Pracken's Paint Shop Pro Tutorials

Easy Sleighbells


Here's a tutorial for some easy sleighbells. You'll make everything from scratch.

For this tutorial, you will need the following:

Paint Shop Pro. This tutorial was written for versions 10 (PSP X), 9 and 7.04 You can download the latest PSP version demo here.

Step 1. Open up a new image 100 x 400, white background.

Step 2.Set your foreground and background to color #662a2a. Choose your preset shapes tool>rectangle, "create on vector" checked.

Draw a rectangle approximately 32 x 290 (watch the numbers at the bottom of your screen).

You're going to do one very simple editing step. Right click on the image>convert to path. Right click again>edit mode. You'll now see 4 little boxes in each corner - each of these box is a node. Choose your pen tool. [Note: PSP 7 users: click your object selector tool, then Node Edit ].

Move your mouse over the line at the bottom, hold down your "Ctrl" key, and click in about the middle of the line to add a node. It's circled in red in the screenshot below (note: in the screenshot, I've turned visibility of the layer off so you can see them better).

Now just pull the node (the one you just added) down a bit, like this. Right click>apply. [Note: PSP 7 users: right click>quit node editing].


Step 2. Go to your layers palette and right click on the image you drew>convert to raster layer.

Choose your selections tool>rectangle. Draw a rectanle all around the strap shape you drew. Then click inside it to select it. You'll see the marquee ("marching ants") around it.

Go to effects>texture effects>fine leather, and apply the settings in the screenshot.

Go to effects>3d effects>inner bevel, and apply the settings in the screenshot.


Step 3. Add a new layer and place it underneath your strap. Set your foreground to a gold gradient of your choice (one comes with PSP), background to null. Choose your preset shapes tool>circle, using the settings in the screenshot.

Draw a small circle at the top of your strap. Apply an inner bevel, using same settings as before.

Step 4. Add a new layer. Change your foreground color to null, background to your gold gradient. Choose your preset shapes tool>circle again, same settings, except change the width to 1. Draw two small circles, like this.

Step 5. Add a new layer. Choose your preset shapes tool>circle again. Draw a small circle for the bell (hold down your shift key while drawing to make it perfectly round).

I applied an inner bevel to mine, but that's optional. I used the same settings as before, except change the smoothness to 100.

Step 6. Add a new layer. Set foreground color to black. Choose your pen tool>draw freehand. Draw an opening shape in the center of your bell. Use your paintbrush to paint in the center part after you've drawn it. You should have something similar to this:

Step 7. Hide all layers except for your bell pieces. Merge visible layers. Turn all layers back on. Now just duplicate your bell layer as many times as you want (right click on the layer>duplicate), and move the pieces into position as you like.

Step 8. Save a copy of your image now as a master PSP file with all layers intact.

Then go back to your image. Delete the background and merge visible layers. Save as a transparent psp file.

Step 9. Now if you want to make different color variations, you can just open up your master psp image. Duplicate your strap layer and change the color as you wish - use a filter of your choice, or you can go to adjust>hue and saturation>hue/saturation/lightness and change the colors there. Just make as many color variations as you wish, then merge each strap layer with all the other pieces and save each one as a separate transparent psp file.

Step 10. If you want to assemble yours like mine above, just open up an image about 300 x 400, white background. Copy and paste each of your sleighbells onto it as new layers. Add a new layer. Choose the streamer tube that comes with PSP and draw a ribbon at the top of one of the sleighbells. Erase bits to make it look as though the ribbon is going through the ring at the top of your bell. Just repeat this for each of the other bells you've added to your image.

I've made the background using the spruce tube in PSP. Just add a new layer and place it underneath all the other layers (except the background). Add your tube. Then lower the opacity of the layer down to about 40.

I've also applied a drop shadow to each of my bells.

When satisifed, hide the background and merge all visible layers.

And that's all there is to it. You now have some pretty sleighbells for the holiday season, and you made them all from scratch!

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This tutorial was created on November 17, 2005.
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