Tube Making
Now that you know how to manage your tubes, you're ready to start making some of your own.  The actual making of a tube isn't difficult, it's getting an image ready to be made into a tube that can be time consuming.  The important thing to remember for a good tube is that it must be very clean around the edges.  No little pixels of stray colors should be present.  That can really mess up a tube!

So the first thing you must do is to really clean up the image you want as a tube.  If you are going to be adding a drop shadow, it will show up very clearly if you have cleaned up the outside of the image....drop shadows have a way of revealing every tiny stray pixel.

Ok....let's assume the image is perfectly clean.  I'm going to use a penquin I've cleaned up.  Then I'm going to test him with a drop shadow, and if that looks fine I'll be ready to turn him into a tube.
 
 

Ok...here's the little guy.
Now I've tested with a drop shadow.
Here he's ready to become a tube.

Now let me explain the steps in some detail.  First I cleaned up an image I wanted to use as a tube.  I tested this by adding a drop shadow which proved to me that his edges had no stray pixels.  Then I removed the drop shadow.

Next:  I used the magic wand and clicked on the white background and deleted it to clear it.  Then I inverted the selection to highlight the penquin.

Next:  I went to New Image and created a Transparent new image the same size as my penquin, 75X100.  Then I went back to the selected penquin, copied and pasted him on the new transparent image as a transparent image.  (a lot of tranparent stuff going on here!)

Now I can export him as a tube file.  (see installing tubes for exporting tubes)

Sometimes I make a plain tube and then go back and add a drop shadow for a second version of the same tube.  I also make tube sets when I want to combine more than one thing.  That can be a bit tricky.  You have to create a New transparent image that will be big enough to hold all your additions as well as giving enough space between tubes if you add drop shadows.  I found this to be the tricky part of tube sets.  I would think enough space was between the images with drop shadows.  Then I would go to use the tubes and find part of another image's shadow in another's tube!  Well....it just takes some trial and error to get your sets to work right.  (Personally, I've actually discovered one of JASC's tubes to have this problem!)

Maybe now you will see how important it is to understand how to remove tubes.  While I was making tubes, I ended up having tons of tube files clogging up the Control box.

Ok.....any questions?



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