Adding text

Step 10: Adding the text

You’ll find the Type tool in the tool palette, marked with a letter ‘T’. If you click and hold on the tool button for a few seconds, you’ll see a mini-menu open up offering several text options, but the one we want is the default setting, the Horizontal Type tool.

Choose a typeface to use for the message on the front of the card. Personally I like a nice cursive script font for this sort of thing, so I went for one called Monotype Corsiva, which is a standard font from Microsoft Word. There are thousands of free fonts available for download on the Internet, at websites such as 1001 Free Fonts or Highfonts so experiment and find one that suits your subject. A size of 48 points should be big enough for our needs.

Type the first line of your greeting anywhere on the postcard, then click on any of the other tools. Click back on the type tool and add the second line anywhere else. You’ll see that the two lines have been added as separate layers, so you can move them around using the Move tool.

Position your text lines above and below the centre elliptical frame. The position doesn’t have to be precise, because you can tweak it after adding the text effects.


Step 11: Adding text effects

Activate the layer for the top line of text, and click on the Type tool again. On right of the top bar you’ll see a button labelled ‘Style’ with a drop-down arrow next to it. Click on this to open the style picker, and click on the small button with the arrow to see the full list of style effects.

Select ‘Drop Shadows’ from the list, and click on the button for Low in the picker window. This adds a shadow effect to your lettering that makes it stand out from the page.

Next to the Style button is a letter T with a curved arrow under it. This is the warped text button, which allows you to add curves and other shaping effects to a line of text. Click on the button, and then select ‘Arc’ or ‘Arc Upper’ from the Style drop-down list. The default setting of a 50 percent bent should be sufficient, but feel free to experiment and see what the different settings do.

When you’ve applied the warp, you can position the text to fit more precisely, and even enlarge or shrink the layer using the Move tool, just as you would with any other layer. When you’re happy with the position of the upper line of the greeting, repeat the process with the lower line, but this time select ‘Arc Lower’ from the text warp list.


Step 12: Flatten and print

When you’re happy with the finished postcard, flatten the layers using the ‘Flatten Image’ option from the ‘Layer’ menu, and save it as a highest quality JPEG or as a TIFF file. Setting any compression in JPEG mode may cause unwanted and ugly compression artefacts to appear around your lettering.

Once you’ve done this, you’re ready to print your postcard. You’ll probably find that standard inkjet photo paper is too thin to make decent postcards, so unless you want to glue the finished product onto some heavier card, you can buy inkjet printer card from any good camera shop or stationers, or buy it direct online from your printer manufacturer. Now send them to your friends and family, who will no doubt be astounded by your resourcefulness and creativity.


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