If you create original images for display on the internet, you have probably been ripped off. While there is no surefire way to stop image thieves, putting a watermark on your images can be an effective deterrent to all but the most sophisticated image thieves.
This tutorial shows how to make a simple watermark that you can drag out from your EasyPalette to use any time you need it. Then all you have to do is emboss it and edits its Merge method. You can see the full size image here.
I've placed quite a large watermark in the image above. You don't have to make yours that big. Start with a big watermark and then you can resize it as needed. I made a watermark base by making a large circle with the Path Outline Drawing tool, then making a large capital C and centering it in the middle of the circle. I added text and used Object, Bend, Wrap, adjusting the amount of bend so that the text on top and bottom formed a circle. Select all of the objects and right click, Merge as Single Object. Color doesn't matter for the watermark base. I made mine black so it stands out well.
Once you've made a base, drag it onto your EasyPalette. Alternatively, while the object is active, choose Object, Copy to Object Library. Either method will open up the Add to EasyPalette dialog box. Give the object a name (e.g., Copyright or Watermark) and save it to a Library.
Click OK and a thumbnail for the watermark will appear in the EasyPalette.
Now any time you need a watermark, drag from the thumbnail in the EasyPalette, directly onto your image. Make sure you use a copy of your valued image, so you don't inadvertently add a watermark to your original that you can't remove later.
To make the watermark readable against any color background, choose Effect, Material Effect, Emboss. When the Emboss dialog box opens, click Options to open a secondary dialog box. Leave the default Coating color as gray and the Pixel value at 3. Select either the Light Source option to the right (circled below) or left of the top center option. I like the one on the right.
Click OK. You'll see that the watermark has turned into a dull gray embossed object.
While the object is active, right click and choose Properties. This will open the Object Properties dialog box. From the General tab, select the Luminosity Only Merge method.
Click OK. Now you can move the watermark anywhere you like, and it will show up no matter what the colors are beneath it in the base image. For example, in the image below I've moved the watermark to another location in the base image and it still reads just fine.
If the watermark is too large for a particular image, you can select the Transform tool to resize it. Hold down on the Shift key while dragging to resize so that height to width proportion is maintained.
You may want to experiment with other Merge methods after embossing. Overlay also gives a nice result.
Finally, don't forget that you can use watermarks to protect your web sets too. Make an extra set of buttons and put a SAMPLE watermark on them to keep them from being used without permission or payment.
This tutorial uploaded 9/26/03
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