I realize that the older versions of Adobe Photoshop differ from the newer versions. I have updated my tutorial to reflect this. I use a Mac, so the windows version of the software may have slight differences.
The old version of the instructions, as well as some tagging tutorials, are still listed here. I will not be bringing my old tutorials over, so you will need to visit her site to try them out.
Now, on to the good stuff! Tips and general how-to’s are at the bottom of the page.
Preparing Your Work Area
Make sure your animation window is open. Select the option from the top menu of your screen.
Window > Timeline
At the bottom of your screen, you will see the timeline window. Most of the time, you will need to activate your first framed animation. If it is already there, you can skip this step.
Adding Premade Animations
There are a few things you really need to pay attention to in this tutorial. I will specify which of these are needed at what times.
Frames are in the animation window.
Layers are in the Layers pallet.
Layers in the animation are named Frame 1 – Frame 25. These are LAYERS, not actual Frames.
You will need to create a tag. I am not doing a tag tutorial here, so you will need to create your own. Of course, your tag is not the same as mine, so there will be a few ambiguous details in this tutorial.
Here is the very simple tag that I am going to animate:
First thing you want do is select the layer you want the animation to appear ABOVE. Maybe you want it behind a tube? You would want to select the layer that is UNDER the tube, so the animation will sit above the layer, but directly behind the tube.
Now that you have your tag finished, it’s time to start the animation process.
Open the animation that you have purchased or downloaded.
Once you have it opened, go to the top menu:
Select > All Layers
Layer > Group Layers
In the layers pallet, right click on the group (indicated by a folder icon) and Duplicate Group.
Don’t hit ok
Find the name of your tag in the drop down box in the popup window.
And THEN hit ok.
You can now close this animation without saving.
Time to go back to your tag.
This part is optional, just in case you want your animation to “glow.”
Highlight the group and look at the top of your layers pallet.
There is a dropdown box that has the word “Pass Through” in it.
Click on that box and choose Linear Dodge.
You can play around with the options in this box to get your animation exactly how you like it.
You can now move the group anywhere you want using the Move tool.
Now comes the fun part…
Make sure the group is open (click the arrow beside the folder icon in the layers pallet to “open” the folder)
You need to make a new frame for each of the animation’s layers.
This will take a minute or two, so you may as well go have lunch or a cup of coffee before you get started.
You have your animation window open, right? (Main Menu: Window > Timeline)
You already have your first frame already there. If you don’t, click on the Create New Frame Animation button.
Duplicate the frame by clicking on the folded paper icon at the bottom of your animation window.
At this point, you are going to need to pay close attention, since the layers are named “frames”.
In the LAYERS pallet:
Hide the “Frame 1” layer in your group and unhide the “Frame 2” layer .
In the ANIMATION window (or timeline):
Duplicate this frame .
Hide the Frame 2 layer and unhide the Frame 3 layer .
Repeat this for ALL the Frame layers.
This will make 25 frames in your animation (if you used one of mine). One animation layer per frame.
If you would like less frames, simply delete the odd frames in your animation window. (CTRL + click on every odd frame)
Select all your frames. (click first frame, then shift+click your last frame)
Click the arrow beside the number at the bottom of one of the frames. Set this number to 0.1 (there is an “Other” option) You may also play with this setting to get the effect you want.
Saving Your Animation
This is a part that has changed from the last versions of Photoshop. There is no longer a “Save As” function that involves animations.
File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy)…
This will bring up a completely different save window than you are probably used to. Simply set everything like as you like. Keep in mind, the color pallet will be different with each tag.
Note: you may need to change the Matte color to match the background you will be posting this on. Usually, just white will work.