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Creating Soft Beveled Text in Photoshop 6

by Nathan Segal

Previous to Photoshop 6, you would have to go through all sorts of steps to create Soft Beveled Text, but with the use of Layer Styles, you can create this effect and have a wide range of control, all within a few easy steps.

To begin, create a new RGB image with a dark blue background and a light blue foreground. Then, select the Type tool and type some text.
Use the Move tool to center the text in the window, then choose Filter: Blur: Gaussian Blur. An alert will come up with the message: "The type layer must be rasterized before proceeding. It's text will no longer be editable. Rasterize the type?" Click on OK and in the Gaussian Blur dialog box, set the Radius to 1.0 (you can use more or less depending on the text you have and the softness you wish to create).

Making sure the Type Layer is still selected, click on the triangle next to the Layer Styles icon at the bottom of the Layers palette to expand the list of Layer Effects that you will apply to the Type Layer. From the pop-up list, select Bevel and Emboss. This brings up the Layer Styles dialog box.

Now, click on the triangle next to the Layer Styles icon at the bottom of the Layers palette to expand the list of Layer Effects that you will apply to the Type Layer. From the pop-up list, select Bevel and Emboss. This brings up the Layer Styles dialog box.
Under the Structure Heading, enter the following settings:
Style: Outer Bevel
Technique: Smooth
Depth: 100%
Direction: Up
Size: 7 pixels
Soften: 0

Under Shading, enter these settings:
Gloss Contour: Outer curve icon
Highlight Mode: Normal
Leave all other settings at their defaults.

This gives you a nice soft edge to your text. The beauty of the Layer Styles dialog is that you can apply changes quickly and easily to create a variety of effects in moments, which you can save as new Styles.

*Nathan Segal is a Writer and Artist who is also active in Stock Photography.

This article first appeared in November 1998.



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