3-D Logos in Photoshop
        by Bryan Gettman aka UNFLUX : 2 April 2004

Introduction -
Time to let out the big secret!  I've been asked numerous times how I was able to create a 3-D logo for a couple of my sites, without using a 3-D program.  Well NOW IS THE TIME!

This is so much easier than people make it out to be.  It's a few quick steps, and you're on your way.  It's also very flexible so you can build off of the original idea to integrate it into your site design or digital art.

Here is an example of what we are going to create:

[ what the final product will be ]

Creating a 3-D Logo -
The following steps will explain how to create a 3-D logo using only Photoshop.

  1. Open Photoshop and start a new Image. Our example uses a canvas size of 320x320.  You can make it any size you need, but I recommend starting fairly large to begin.

  2. Make a new layer by going to the main menu at the top, and select Layer/New Layer (or Ctrl+N).  This will be the layer we put your logo on.

  3. Insert your logo in the middle of the canvas, making sure it's on the New Layer, and not on the Background Layer:

[ logo ready to go 3-D ]

For the highlights to look correctly, it is important that you choose black as the color to start your logo.  If you have a plain, black & white version of your logo, that would work best for this effect.  Using black gives a more natural look to the highlights than starting out in your desired color.
  1. Once your logo is on the canvas and its own layer, go to the Main Menu and select Edit/Transform/Skew. Drag out the bottom corners to make your image look similar to this, and hit ENTER to accept the changes:

[ use free transform to skew the image ]

You can also right-click on the logo itself and select Free Transform from the popup menu.  Then right-click again to select the Skew option.  This is a good shortcut a quite a few menus in Photoshop.
  1. Next, re-open the Free Transform Menu and select Scale to reduce the height of the logo a little.  You want to squeeze it down to give it a little more perspective, and once we've done the next few steps, you'll get a better idea why.  Make the image look like this one, and hit ENTER to accept the changes:

[ squeeze down the image ]

  1. Move your logo so it's in the middle of the canvas by dragging it with the Move Tool .  Now your image should look similar to mine:

[ logo with some perspective ]

  1. Now it's time to add some dimension and shape to the logo, so we're going to add a slight emboss to it.  On the Main Menu, choose Filter/Stylize/Emboss.  Set the properties panel to something similar to this:

[ bevel and emboss settings ]

  1. After you apply the Emboss filter, your image should look similar to this one:

[ logo with bevel and emboss ]

The next page will continue from this step and teach you some cool tricks also.



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