Monday, September 06, 2010

My First Watermark

Only recently have I started to watermark the images which I post on this blog. When I started out, I'd just open the image in Adobe Photoshop or GIMP and create a text layer. Then manually typing in my blog address using the font Calibri and adjusting the transparency and colour depending on the background colour of the image. And finally when I'm satisfied with the visibility of the watermark, flattening the layers and saving as a JPEG or GIF (depending on the nature of the image).

I think this method is the most basic way of adding a watermark to your images (oh wait! the most elementary way is opening it in Paint and adding text in). However I found that my watermarks didn't look uniformed because when I switched from using Photoshop to Gimp and vice versa, the font looked slightly different. Not to mention the size and colour of the watermarks varied in degrees.

So I finally decided to Google up on how to create my own watermark using Photoshop. After a basic search I found 2 sites to guide me on my maiden attempt. One site instructed how to create a watermark and store it as a Pattern in Photoshop so that you can add it to your image in a tile-like style. And the other taught of how to create a watermark and save it in a PNG-24 format and later upload it to your website server system which is able to add the watermark to all images on your site. I didn't fancy the tile-like watermarking technique and I don't know whether that automatic watermarking system works on Blogger, so I decided to take the best from both sites and added in a little vector drawing to make my own watermark.

So this is basically what I did:

  1. Open a new canvas, specify the desired width and height, select a transparent background
  2. Add a text layer, adjusting its position, size, font style and colour and also its intensity (I used black, solid)
  3. On a different canvas, open an image of a periwinkle and add a new layer
  4. Using the magnetic vector tool, trace the outline of half the periwinkle on the new layer
  5. Add colour (black) to the selected area (the tracing of the periwinkle) using the paint fill option
  6. Then adjust the transparency of the shape (periwinkle) - making sure that the correct layer was selected
  7. When satisfied with the colour intensity, use the magic wand selection tool to select the shape and copy it (Ctrl + C) to the clipboard
  8. Going back to the watermark canvas, paste (Ctrl + V) the periwinkle shape, creating a new pasted layer
  9. To edit the flower size, position and angle, right-click the pasted image and clicked free transform to rotate it and resize it (make sure the X and Y-axes perspective is locked) and move it to the desired position
  10. When done, click the tick to confirm the transformation actions
  11. My watermark has a portion where the periwinkle shape overlaps the text. For this, I rasterised the text layer (after which, no further text editing is available), and used the magic wand selection tool to select the letter 'h'. Then I used the eraser tool to empty out the solid black colour. With the selection still active, I selected the pasted periwinkle shape layer and erased the semi-transparent black colour - this leaves a 'h' hole in both layers.
  12. When all editing is completed, flatten all the visible layers and save as a PNG file
  13. If you are using Photoshop, you will need to transfer your project to InDesign to add in the watermark and then import it back to Photoshop to flatten the image and save as a JPEG file. If you are using Gimp, the watermark can be added without having to export/import to an external software
This is an example of the final product of my first watermark project.

View of Subang Jaya from the flyover (while driving home from work)

P.S: Hopefully I'll be able to actually finish the post which spurred me to create this watermark... i.e. some tales from my vacation :P

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