JoshN, you might consider to go through all of Mark's great tutorials. There's also an advantage; if you have questions, you can always post them in this forum and you will get an answer from the Guru himself or any of our members. When Mark has a new tutorial, many of our members try it out which helps Mark to make any minor corrections if needed.
[doh] HELP!! ... was following the tutorial and came unstuck ... so I went to Gausians version and came unstuck on step 4 ... have posted a screen grab of where it starts to go wrong ... note also that my squiggly circle has automatically filled with my forground colour[innocent] .... [confused] [confused] [note I'm using PS7]
Namvet, make sure that you've got your Freeform Pen Tool set to "paths"... as in image below. You're so far okay based on the screen shot that you submitted. Click OK at that point and you will see the "marching ants" on Layer 2. Invert the selection and fill with white... then continue as per Gauss' instructions, starting at 5.
Last part of Step 8, Now hold CTRL and click on "layer 3" to select it, hit DELETE about 4 times to remove all the black, Do NOT lose the selection.
When pressing Delete, the black does not disappear. I've reworked steps 7 & 8 about 10 times now, amking double-sure that I'm doing exactly what Guassian wrote. Tried holding down CTRL while deleting, but that fills, not deletes. For some reason I think the either my pen is wrong or the inverse isn't working.
EDIT: In step 4 you create a new layer before using the pen. In step 7 you use the pen before creating the layer. I've done it both ways now in trying to create the shadow. Neither works.
JoshN, layer 3 is your "shadow layer". Make sure that you have nothing else selected after you've filled this selection with black. Then press CTRL & click on this layer. The "marching ants" should be around your shadow. You need to "delete" this filled selection 3-4 times to completely remove the black fill. Then... leave the selection going and use the gradient tool just like you did for the highlight (layer 2) only this time filling the selection with the black to transparency gradient.
Always make sure during every step that the right layer is active (brush icon). If the wrong layer is active, you will delete the selected area from that layer instead, many times without even noticing it.
[confused] Okay... now I'm confused 'cause this isn't making any sense! IF the marching ants are around your selection on layer 3 (as they appear to be in the image that you posted), pressing the 'Delete' key will empty that selection of its black pixels.
Just a thought... Are you sure that you're not inadvertently holding down the CTRL key too? Instead of the 'Delete' key, try the 'Backspace' key... [confused]
Like I wrote at the top of my "corrected" tutorial; I did it in PS7
In PS 7 I don't need to turn off the path, but it seems that you're using an older version. In that case right click on the path and select Turn off path. Now try again. I think that you had the same problem with the highlight, but in that case you didn't notice it, because the color of the filled selection and background are both white.
OK, it's working now. Things that I had to do in PS 5.5 to get it to work:
1. Before starting with the shadow a deselect must be done. It never states that.
2. Turn off path must be used before the delete command will work.
A BIG THANKS to both of you. As soon as I'm finished I'll post up the product. I can tell it will already need some refinement, but it's working.
Great Josh and good of you NOT to give up. The first steps are always the most difficult ones and with the solutions that you've found for a few of the obstacles you have more understanding on how to tackle these same problems in the future. Maybe you should try the same tutorial again, but this time without any instructions. If you feel comfortable with these techniques it's on to the next one. Trust me Josh, give it a few weeks (not even months) and you'll be amazed to see how much you have improved.