Updated: January 20th, 2015
4000 Styles for Photoshop CC & CS 6 5 4 3 2 1 Elements 2014 includes glow effects, inner bevel presets, stroke presets, glass effect, effects, gel effects, text effects, blends, shadows, frame effects, ring presets, color effects, gradients, text effects and more. Load the presets into PS and PS Elements via the open command as well as via the palette load / replace or double click the ASL file set. Amazing effects for all your projects to apply to layers as well as text, strokes and other elements of the application. PC & MAC.
On purchase, receive ASL files + notes + gallery + serial
Commercial use, royalty free
3000 Styles including bevels, glow, metallic presets, gradient presets, bevelled effects, ribbed, extreme, color effects, weird and wonderful presets, smooth color effects, outlines, glowing effects, multiple bevel effects and more. Commercial (CU4CU) use (license), no time limits, world-wide use. All are by Andrew Buckle / graphicxtras.com. Pertfect for PS CC CS6 - 1 & Elements 2014. Use the colorful presets to create ceramics, book covers and interiors, packaging, videos, wrapping, cards, leaflets, packaging, logos and much more - a stunning toolkit of designs. Load the ASL files via the open or the palette in PS and PSE. Apply the wonderful effects to text and layers. For PC and MAC OS X. Easy to apply layer effects. You can combine with shape layers (there are over 20,000 or so vector artwork available on graphicxtras.com - they all work amazingly well with these layer effects). You can modify the layer effects in many different ways via the layer style dialog. You can use the presets to add amazing flourishes to brushes and patterns as well as export the results to other applications such as Illustrator.
Installation and basic use
Load the PS Styles via file menu and open command or via the palette load and replace commands. Access the layer effects via the style palette. Modify effects via layer dialog or scaling. Apply to text as well as images and layers.
CS6 / CC - Install folder for the presets
They can now be installed in the c drive 'user' appdata roaming Adobe / Adobe PS CC CS6 folder for the effects .. (for the PC anyway). Still, personally I prefer to just use the load / replace command to find the ASL files which I leave in various folders on my machine. Once loaded, the effects in the ASL file are then accessible via the palette and can be applied to layers, artworks as normal.
Changes in CS6 and CC
Nothing particularly noticeable has been changed with them in this version of the Adobe Creative Suite though if you go to the layer effects panel which can be found in the layers menu - you will now notice the Photoshop style individual entries have been moved around - not sure why as the drop shadow was fine at the top for me - perhaps Adobe could allow us to change the dialog so we can move items around and move some of the least useful entries such as perhaps the outer glow or inner glow (unless you use them over and over) - can't say I have used them that much. Drop shadow now is at the bottom of the list .. clearly a tool that is rarely used. As the dialog is not that big and the list is not scrollable, again, why was it changed ? as all the items are still visible as before. Anyway - the list for CS6 is now
And why isn't the outer glow and inner glow paired and the drop shadow and inner shadow paired ? truly odd changes. Anyway, the dialog changes have had no effect on the actual effects and they work with CS5 as they work with CC CS6. The dialogs look a little tidier with some of the fields moved around but no new functionality has been added.
If there is a particular effect setup that you like for say the drop shadow, you can always click the 'make default' and that will mean the next time you create a shadow that set of distance, spread, size will be used.
With CS6 - if you select the layer, you can now go to the properties dialog and change the feather / density (blur of the edges) for the path - this also can be used in combo with the layer effects - so an image can have a tile effect, stroke and now it can also be blurred (in some ways, it would have been a nice addition to the layer effects dialog but then, I guess, the ASL files would have had to be changed to save the blurring effect and that would have resulted in modifications to the format). The blurring can be used to create some truly unusual layer effects with any layer or perhaps text.
Stroke layer effects / CS6 CC
With the new version of the application, you can now select a vector artwork (one with layer effects applied such as a bevel) and then you can go to the top option bar and change the stroke to add a color to the stroke as well as dashes - this stroke is above the actual stroke included in the effects dialog (so you can have basically two strokes to a path now - so one can be black and one can be read). The stroke in the effects dialog appears on top of the stroke / fill combination. The stroke can have a blend / tile / solid color - as can the one in the layer effect dialog - you can use the same or different settings. You can use this combination to create some very interesting stroke effects with text and standard layers.
Modifying the presets
The effects are not fixed in stone. You can modify the effects by selecting the shape with the style and going to the layer menu and the layer style commands such as adding or modifying the drop shadow, bevel, stroke, inner glow. You can also double click the shape layer and the layer effect in the layer palette to modify the style effect. The style effect can also be further modified via the layer menu scale effects option at the bottom of the layer menu - some of the effects are not affected by the scaling but some such as stroke size are. The style also can be modified by applying smart filters (turning the shape into a smart object) - the layer effects are still accessible and can be modified as before by double clicking the smart object icon (and editing the PSB document associated with that layer)
Smart objects / CS5 / CS6 CC
You can use the layer effects and smart objects in CS5 / CS6 to create a near infinite combination of layer effects to any layer / text. Select a path (text say) and then go to the layer menu and apply a shadow or style and then go to the layer menu and smart object option and you can then turn that into a new layer type. The smart object can then in turn have a new layer effect set (shadow, bevel) applied to it and this can be repeated and repeated - at all times, the layer and the layer effects as well as any actual filter effects applied, can be altered during the creative process. Double click on the smart object entry on the layer menu for that particular layer. You can also just flatten the result to remove all the smart objects / smart filters.
Use the effects with the layers
Use the effects with layers in CC CS6 CS5.5 CS5 CS4 CS3 CS2 CS1 and Elements 10 9 8 7. The effects from graphicxtras.com are all stored in 6 format and can be used in all versions from that ( 6 still works fine on Windows 7). They can be applied to layers (such as basic layers as well as text layers). There has been no real change to the format of the ASL file since the early days of the creative suite. Elements uses them but PSE has limited options to editing the effects and some of the features / sub effects are not even accessible.
Use the effects to add awesome edges to images. A quick way to do this would be to select a region, inverse that and then copy the selection and paste. The new layer based on the selection can then have a pre-defined style applied or use that as an initial point and then modify the style via the layer effects menu. The edge can then be flattened with the other layers. Millions of different edge effects can be applied in seconds via the layer effect palette. The edges does not need to be a rectangular either, it can also be a rough / distressed artwork and much more - the key thing is the inner part to allow for the image beneath to be seen.
You can also use masks to create a quick edge. Open a document with a picture and then create a new layer and fill with black - apply a layer effect to that layer and then select the quick mask option on the toolbox. Then apply a brush stroke to fill the region you want for the visible part of the modified image - then exit the quick mask mode (#ia the toolbox) and then select invert and cut the selection
After Effects (and others) and accessing the effecys
Access the layer effects in Adobe After Effects. You can also access the style effects in other applications though only a limited selection of layer effects are available
Web controls / creation of buttons
Use the effects to create web control buttons for web pages. There are also many additional web control available on the web. Recently a new version of Alien Skin's Candy filter set (version 6) has been released and it includes many new possible web effects (though these are not layer effects). Many of the effects included in the various packs include bevel settings. If there is no particular bevel setting for a particular layer effects, you can always add one by going to the layer menu and select the layer style command to display the layer effects dialog - the bevel can then be set to an inner bevel, emboss, stroke emboss, shading can be changed, gloss, shadow changed as well
Saying all of that, perhaps many great web buttons can be created more effectively in CSS3 such as combining shadows and gradients etc
Presets and text effects
The presets can be used with text to create awesome text effects. Use layer scaling to tweak settings as well as go to the layer menu and the layer style dialog and change the various bevel, settings as required. As the text can be 5pt or 50pt is virtually impossible to match the style exactly to the text. Personally I prefer to change the text into a custom layer and then apply the layer effects but you then lose the option to be able to change the text if you suddenly notice there is a spelling mistake or the client wants a change to the project.
Layer scaling / selected layer artwork
Use the layer scaling dialog to tweak the style / layer effect without going to the layers dialog. The layer scaling command can be found at the bottom of the layer menu and layer style menu. The layer scaling command can radically change the style applied especially if using a satin or bevel effect. Some of the effects are only subtly changed by the layer scaling command such as stroke or drop shadow. Using the layer scaling you can virtually create nearly infinite layer effects from a basic set of ASL effects - an effect that looks rubbish might suddenly turn into magic by the slightest change to the scaling setting.
1) Select artwork
2) Apply style to the artwork
3) Go to the layer menu and Layer style menu
4) Select layer scaling (bottom of the menu)
5) Change slider setting as required.
Layer Comps are superb - they are a great way of organizing your work (ok, I am certain they could be done better and I would love to see more options added such as perhaps live effects) - the key thing here is that you can use them with layer effects. Create a layer and then apply a layer effect and then go to the layer comp palette in PS and create a new layer comp (saving the appearance, visibility and position). The appearance is the layer style so the current position of the drop shadow and the bevel are all saved). Now go to the layer comp palette and you can select the comps and then the layer effect will change as set at the time of the comp creation (you can also update the comp so it is not cast in stone)
Select and apply
Select an area of an image, copy and apply a style - in this way you apply a particular layer effect to a particular part of an image - you can use this approach repeatedly with an image and create a weird mosaic of different layer effects. Until you flatten the image, the layer effects are all active and can be changed at any point via the layer effects dialog.
Modify the presets
Modify the effects to create 1000s of different effects. The newly modified effects can be saved to a new ASL file as required. Modify the effects via the palette (found in the layers menu). You have limited features to modify layer effects in Elements and cannot save them.
Warping the presets
Use the layer effects and warping transformations for amazing visual effects. The standard warping via the edit menu transform warp can be used with the layer effect by applying a shadow or bevel to a path and then converting the text or artwork into a smart object, the image can be warped in 100s of ways using the edit menu puppet warp command. The puppet warp effect seems to pull the color / layer effect away from the layer and distorts the effects in many weird and wonderful ways.
Use the layer effects via the pasteboard or VP dialog for weird and wonderful perspective effects. To do this, apply a layer effect to a layer and then go to the filter menu and select the vanishing point option. You can set up all kinds of unusual VP for the design - use to create truly wonderful perspective effects (works great with layer effects applied to text).
CS6 Blur Filters / effects
CS6 comes with a selection of wonderful new blur features - the blurs can be used in combination with the layer effects - apply field blur, iris blur, tilt shift, bokeh live effects and more to the effects to create smeared and weird color effects with all the effects in the ASL files from graphicxtras. A dialog will appear and say that the layer needs to be rasterized. Once that is done you can manipulate the blur settings in many different ways by moving the control pins - use the control point or the slider settings. You can apply multiple pins to the layer effect text (or layer) as well as multiple filters.
Use the style / layer effects in combo with brushes to create styled brush effects via a new layer. Create a new layer and select a brush and set the color of the brush via the toolbox. You can pre-select the layer effect or apply the layer effect post brush strokes. You can use with any of the brush tools.
You can also apply any of the layer effects such as drop shadows erc, any of the effects from the packs from graphicxtras can also be applied to create super colorful brush strokes in seconds. You can, of course, create multiple layers with multiple brush strokes and apply multiple different layer effects and shadows to those brushes - so you can create a multiple shadow brush stroke image over multiple layers, these can then be grouped and turned into a smart object which in turn can also have additional layer effects applied. Brushes and layer effects can be used to create wonderful images in an isolated area instead of just applying to an entire design or layer. You can also just select the eraser tool and erase the applied layer effect - so shadow and gels and bevels can be just as quickly removed.
You can apply standard plugin effects to the layer effects. Create a new layer and then apply a layer effect (gel, metallic,) and then flatten the art and apply a filter such as blurs, gallery effects / filter gallery. You can also apply a layer effect to text and then by converting the layer into a smart object via the layer menu convert command - you can apply live effects / smart filters such as blurs and pinch effects to the layer effects. As the object is a smart object, the filters and the object and the layer effects can be changed at any point. Just go to the layer palette and double click the smart object and change the layer effect. Sadly, the layer comp doesn't seem to take into account smart objects.
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