Text on a Curve PSP Tutorial


© Barb's Playground  01 /02 /11

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This tutorial was done using PSP X but can be adapted to any version of PSP. Some screen shots have been reduced in size. There are many ways to do text on a curve and this tutorial will show you several ways. We will start using the very basic way of doing it and then learn a fancier way. If you practice manipulating vector nodes, you can get very creative. You will need:
** Paint Shop Pro - download a trial version here   

** Download my rose image below.
** A working knowledge of PSP 's tools.
** A working knowledge of layers.
** Some knowledge of vectors and vector nodes helps but I will teach you how to do that, if you just have some patience.

Getting started


* I have set up 3 lessons here to show you how to do text on a curve. For each lesson, open up the rose file to start fresh.

You will need to be patient while leaning this if you are new to vectors. You also need to know that when you align your text, it may take you several times to get it the way you want. I constantly keep re-aligning my text until I like it, so don't give up!

* Let's begin! Right click on my rose image below and save as "TocRose" then open the file in PSP. (Note: If you like this rose, you can get the pre-set shape on my site
here :)

*
LESSON 1. Lets start with the most common and easiest way to do text on a curve.

STEP A *
Open up my rose image file if you haven't already.

*
Select your "Preset Shape" tool, "Preset Shape", "Ellipse", background color null, foreground color "black", (Note: the foreground color can be any color but for visual ease while learning, use black).

* Using the settings shown below (make sure retain style is checked) and while holding down your shift key, draw a circle around the rose. NOTE: If you are using PSP X, see the diagram below because you must select your Ellipse shape this way.



* At this point you should see a black circle outline, surrounded by a black square outline. If your circle is not perfectly surrounding the rose, left click on the tiny inner circle and while holding down your left mouse, drag the circle until it is centered around it. See example below.


STEP B * Now for the somewhat tricky part.

* Click on your Text Tool. Select the "Ariel Black" font. (Note: you can use any font, but use this for the sake of following my screen shots.

* NOTE: If using a different version of PSP, you may need to adjust the size of your text. Use the font size of 100. Yep I know it only shows up to 72 size in PSP X, but just click on the size once to blue highlight it and then key in the size you want ... in this case 100.

* Make your foreground color
#6a0102 and your background color #d00004.

* Now Position your cursor on the upper left hand side of the black circle and move it around until you see the letter "A" with a rounded underline and left click once. In your Text Entry box key in "Text on a Curve" and click apply even if you don't like the way the text is positioned. We always apply the first time so that you don't have to keep re-entering the text if you need to re-align the text. After that, you can try again and just cancel on the text box until you get the result you want.

If your text looks like below, continue following the tutorial. If not click on your undo command and repeat the step above until your image looks like below.

STEP C 
* At this point we want to remove the black circle so that only the text shows.
* On your Layers Palette,  left click on the Vector 1's "Plus Sign" (+) to open up the vector layers.
* On the Ellipse Layer, left click on the "Eye" to turn off that layer's visibility.
See below:


* Now right click once on the Vector 1 layer and on the drop down menu, click on "Convert to Raster Layer".
* If you want to move the text, just use your move tool.
* That's it! You are done!

* LESSON 2.  Now we are going to learn how to put the text on the bottom. Thanks to my friend Susy at Animation Lessons , she showed me an easier way to do this so I am modifying this tutorial.

* Repeat
STEP A in LESSON 1.

* Now at the top in your commands, click on "Image", then click on "Flip". See below.


* Like you did in LESSON 1, click on the tiny middle circle and drag your black circle down somewhat below the rose. Your image should look like below.

* Click on your Text Tool. Select the "Ariel Black" font. (Note: you can use any font, but use this for the sake of following my screen shots.

* NOTE: If using a different version of PSP, you may need to adjust the size of your text. Use the font size of 100. Yep I know it only shows up to 72 size in PSP X, but just click on the size once to blue highlight it and then key in the size you want ... in this case 100.

* Make your foreground color
#6a0102 and your background color #d00004.

* Now Position your cursor on the lower left hand side of the black circle and move it around until you see the letter "A" with a rounded underline and left click once. In your Text Entry box key in "Text on a Curve" and click apply even if you don't like the way the text is positioned. We always apply the first time so that you don't have to keep re-entering the text if you need to re-align the text. After that, you can try again and just cancel on the text box until you get the result you want.

If your text looks like below, continue following the tutorial. If not click on your undo command and repeat the step above until your image looks like below.

* Now repeat STEP C in LESSON 1 to remove the black circle and convert the layer to a raster layer. Use your "Move" tool to position it the way you want.

*
LESSON 3. Now we are gonna get a bit more complicated. Open up your rose file.

*Make your background color null, foreground color "black"
* Select your "Pen" tool and then at the top in Mode box, select "Draw Point to Point - Bezier Curves" using the settings shown below.
 

* Position your curser on the left side above the rose and left click once. Move your curser up and over to the right and left click again. Repeat this process until you see 5 nodes like the example below.



* If your nodes are not lined up correctly, left click on a node and while holding down your left click, drag the node to the position you want. Do this with each node until you have it like the example above.

* Double left click on any node, (this will select all nodes) then right mouse click once. On the drop down menu select "Node Type", then select "Asymmetric". Your black line should be more rounded. See shots below:
       

* Click on your Text Tool. Select the "Ariel Black" font. (Note: you can use any font but use this for the sake of following my screen shots.)

* NOTE: If using a different version of PSP, you may need to adjust the size of your text. Use the font size of 100. Yep I know it only shows up to 72 size in PSP X, but just click on the size once to blue highlight it and then key in the size you want ... in this case 100.


* Make your foreground color #6a0102 and your background color #d00004.

* Now Position your cursor on the left hand side of the black curved line and move it around until you see the letter "A" with a rounded underline and left click. In your Text Entry box key in "Text on a Curve" and click apply even if you don't like the way the text is positioned. We always apply the first time so that you don't have to keep re-entering the text if you need to re-align the text.  After that, you can try again and just cancel on the text box until you get the result you want.

If your text looks like below, (Note: You can use your "Move" tool to position it where you want), continue following the tutorial. If not click on your undo command and repeat the step above until your image looks like below.


* And of course we now know how to hide the black line and then convert the vector layer to a raster layer.

CONGRATULATIONS! You DID IT!

In Conclusion
There are lots of ways to position and shape your text by learning more about vector nodes/bezier curves. You can take LESSON 3 and before you convert the vector layer to a raster layer,  click on the nodes and drag them all over the place and watch your text do a dance lol! The main thing is to not be afraid of vectors. They take practice, but is it not worth doing that to become more of a creative artist?
 
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and that it stimulated your creative juices. If you have any questions or problems, don't hesitate to email me.
                                                                            

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