Using the Emboss Brush to Give Texture
We’ll start out with the photo of a forest path shown below. Our goal is to isolate the path and modify it so that it appears to be made of stone instead of dirt. (Click any image in this article for a larger view.)
The first thing we want to do is make sure that the layers palette is visible. If you haven’t done much work with layers or if you need a quick refresher, take a look at this series on using layers in Paint Shop Pro.
Next, if you haven’t already done so, promote the background layer to a full raster layer. Later in the tutorial, we’ll be moving layers around, and a background layer cannot be moved unless it is first converted to a full layer.
Now, we want to create a copy of this original layer to work on. To do this, select Duplicate from the Layers menu on Paint Shop Pro’s main tool bar.
Finally, we can start working with the Emboss brush. This tool is located in the brush section that is about in the middle of Paint Shop Pro’s side tool bar (the same area as the Dodge and Burn brushes).
Once you’ve selected this brush, a new tool bar will appear underneath the main one at the top of the Paint Shop Pro interface. Here, you can modify the settings for the Emboss brush. If you haven’t spent much time working with brushes before, these various options can seem overwhelming at first. However, the default settings work just fine most of the time. You may want to change the Size of the brush depending on the photo that you’re editing, but keep the other values as they are for now.
Now, with the Emboss brush selected, we want to paint over the path in the layer marked as a copy of the original photo. This is basically like “decoloring" that area of the photo while introducing the texture. If the first pass of the Emboss brush doesn’t give you as much texture as you’d like, you can always color over it a second time.
Here is what our photo looks like after applying the Emboss brush to the path.