Make the Red Heart of China graphic

Hey, feeling like I haven’t posted here for a long long time, don’t like it, for me. So I am back here again. Well, really, I am busy working on 2(maybe 3) small projects in the same time in the past week and right now. Finally I get some time to have you this post.

OK, here I just want to share a small Photoshop tutorial with you. You know, I worked on the “Client Testimonies” Pages design for the client, she wanted to have a “Red Heart of China”(what is it?) image on the background. So I made one. It looks not bad, shiny and Mac-aqua style.

Here it is: (download the original PSD file)

Well, there are thousand of the tutorials about how to create a Aqua-style stuff such as a ball, a button, a red heart, etc. But from what I saw, most of them are made with pixels – they are pixel-based. Yeah, they look cool. All the times? I don’t think so. They would look rough and fuzzy when they are zoomed in oversized, such as zoomed in 200%, 400%. The one I made is vector-based mainly, which one still looks good and even better when it is zoomed in with any precent, it stays at the same as before even if it is zoomed in. I use the Photoshop’s vector-based drawing tools – the Pens and Shapes – which is ideal for creating sharp, smooth-edged graphics, to create this “red heart” graphic. You know, vector drawing has the advantage of being resolution-indeependent. When vector graphics are printed on a postscript-based device, or zoomed in as a very large size, their smooth lines are retained regardless of the resolution of the file.
Below is the difference between the pixel-based one and the vector-based one:

The benefit of using the vector-based method to create a graphic because it can:

  1. be cross medias applied.
  2. be easily and full controlled in Adobe Photoshop. You can change the color, the looking, the outline, in any time, because the file is not rasterized.

How to (non-detailedly):

Take a look at the picture on the right, it displays the element structure of the graphic from top to bottom.

So you would make all of them in order in Adobe Photoshop:

  1. The layers in “Highlights” Group:

    • curves
    • heart-2
    • heart-1
    • window
    • ref(reflection)_bottom
  2. stars

  3. the layers in “heart” Group:

    • ref_yellow-2
    • ref_yellow-1
  4. shadow

  5. bg – the “fill layer” (so you can change the background pretty easily)

I am sorry for that I can not provide any detail about making this graphic, such as “step by step”, I would love to do that for you if I could, you know I am busy working on some projects. So there is the original PSD file of this “Red heart of China” graphic, feel free to download it and check it in your Adobe Photoshop, I think you would know how it works after you open it and practice another copy one more time : )

Of course, you could post here or “contact me”: if you got some question about making it, you know, I always would love to hear from you and hope could help you out :)

Well, there are “some different versions”: of the “Red heart of China” graphic, mine(I didn’t create it, I just re-make it) is one of them.

Wow, this is the last post of 2008! The new year is coming in 30 minutes, yeah! Happy new Year and gooood luck to everyone on this planet :D

The “Red heart of China” story:

You know, the “Red heart of China” graphic was really popular and most widely-used during “5.12 Earthquake”: in SiChuan Province and “Beijing 2008 Olympic Games”: on August of this year in China. Most of the youth in China had it on their faces or arms, and even “added it as the buddy-image of their IM tools”: Sounds crazy?

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