USING THE FUN TOON ARTIST PHOTOSHOP ACTION
Just a quick blog this week – wanted to share this really free fun Photoshop action downloaded from Adobe Create. Nuwan Panditha (Black Null) made this wonderful action and the results are give a nice cartoon-like effect. The image above was processed as a regular photo before, but the cartoon look worked out well for this close up of the front of an old Ford.
First, here is the download link. The download folder contains the action, a PDF guide, and a .pat file of 20 patterns. I would suggest looking at the PDF guide giving relevant information on the different layer groups before running the action. I will also caution you that the files can get pretty big – the Jaguar image was over a gig after running the action.
There are a few things you need to do before running the action: 1) set the image to 8-bit and RGB modes; 2) make sure the document does not exceed 5000 px on a side and 3000 px is best; 3) make sure Open CL is active in PS preferences; 4) if image is cropped, be sure to “Delete Cropped Pixels” is checked in the Options Bar; and 5) load the patterns (info on how to do this is in the PDF). The other thing that must be done is to create a brush that has a Hardness set to 100 and Spacing 10% – use it to paint in white on the new layer where you want the action to place cartoon effect before actually running the action.
Nuwan says that close up images work very well with this action – image should be sharp and well lit. So do not use images that are all white or black and use Levels Adjustment to balance the brightness of the image before running image.
To run the action, two layers are required, the bottom image layer and a New Layer on top – this is where you use the brush noted above is used to paint with white over the part of image to be emphasized. The action can take 3 to 4 minutes to run.
Once the actin is run, a Toon Artist folder is created that contains all the subgroups which allow you to get the different effects. Just turn on and off the eyeballs to see what each section does to the image – and open them up to tweak each. Several have layer styles attached so check out those. In the Screenshot below the 2nd layer up shows just the white painted front part of the car that was detailed with the cartoon lines. The painted background effect was created by turning on in the BG FX folder the Original BG layer and adjusting the BG Color (Solid Color Fill Adjustment Layer that shows a brownish icon color) located at the bottom of the Toon Artist folder (3rd layer up in screenshot). In the Screenshot it can be seen that the BG Pattern subfolder was not used in for this image.
Here is a Jaguar image taken at the Jacksonville Zoo that shows some of the other cartoon features that can be added to an image with this action. To keep the image size under a gig, I had to resize it making the long side 6 inches, and remove all the hidden layers that were not being used.
Bottom Line: It is a bit complicated to use, but once you try it a few times, it is really fun to create different effects. I enjoyed having something different to try out. Nuwan also did another action I wrote about a while back that you might download. The blog is called Trying Out the Free Watercolor Action from Adobe – Pretty Nice! Have a great week…..Digital Lady Syd