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Design Glossy Orb Style Button with Custom Shapes and Layer Styles

Updated on November 21, 2015

In this tutorial I am going to show you how to create gorgeous glossy orb button in Adobe Photoshop. In the process of creating the orb we'll be using Ellipse Tool, Custom Shape Tool and lots of Blending Options.

For those of you who are still at beginners level I am going to show how to use the geometric tools instruments to create shapes with constrained proportions. You will also learn how to use gradients, Pen Tool path and Blend Mode changes in order to achieve awesome glowing effects.

I did my best to make all the steps of this tutorial very detailed, short and easy to follow. You don't need special skills to create this cool button design. This tutorial will show you that it is enough to know how to use the potential of each Photoshop Instrument and of the Layer Styles in order to create wonders.

I have used Adobe Photoshop CS6 to create the button but all versions of the program are applicable as I haven't used brushes, custom shapes or other features default for Adobe Photoshop CS6.

This is the final result you should get if you follow all my steps:

STEP 1

Start your work with creating a new Adobe Photoshop .psd file of 700px Width and 700px Height. Name the document Glossy Orb Button for example, set Resolution to 96 Pixels/Inch and choose Transparent for Background Contents.

You will get transparent Layer 1 in your Layers panel. Double click on its name and type Background in the white space.

STEP 2

Navigate to the Tools bar and click on the Foreground color swatch to change the color. Choose color #388390 from the Color Picker then grab Paint Bucket Tool and simply drag with it on your canvas in order to colorize your background with the chosen Foreground color.

The other way to colorize is to navigate to the Menu bar and select Edit, Fill, Foreground Color.

Create the Button Base with Colorful Gradients and Strokes

In Steps 3-10 you have to draw a circle with Ellipse tool of Fixed Size, then duplicate its layer and apply Layer Styles on both circle layers. The most important effects in this part are the two gradients and strokes which will colorize and give golden border to our Glossy Orb Style Button.

STEP 3

Create a New Layer above the Background layer and name it Base. Press Ctrl+G to put Base layer in a Group and name this new Group Button.

We are going to create the base of our orb style button. So set Foreground Color to any color you like. We are going to add Gradient Overlay later so the chosen color of the button base does not matter. As you can see I have chosen nice sunny yellow #ffe551.

Select Ellipse Tool, in the Options Bar set its Mode to Pixels, check Fixed Size and set Width and Hight of the Ellipse to 560px both. Draw perfect yellow circle and with the help of Smart Guides (View, Show, check Smart Guides) place it in the middle of your image.

STEP 4

Now decrease Fill Opacity of Base layer to 0%. Double click on the layer to call Layer Style dialog box or go to Layer, Layer Style, Blending Options and firstly tick Drop Shadow. Change its settings as follows:

Blend Mode: Multiply

Color of Shadow: #000000 (black by default)

Opacity: 75%

Angle: 120 degrees

Use Global Light: ticked

Distance: 0px

Choke: 40%

Size: 40px

Contour: Linear

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Noise: 0%.

Layer Knocks Out Drop Shadow: checked.

Keep Layer Style dialog box opened as we have another three Blending Options to apply on our Base layer.

STEP 5

The next Layer Style to be checked is Gradient Overlay. Change its settings like this:

Blend Mode: Normal

Dither: unchecked

Opacity: 100%

Set the Gradient colors as follows:

First Color Stop (Location 0%): #f9fe70

Second Color Stop (Location 56%): #e2e05c

Third Color Stop (Location 100%): #c3a751

Reverse: unchecked

Style: Radial

Align with Layer: checked

Angle: 90 degrees

Scale: 100%.

STEP 6

The next Layer Style to be added to the Base layer is Stroke. Insert these settings:

Size: 16px

Position: Outside

Blend Mode: Normal

Opacity: 100%

Fill Type: Gradient

Set the Gradient color stops like this:

First Color Stop (Location 0%): #f4e05d

Second Color Stop (Location 36%): #b6a745

Third Color Stop (Location 60%): #2d584f

Fourth Color Stop (Location 100%): #fff588

Reverse: not checked

Style: Reflected

Align with Layer: checked

Angle: 0 degrees

Dither: checked

Scale: 100%.

STEP 7

In order to finish our work on Base layer and to add it 3D look, check Bevel and Emboss and insert these settings:

Style: Inner Bevel

Technique: Smooth

Depth: 100%

Direction: Up

Size: 49px

Soften: 0px

Angle: 120 degrees

Use Global Light: checked

Altitude: 30 degrees

Gloss Contour: Linear

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Highlight Mode: Screen

Color of Highlight: #f6ff69

Opacity: 75%

Shadow Mode: Multiply

Color of Shadow: #c4a34b

Opacity: 75%.

Now press OK button to apply the Blending Options and to close Layer Style dialog box.

This should be the result on your screenshot so far. The first part of the button is ready.

STEP 8

This step is more than simple. Just duplicate our Base layer- right click on it and select Duplicate Layer or simply drag the layer to Create a New Layer Icon at the bottom of Layers Panel.

As we have to remove the previously applied Blending Options, right click on the duplicated Base copy layer and select Clear Layer Style. You can do the same by dragging the fx icon which is to the right of Base copy Layer to the recycle bin icon at the bottom of Layers pane.

Keep the Fill Opacity of Base copy layer to 0%.

STEP 9

Now comes again the fun part with Layer Styles playing.

Double click on Base copy layer and firstly check Gradient Overlay in Layer Style dialog box. Apply the following settings:

Blend Mode: Soft Light

Dither: unchecked

Opacity: 100%

Select Yellow, Violet, Orange, Blue Gradient

from the Gradient Picker.

Reverse: unchecked

Style: Radial

Align with Layer: checked

Angle: 90 degrees

Scale: 100%.

Keep Layer Style dialog box opened as we have to add Bevel and Emboss in the next step.

STEP 10

The second Layer Style to be applied on Base copy layer is Bevel and Emboss. Change its settings like this:

Style: Inner Bevel

Technique: Smooth

Depth: 100%

Direction: Up

Size: 100px

Soften: 0px

Angle: 120 degrees

Use Global Light: checked

Altitude: 30 degrees

Gloss Contour: Linear

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Highlight Mode: Screen

Color of Highlight: #f6ff69

Opacity: 75%

Shadow Mode: Multiply

Color of Shadow: #c4a34b

Opacity: 75%.

Now press OK button to close Layer Style dialog box. Our work on Base copy layer is finished.

This should be your result after applying layer styles on Base copy layer:

Draw Registration Target Custom Shape and Create Awesome Rays Effect with Inner Glow Layer Style

In Steps 11-13 you need to draw blue Registration Target Custom Shape of Fixed Size, then you should change its Blend Mode and apply Inner Glow Layer Style to create the final fading rays effect.

STEP 11

Create a New Layer above Base copy layer and call it Registration Target after the Custom Shape we are going to use.

Now change Foreground color to #396f91.

Grab Custom Shape Tool from the Tools bar, set its Mode to Pixels in the Options bar, click on the gear icon and select Fixed Size. Insert 550px for both Width and Height. Find Registration Target shape from the Custom Shape picker and draw it in the middle of your image as you see on the screenshot below:

STEP 12

Change Blend Mode of Registration Target layer to Overlay.

STEP 13

Double click on Registration Target layer and when Layer Style dialog box appears on your screen, check Inner Glow and insert these settings:

Blend Mode: Screen

Opacity: 30%

Noise: 0%

Color of Glow: #c0fffb

Technique: Softer

Source: Center

Choke: 0%

Size: 24px

Contour: Ring-Double

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Range: 50%

Jitter: 0%

Press OK button to apply the Inner Glow and to close Layer Style dialog box.

This should be your result so far after applying Inner Glow with Ring-Double Contour on the Registration Target Shape:

Draw Forward Custom Shape and Apply Blending Options on It

In Steps 14-17 you have to add symbol to our Orb Style Button. I have chosen Forward Custom Shape. For this Shape, as for the previous ones, you will also use Fixed Size Option. As a final touch, you have to add three Blending Options to give the Forward Symbol glow, stroke and subtle 3D Effect.

STEP 14

Create a New Layer on top of Button Group and name it Forward Custom Shape.

Change Foreground color to #2f7b89.

Select Custom Shape Tool in Pixels Mode and set its Fixed Size to 280px both Width and Height.

As you can see on the screenshot below, I have added two guides which intersect in the middle of the canvas to help drawing the Custom Shape. You can repeat the same by firstly selecting View, Rulers and then drag one Horizontal guide at 350px and one Vertical Guide at 350px either.

Now having the guides, find Forward shape in the Custom Shape Picker and draw it in the middle of the canvas.

To get rid of the Guides just go to View, Show, Guides- uncheck Guides.

STEP 15

Double click on Forward Custom Shape layer to activate Layer Style dialog box, check Inner Glow and apply the following settings:

Blend Mode: Screen

Opacity: 80%

Noise: 0%

Color of Glow: #b1fff9

Technique: Softer

Source: Center

Choke: 0%

Size: 40px

Contour: Linear

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Range: 50%

Jitter: 0%

Keep Layer Style dialog box opened, as two more Blending Options are coming in the next steps.

STEP 16

Check Stroke in Layer Style box and insert these settings:

Size: 1px

Position: Outside

Blend Mode: Normal

Opacity: 100%

Fill Type: Color

Color of Stroke: #32535c.

STEP 17

The third (and last) Layer Style to be added to Forward Custom Shape layer is Bevel and Emboss. Insert the following settings:

Style: Pillow Emboss

Technique: Smooth

Depth: 225%

Direction: Up

Size: 7px

Soften: 0px

Angle: 120 degrees

Use Global Light: checked

Altitude: 30 degrees

Gloss Contour: Linear

Anti-aliased: unchecked

Highlight Mode: Screen

Color of Highlight: #83dacb

Opacity: 100%

Shadow Mode: Multiply

Color of Shadow: #245a5f

Opacity: 70%.

Press OK button to close Layer Style dialog box.

With this we finished our work on Button Group. In the next steps we are going to add gradient glows to make our orb style button really glamorous.

This is how your Glossy Button will look after adding Forward symbol with the respective Blending Options:

Add Glossy Effects Using Elliptical Selections and Pen Tool Paths

Your task till the end of this tut is to add more glow to the Orb Style Button. For the purpose you need to create selections with Elliptical Marquee tool and fill them with Foreground to Transparent Gradient. You will also draw a crescent shaped Pen Tool Path and stroke it with Soft Brush.

STEP 18

Create a New Layer on top of Layers panel and name it Glow 1. With this new layer selected press Ctrl+G (Layer, Group Layers) and call the new Group Glow.

Grab Elliptical Marquee Tool (keep Glow 1 layer selected) and draw an ellipse covering almost the whole upper half of your button. See the screenshot below for a reference.

In order to fill the ellipse with color, take Gradient Tool, from the Tool bar. Press D then X key to set Foreground/Background color to White/Black. In the Options bar choose Foreground to Transparent Gradient from the Gradient Picker then select Linear Type of Gradient.

Drag with Gradient Tool from the upper to the bottom part of the ellipse. You should get a result like the one shown on the screenshot below.

Press Ctrl+D (Select, Deselect) to get rid of the selection.

STEP 19

Change Blend Mode of Light 1 layer to Soft Light.

STEP 20

Create a New Layer on top of Glow Group and call it Glow 2.

Now grab Brush Tool and from the Brush Preset Picker select Soft Round Brush. Set its Size to 9px.

Your Foreground color should be white in order to stroke the Pen Tool path with white color in the next step.

STEP 21

While Glow 2 layer is selected, take Pen Tool in Path mode and draw an arc shaped path at the upper part of our glossy button.

STEP 22

Now right click on our Pen Tool path, select Stroke Path from the fly-out menu, in Stroke Path dialog box select Brush (by default) and tick Simulate Pressure.

STEP 23

Press Delete key twice to remove the Pen Tool Path. Change Blend Mode of Glow 2 layer to Soft Light.

STEP 24

We'll continue to add glows in the next steps.

Create a New Layer on top of Glow Group and call it Glow 3.

Now Ctrl+click on Base or Base copy layer's thumbnail to load selection.

STEP 25

Check if your Foreground color is white, then select Gradient Tool and choose Foreground to Transparent Gradient of Linear type. Select Glow 3 layer and drag with the Gradient from the bottom right of the selection (see the red arrow) until you get the result shown on the screenshot below.

Press Ctrl+D to deselect.

STEP 26

While Glow 3 layer is highlighted, take Elliptical Marquee Tool and draw a circle as you see on the screenshot below. Press Delete key to remove the selected parts of the white to transparent gradient. Then press Ctrl+D to deselect.

STEP 27

Change Blend Mode of Glow 3 layer to Soft Light.

STEP 28

Create a New Layer on top of Glow Group and name it Glow 4. Ctrl+click on any of both Base layer's thumbnail to load selection. Keep Glow 4 layer highlighted and check if your foreground color is white.

Grab Gradient Tool, Foreground to Transparent and of Linear type. Drag with Gradient Tool from the bottom left side of the selection. It is shown on the screenshot below with red arrow.

Press Ctrl+D to deselect when you are ready.

STEP 29

Draw a circle with Elliptical Marquee Tool as the one on the following screenshot. Press Delete to get rid of the selected parts of the gradient.

Press Ctrl+D to remove the selection.

STEP 30

Change Blend Mode of Glow 4 layer to Soft Light and reduce its Fill Opacity to 50%.

STEP 31

Heave a deep sigh. We are ready with our super cool glossy button tutorial. If you have followed all my steps you should get the result shown below and your Layers pane should contain one separate Background layer and two Groups of layers- Button and Glow.

STEP 32

This is the final result saved in .jpg format.

Hope you liked this tutorial, found it useful and learned something new.

Good luck and have fun! :)

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    • CorneliaMladenova profile image
      Author

      Korneliya Yonkova 22 months ago from Cork, Ireland

      Thank you very much for the nice comment and support! :)

    • profile image

      A guy somewhere... 22 months ago

      Excellent tutorials Cornelia. You are very skilled and imaginative. I'm also really impressed that you are mostly self-taught. Thank you for sharing.

    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 2 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Thank you Cornelia for this information.

    • CorneliaMladenova profile image
      Author

      Korneliya Yonkova 2 years ago from Cork, Ireland

      Hello, Rachel, in 2008, before I emigrated to Ireland, I attended five Saturdays Photoshop course in Sofia. But it was not enough, they only show me how to use the instruments. Since then I started to practice solidly and now I achieved this high level. So the course is to teach you the use of any instrument, but it depends on you how to use it :)

    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 2 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Cornelia, I know I'm old fashion and actually clueless in a lot of things, so how did you learn how to do these things? Did you have to go to school to learn these techniques? You are very creative, for sure. Thanks for sharing.

      Blessings to you.

    • CorneliaMladenova profile image
      Author

      Korneliya Yonkova 2 years ago from Cork, Ireland

      Thank you very much for the support, my friend :)

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      This is really nice. I'm saving this and bookmarking the page to use sometime. I love it.

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