Well, here it is, a full tutorial on how to make a livery in Adobe Photoshop CS.
This tutorial features Photoshop CS5, however, you can get Photoshop CS2 directly from Adobe for free at the link below. You need to make an adobe account to download it.
Also, Here is a list of some resources I find invaluable for livery making:
So without further ado, here it is:
Step one: grab a template from JetAbout:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.51.05 PM.png 847.16KB 313 downloads
You should use the kits section. The templates seem to be higher quality than in the single image section, and it is much easier to work with layers than without.
Step two: load the templates into photoshop. keep make your base layer the active layer. your screen should look something like this:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.14.03 PM.png 1.02MB 371 downloads
Now, go to the top menu and click Image>Mode>RGB Color. this step is EXTREMELY Important, without it layers will not work and the rest of the tutorial is useless.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.14.47 PM.png 1.07MB 315 downloads
Step 3: In the details file, press Command-A on a Mac or CTRL-A on a Windows to select all. Press Command/CTRL-C to copy. now go back to the base layer and press Shift-Command/CTRL-V to paste in place. this will automatically align the layers to they fit on top of each other. do this for the other layers as well, making sure you do them in order. of you do the details layer last you will get a bunch of windows on top of the wing. Its always base, Details, Wing/Engines. engines are always last if they are a separate layer.
Step 4: in the top menu, select Layers>matting>defringe. set this to about 4-5 pixels and press OK. this will get rid of that pesky white border around everything. do this for the wing/engine layer.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.16.25 PM.png 1.13MB 310 downloads
Step 5: set the details layer mode to Multiply. Nothing should happen. Do it anyway, it is necessary for when you add color to the plane.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.29.43 PM.png 1.13MB 452 downloads
Step 6: Do a rough selection of the windows, making sure to exclude any fuselage frames/doors and include the windshield.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.31.59 PM.png 993.02KB 612 downloads
Hover your mouse over the details layer and press Command/CTRL-Option-Shift. your mouse should now be a little pointing finger with a little box in the lower right that has an 'X' in it. Click, the selection will suddenly perfectly fit the windows
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.37.53 PM.png 1.1MB 533 downloads
Now, while still using the selection tool, go to the top and click refine edge. play around with the setting in here until the inner part of the window is selected. In this image a red tint means unselected. yours may be different, but you get the idea. spend as much time as you can on this so that as much of the window is selected as possible without slecting anything outside it, as otherwise the wondows will look as bad as they do in this tutorial. alternatively, you can skip this step. the windows will be similar to the color of your airplane but they will still show up.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.39.57 PM.png 1.14KB 327 downloads
If you have chosen to follow through with previous step, Confirm this. If you ahevnt, ignore this. now Command/CTRL-C and Shift-Command/CTRL-V to paste. a new layer should appear. rename this layer 'windows'. make sure its layer mode is in 'Normal'
Now hover your mouse over the layer preview for the Wing/Engines and Command/CTRL-Click it. the wings and engines should now be selected. Now select a box around the winglets, as we dont want to change them. Again, click Refine Edge and add about 10-20 points of smoothing, paying attention to what happens and adjust accordingly. now go to the top menu and click Select>Invert. now press Command/CTRL-X to cut. the wings and engine should lose their jaggedness.
Now click the base layer and select the magic wand tool. in the upper menu set the tolerance to about 5 and click anywhere outside the plane (the checkerboard are in this picture)
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.50.36 PM.png 665.16KB 215 downloads
Press Command/CTRL-X. your plane should now also have a checkerboard area.
In the top menu click Layer>New>Layer. set the name to 'base color', ignore everything else.
now hover the mouse in between this new layer and the base layer and press ALT. the mouse should turn into two circles. click. a little arrow will appear next to the layer 'Base Color'
This is called quick masking. remember this, you will need to do it again.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.54.16 PM.png 3.38KB 155 downloads
press Shift-F5, a dialouge box will appear. set it to color. if it is already set to color, do it anyway. another box will appear asking you to choose a color. choose whatever color you want. I'm going to use a nice dark red:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 6.55.19 PM.png 730.27KB 204 downloads
Click OK. your plane should now be colored! Now create a new layer above this and quick mask it to the base color layer. call this layer 'livery elements' and ignore it.
create 3 more new layers and quick mask them. name the bottom one 'gloss', the middle one 'Shadow' and the top one 'highlights'
select the pen tool and draw a line roughly like this, being sure to follow the contour of the plane:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.02.56 PM.png 136.32KB 238 downloads
Above the layer palette is a tab called 'paths'. click it
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.04.14 PM.png 20.12KB 120 downloads
at the bottom is a little image of a dotted circle. again, click it. your path will turn into a selection.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.05.10 PM.png 2.05KB 22 downloads
now go back to the layers tab and make sure the 'gloss' layer is selected. press Shift-F5 and set the fill to white. press ok. set the Fill, not the Opacity, to 0. the circle will disappear.
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.09.45 PM.png 13KB 22 downloads
now double-click the layer preview for the gloss layer. the layer styles palette will open. on the left, check the 'outer glow' box. approximate the settings I have here:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.11.35 PM.png 64.12KB 30 downloads
the plane should look like this:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.12.08 PM.png 184.29KB 48 downloads
create a new layer above 'gloss'. select both this new layer and the gloss layer, and go to Layer>merge layers. the little subtext under it should disappear. rename it 'gloss'
now select the eraser tool. making sure the brush is set to a circle, set the size to about 60 and the hardness to 0. set the brush opacity to about 30%. now gently erase the beginning and the end of the gloss layer so it looks about like this:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.17.35 PM.png 209.68KB 50 downloads
Go to the 'shadow' layer and select the paintbrush tool. making sure the brush is set to a circle and the color is black, set the size to about 100, the hardness to 0, and the opacity to about 20%. now gently paint the underside of the plane so it looks about like this:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.20.22 PM.png 199.04KB 54 downloads
go to the 'highlights' layer. with the same brush, set the color to white and do this to the topside. remember, you can always adjust the other layers if they do not work together. in this picture I lowered the opacity of the gloss layer so it wasn't too strong:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.23.09 PM.png 217.85KB 51 downloads
now on the highlight and shadow layer, add some to the tail so it looks about like this:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.24.55 PM.png 56.01KB 104 downloads
Now add as many layers in between the 'livery elements' layer and the 'gloss' layer as you need to make your livery. here is an example:
Screen shot 2011-09-10 at 7.46.22 PM.png 1.22MB 140 downloads
And that's it! I will add the engine, winglet and final product creation sections at some point tomorrow but I am a little tired at the moment.
any questions? just ask. I will do my best to answer them
I would try and do a tutorial in gimp but I cannot for the life of me get it to work on my computer.
Hopefully much of this still applies.