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Creating a Trading Card Game Frame


Corpse

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Hello
I'm not an expert at Photoshop by any means, but I know how to put a text in a box or cut someone's eyebrows out :mrgreen:

Right now I'm trying to make a frame/template for my own game. I don't want anything too fancy, I was just trying to put a few boxes around and ended up with something that won't make your eyes puke.

The problem is: it's too plain, too simple. The reason is I was just using boxes and shapes, adding borders, changing opacity and texture, that was all.

But take a look at this card from Magic. As you can see, there are little small details, like the art popping out (is that bevel and emboss?); the borders on the boxes are smooth and nice to see (instead of mine, which no matter the opacity or color, they would be horrible to see); even the extreme border, inside the card itself, there's a small 1-2 pixel line that makes the whole card popping out.

www.photoshopgurus.com.jpg

Now: how do I make all these little details? How can I make a box that pops out like the one in the image, or the smooth stroke in the textbox? As I said, putting stroke at 50% opacity, or changing the color, won't really do much. Hope some of you can give me some tips, thanks a lot cheers :naughty:
 
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IamSam

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Hello and welcome to PSG.

There are many ways this can be accomplished but I want to explain one of the easiest.

This applies to the card on the left.

These can be created in layers with layer styles applied to each layer.

Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 8.19.51 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 8.20.11 AM.png

Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 8.20.33 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 8.20.48 AM.png

The text with it's effects would be the uppermost layers.
 

IamSam

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I have to run to work now, but I will create a quick tutorial later tonight if needed.
 

Corpse

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Hello Iam, thanks for your answers.
I wanted to show you my first draft for the frame, I will attach it to my post.

Example.png

As you can see, it's nothing special. The image is scaled down: I found out that working at a bigger resolution and then reducing image size by 60%, 80%, gives it a nice feel, while keeping the text still readable. But look at the boxes: they are flat and nearly boring to look at. I just made them with some shapes (PS: I can't use the pen tool :mrgreen:)
Following your instructions I managed to make a skeleton for the template, but I can't really do more than this.
PSG copy.png
This is how I actually would like my template: clean, but still nice to look at. Overlays and filler patterns are not applied, it's just a green color. I used the pillow bevel. I made a mask for the main green body with a square, so I can place the image at the bottom. The space below the picture should contain symbols related to the card, and the main rule text is the big one down there obviously. Would love to make the borders of the rule box, the image (which are actually the border of the green fill cut out) a bit better, and maybe adding a small effect right near the black borders of the card, which right now is just the effect of the bevel on the green fill.

I would certainly love a tutorial or more in depth explanation (especially with overlays/patterns/textures and layer styles, since I always get a headache when I try to apply a bevel :thumbsup:)

Cheers - (images are placeholders)
 
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IamSam

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I would certainly love a tutorial or more in depth explanation
I'm never sure what folks mean when using the term template. I think your really meaning mock-up.

Your on the right track so I don't know that a tutorial would help you much for now.

What I can do is let you look at my PSD that I used to create this:

Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 11.04.47 PM.png

This will give you some basic ideas about layer structure, grouping, as well as my layer style settings that you can study.

In my mock-up, everything is editable! I used shapes, smart objects, and clipping masks. To add a new texture, just import it into Ps and place it in a layer above the current texture and clip. You don't even need to deactivate the previous texture layer since only the new one will be visible.

I could have made much better use of smart objects, but I wanted to keep it somewhat easier to understand.

Here is the PSD download.

Let me know if you have any questions!
 

Corpse

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That's a really nice starting point, thanks a lot. Just a few questions

a) How are the borders added? I tried adding a Stroke as layer style but, of course, the stroke doesn't go outside the bevel. My only solution is to make another layer in the same group (but still above obviously) and draw the borders manually? I'm talking about borders in the art box, as you can see outside the bevel/shadow effect, there are little borders and they do make the card look nicer
b) Any way I could make the bevel of the art box squared? The corners in your example are rounded, playing with the settings didn't help, so there has to be a way to make it which I'm unaware of

Sorry for my english if anything is unclear, thanks for the psd and the help !
 

IamSam

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Corpse said:
a) How are the borders added? I tried adding a Stroke as layer style but, of course, the stroke doesn't go outside the bevel. My only solution is to make another layer in the same group (but still above obviously) and draw the borders manually? I'm talking about borders in the art box, as you can see outside the bevel/shadow effect, there are little borders and they do make the card look nicer.
Sorry, which borders on what card? There are many cards in this thread.


Corpse said:
b) Any way I could make the bevel of the art box squared? The corners in your example are rounded, playing with the settings didn't help, so there has to be a way to make it which I'm unaware of.
Edit: I didn't like the transparency of that technique, let me try another.

OK, on a new layer above the Layer 2 group, I set up my guidelines to the proper depth of the squared bevel I wanted.
I then made selections of each bevel (seen at left) and used the Gradient Tool to add the shading. I did this for each of the bevels.
Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 6.14.51 PM.png

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 6.19.53 PM.png
 

Corpse

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Sorry Sam, I meant these kind of borders.
From my point of view, I think they could just be added on top of the bevel and all the other effects, and maybe play with their color/opacity. What do you think? I'm sure there has to be another more practical way, this is the kind of "brute force" way of doing things :banghead:

brd.png
 

Corpse

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Yes! That does the trick, it's those little details I was missing!
How would you add something like that? I really have no idea how to work with layer styles, drop shadow and stroke are the only ones I use sadly

This last picture is really nice looking
 

IamSam

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Sorry did not see your post.

On a new layer, I again used the guidelines to create a white template.
Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 6.33.19 PM.png

I added a layer style to this layer and added a stroke.
Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 6.33.32 PM.png

I then lowered the layer FILL to 0%.
(Since the fill percentage does not affect the layer style effects, they will still be visible)
Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 6.33.53 PM.png

I repeated the process for the inner edge.
 

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