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  Cool Type Effect With Canvas™ 7
Part One

Deneba Canvas 7 features SpriteEffects™, a new technology that allows editable live effects on vector, paint and text objects. This is a huge advance and can only be fully appreciated when you see how these effects can be used. You can create finished works for both print or screen displays directly from Canvas or you can port them to other applications and use them for other projects. This tutorial is only a tiny sampling of what's possible.


Here's how it works. Live effects are available on a number of graphics applications - Macromedia® Fireworks® and Adobe® ImageReady® just to name two. Live effects are simply effects that are removable and editable. For example, you can apply a bevel effect to a paint object, then remove it or change it without affecting the pixels of the paint object and having to completely recreate it from scratch. You can attach more than one effect to an object, reorder them, add more or remove them at will. This is a major advance for productivity and creative freedom.

But Canvas is unique because of its integrated bitmap and vector environment. As a result, these effects can now be used in print media as well as for screen presentations such as web pages. This tutorial will explore the creation of a type effect in Canvas, then we will port this effect over to Adobe Photoshop® and Adobe InDesign®. You don't need InDesign or Photoshop to do this tutorial. I chose to include examples of how to port these effects over to these applications just to illustrate how flexible these effects are.

The rendered SpriteEffects themselves are pixel-based (bitmaps). When an effect is applied, it doesn't change the object. A new bitmap image is rendered. You can adjust the resolution of the rendered effect. You can select a high resolution and use the effect in a print project. If you apply an effect to a vector object, you can resize the object and achieve a perfect rendering with no loss in quality.

There's more good news. You can use third party plug-ins for these effects. Most Photoshop-compatible plug-ins are supported by Canvas (some are not). This another huge benefit. For most users with a variety of these plug-ins, all they need to do is get Canvas 7 and point to the plug-ins folder in the preferences setup. So let's get started.

What You Will Need For This Tutorial

This tutorial uses the Extensis® PhotoBevel plug-in. The people at Extensis have generously made this plug-in available for free. You can download it from their web site at http://www.extensis.com. If you do have Photoshop, install it in the Photoshop Plug-Ins folder. If you don't have Photoshop, then install it or move it to a different folder and point to this folder in the preferences setup.

This tutorial uses the font, Mistral - which is included in the full version of Canvas on the installation CD*. You need to install this font and make it available to Canvas. If you don't have this font, then you can pick a similar one.

*Font packages may vary. Check it out for yourself before buying anything.

1. First, if the PhotoBevel plug-in was installed in the Photoshop Plug-Ins folder, you need to point to that folder in the preferences setup. Start Canvas 7 and click File > Preferences and select the "Painting" tab. Click the "Plug-ins" button and navigate to the folder on your hard drive that contains the plug-in. This change doesn't take effect until the next time you start Canvas, so you have to exit the program and restart it.

2. When you restart Canvas you will see the following dialog:

You need to click the "Load" button to activate the plug-in and make it available to Canvas.

  Note: If you hand off a Canvas file to a service provider that uses a third party plug-in for a SpriteEffect, that same plug-in must be installed on their hard drive for the effect to be rendered.

3. Select the Text tool and type the word "Mistral" anywhere on the layout area.

4. Choose the Selection tool and the new text object will be selected.

5. If the Text Ruler isn't active, click Layout > Display > Show Text Ruler. Click the drop down arrow next to the font box.

6. Choose Mistral for the font, then click the drop down arrow for the point size.

7. Choose 72 for the point size.

8. This is what your new text object should look like. The text should appear black if the default pen ink is black.

Click Here To Continue...


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