By Christopher "shaithis" Buecheler
We're adding the bottom shadow now. I don't want it to be as strong as the top, though, since lighting would typically prevent that. Thus, in the next image...
...I drop the opacity to 50%, rather than 70% (remember to set the layer mode to "multiply").
I've now merged all of my layers except the two shadows (after saving, of course. I average 5 or 6 .PSD's for each texture I make. I never merge anything without saving first, except in very rare exceptions where I'm dead positive I know what I want). I left the shadows unmerged so that in the event I want to add more to the bottom texture (which I do), the shadows will affect those additions. This is important, because things will look very much incorrect if that doesn't happen (it would make any dirt/scratches I add appear to be floating over the texture, for example).
Now I want to make some "dripping water marks". To do this, I use channels. Channels are a cool technique photoshop offers for making custom selections (among other things). They're a lot like quick-mask mode, but they're extremely versatile, and I don't claim to have mastered them. I use essentially use them as follows: You edit your selection in grayscale (black = selected, white = unselected, 50% gray = 50% selected, etc). You can then load this selection onto any layer you want, and apply filters or brushes to it as you would a normal rectangular/elliptical selection.
We've created the channel, and are ready to begin editing it. That red isn't really there. It's just photoshop's method of showing you the selection you're editing while also displaying the actual picture. You can turn the background image off and on (which I do in a minute) and work either just in grayscale, or in this red-transparent mode. You'll end up using both modes a lot to check your selection against the effect you want.
There's that grid again. I'm selecting the bars, because I don't want anything I do to affect them. So in the next image I'm...
Filling them completely with white. I made this channel in reverse, and thus in five pics or so, when I go to load the selection, you'll see I have "invert" checked. This selects the exact opposite of what the channel would define. For now, I want the effect I'm planning to blend in with them. I'll then go back and fill them with black in the end. This would cause them to be selected, if I didn't invert. It's kind of confusing, but if you play around with channels for a bit, they become a really useful tool.
I just scribbled on this with the brush tool and the pencil tool. It lays out the basic effect.
Credits: Graphic Content is © 1998 Christopher Buecheler. All other content is © 1998 loonyboi productions. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited, so don't do it, or we'll paint you white against a white background.