Apr 27 2009
By: Rick Yaeger
During MacWorld NY 2002, Apple came under fire for many things including charging an annual fee for .mac service (the free for life service previously known as iTools) and for offering no special deal for Mac OS X users who upgrade to version 10.2. As if those weren’t bad enough, Apple defaced its own “X” logo by covering it in simulated Jaguar fur. Why would they do such a thing? Sorry I can’t offer an answer to that question. I can however offer a suggestion on how you might do the very same thing.
As with our Ubiquitous
Aqua Type tutorial, we at MacMerc do not condone the use of Faux Fur Type
in any way. We only offer this tutorial for entertainment purposes. The techniques
shown below, when used separately, are harmless but when used together as illustrated
below without restraint, people may get hurt.
Step 1: There’s more than one way to skin a cat. (There may very well
be, but I only know this way)
The first thing we’ll have to is create some Jaguaresque texture. I
suppose you could paint all those spots in by hand. If you want to go that way,
suit yourself. For the rest of you that want Photoshop to do the work for you,
I’m starting with a 7″ x 2″ 300ppi RGB file with a white background layer â€” for the purposes of this tutorial, I will assume you are working on a file of the same dimensions and resolution.
Create a new layer, fill it with White and name the layer “Jaguar Fur”.
Under Filter choose Texture>Stained Glass. Set the filter to a 25 pixel
Cell Size, 18 pixel Boarder Thickness and 0 Light Intensity and click “Okay.”
This filter will map out the basic spot pattern.
Invert (Command-I) and then go under Filter again and choose Sketch>Photocopy. I’ve used a Detail setting of 6 and a Darkness value of 50 to simulate the holes in the middle of the jaguar spots. The texture still looks too sharp and angular, so obviously we have to do a little more filtering.
Under Filter, choose Pixelate>Pointillize and set the Cell Size to 10 pixels
before hitting “Okay.” Now we’ve got spots on our spots and, not only
that, they are totally the wrong color.
Before we apply the final filter on our spots, set the foreground color to R: 10, G: 6, B: 0 (practically black, but not quite) and the background color to R: 225, G: 164, B: 59 (a nice dark orange).
Now choose Filter>Sketch>Stamp and set the Light/Dark Balance to 1 and
the smoothness to 7. Nice spots.
From spots to fur: Go to Filter>Noise>Add Noise… and use a setting
of 10%, Gaussian and Monochromatic and click “Okay.”
If you look closely at the Jaguar’d X on the Apple web site or on the Mac OS X 10.2 box, you will notice that the grain of the fur follows the lines of the letter…well, forget it, this tutorial is already running long so you’ll just have to deal with what you get.
Go to Filter>Blur>Motion Blur… and set the Angle to 90Â° and the Distance to 10 pixels. Click “Okay.”
Go to Filter>Distort>Ripple and set the distortion Amount to 20% and the size to Large. Click “Okay.”
Now sharpen the fur by going to Filter>Sharpen>Sharpen. Now that you’ve Sharpened once, Sharpen again.
The jaguar skin is done. Now we just have to apply it to something.
Step 2: Adding Fur to Type
Just as I did in the Ubiquitous
Aqua Type tutorial, I will be setting “MacMerc.com” in 93pt ITC
Garamond Light Condensed in the center of our canvas. This will create a Type
layer in the Layers palette above the Jaguar Fur layer. Command-click the new
type layer to make a selection of its opacity.
Now click the Jaguar Fur layer to highlight it in the Layers palette and choose
Add Layer Mask>Reveal Selection from the Layers menu.You may now click the
layer visibility icon (the “eye”) next to the type layer to make that
Select the Jaguar Fur layer in the Layers palette because next we are going to be adding some Layer Styles so that our type seems to
have dimension. You can download my finished style here, or set you own by the
The final touch to the fur texture is to add the small stray hairs similar
to those that stick out from the upper serifs of the Jaguar X. Open the Channels
palette and drag the Jaguar Fur Mask to the “Create new channel” icon
at the bottom of that palette â€” this will create a duplicate.
Now choose Image>Rotate Canvas>90Â° CCW. Don’t worry if things look
a bit sideways, it’s only temporary.
Choose Filter>Stylize>Wind and set the Method to Wind and the Direction
to From the Left.
We can set the canvas upright again by choosing Image>Rotate Canvas>90Â°
Click the Jaguar Fur layer in the layers palette and click on the layer mask
icon that is displayed on the right hand side of it. Command click the “Jaguar
Fur Mask copy” channel in the Channels palette to activate it as a selection.
I want you to zoom into your image and find one of those upper serifs I mentioned
earlier. Using the Brush Tool, paint under the serif where you would like to
see some stray hairs. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with the amount
of stray hairs hanging from your type.
Step 3: A Moment to pause and reflect
The last step in this effect is to apply the reflection underneath the type.
Click the Background layer behind the Jaguar Fur layer, hit Command-A (Select
All) and then hit Shift-Command-C (Copy Merged). Finally, hit Command-V (Paste)
to add a new layer to our project. Rename this layer “Reflection”.
With the Reflection layer still selected choose Edit>Transform>Flip Vertical.
With the the Shift key down, use the Move tool (key command: v) to slide the
image within the Reflection layer straight down until the bottoms of the letters
meet. If the type you are using contains letters with descenders (strokes that
hang below the baseline), you may need to move the Reflection layer well below
the bottom of the descender in order to make the type seem to “hover.”
Set the Reflection layer’s opacity to 20% in from the Layers palette.
Go to Layer>Add Layer Mask and choose Reveal All. Make sure the Reflection
Layer Mask is highlighted in the Layers palette, the foreground color is set
to white and the background is set to black. Select the Gradient tool (key command:
g) and select the Foreground to Background gradient set to Linear in Normal
mode at 100% opacity. Hold the shift key down and click and drag straight down
from the bottom of the main text to about midway to the bottom of the canvas
and then release the mouse button. The effect is complete.
As with the Ubiquitous
Aqua Type tutorial, the final step is to close the document without saving,
trash that Layer Style you downloaded and never, ever use this tutorial. Speak
to someone you trust and respect about what you have done and ask them to be
there for you the next time you are tempted like this.