Eyeball FxZone: Photoshop tutorials and tips

After FX Tutorials : Inset Lines

Here is my tutorial on how to create wires or cables using photoshop and paths. The process is very tricky and requires a little practice since paths will be used. You will also need to know how to use the different pen tools for this tutorial.

Figure 01

First you create a path using the pen tool. Create the start and end point of the cable or wire using only two points.

Figure 02

Using the add anchor point tool, add the point in between the two end points by clicking on the center of the line generated by the 2 points(fig. 03). To twist the path, use the convert anchor point tool then slowly click on the center point then drag it sidewards and upwards(fig. 04). This is part requires a lot of practice since it is not very easy working with paths. If the twist does not come out right, simply click on the center point to reset the path then try again.

Figure 03


Figure 04

You will then need to complete the path. Do not use the stroke button on the paths palette because it creates a jagged looking stroke which is not anti-aliased. Just complete the path using the pen tool. Click on one of the end points then plot a path going to the other end to complete the path. Make sure the added path has a little distance from the the twisted path because you will be stroking it(fig. 05).

Figure 05

Click on the load path as a selection button on the path palette to convert the path to a selection (fig. 06)1 then use EDIT > STROKE to stroke the selection. I used the thickness of 5 pixels for this tutorial (fig. 07).

Figure 06


Figure 07

Use the rectangular marquee tool to select the excess parts of the cable then hit the delete key to remove them. Apply a very light outer bevel effect on the cable to give it the rounded 3D look.

Figure 08

Figure 09

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