187. Create Metallic Text
Before You Begin
98 Apply a Layer Style
183 Add a Text Caption or Label
188 Create Text That Glows
189 Emboss Text
Sometimes, plain text is just not what you are looking for to set off an image. Photoshop Elements provides several different effects for modifying the text on your image, including an effect that makes the text look like chunks of metal.
You can find the available effects on the Styles and Effects palette on the right side of the Editor window. If you do not see the Styles and Effects palette, open it by selecting Window, Styles and Effects from the menu bar. The palette contains many effects, filters, and layer styles you can apply to text, including many metallic textures. To apply these textures, you may have to select the text first, or simplify it (convert it to raster data). See 96 Simplify a Layer. Here you'll learn how to apply a simple brushed metal effect.
Some text effects, including Brushed Metal, are made possible by Photoshop Elements's vast array of custom layer styles. When you attribute a layer style to a layer (whether or not you intended to in the first place), in the Layers palette, a lowercase f icon appears to the right of the layer's name. Click this icon to make adjustments to the style. See 98 Apply a Layer Style for more about finding and using custom layer styles.
Other metallic textures you might try include the Chrome filter; the Gold Sprinkles and Rusted Metal effects; and the Wow Chrome, Brushed Metal, Diamond Plate, Copper, Chrome Fat, Rivet, or Molten Gold layer styles.
Open an image in the Editor in Standard Edit mode and save it in Photoshop (*.psd) format. On the Layers palette, select the layer below which you want the text layer to appear. The text layer will be inserted above the layer you choose.
Select the Type tool from the Toolbox and add text to your image. It doesn't matter what foreground color you use to create the text; all the Brushed Metal effect cares about is the shape of the text. See 183 Add a Text Caption or Label for more information on adding text.
For most tasks, you'll want to use a font with enough size and body to be recognized by the eye as metallic. The exception, as you'll see in this example, is when one passage of text accompanies a larger passage with a bolder, thicker style. In such a case, the smaller text can participate in the effect along with the larger text that substantiates the effect.
Display Text Effects
In the Styles and Effects palette, select the Effects option from the first drop-down list. From the second drop-down list, select Text Effects. The palette changes to show thumbnails for the various text effects from which you can choose.
Apply Brushed Metal Effect
In the Layers palette, select the text layer. Double-click the Brushed Metal thumbnail in the Styles and Effects palette.
The effect is applied to your text. The Brushed Metal effect is actually a combination of several different filters. Photoshop Elements applies each filter to your text to create the effect of metallic text.
You can remove the effect from your text by right-clicking the layer in the Layers palette and selecting the Clear Layer Style option from the context menu that appears.
Customize the Style
To customize the effect for any passage of text in your image, in the Layers palette, double-click the f icon next to that layer's name. The Style Settings dialog box appears.
You can adjust the Lighting Angle for the text by typing a value in the field or twisting the Lighting Angle knob. To ensure that the text is given the same lighting angle as all other 3D effects in the image, enable the Use Global Light check box. You can adjust the bevel size by dragging the Bevel slider or by typing a value. The Bevel Direction option designates whether the appearance of the metal bevel is raised (Up) or lowered (Down). Click OK.
View the Result
When you're satisfied with the image, save the PSD file. Then merge the layers together (if any) and resave the result in JPEG or TIFF format, leaving your PSD image unflattened so that you can return at a later time and make different adjustments if you want.
For this example, I created two text passages and gave them both the Brushed Metal text effect. Behind these text layers is a simple rectangle to which I applied the Wow-Chrome layer style. (See 98 Apply a Layer Style for details.) Both passages use variants of a font called Copperplate (which is not shipped with Photoshop Elements). To make A.J.'s metal plate stand out from the rectangular metal plate, I increased A.J.'s Bevel size to 8.
To create gold text, apply one the Wow Chrome layer styles, then group it with a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer that you use to colorize the text with a Hue of 59, Saturation of 58, and Lightness of -26.
To help the text layers incorporate some of the lighting effects from the chrome layer beneath them, I changed their blend modes to Color Dodge. This mode uses the color of one layer to lighten the color of the one beneath it. See 111 About Tool Options for a discussion of blend modes and how they work.