Learn about the tools and tool options in Paint Shop Pro 8, including, how to select colors, gradients and patterns. Reuse of materials is also covered. (From the book, Paint Shop Pro 8, by Jennifer Fulton, Sams, 2004, ISBN: 0672323893.)
Working with Tools in Paint Shop Pro 8 - Save Materials for Reuse (Page 15 of 16 )
After carefully selecting a color, gradient, or pattern, and possibly adding a texture, the last thing you want is to lose all that work. Granted, you can easily reselect a material if you've used it recently by right-clicking the Foreground Color, Background Color, Foreground Material, or Background Material box on the Materials palette and choosing the material from those listed in the Recent Materials list. The Recent Materials list, however, can hold only 20 of the most recently used materials. So if you think you might reuse a material after selecting 20 other materials, or if you think you might need the material for use in another image, save it as a swatch.
Swatches are displayed on the Swatches tab of the Materials palette. You can control the type of swatches displayed by clicking the View button at the bottom of the tab and clicking a swatch type, such as Gradient. To select a swatch for the foreground color, click it; to make it the background color, right-click the swatch instead. To delete a swatch, click it and then click the Delete Swatch button at the bottom of the tab.
Tip - You can also create a swatch while creating a material in the Material dialog box; just click Add to swatches to add the current material to the Swatches tab of the Materials palette.
Click the Swatches Tab
On the Materials palette, click the Swatches tab to display it.
Click Create New Swatch Button
Click the Create New Swatch button at the bottom of the tab. A Swatch Name dialog box opens.
Type a Name
Type a name for the swatch and click OK. Later, when you hold the mouse pointer over the swatch on the Swatches tab, that name will appear in the tooltip.
Select Material and Click OK
The Material dialog box automatically appears after you name the swatch. Make your selections from this dialog box and click OK.
Tip - You can change the materials associated with a swatch; just double-click the swatch on the Swatches tab to reopen the Material dialog box.
Save Tool Options for Reuse
After choosing a tool and refining the options you want to use with it from the Tool Options palette, it's difficult to think about having to do it all over again if you need those exact settings again at some later time. Granted, you can switch to a different tool and come back to this one later, and the settings you used before will still be there. But if you change the settings of a tool to use it for some new task, you don't want to go through that long refinement process all over again just to recall its former purpose. Well, don't resort to ginkgo biloba to aid your memory recall; instead, save those settings in a tool preset.
Preset—A collection of saved settings for use with a specific tool or a dialog box.
Display Presets List
Select the Tool Options settings you want to save with a tool. If the tool is a painting tool, you can select settings on the Brush Variance palette to save as well. Click the Presets button to display the Presets list.
Note - A tool preset is a series of saved settings for use with a specific tool, such as Airbrush. If you want to make the settings available to all the painting tools, save them as a brush tip. See About the Painting Tools.
Click Save Preset
Click the Save Preset button. The Save Preset dialog box appears.
Enter a Name
Type a descriptive name for the preset into the Preset name box.
Tip - When using a tool you haven't used in a while, it's usually a good idea to reset the tool to its default settings. Click the Presets button and choose Reset to default.
Turn Off Settings As Desired
Click the Options button to expand the Save Preset dialog box. A list of all possible options associated with the tool appears in the Preset includes list, along with their current values. For example, the Opacity was currently set to 100% for my Paint Brush. You can turn off any option you don't want to save as part of the preset by clicking its Save icon. When you do, a red X appears over the Save icon to indicate that the option will not be included in the preset. For example, I turned off the Opacity setting because I don't want the preset to change the current Opacity setting when I reload it at a later time.
Tip - When saving a preset for the Paint Brush tool, you might not want to save the current foreground and background material with the preset. That way, when you select the preset later on, your current materials won't be replaced by the one in the preset.
Enter Other Data and Click OK
In the expanded dialog box, you can also enter an Author name, Copyright data, and a Description for the preset if desired. Click OK to save the preset.
Note - To use a preset after creating it, change back to the tool for which you saved the preset, click the Presets button, select the preset and click OK. Current tool settings are replaced by those saved with the preset. Any current tool settings you did not save with the preset are not overridden.
This chapter is from Paint Shop Pro 8, by Jennifer Fulton, (Sams, 2004, ISBN: 0672323893). Check it out at your favorite bookstore today.