saturation: 50. You now have a nice blue eye for your dolphin.

Save your image: CTRL+S

Make sure the visibility for all layers is turned ON. Right click on any layer and choose Merge/Merge Visible.

Add a new layer. Make your new layer active. Go to Selections/Load From Disk; click on body.sel and choose OK.

Apply a cutout as follows:


Merge visible layers.

If you'd like a softer edge for your dolphin, go to Selections/Load From Disk and click on the file soften.sel.  Click OK to load the selection.

Click on your Retouch Tool (that's the little hand in your toolbar) and enter the following settings:


Using your retouch tool soften the edges of your dolphin, going completely around your image. With the selected area, you don't have to be very precise - you are limited to softening only the area within your selection.  

If there's two things you should know about me here they are:
1. I like precision, so you will very rarely get instructions form me that say "about the size of a...", or "draw a large circle", and...
2. I'm very impatient: there's absolutely no way I would go around the edge of this image freehand - way too time consuming for me!

Okay, enough about me, on with the tutorial:

Here's a close up showing the difference between your hard edge and the edge that's been softened:


Deselect

You can now export your image as a picture tube for later use, or simply hit CTRL+S and you can use your dolphin.psp file at any time.

To finish off your dolphin as I did at the top of the page, see below.

Here's how I finished my image for the graphic you saw at the beginning of the tutorial:

Add a new layer and flood fill with white.  Move this layer below your "dolphin" layer.

Add a new layer above your white layer and name it "water". Flood fill your water layer with the water graphic provided below, or one of your own.  Lower the opacity on your water layer to 75. 

Duplicate your dolphin layer. Make your "Copy of dolphin" layer active. Click Selections/Select All; Selections/Float; Selections/Defloat. Flood fill this selected area with black. Using your mover tool, move this image toward the bottom of your canvas. This will be your shadow, so place it wherever it looks good to you. Lower the opacity on this layer to 30 and apply a Guassian blur of 2.5. Move this layer below your dolphin layer.

If you'd like to add some marine type decorations to your image, add a new layer between Layer1 and your water layer and place them on this layer. You can find some wonderful tubes at Barry's site.

Merge all layers and add a border of your choice and enjoy your new graphic!.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial - if so, tell your friends; if not, tell me!

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This tutorial was featured at FlyByNightGraphics.


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Copyright ©1999 -2003 by Cathy. All rights reserved.
Revised: April 06, 2008.

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