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Photoshop Styles: Inset

Creating an inlaid metallic effect in Photoshop 7 and CS By Dave Nagel
We've covered a number of graphic effects in Adobe Photoshop, but most of them are destructive to your original artwork. This week we go back to some Photoshop basics to explore Layer Styles for the creation of a metallic, molten inlaid effects. Why? Well, Layer Effects are non-destructive, so you can apply them to text, for example, without having to rasterize. And you can save your styles to create your own variations that you can easily recall later.

Everything we'll use in this tutorial is included with the basic Photoshop package an will work with version 7.0 or CS. No third-party tools are required, though I should note that there are commercial filters that will allow you to create this effect with more detail and variation, such as DreamSuite from Auto FX.

Creating the inner portion of the effect
To begin, launch Photoshop and create a layer with a transparent background. Apple text or paint to the layer just so that you have something to preview when you're creating your Layer Style. I'll use text for now. (A serif font will look good with this effect. In my case, I'm using Adobe's Warnock Pro.) I'll also add in a white layer in the background just so that it's easier for you to see what's going on, but you don't need to do this.

Now, with your new text layer selected, choose Layer > Layer Style > Bevel and Emboss. This will call up the Layer Styles dialog. Set the Style to Inner Bevel, the Technique to Chisel Hard and the Depth to somewhere near maximum. For now you can leave the size at default because you'll need to adjust it to suit your specific object. Do, however, change the Gloss COntour to "Ring Double," as shown below. And make sure you turn on anti-aliasing.

Next we want to add some contour to the bevel, so choose the Contour option and adjust the Contour and/or Range options until you have a gloss you like. (Again, this will likely be something you'll adjust to suite your particular object.)

Now in the Bevel and Emboss area, we're going to add in a texture. Click the Texture option, and choose one of the preset textures that's sort of round and bubbly. There are many to choose from, or you could use your own. Whether you choose to invert it or not will, again, depend on your object.

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