Paper Clip Enhancement (Tutorial)

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Paper Clip Enhancement (Tutorial)

I came across this tutorial for paper clips tonight and had to give it a try. I thought it was a great alternative to just erasing the "behind the paper" part of the clip. Just adds a little something, I think. This pic is at 100% on my last layout and it's not that noticeable when zoomed out. I had the opacity really low - like 20% - next time I might bump it up so it's more obvious when looking at the page as a whole.

She does the tutorial in PS, but I did this in PSE using the emboss style and adjust opacity levels. Really easy. Tutorial here:

Paper Clip Tutorial by zoenanai, on Flickr

thanks dear, this is really cool!

You're welcome. I thought so too! I love learning new tips and tricks. smiley

Looks like a great tip!

This is a great tutorial for washi tape, with a similar emphasis on making it more realistic:

That's a good one Marisa. Thanks for sharing. I've seen a similar one using dodge & burn, but I like how she downsizes the brush each time. Never thought about that. smiley

Thanks Amanda!

Thanks for sharing the tutorials. I had seen the washi tape one, but the paperclip tut finally freed me of my paperclip anxiety!

LOL Melouise! Glad it helped. smiley

Wow, Thank you. I haven't seen any of these and am now keen to try them out. My next page will have to feature a paperclip and tape somewhere.

Thank you so much for this tutorial smiley

You're welcome. smiley

I went looking for this tutorial today and the link is dead. smiley Would anyone who got the technique down be willing to write out the steps here, or, if you know it Marisa, maybe you could add it to our tutorial section?

Hi Violet, if you can bear with my instructions, this is how I did it. I posted a page in the gallery and there is a paperclip holding a note on it if you want to see. It's not perfect, but I am trying hard to learn...

Bring up your papers or elements (if you are clipping two objects together, I think they need to be merged together, which is what I did).

Ctrl click the layer with the merged objects to select it and marching ants will appear. (The paperclip should be on it's own layer above it. Duplicate it and hide the top one.)

Bring up the polygonal lasso tool. While 'holding down' the ALT. key (this is very important), use the polygonal lasso tool to bring the marching ants down from the top of the page (inside the paperclip) and around the inside of the paperclip without touching it up the other side of the paperclip to the top of the page (hope that makes sense).

Click on the paperclip layer, then click delete, and the outer part of the paperclip will disappear.

Make visible the top paper clip and lower it's opacity. Then use it as a guide as you use the dodge and burn tools to shadow/highlight it, before you delete it.

I somehow forgot to write down where I found these instructions, and if I find the article, I will post it for you.


Thanks, Nina! The clipping part I've done for a while, but the dodge and burn part isn't totally intuitive. Good to know I use the paperclip itself as a guide, with lowered opacity - that makes sense.

Here's another video. She does it a little differently but gets the same effect in PS.

Ms Amanda, for some reason it won't let me in. All I see is a red page that says smiley

Sorry! That was the wrong link. I updated. It's a youtube video. smiley