Software: Ulead PhotoImpact 6

Title:  Glass Dragonfly

Author:  Virginia

Skill Level:  Beginner

Please read: Terms of Use

Featured Tools: 

  • Path Drawing Tool
  • Outline Drawing Tool
  • Transform Tool

Using PI8?  Try this tutorial instead.


Outline Drawing Tool 

Transform Tool 

1. Open a new image—single color, 350x350

Outline Drawing Tool / Ellipse / 2D object / Width 2 / Color - dark...  Draw an elongated ellipse—225x75 pixels.  Deselect it (click on a blank part of the canvas).

Outline Drawing Tool / Custom Shape / Heart / 2D object / Width 2...  Draw a heart about 130 pixels high. Use the Transform Tool to Rotate Left 90. Use the Resize to flatten so the heart so that it fits in the ellipse, and to stretch so it fits the long way, as shown. It will take a couple of tries to get the heart to the right shape.

Merge All

2. Edit/Trace/Image.  Accept defaults, click OK.


Change Mode to 3D round. Click on Material, go to Gallery / Tab group Metallic, choose Copper 6.

Open a new canvas—I like to work with the 512x482, but it depends on you and your computer—and drag the wing to the left side of the new window. Close old window.


Transform Tool


3. Duplicate wing. Using Transform Tool, flip one horizontally. Move the new one to the right. Align the wings -- an easy way to do this is to select them both (hold down the Ctrl key while clicking on each wing) and go to Object/align/center vertically. Deselect by clicking away from the wings, then select each wing one at a time. Use the arrows on your keyboard to leave a space between the two wings.

Duplicate the right wing and rotate it to the right 25 degrees. Duplicate the left wing, rotate 25 degrees to the left. Arrange the two on the right so that the points of the hearts are close to matching, and then do the same to the two wings on the left.  Again, the arrow keys on the keyboard make this a snap. Go to Object / Select All Objects, then Object / Group—OR—right-click / Select All Objects and right-click / Group.  Deselect wings.

Pick Tool

4. Outline Drawing Tool / Circle 3D Round / Width 3... Draw circle for the head, 99 pixels across. Click Material, then Gallery, Tab Group Metallic, Copper 6.

*Duplicate. Format / Dimensions, click User Defined, check Keep Aspect Ratio, enter 90 for w-h, unit percent. Click Selected Object, click okay. Repeat from * until you have 5 graduated circles.

Click on your Pick Tool. Select all the circles, go to Object / align / center horizontally. Click away from the circles on a blank piece of canvas. Using your up and down arrow keys, arrange as shown, overlapping the circles just slightly. You may need to move the whole group a bit left.  Deselect.

5. Path Drawing Tool / Rounded Rectangle / Border 6 / Depth 20...  Draw a rectangle to fit from top circle to the second and wide enough to attach both wings, approximately 38x39—however it looks best to you. Set Roundness at 64.  Deselect.

6. Path Drawing Tool / Circle / 3D Round / Border 50 / Depth 30... 
Make a 3D Round Circle, 99x99 pixels. Duplicate and change size 90% four times as you did for the circles. Open your Easy Palette to Material Gallery / Glass. As you select each circle, double-click the glass preset you wish. One at a time, center the round over its circle and right-click / arrange / send to back. You may play with the border and depth to get the look you want. Depending on the fill you use, you may need to remove a shadow.
Object Eraser Tool

7. One last thing: a pair of antennae.

Go to Outline Drawing Tool / Custom Shape / Heart / 3D Round / Width 2 / Material / Gallery / Copper 6...  Draw a heart the same size as the head, or thereabouts. Go to Object, Convert Object Type, From Path to Image.

Click on the Object Eraser Tool, soft edge 0, erase half the heart, and click Trim.  Go back to the Pick Tool.  Duplicate this piece, then flip horizontally. Arrange the antennae on the head, using the Transform Tool to Rotate freely and maybe Distort or Perspective until the placements suit you. They don't have to match :)

Optional -- Path Drawing Tool, heart, 3D. Draw two tiny hearts and attach to the ends of the antennae.


8. Object / Select All Objects

Object / Merge as Single Object

Object / Shadow—click Shadow, the far left style, X- and Y-offset 7, the rest as is. Right-click in the color box and choose "Color on Screen".  Click on one of the colors in your Dragonfly.  Right-click on the color box again and choose "Windows Color Picker".  On the color bar at the far right, click near the bottom to make the shadow color very dark.  Click OK, and OK again.

Well, there you have it, my first tutorial.  I hope you have fun with it!
Any questions, comments, please drop me a mail :)

Thanks to Debbie, who tested this for me.  Wouldn't have done it without her!


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