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It's assumed for the purpose of this tutorial that you're using Photoshop and are reasonably familiar with its basic functionality. You might also be able to use this technique with other similar packages, eg. GIMP. If you have any specific questions about any of the stages, don't hesitate to ask. My email address can be found at the bottom of the page. Now, on to the tutorial...

[Step 1] Step 1
Create a new image with a size of 800 x 300 pixels.

[Step 2] Step 2
Fill it with black.

[Step 3] Step 3
Select white as the foreground colour.

[Step 4a] [Step 4b] Step 4
Use the text tool and enter your logo text. You can use any font for this, but it should be around 150 point in size. I'm using "Comic Sans MS" bold at 150 point with the text "Tutorial". Depending on the number of characters in your logo, you may need to start off with a bigger canvas, but make sure there is a gap of at least half the font height around the text.

[Step 5] Step 5
Make sure the text is rendered to the background by flattening the image. (Layer -> Flatten -> Image)

[Step 6a] [Step 6b] Step 6
Select the Gaussian blur filter (Filter -> Blur -> Gaussian Blur) and drag the radius slider up to about 5 pixels. (If you are using a fairly thin font you may need to reduce this slightly if it blends the letters together too much). Apply the blur.

[Step 7a] [Step 7b] Step 7
Select the lighting effects filter (Filter -> Render -> Lighting Effects) and set the parameters to those shown in the screenshot. Then adjust the lighting direction line in the preview window so that the black square is at 45 degrees to the Northwest of the white circle. You should adjust the distance such that it's just far enough away to keep the background black or almost black. Apply the lighting effect.

[Step 8] Step 8
Use the eyedropper tool to sample the background colour. It probably won't be quite black, but a dark shade of grey. Make a mental note of the numerical value of the largest RGB colour component. (Though they should all be the same, so it doesn't matter which you pick)

[Step 9a] [Step 9b] Step 9
Select the levels tool (Image -> Adjust -> Levels). Set the left most "Input level" value to one greater than the number you noted in the previous step and set the middle "Input level" value to 1.50 Apply the level correction. The background colour should now be black, and the logo slightly lighter than it was.

[Step 10] Step 10
Create a new layer.

[Step 11] Step 11
Select the Linear gradient tool and pick the "Spectrum" gradient type.

[Step 12] Step 12
On the layer you just created, apply the gradient from left to right across the whole canvas. (Holding shift down whilst dragging will make sure the gradient is straight)

[Step 13a] [Step 13b] Step 13
Change the layer type to "Overlay" to let the spectrum gradient colour the first layer.

[Step 14] Step 14
Flatten the image. (Layer -> Flatten Image)

Step 15
If you want the image for a black background then that's it. You've finished! If not continue to the next step.

[Step 16a] [Step 16b] Step 16
Select the background parts of the image using the colour range tool. (Select -> Colour Range) Make sure fuzziness is set to 0 and click anywhere outside the text in the preview window before clicking OK.

[Step 17a] [Step 17b] Step 17
You should see the moving outline of the selection around your text. We need to move this away from the text slightly by using the selection contraction tool (Select -> Modify -> Contract) with a value of about 8 pixels.

[Step 18a] [Step 18b] Step 18
Feather the selection (Select -> Feather) by 8 pixels.

[Step 19] Step 19
Select as the foreground colour whatever colour you want the background of the logo to be.

[Step 20] Step 20
Use Edit -> Fill, and select foreground colour as the fill type. Fill the image.

Step 21
Crop and scale the image to the size you require. And there you have it... One finished logo!

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Last modified:  Thu Feb 22 2001     Jonathan Hunt  jonathan@xlcus.com