In this Photoshop tutorial, I’m going to show you how to create the title to Star Wars. We are going to make the perspective text and actually animate it, so that it moves just like at the beginning of all the Star Wars movies. We are going to do all of this in Photoshop CS6 or Photoshop CC. If you have an earlier version of Photoshop, you can still make the text effect, but you will need CS6 or CC to make the animation.
I have also included the PSD that you can download for free at the end of this tutorial. PhotoshopCAFE: doing what other tutorial sites don’t 🙂 Enjoy!
Step 1 – Creating the Text with the Star Wars font
Start with a new blank document. Set the background color to black.
We are going to create some paragraph text.
Click the type tool
Choose bright yellow as the color. The font used on Star Wars is Franklin Gothic.
Now, we will create a body of text. To create paragraph text, click and drag a box around the area where you want the text to go.
Either type, or paste in some text.
Here is the nonsense text used in this block, if you want to, just cut and paste it…
We now want to add some perspective to the text. You will notice that you can’t add perspective to a paragraph of text without rasterizing it. Or can you? I have figured out a sneaky way of doing it, that is the key to this technique working. (I thank my days as a Flash designer for figuring out this kind of stuff).
Right click on the text’s Thumbnail in the Layers panel and choose “Convert to Smart Object”
Step 5. making the Star Wars Perspective text
Now, we can transform this smart object.
With the text Smart Object active in the Layers panel, Press Cmd/Ctrl+T for free transform
Right Click and choose Perspective.
Drag the top corner in to make a perspective shape.
Press enter to apply.
We have now made an image of the Star wars perspective text effect. This is where other tutorials end (Hopefully, Youtubers won’t rip off this tutorial, like they have a lot of my other tutorials, so sad). But this is where we kick it up a gear. We are going to make it move!
Animating the Star Wars Intro Perspective text in Photoshop CS6 or CC.
You can use any version of Photoshop to get to where we are right now, but you will need CS6 or CC to animate it.
Open the timeline from the Window>Timeline menu if it’s not visible.
Right in the middle of the Timeline, you will see a button that says “Create Video Timeline.” Go ahead and click it
You will now see a timeline appear in Photoshop.
I know you are tempted to try and animate things right now, but resist the urge. You won’t get a decent result animating it on this timeline.
This is where the magic of a nested animation comes in handy. (I wrote a book on this kind of stuff in Flash (How to Wow With Flash) and I can adapt these techniques to work in Photoshop.
Find our Smart Object with the text and double click the thumbnail
You will notice that a new document opens with the contents of the smart object displayed. This is where we are going to do our animation.
Go to the timeline and click the arrow on the left of the track name, to reveal the animation options.
Click the stopwatch icon to the left of the word Transform. This will create a yellow diamond which is an animation keyframe.
On the document window, drag the text down to the bottom of the screen.
(Tip: Hold down the shift key as you drag to constrain the movement to a vertical alignment). We are setting the beginning of the animation
Now for the end
Move the playhead to the end of the timeline, by dragging it.
Drag the text all the way up (while holding down the Shift key). We are moving it to the end position of the animation.
You will notice that another animation keyframe is automatically created.
If you press the play button in the timeline (Or press the spacebar) you will notice that the text now animates from the bottom to the top of the window.
Now for the magic!
Press Cmd/Ctrl+S to save the document (contents of smart object).
Close this window and go back to your starting document where you first created the text.
Press the spacebar / play button in the timeline
You will now see the star wars effect working!
I don’t know about you, but I think this is pretty cool.
How to export photoshop animation as a video
If you want to export this as a video do this:
Choose File>Render Video
Select Folder (name the video and select where you want it to be saved to)
Choose H.264 as the format
Preset: High Quality
Then press render
The video will now be created in the folder you chose. Be patient, it may take a while
I have done a lot of experimenting with video and animation in Photoshop and had the huge honor of presenting some of my techniques for Adobe at their world headquarters (several times), as well as at Adobe Max (the Adobe World Conference).
If you want to get deeper into what you can do in Photoshop with Video and animation check out the 2 premium videos that I have created. Video in Photoshop will get your feet wet and teach you the range of things you can do in Photoshop (perfect for a beginner). Then check out Making Movies in Photoshop, which picks up where Photoshop and Video leaves of. I have also written a book, Video in Photoshop with Peachpit Press that you can find at bookstores.
Thanks so much for checking out this tutorial!
Download the PSD here
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