Cow from Vectors

I claim the copyright to this tutorial.  You are free to do whatever you please with what you make, but please do not take my tutorial.  Do not send the tutorial through email.  Only share my link.

This tutorial was created for some friends of mine who wanted to begin learning more about PSP.  It is intended for intermediates to learn how to use Vectors.  This tutorial actually only makes the vectors.  To complete the cow, you will need to go to the next page.  If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

To do this tutorial you will also need Paint Shop Pro.  I used Paint Shop Pro 8, but the steps used may also be done in Version 7.04.  You may download a free trial at Jasc.

Remember to save as a psp file often!

Ok, now some can find vectors to be tough.   I tried to put many images to help you.  Just try your best to make it look like the image.  Remember that it doesn't have to look exactly like it.  And the more practice you get with vectors the better.  Now let's take a deep breath and begin.

1.  Open up a new, transparent image, size = 500 x 500.  Set your foreground color to black, and background color to white.

2.  Select the Shapes tool.  Set the shapes tool to ellipse, width = 15.

3.  Draw an ellipse that is long vertically.  Leave enough room to be able to put two of these ellipses side by side if necessary and still have some empty space.  Also leave room on top for head.  Since we are working in vectors, you can always adjust the size later if need be.

4.  Now we will do some node editing.  Click on the pen tool (see arrow).  It will change to node editing format.  We want to add 2 nodes, one on the left and one on the right, between the top and middle nodes on each side.  To do this, move the cursor over the edge of the ellipse where you want to add a node, and hold down the CTRL key.  You will see the word add.  If you don't see the word ADD, then move the cursor over the edge until you do.  When you see that word ADD, left-click once and a node has been added.  Add a node to the other side.

5.  Ok, Here I have numbered the nodes that I want to work with.  Click on Node 1, and hold the left mouse button down.  Drag the node out to the left just a little ways to make it rounder there.

6.  Now repeat step 5 on NODE 2.

7.  Click on Node 3.  Pull the arrow down and in a little.

8.  Now repeat step 7 on NODE 4.

9.  Now we need to add 2 nodes on the bottom, one on each side. (nodes 1 & 2).  Hold the CTRL key down, move the cursor onto the edge of the ellipse until you see ADD, and left-click to add Node 1 (in picture below), and repeat to add Node 2 (in picture below).

10.  Click on Node 1, and pull the arrow out a little, and move the node down to the bottom level as the bottom node.  Repeat and do the same with Node2.

11.  Click on Node 1.  Then Right-click on Node 1, and choose Node Type > Cusp.

12.  Move the arrow of the node up at almost a 90 degree angle.  Move the circle of the arrow at node 1  to a horizontal position.

13.  Now right-click on Node 2, and choose Node type > Cusp.  make the 90 degree angle with the arrow and the circle end.  just like in step 12.

14.  Ok, now we need to add a node on each side of the middle bottom (see the arrows in the picture below).  To do so, hold the CTRL key down, hover the mouse over the edge of the shape until you see the word ADD, then left click to add a node.  Add one node on the left and one node on the right of the middle.

15.  Click on the middle node, and drag it up.  Click on each of the nodes that you had added and pull them close together so that they are almost touching.  You are making the legs of the cow.

16.  On the 2 nodes at the bottom, click on one, choose Node Type > Cusp.  Then do it to the other one.

17.  Now on each of the four nodes on the bottom, right-click on the node, choose Node type > smooth.  Do this to all four nodes on the bottom.  Adjust the position of the nodes if necessary to make the hoofs rounder.

18.  Now Right-click on the vector layer in the Layer Palette, choose Duplicate.

19.  In the Layer Palette, right-click on each vector layer and choose Rename.  Rename the top one front, and the bottom one back.  On the back layer click somewhere in the middle of the shape and slide the shape over to the right and up so that it looks like in the picture below.

20.  In the Layer Palette, Right-click on the bottom layer and choose New VECTOR Layer.  Call this layer Tail.

21.  Click on your shape tool.  Change it to rectangle, and draw a skinny rectangle on the tail layer.

22.  Click on the pen tool to go into Node Editing Mode.  Add a node in the top middle and bottom middle (see arrows).  To do this, hold the CTRL key down, hover the mouse over the edge of the shape until you see the word ADD, then left-click to add the node.  Add a node to the top middle, and a node to the bottom middle.

23.  Then add another node between the left end and the middle node.  Do this on the top and the bottom.  I have numbered the nodes that we will use in the picture below.  Slide the nodes around to get the shape for your tail.

24.  Right-click on Node 1.  Choose Node Type > Smooth.

25.  Repeat Step 24 for Nodes 2 - 6.   Your tail should look rounder, rather than jagged or pointy.

  (we will animate the tail.  If you don't wish to animate, you can skip Steps 26 - 28)

26.  When you are satisfied with the shape of your tail, right-click on the tail layer and choose Duplicate.

27.  Rename the copy layer as Tail 2.  We will be animating the tail later.  If you don't wish to animate, then you can skip Step 26 -28

28.  On the Tail 2 layer, move the nodes  1- 6, so that the tail is in a different hanging position.

29.  Right-click on the TOP layer and choose New VECTOR Layer.  Call this layer HEAD.

30.  Choose your shape tool, set to ellipse.  Draw an ellipse, almost in a circle.

31.  Right-click on the Head Layer, and Choose New VECTOR Layer.  Call this layer MOUTH.

32.  Draw a horizontal ellipse over the bottom of the head.  See picture below.  Push or pull the middle nodes in on the side if you want to make it longer or shorter. 

33.  Right-click on the Front layer, and choose New VECTOR Layer.  Call this layer, RIGHT EAR.

35.  Change the shape to Triangle.  And draw a triangle on the right side of the head, part of it under the head.

36.  Click on the pen tool.  Drag the top node under the head.  Add another node between the top node and the right node (see picture, it's red).  To do this, hold the CTRL key down, hover the mouse over the shape edge until you see the word ADD, and left-click to add the node.

37.  Right-click on this new node.  Choose Node Type > Smooth.

38.  Right-click on the node again.  Choose Node Type > Curve Before.

39.  Right- Click on the bottom Node and choose Node Type > Curve before.  The ear should be taking a curved shape now.  If you pull out on the newly added node it'll make the ear fatter if you like.

40.  Right-click on the bottom right node and choose Node Type > Curve after. (same node as in 39). 

41.  Pull out on the arrow and bring up a little to make a point at that node.

42.  While still in Node-editing mode, change the background color to black.  Your ear should have turned black now.

43.  In the Layer Palette, right-click on the Right Ear layer and choose Duplicate.  Rename this layer LEFT EAR.

44.  In the top menu, click Image > Mirror.

45.  Click somewhere in the middle of the left ear and drag it into position.

46.  In the Layer Palette, right-click on the HEAD layer and choose New VECTOR Layer.  Call this  layer EYE.

47.  Set foreground color to black, and background color to white.  Draw a small ellipse to make the whites of the eye.

48.  Change the background color to black.  On the SAME layer draw in a smaller black ellipse to make the pupil of the eye.   (see picture below)

49.  Right-click on the eye layer and choose Duplicate.

50.  Click on the mover tool, and drag the eye over to the left.  With the mover tool, position your body pieces to your liking.

51.  Now save this as CowVector.psp.  ( We can use this to make more cows.  Changing colors will be very easy.

Now let's learn how to use the vectors to finish off the cow with spots.  No naked cows allowed!

Continue to the Animated Cow tutorial to learn how to use your vectors and decorate the cow--even if you DON'T want to make it animated.

 
 



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