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How do I Refine the Edges of a Stroke/Outline?


Dana Alley

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refinetag.jpg
I am working on some tag's with the Pen tool. Notice how the edges are fizzy and a bit rough. What is the best tool/technique to clean this up? My goal is to make custom shapes or brushes with these 'Tag' designs. Thanks!

Dana
 

Davin Salo

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When using the pen tool you kind of always get that jagged effect. But since you're looking to use it as a brush, consider creating an extremely large brush (larger than you intend on using it at, by an extra 200 -500 pixels). Then when you go to use it it should mask the "jaggy" effect.

You could also try mucking around with the "refine edge" tool. Select the shape by "Ctrl+Clicking" on the layer's image in the Layers Palette to get your selection and going to the "Selection" dropdown up top. From there you can go to the submenu for refine edge and test that out. Add a bit of smoothing (1-3 pixels) and maybe pull in your selection a bit (1-2 pixels). Then invert your selection and delete the jaggies!

Hope this helps!
 
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You could always learn how to use the pen tool, and do it as a vector image! This way, the edges will be perfect, and it won't loose quality when enlarging or shrinking it. Vector images are the best thing to use to make brushes in my opinion. Though the pen tool is a bit fiddly to get used to!
 

Dana Alley

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You could always learn how to use the pen tool, and do it as a vector image! This way, the edges will be perfect, and it won't loose quality when enlarging or shrinking it. Vector images are the best thing to use to make brushes in my opinion. Though the pen tool is a bit fiddly to get used to!
I did use the pen tool (as said in my post). But how do I make it a vector image?
 

Davin Salo

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Not a problem :p.

Can you use the pen tool to define a layer? (instead of bitmap information?). I know you can use smart objects and import from illustrator, but have never really messed around doing it inside of photoshop; though I like the idea of keeping it all in one program.
 

Adam McIntyre

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Sorry, but Davin Salo is incorrect.

The Pen tool wil ALWAYS give you a perfect edge. When you "Right Click ›› Make Selection", you need to check the box that says 'Anti-aliased' - this will give you a perfect edge.
 

SeniorS

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For that kinda object to be sure that edges are fine one of the best option (for me) is to use that path to create shape.
1. Select path you made with pen tool.
2. Now add Layer adjusment layer - Solid Color with fill color (in that case that lighter green). That will create shape from that path and it will be vector base so it will be smooth.
3. With that shape active add Layer Blending option Stroke. And choose inside and set darker green color. The bigger stroke you'll use then not smoother it'll became (from one side, you can choose which side it'll be inner or outer). I don't know how to avoid it using effects.

Of course with some shapes you can dublicate them and make one of them smaller with transform path and then it'll be smooth too but stroke width will not be same at all sides.
 

SeniorS

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Hmm, my PS is off (and i so don't want to start it, here is 2am :)), so i'm not 100% sure. But with path and shapes there isn't antialiasing option at all. There is third type in a row of pen tools, and don't remember how it calls, which have antialiasing option but it's not quite vector object anymore (again not 100% sure).
That's all, of course, is correct if you don't use path to create selection, which acttualy isn't necessary.
 

Davin Salo

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Sorry, but Davin Salo is incorrect.

The Pen tool wil ALWAYS give you a perfect edge. When you "Right Click ›› Make Selection", you need to check the box that says 'Anti-aliased' - this will give you a perfect edge.
The man speaks truth. Tried it and it turned my jaggy pen tool lines into perfection. Thanks for the tip Adam!

I suppose I don't typically use the in program pen tool all that often.
 

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