Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How to add a Santa Hat to your avatar using photoshop

It's festive hat season! And not just any hat - it's Santa Hat time!!

If you have Photoshop it's actually quite easy to make your avatar, like this one.

First, find a Santa Hat. There's plenty of free clipart websites online.

Open the hat image in Photoshop.

Then open the other image, the one you'll be adding the hat to. I think it's easiest at this point to make both images roughly the same size by going to
Image -> Image Size
But don't worry about getting the images exactly the same size.

Now we're going to use the magnetic lasso function.

I usually magnify the image before I use this function. You can do this by pressing CTRL and then the + sign on your keyboard.

The magnetic lasso is easy to use, just click on the outline of the hat, then move your mouse along the outline. Sometimes, especially at sharp turns, you can make a "fastening point" by clicking your mouse. You will have to go all the way around and close the lasso by clicking on the first square you made with this tool. You'll know it's created a complete circle because the line becomes squiggly.

Don't stress about it being too perfect, we can erase the excess white a little later on...

Once you've finished that press CTRL C to copy the hat.

Then click on the non-hat picture and paste the hat.

You can use

to move the hat to the right place. And if the hat's too big you can click
Edit -> Transform -> Scale
and then click and drag one of the corners to make the hat smaller.

If the magnetic lasso hasn't done it's job properly and there's too much white around the hat just right click on the Eraser button and pick the Background Eraser Tool.
And click the white areas to make them disappear into the background!

And there you have it! Some extra festive cheer!

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