Part Three: Wicked Third-party Software
~ 09 June 2004 ~
“That Wicked Worn Look”
Something wicked this way comes.
And this time around it comes in the form of a cheat. You’re gonna love this.
Say hello to Mister Retro and his fabulous machine wash filters. Can’t figure out this whole worn thing? No problem. The Mister Retro filters make weathering and aging a breeze. Simply install the actions in Photoshop, keep the CD on hand to save disk space, and then run the filters as often as you’d like. Check out some of the cheats you can produce.
I’ll admit my opinion is biased, as I haven’t reviewed other machine wash filters. But the Mistro Retro ones do such a stellar job I’ve had no need to.
We’re going to take this week’s tutorial offline by producing a T-shirt design, demonstrating the flexibility of the filters. (Though, they work just as well online, of course.) And I want you to know I created the artwork solely for this tutorial. That’s how much I love you.
Step 1 – We’ve been through this before, dahling
Start with basic shapes. Can’t go wrong with something retro-ish. Easy does it.
Step 2 – Add flavor
Toss in a few words done up in classic typefaces, add a quarter star & stretched arrows, and suddenly, as if out of nowhere, a logo emerges. Incredible. (Useless side note: I have to admit Zeldman’s prolific use of Clarendon of late tipped the scales in the classic typeface’s favor. Hence, “Authentic” appears in Clarendon skin.)
Step 3 – Enter Mistro Retro
Here’s where the Mistro Retro machine wash filters work their magic. Flatten the artwork (but save a copy before doing so!), and play the “Regular Cycle” action using the Actions palette. The first step — and only step — requires you to choose a filter and place it over the artwork. I’ve chosen the “Aged” filter for this tutorial. Then, give the Return/Enter key a pinky tap and sit back and watch the show.
Step 4 – Sample wear using the “Aged” filter
When the smoke clears and the mirrors leave the stage, our artwork automagically goes from drab to ubersvelte. Okay, so that last adjective probably doesn’t fit. But at least it rings well.
…or “Wooden” filter or “Decay” filter and so on.
So the “Aged” filter doesn’t float your boat? No worries. Choose from 60 filters, like the “Wooden” one above. Or “Decay.” Or “Jersey.” Or “Crackle.” Test a few here.
I’m still amazed at how easy it is. I feel guilty. Very. Especially for a mere $32 bones.
Open Source Download
Sorry dial-up patrons, we’re back to a fat download this week. File contains the original artwork — yes, layered — and four finished samples.
Gear up for a few expert guests, ’cause something wicked this way comes again next Wednesday.
NOTEIf you ever use the download artwork to actually screen a T-shirt, 1) send me a Large and 2) be sure to increase the dpi to 200+ before creating the screen.
Stock photography, type, and killer tees. Genuinely recommended by Authentic Boredom.
Authentic Boredom is the platitudinous web home of Cameron Moll, freelance new media designer, author, and speaker. More…
Full-time and freelance job opportunities. Post a job...
A selection of fine reading, available for a limited time only:
- Jobs home page reorg
- Coming soon: Mobile Web Design, the book
- Dyson ad: Text as more than just words
- Setting sail for Europe
- Review: Sumo Omni bean bag chair
- Dashboard widget for Authentic Jobs
- Limited-time offer: $99 listings
- Nine skills that separate good and great designers
- Fire sale
- Introducing AuthenticJobs.com
CSS Mastery: Advanced Web Standard Solutions A solid round-up of indispensable CSS design techniques by Andy Budd, Simon Collison, and Cameron Moll.
Mobile Web Design A guide to publishing web content beyond the desktop. Tips, methodology, and resources. Now available.
Letterpress Posters The unassuming beauty of a freshly letterpressed print.
That Wicked Worn Look. Techniques for that worn, aged, distressed look.
Mister Retro Machine Wash Filters Turn the dial to “Instaworn” with these filters.
Blinksale Dive in and enjoy shamelessly easy invoicing from Firewheel Design.
Basecamp My preferred web app for internal and client project collaboration.
HOW Conference Austin, June 24–27. Pentagram, Adobe, P&G, et al.
Web Design World Seattle, July 20–22. Practical sessions on web design.
Stimulate Salt Lake City, September 2009. Entrepreneurship and design conference.