Rising Hat Tutorial
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This tutorial is the first in a series of three hat tutorials moving about a name. You can access the other two tutorials at the bottom of this page.
I did this tutorial in PSP version 9, but I am sure the technique would work in other versions as well.
Within the zip are 5 various green hats, a couple of top hats in different styles and a derby. They are each on individual pspimages made in Version 9. You may save them in a folder for pspimages, or you can tube them. In doing this tutorial, I used them from my tubes at the scale at 100. You can use the size your are comfortable with or works with your name. To enlarge the hats, you might want to resize with Image/Resize and with percentage at Smart Size - this might keep the jaggies at a minimum. If you do get jaggies, remember to use the soften brush to soften them, or whatever method works best for you.
Open a new transparent image, 300x300. Flood fill it with white, and name it wht bg.
Add a new raster layer, if you are using a hat from your picture tubes, name it hat 1. If you are copying and pasting as a new layer, rename the layer after you have pasted the hat. We need the hat on the image to judge the size of your name, for it is easier to change the size while the letters are still in vectors to avoid blurring, jaggies, etc. For this first hat image, be sure to center it on your image. If using it as a tube, place your cursor over 150x150. If you are copying and pasting, it will automatically be centered.
Activate your first layer, the "wht bg" and add a new vector layer naming it name.
Choose the font you want, and the color/colors. I am using a font named DownWind. My name only has five (5) letters, so I am using size 48 for mine. You will have to make adjustments according to the length of your name, but you can do that with lowering the hat over your name.
I used #025c02 for my stroke and #04be04 for my fill. You can use any color/colors - even not using a stroke color, if that is what you prefer.
Type your name centered and near the bottom of the image, as in the screen shot.
Using your Mover Tool, move your hat straight down to be sure it covers all the letters of your name. If your name sticks out any, just use the Text tool on the name layer to bring the width in so that it is covered by the hat or you can enlarge the hat. Even though you have the hat covering your name, you can still move the text even if you can't see all of it. It won't disturb the hat layer at all. The screen shot will show you what it will look like if you have to do this. The box you see shows just where my name is under the hat.
If your name is well covered, we can go on to the next step. Activate your hat layer, right click and duplicate it. Click on the hat with the Mover tool - don't move it, just click it. Watch it closely, if it moves any, click your Undo button. With your up arrow key, tap about 15 times to move the hat straight up. About 15 taps should move it as it shows in the screen shot. Rename the layer hat 2.
Duplicate the "hat 2" layer, go to Adjust/Sharpeness/Sharpen, then click on the new hat layer with the Mover tool, and again tap the Up arrow key about 15 times. Rename this layer hat 3.
Repeat this process until you have 5 hat layers. Turn the visibility off to layers "hat 1" through "hat 4" and you should be able to see your entire name with a good amount of clearance at the top. If not, add more hat layers until the hat is about the same distance shown in the screen shot.
Once you have all your hat layers with the final one clearing your name, convert your text (name) to a raster layer.
Time to crop our image and then take it to Animation Shop (AS). Turn all your layers on and using the Crop Tool, trim your image down so you just have the white background making a small frame for your images.
Turn the visibility off to all layers except the "wht bg", "name" and "hat" layers.
Open Animation Shop and minimize it. In PSP, go to Edit/Copy Merged. Go back to AS, Right click on the workspace and Paste as New Animation.
Go back to PSP, turn the visibility off for the "hat 1" layer and turn the visibility on for "hat 2". Edit/Copy Merged and go to AS. Right click on the image and then Left click on Paste/After current frame. At the bottom of your image there is a little arrow - slide it all the way over to the Right. You have to do this arrow-slide each time you paste the new image after the current one.
Repeat this process for each of the other layers. Once you have them all in AS, go back to PSP and do the Copy Merged of all the same layers in reverse. We have the hat rising in the first frames, now we have to lower the hat. If you have 5 frames like I do, you do the Copy Merged on "hat 4" and paste it after Frame 5; then "hat 3", pasting it after Frame 6 and then "hat 2", pasting it after Frame 7. We only need one frame of the first and the last layer so we don't need to copy them a second time.
The other way to do it, is to copy the frames one at a time from the one before your last one (with the hat at its highest) and paste them in turn after each succeeding frame.
I have five (5) frames from copying my layers, so I copy frame 4 and paste it after frame 5, then copy frame 3 and paste it after frame 6, and so forth until I have all but the first frame copied and pasted again. To do this, it helps to zoom out on the series of frames so that you can see more of what you are doing. Either go to View/Zoom out by 1 or roll your scroll down a little bit on your mouse.
Note: To copy a frame, Right click on the frame you want to copy, a window will come up and click on Copy. Then go to the frame you want this copied frame to be pasted after, Right click on it, and go to Paste/After current frame.
Remember to slide your little arrow after each paste so that you are pasting after the correct current frame.
Once you have all of your frames ready, go to Edit/Select All. You will see all the frames outlined in blue. Go to Animation/Frame Properties.
Change the number to 15. Go to Edit/Select None. Right click on frame 1, go to Frame Properties, change the number to 100. Do the same with the frame that has your hat at its highest - for me that is Frame 5.
Click on your Animation icon in the top tool bar and watch your hat rise up and down. If this looks like you want it, click on the icon again to stop the animation and go to File/Save As - this will save and optimize your animated image.
Note: In viewing mine, I played with the animation speed a bit, as it seemed a bit jerky. I tried 13, better, but still some fine jerks! So I went back to 10 and kept the first and "middle" frame at 100. So be sure to play with your speeds a bit to get what you want, don't take my word for it! I have noticed with fewer frames you do have to reduce your speeds some to get a smoother animation, and sometimes to use say 25 on one, then 20 on the next and so forth will smooth it so you don't have to reduce all to the same number.
Thank you for trying this tutorial! If you would like to try the other two hat tutorials in this series of three, just click on the name of the tutorial.
Bouncing Derby Tutorial
Flipping Hat Tutorial
This tutorial was written Feb 28, 2008.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any comments or questions. Send email to susie