Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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The world’s biggest post about Photoshop (PSDs, textures, tutorials, patterns, shapes, brushes and…)

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Ok, this is a really particular post.

I’m working to create one of the biggest post about Photoshop (you know, i love this software…).

It is “in progress” which means that i will update it every time i’ll find new cool things. JUST FREE COOL THINGS.

If you want to participate, please, leave a comment with a good link and if you like this post…your vote is always appreciated (Digg it, Add to Delicious, Stumble This)!

UPDATE (august 9th): At this moment there are 50 links

70 Beauty-Retouching Photoshop Tutorials

15 Amazing Photoshop Text Effects

41 Nicest Photo Effects

45 Photo Editing Tutorials for Photoshop

11 Super Awesome Photoshop Movie Effects

15 Photoshop Tutorials for Creating Product Advertisements

70 Horror, Blood and Gore Photoshop Effects and Brushes

18 of the best photoshop videos online

53 Killer Photoshop Illustrator Effects and Tutorials

45 Photoshop Tutorials for Better Navigation

20 Excellent Photoshop Tutorials for Web Designers

27 Best Photoshop Web Layout Design Tutorials to Design Decent Web Layouts

Top 15 Fire effect Photoshop tutorials

Create vector and cartoonish characters: Top 25 Photoshop tutorials

Create an Awesome Illustration Using Custom Brushes

Grunge Textures (2400 pixels x 1800 pixels minimum)

30 Paper Textures

12 Places To Download Free Textures

55 Human Brush Sets

36 cool free textures

300+ Vintage Style Textures

75 Insane High Res Photoshop Brushes

Over 300 high resolution textures

300+ Free Hi-Res grunge textures you’ve never seen before

30 Brilliant Textures

Dinpattern (free to use commercially and non)

400+ High Quality Patterns

18 Excellent Sources for Free Photoshop Patterns

400+ Swirls, Curls, and Fleurons

35 FREE abstracts and cool Photoshop brushes hand-picked from Deviantart

25 New Brushes hand-picked from DeviantArt - Round 2

Brushes Download (Various)

100 Awesome High Resolution Photoshop Brushes

64 Beautiful And Free Nature Brush Sets

200+ Free Grunge Photoshop Brushes

Oriental Photoshop Brushes And Vector Images For Mysterious Designs

10 Swirls & Decorative Brush Sets


Psd Freebee (Various)

Official PSDS (Various)

My (free) professional template for you

14 Amazing Free Photoshop .psd Resource Sites

iPhone interface psd

Spider Man 3 Logo

860 Shapes

8940 Custom shapes

Foliage Shapes

1000 Web 2.0 Gradients

1000s of Free Photoshop Plugins & Filters MegaList

The history of Photoshop


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Tutorial: How to make retro/futuristic curves in 10 Steps

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Step 1: Draw Lines in Illustrator

We’re starting off in Illustrator to draw the lines. Create a new document with the dimensions 1920×1200. The other settings don’t really matter since the vectors will be imported into Photoshop anyway. Draw a nice smooth curve with a 4px black stroke. Draw another curve, this time with a 1px black stroke.

Step 2: Blending the curves

Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options and set the Blending Steps to 12. Now select the two curves and hit Object > Blend > Make.
REPEAT STEP 1 and 2 to make another set of curves. Play with the settings until you’re happy with the outcome.
Step 3: Importing the curves into Photoshop

Create a new document in Photoshop. Make it 1920×1200 large and fill the background with a dark grey (I used #161616). Go to Illustrator and drag-and-drop the curves into your Photoshop document. There’s no need to expand the curves. Photoshop will do it for you.
Step 4: Applying Gradient and Glow Effect

Select one of the layers containing the curves and go to the Layer Style Menu. Start of with setting Fill to 0% (Blending Options: Custom). Apply the settings shown below. Don’t worry too much about the gradient colours at the moment. We will adjust the overall colour scheme of the design at a later step.
Right-Click on the layer in the layers palette and choose “Copy Layer Style”. Select the second curves layer and select “Paste Layer Style”. Your image should look similar to the one below.
Step 5: Copy the Curves + Composition

Select the first curves layer and copy it a couple times. Then move the individual layers like I did in the picture below. Group the layers.
Repeat Step 5 with the second curves layer. As you can see I moved the around a bit to get a nicer composition.
To get a smoother cut-off I decided to use a gradient layer mask (on the whole group). Set the gradient to black-to-white and apply it on the mask.
Step 6: Clouds and Colours

Create a new layer on top of everyting. Make sure that Foreground and Background colours are set to Black and White respectively by pressing “D”. Go to Filter > Render > Clouds. Set the Blending Mode to Hue and enter the Layer Style menu. Go to the gradient option and select a colour scheme you like. Set the angle to 135 degrees and make sure to set the Blend Mode to Overlay.
Step 7: Add Textures

Open 2 concrete texures and place them on top of the Background layer. I used textures from the Free Urban Texture Pack. Set one blending mode to Multiply and the other to Overlay.
Step 8: Add Circles

Create a new layer and draw some different sized circles using the Ellipse Tool. Make sure to use the “Shape Layer” mode and select “Add to shape layer” from the menu. Hold down the Shift-key while drawing to get perfect circles.
Step 9: Make Layer Masks

Cmd-Click on the circle layer it in the layers palette to make a selection, then hide the layer. Now select the first Texture layer and hit the mask button. With your selection still intact go to Selection > Inverse. Activate the second Texture layer and hit the mask button again.
Step 10: Final Image and Tweaks

That’s all there is to making a wallpaper like the one for December 08. Add a bit of text if you want to. For other colour schemes you can always add a Hue Adjustment layer.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Tutorial: Wowza Media Server Pro

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Many Java developer tools can be used. I find that Wowza’s own Eclipse-based integrated development environment (IDE) is a very nice tool for the job. It is fast, reliable, and stable. Developers can run Wowza Pro server within the IDE. This is helpful in debug mode (to hit break points and see logging output in the console) and to dynamically compile and drop modules into the appropriate places in the server folders. Wowza IDE is available for Windows or Mac OS X; it is a free download from Wowza’s website.

When developing Wowza modules, start by reading the Creating a Custom Module chapter in the Wowza Pro User Guide. Next read the Wowza IDE User Guide that comes with the IDE. This concise guide covers the basics of the IDE and what you need to know to load a custom module in a Wowza Pro application.

The Server-Side API in the Wowza Server documentation folder is an extensive reference that provides details on various API calls.

The best way to learn is with the “ServerSideModules” example that comes with the server (in the example folder). It includes two Wowza server-side module class files, and Flash client applications that connect to them. The files in this example are very instructive, and any developer getting started with Wowza modules should study them. These examples are the real quick-start guide to Wowza development.

The first Wowza module in this example is MyFirstModule, which is Wowza’s “hello world.” The other example is ModuleServerSide, which is a working index of functions and data types that demonstrate a wide range of ways for Wowza to interact with a Flash client. These examples are very helpful in understanding the overall architecture of a streaming application, and where the web server and Flash client are in relation to Wowza server and applications.

Logging and Monitoring
Wowza Pro installation comes with JConsole, a popular Java Management Extensions (JMX) console that is widely used to monitor Java-based applications. With Wowza Pro it is used for real-time monitoring of local or remote servers.

For logging, Wowza uses the standard W3C Extended Log Format (ECLF). The logs can be parsed for analysis in many ways. For example, the popular log analysis tool Sawmill provides a Wowza-specific module. But you can also read log files in a text editor in order to see what is happening on the server.

Wowza for Amazon EC2
In conclusion, one other licensing option for Wowza Media Server Pro worth mentioning is Wowza Pro for Amazon EC2. This version is available as paid Software as a Service (SaaS) on Amazon’s elastic compute cloud where capacity can be added or reduced on-demand. It is not a simple solution. This service is intended for tech-savvy streamers, not the users who are looking for a CDN turnkey solution. I recently used it to stream a weekend-long live music event from California organized by PeaceRoots Alliance. It worked well and proved to be very economical.

Others seem to find it attractive as well, even for large-scale deployments. One user, Mogulus, an up-and-coming provider of live stream publishing services, deployed some 60,000 producers on the Wowza Pro for EC2 infrastructure.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Drawing and coloring Anime Girl Picture With Photoshop

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The next lesson I'll show you how to scan the contours and separate them from the background, how to create a picture in anime style, looking like a vectorial one.

All that you have to do now is to open a pictured by hand character's contour in a new window: File ? Open (ctrl+o).

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2

Applying the next selection, Image ? Adjustments ? Curves (ctrl+m), clean the picture the way to remain the contours only on it.

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2

Using the Brush Tool of white color, paint out all the unnecessary lines, if it is necessary the new drawing too (setting the same size, the contours have). Use after that the command: Image ? Adjustments ? Threshold.

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2

Get to the next menu: Select ? Color Range and make a click on the white background, just to mark it out.

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2

Erase then the marked region (ctrl+x) to remain only the black contours. Next step includes creating a new layer: Layer ? New ? Layer with the fast button on the Layers window. Move it under the layer containing the contours and paint the doll with the basic colors. Every color must be inserted on a new layer. Choose for this the Brush Tool.

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2

Determine now the light's direction and create the background's layer (paint it with Paint Bucket Tool)

drawing anime girl in adobe Photoshop cs2


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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How To Acces a MySQL Database using PHP

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Notice the Connection Strings. We will be using the PHP connection string. Copy everything but the $dbh= from the PHP connection string and paste it into your PHP file. As you can see below, I have already added the basic HTML to the page. Simply paste the code between the open and close PHP tags.
How to Access MySQL Databases using PHP

To explain the string a little bit:
Mysql_connect – is a built in function to connect to a database
“localost” – tells the server to connect to the local database
“projectc_testuse” – this is my username for the database (be sure to replace it with yours)
” – this is where you need to type in the password for your database user
Or die – will return an error if we cannt connect to the database.
Mysql_select_db (”projectc_Test”); - select the database for use

Now that we have a connection to the database, we will need to build our query. We will be selecting everything from the TestTable we created in the previous tutorial. An asterisks (*) is a wildcard character that means all. So our query will look like this (note: I added comments. They will be in orange).

How to Access MySQL Databases using PHP

What did we do? We created a variable called query. Then we set the variable to be a MySQL query that will select everything from our TestTable.

Now we need to execute the query and display the results.

How to Access MySQL Databases using PHP

Ok. We are creating an array called $row. Using the mysql_fetch_array function we will execute our query and store it to our array so that we can write the data to the page. Echo will write whatever follows to the page.

I will break it down the echo string a little bit here is what we have (check the comments on each line).
How to Access MySQL Databases using PHP

That is it. Save this file with a .php extension. Upload the file to your web server and execute it in your browser. The results should look something like this.
How to Access MySQL Databases using PHP


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Create Cool Photoshop Logo Inspired By Versus cable network

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his Adobe Photoshop tutorial will show you how to create a rounded logo, inspired by the Versus cable network. We will use gradients and layer style to create this logo in Photoshop. This tutorial is great for all Photoshop users from beginners to intermediates.

This is what you will get when you are finished:

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Start off with a new 500×500 pixel document with a background color of black
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now select red(#ff0000) as your foreground color. Create a new layer, then using the Elliptical Marquee, tool draw a perfect circle by holding the shift key while drawing.

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now press alt+backspace to fill the area with red.

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now apply the following layer style to this layer.

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Gradient Overlay:
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Then apply the style and your image should look like this:
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now create a new layer and draw another perfect circle inside the other circle and fill it with black (#000000)
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now we will create another new layer, and draw another smaller circle inside our black circle and fill it with red (#ff0000). Your image should look similar to the one below.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now using the Elliptical Marquee tool again, create a smaller circle inside the red (do not create a new layer this time) one and press the delete button to remove the inner part of the circle.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now you can deselect. We need to use the Elliptical Marquee tool again and select the lower right corner area of the circle and delete it.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now create a smaller circle where we just deleted one, and fill it with red. You will want to use the arrow keys to position the dot before you deselect it.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now we will add our text. Create a new layer and select the Text Tool. Click on the Layer and type the first letter, I will use a T. The font I am using is 235pt Add City Boy, you can download it here. Position your letter so part of it is overlapping with the edge of the circle.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now create another layer and add the other letter for your text the same way you did before.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now we will merge the two text layers with the circle layer. Select all three layers by press ctrl and clicking them, then press ctrl + e to merge the layers. Here is a before and after.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now select your newly merged layer and apply the following Layer Styles by right clicking the layer and select blending options.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Apply the style and your images should like the one below.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now create a new layer. CTRL + Click on the layer with the black circle to make a selection like it on the new layer.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now reset your colors so that black is the background and white is the foreground. Select the gradient tool, select “Foreground to transparent” as your color.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Fill circle with the gradient by clicking outside the circle and dragging inward (like the arrow in the picture below).
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now deselect the circle and draw a new larger one offset like below.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now delete the selection and our results should look like this:
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now you can leave the logo like that if you want, but I decided to add a little bit more to it. First Select all of the layers (except the background) in the layers panel by CTRL + Clicking them. Then on the menu in Photoshop go to Edit > Transform > Perspective .
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Now move the points so they look like this:
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial

Then apply the style and you are finished! I hope you liked this tutorial, feel free to leave suggestions for my future tutorials.
Versus Inspired Photoshop Logo Tutorial


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Drawing Chinese Bamboo With Adobe Illustrator part 4

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12. Symbol Stainer Tool

Select a lighter yellow-green tone color and use Symbol Stainer Tool to stain Symbols (stain Symbols randomly).

symbol stainer

13. Symbol Screener Tool

Use Symbol Screener Tool to reduce bamboo leaves Opacity (selectively click on the leaf symbols). This will get a see-through effect.

symbol screener

14. Make more leaves behind

After you done with the leaves on Layer 2, make a new layer(Layer 3) and drag it to the bottom of the layer list. Lock Layer 1 and Layer 2, use Symbol Sprayer Tool to make more bamboo leaves(refer to Step 8-13) on Layer 3.

make more leaves behind

15. Add more bamboo sticks

Finally, duplicate more smaller bamboo sticks and send them behind the big bamboo sticks.

copy more bamboo sticks

16. Final!

Here is the final image.

final bamboo illustration


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Drawing Chinese Bamboo With Adobe Illustrator part 3

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8. Symbol Sprayer Tool

Create a new layer and lock the bamboo sticks layer(Layer 1). Select Symbol Sprayer Tool and pick the bamboo leaves Symbol you have created in previous step. Spray it on Layer 2 by dragging the mouse.

symbol sprayer

9. Symbol Sizer Tool

Now, we need to create various size of bamboo leaves. Select Symbol Sizer Tool, randomly click on the bamboo leaves object. Tips: hold down ALT key+click to reduce size.

symbol sizer

10. Symbol Spinner Tool

Use Symbol Spinner Tool to rotate/spin Symbols.

symbol spinner

11. Symbol Shifter Tool

Use Symbol Shifter Tool to spread(by drag) bamboo leaves out.

symbol shifter


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

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Drawing Chinese Bamboo With Adobe Illustrator part 2

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4. Draw a bended bamboo

We want the bamboo look natural, not Copy & Paste, so we need to create a bended bamboo. Repeat Step 1 & 2 to create a bended bamboo like the image shown below. Now we 3 different versions of bamboo: straight, bended, and twisted.

create a bended bamboo

5. Duplicate more bamboo

Make more bamboo by ALT + drag. Selectively copy from different version of bamboo, resize them or flip them around so they don’t look alike.

make more bamboos

6. Create bamboo leaves

Create your bamboo leaves like the image on the left(below) and fill it with different tone of green. Again, use Mesh Tool to create the lighter spot.

create bamboo leaves

7. Make a bamboo leaves Symbol

After you done with the leaves, drag it to the Symbols Pallate to create a new Symbol. If your Symbols Pallate is not showing, go to Window > Symbols or press Ctrl+Shift+F11.

make leaves symbol