Enhancing Your Layouts
by Ruby Rynne
Part two: Old fashioned white photo borders – the quick way
In the last tutorial we looked at matting a photograph with a plain colour or a patterned paper. In this tutorial I will show you how to use a Photoshop command (also supported by other softwares) to quickly add an old-fashioned white border to your photos, or any other shape, text or object.
Let’s open our layout again, with the background paper and plain photo in place.
First we need to select the photo. In Photoshop, press your CTRL (PC) or Control (Mac) key and click the thumbnail of the photo in the layers palette. You should see the marching ants around the photo. Now create a new layer above the photo.
Make sure your front colour chip is set to white. To reset your colour chips, press D, and to bring white to the front, press X.
Now we will go to the Edit menu and choose Stroke.
I’ve chosen 28px width, the size of the stroke you choose will depend on the size of the image you want to apply the border to. Select Inside as the location (I will show you why in a moment), and leave the blend mode and opacity at the default or Normal and 100%. Click OK.
And there is our white border! It’s still on a separate layer so you can remove it, move it, clip paper to it, whatever you want. When you’re happy with the border, just merge it’s layer with the photo layer and you’re done.
So why Inside? Well, it’s to do with the mathematics of the stroke function. Let’s see what happens if I use the exact same settings but with Outside selected as the stroke Location.
As you can see, the corners have been rounded off. And not very attractively! If you do want to make your photo corners or border corners rounded, this isn’t the best way to do it, and I will show you a technique that works perfectly in a future tutorial.
OK, so now we know how to add a border to a picture to make it look like an old-fashioned photograph. What else can we do with this technique?
Let’s have a look at titling for your layout. I’ve started with a word – Sisters – and I’ve used Bickham Pro Script in a pink that co-ordinates with my background paper. It ‘s a pretty font, but it doesn’t show up very well on my page.
Following the steps we used for the photo border, I’ll add a white stroke to the text. I’m going to put the stroke on a new layer just as I did before, but this time I will use a Outside location. There are not sharp corners, so it won’t make the text look cut off, and using an Inside location would impinge on the text too much.
Much better! Now I just need to add a drop shadow. First I will merge the text layer and the stroke layer. Then I’ll add my drop shadow using Photoshop preset parameters.
In Part Three I will show you another way to add strokes in Photoshop and an extra step that adds depth to layout titles.
Supplied: Sisterology Page Kit by Ruby Rynne, photo courtesy of Photoshop Creative.
© 2009 Ruby Rynne