I think you’ll find this to be a very useful image. It’s a high-resolution metallic RSS logo rendered over a black reflective background that is easy to mask out in photoshop (in case you want to place this over a transparent background). I do a lot of web development work, and this is the default RSS logo I use for all of my client’s projects. It’s pretty sharp looking when scaled down to a smaller size, and the bling factor is very high thanks to the high gloss of the metallic surfaces.
Need some Microsoft logo illustrations? Here are six quick renderings featuring that famous four-color brand. All of these images feature transparent Microsoft logos posing with one other object, of course, they are all free of watermarks.
Just let me know if you would like any of these graphics in a larger resolution. I can provide any of these images up to 8000px wide if you have a need for them. Included in this batch are:
- A Microsoft logo sitting on a blue book over a white reflective surface
- A transparent Microsoft logo spilling out of an overturned cardboard box
- A transparent Microsoft logo hovering inside of a chrome heart
- A series of white binary digits orbiting around a large Microsoft logo
- A hovering Microsoft logo with transparent white signal waves radiating out from it
- A glowing Microsoft logo sitting on a simple black microchip and electronic circuit
These simple object icon illustrations are extremely useful – they consist of one main large object with a supporting smaller sub-object placed in front to convey a conceptual idea or single metaphor. And since they are rendered over a white background and surface, they are easy to extract in Photoshop with a bit of masking. These three free object icons feature metallic Facebook logos placed in front of a bigger object (an audio speaker, paint can, and two simple people icons).
As a producer of royalty-free images, there are a lot of repetitive tasks I am faced with in my day to day work. Every illustration I produce must go through some sort of post processing before I can upload them, which can include things like resizing, keywording, and general retouching of any sections that didn’t render exactly like I had planned. I wish it were as simple as just pressing the “render” button in FormZ (my 3d modeling program of choice) and have the resulting image prepped and ready for upload to Norebbo.com – or any other site that I upload to. If life were easy, that’s exactly how I would envision it to work. But as we all know, life is never that convenient is it?
For the sake of this explanation about Photoshop actions, I’ll discuss one of the most common repetitive tasks that I must do with all of my royalty-free 3d illustrations: batch resizing. I normally need three sizes of every image that I produce: one large version that is 8000px wide (for my own archives), a version that is 5000px wide (for uploading to all of the major microstock websites), and one 4000px version with some minor alterations specific to istockphoto.com‘s strict upload requirements. Of course, if it’s an exclusive image that will only be uploaded to Norebbo.com, I only need two versions for my archives: an 8000px version, and a 1024px version. But no matter what the image will be used for, the same issue applies: I need a quick way to batch resize images, and Adobe’s “Actions” tool in Photoshop can really help with that.
This is how I set up my Photoshop actions to automate my image resizing tasks
First of all, if you aren’t familiar with the actions tool, it can be found in the “Window” menu drop down box in Photoshop’s main toolbar at the top of the screen. Selecting the actions tool will launch a small window in your screen space containing all of the functions and options for setting up your actions.
If the idea of yet another floating window on your screen seems a bit messy, have no fear – you can very easily organize them with Photoshop’s powerful window tools. Did you know that you can combine several windows into one? Yep, it’s true – just click and drag any window into another, and they will “attach” together. The contents of each will be viewable by selecting the associated tabs in the new combo window. Pretty neat, huh? I normally combine my layers, actions, and text windows into one, as they are by far the most useful palettes for my particular workflow. Feel free to arrange things however you prefer.
Step one: Creating a new action from scratch
So now that you’re organized and ready to go, let’s set up an action that will re-size large images down to, say, 2000px. The first thing to do is to open an image that you want to resize. This will be your “template” image, meaning that the actions you apply to and record for this one will be applied equally to any other image you will apply this action to.
Open your actions palette, and you will see a list of default actions already in place. Ignore those for now, as none of them will do what we want to do. So we will need to create a new action from scratch.
Now that the palette is open, you will notice a small “page” icon in the bottom right hand corner of the frame (screenshot shown at right). This is the “new” icon, and it is a common element in all Photoshop palettes. Clicking this icon is a much faster way than manually selecting the “New Action” item from the main menu at the top of the page – so it’s something that you might want to make a habit of. It will make your workflow much more efficient!
Don’t worry about about all those other icons along that bottom menu yet – I’ll explain what each of those do as I go through each individual step. Click this button, and proceed to the next section.
Step two: create a name for your new action
After clicking on the “new” icon, it will launch a dialog window that will allow you to set basic parameters of the action such as a name and color identification (which comes in handy if you’re going to create a lot of actions). Go ahead and name it whatever makes the most sense to you – and you can also set up some keyboard shortcuts if that sort of thing floats your boat. I think it’s a neat feature, but I had difficulty setting it up to work correctly on my Macbook Pro. No matter what Function keys I selected, my Macbook refused to execute the actions. I’m sure there is an easy fix for that, but that’s the topic of another tutorial… Anyway, I will name may action: “norebbo 2000 wide”. I know, I know. Sometimes I astound myself with my own creativity.
Step three: setting the parameters for the action (or, more simply: recording the action)
As you can see in the actions palette to the right, the name of my new Action named “norebbo 2000 wide” is automatically selected. That means that it’s ready to receive recording information. It is very important that you pay attention to what action is selected in your palette before you begin recording! I can’t count the number of times I made the bone-headed move of recording data to an action I had made previously.
With the name of your new action selected, press the red “record” button in the bottom menu of the action palette. The button will appear to be pressed in when you click it, indicating that you are now in a recording mode.
It is very important to understand that from this point forward, with that red “record” button selected, everything you do now will be recorded as part of the action. So this is not the time to experiment with color variations or layer adjustments. You don’t want your actions to be bloated with unnecessary tasks, so be very certain that what you do to your image while you are recording is what you want to do to every image you apply this action to. Filling your actions with a lot of unnecessary steps will increase the time it takes to perform the action, and that can add up if you have a lot of images to process.
So now that you are in a recording mode, you can begin processing your image. In my case, I need to make an action that will scale a large image down to 2000px wide. As I complete that step, everything I do is recorded in the actions palette as a separate list item. As you can see from the screenshot to the left, I have also added one more adjustment in addition to the image size change: a bit of shapening, faded it by 50%. Happy with the way the image looks, I save the image and close it. Notice how the actions palette records every step – even the closing of the image!
Before you do anything else, stop the recording by pressing the gray square “stop” icon at the far left of the tool bar (shown in the diagram to the left). This is the one step that I seemingly forget over and over again, and if the action is still gathering data, it will record everything I do until I press that “stop” button. Don’t forget!
But if you are like me and you do end up forgetting this crucial step, no worries. You can edit your actions even after you’ve stopped recording. Just double-click the item in your action that you wish to change, and you will be able to change the parameters you set while you were recording. Note that you can also change the order of the steps by just clicking and dragging an item, or you can even delete individual steps as well by selecting it and pressing the trash can icon in the far right end of the tool bar. It’s an easy way to fix your action if you are bone-headed like me and forget to press the “stop” button before moving on to other things.
Step four: executing your action on a single image or an entire batch of files
Now that you have created your action, it is time to apply it to other images. You have several options in order to go about doing this. The easiest way is to simply open up another image into Photoshop, select the name of the action you want to execute, and press the gray triangle icon (“play button”) in the toolbar of the actions palette. Photoshop will take care of the rest and process your image quicker than human hands ever could. Voila. It’s that simple!
But what if you need to apply that action to an entire folder of images? No problem – that’s very easy too. Use Photoshop’s built in “Batch” command (found by going to “File > Automate > Batch…”) to set up the parameters for applying actions to large batches of images. This will launch a dialog window crammed full of settings that will require you to select the action you want to use, choose the images you want to apply that action to, and how you want to save them. Personally, I find this dialog box too complicated for simple batch tasks. Luckily, there is one more (easier) way to do it: use Adobe Bridge!
Adobe Bridge is a visual file browser, which lets you see thumbnail images of all your files instead of just text file names. If you have Photoshop, you have Bridge – they are bundled together. Launch Bridge, and go to the directory where you have placed your files that you want to apply your new action to. Select every file that you want to change, and then go to the Bridge menu and select “Tools > Photoshop > Batch…” This will invoke that same dialog I discussed above, but the added benefit of doing it through Bridge is that the files you want to change are already selected in that dialog. So basically, it eliminates one step. You may prefer to do this directly through Photoshop, but I have found that it’s easier to do it through bridge – try it both ways to see what works best for you.
As you have just read, Photoshop’s actions tool is a great way to automate repetitive tasks. It can be used for very simple one-step processes like renaming files, but it’s also powerful enough to create complex 50-step actions that would take forever to do on an image-by-image basis. And since every step in the actions are fully editable, you can continue to tweak and fine-tune your actions until you get them right. No need to delete and start over if you don’t get it right the first time!
Although setting up and using Photoshop actions may seem complicated, you will quickly discover how much of a valuable asset they are in developing an efficient work flow.
Are you sick of these Apple logos yet? Yeah, I’ve built a lot of them. To be quite honest though, I’m not totally happy with this series of black glass Apple logo images – I had difficulty rendering them so that the shadows from the objects didn’t fragment on the face of the logo, but it is what it is. I spent several hours creating the template for this series, and I still couldn’t get it right. Total bummer, but hopefully you won’t mind. The shadow issues could probably be resolved with some minor Photoshop work, but I haven’t the time for that sort of thing right now. Excuses, excuses. I know!
Anyway, this is a very dark series. The Mac logos are made of a black glass texture and the environment they sit in is very dark. Strong lights from the side set a pretty strong mood.
This is a continuation of images from the previous series of Apple logos that I uploaded yesterday. This set is very similar, featuring a variety of objects placed on or next to those glossy metallic Mac logos. Objects in this series includes: AA batteries, network cables, a key, a bright red Sold sticker, a large magnet, and a colorful bar chart. Have no fear…there are more images coming shortly.
About two years ago I was creating a lot of royalty-free iPhone illustrations – then, all of the major microstock websites started cracking down on anything that they deemed to be copyright-protected material. That put an end to my iPhone image production real quick, but…they seemed to be very popular. I’m still making a lot of them to this day (to give away as freebies), and here are three quick examples:
- an iPhone 3Gs with a gun sitting on top
- an iPhone 3Gs with a glowing orange fingerprint on the screen
- an iPhone 3Gs with a large microphone standing on top
I’ve got a few more of these images lying around that I need to upload, and I’ll get around to that as soon as I can. And I should probably build a 3d model of a 4G iPhone as well…
Most people probably don’t know this, but my bread and butter is website design. That’s what I spend the most of my time doing, and I have a full list of great clients who keep me very busy. And like any other busy web designer, I’ve got my fair share of web templates and website elements that never made it to final production. Case in point: these five website banners. They were part of a large collection of concepts I made for a client a while back, and these are the rejects. Shame to let them go to waste, right?
Feel free to download and use however you wish. They are all fully editable (requires Adobe Photoshop).
In addition to all those Facebook logo illustrations I have been working on, here is an initial set of six Twitter logo graphics that follow the same format. I’ve taken some liberties with the logo a little, making the logos very metallic – almost medallion-like. They render very nicely that way, with a lot of glossy reflections and massive amounts of bling.
And yes, there are a lot more where these came from, and I’ll be uploading them directly from my archive very soon.
They say that resistance is futile, but I disagree. Would you believe that I STILL don’t have a Facebook account? I feel like I’m pretty much the only person on the planet that isn’t connecting through social networking apps all day, but that just isn’t my style. However, making graphics for these highly popular tools is my style.
Here are six free images depicting metallic blue Facebook logos posed in various settings. I’ve been producing a ton of these lately, and I’ve got a lot more to share. But for now, here are six random samples. All are high-res (1600×1200) and completely free. Let me know if you have any suggestions for new images incorporating that famous Facebook brand!