Classy Glassy Buttons pg 4: Production Graphics with Wendy Peck at | WebReference

Classy Glassy Buttons pg 4: Production Graphics with Wendy Peck at


Classy Glassy Buttons: PhotoShop Glass Buttons 2

Add text
What is a Web button without text? Beyond the obvious communication value of text, this will be the final piece to making this button look like glass.

Add your text ... nothing special here. We will work our magic with the text shadow. Choose the text layer and open the effects window. Make sure the Drop Shadow option is checked. Specify the following options: Opacity 40%, Angle 90°, Distance 3, Blur 6. These settings will be different depending on how your button lighting and depth is designed, but you must keep the angle and distance of the shadow in mind.



This is the easy part if you have worked through the method above. Since all the contour and shaping is done with transparency, you can simply replace the background color under the button, and your color will change.

Reload the button selection. Select your background layer and create a new layer to receive the color. Set foreground color to the desired button color and fill the button selection. Your button now has the new color.

Note: If you would like your button to remain transparent to allow a background to show through, select a much darker value of the color you desire and adjust the opacity of the layer to get the correct color. See sample here.

When you start to color your buttons, you will know exactly why I recommended everything go on a separate layer. Depending on the color, you may wish to adjust the highlight (size reduced here), the stroke (intensified). For realistic effects, you can also adjust the transparency of the highlight, to let a little color show through.

In the fuchsia button shown here, the highlight layer was reduced to 90% opacity and the drop shadow on the text was changed to a dark fuchsia I also increased the shadow intensity.

Finally, in the blue sample shown at the right, I added a drop shadow to the color fill layer (the only layer with the full button shape). Glass shadows will pick up some of the color from the glass. To change the color of the drop shadow, click on the color chip in the Effects window and choose the new color. Make sure the shadow has the same direction as the rest of the shading in the button, 90° in this case.

I have included the layers for the final button shown here. All layers except the color layer are the same for each button in this tutorial. The color changes, of course, and the effects icon only appears because I added a shadow to the last sample.




This long explanation makes the method look tougher than it really is. Work through it a few times, and you will find that you can create dimensional glass very quickly, and will probably find yourself exploiting transparency in many other applications as well. This is a very nice little tool to have in your mind.




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Classy Glassy Buttons Tutorial Index

Classy Glassy Buttons Start
PhotoShop Rounded Rectangles
PhotoShop Glass Buttons
PhotoShop Glass Buttons 2
PaintShop Pro Rounded Rectangles
PaintShop Glassy Buttons

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Created: Apr. 13, 2000
Revised: Apr. 13, 2000