Terms of Use


Using The Basic Vectors Tools in PSP 8

(Part A)


Now lets get to know the basic tools by making this tag:

These are the Vector Drawing tools:


We are only going to use 2 colours plus white for this tutorial.   A dark colour for the frame and text, a lighter shade of the same colour for the inside of the frame, and white for the stars.

If you need to save your work part way through, make sure you save as a PSP file.  Most other file types (.jpg or .gif for example) will cause the image to be flattened into a singe raster layer, and you will lose the individual vector objects.

  • Create a new image - 400x400 white background

  • Layers – New Vector Layer

Draw The Rectangle:

  • Select the Shapes tool

  • Choose a colour and on the materials pallet, set your Foreground colour (left box) to a dark shade of that colour, and set your Background colour (right box) to a light shade of that colour.   Make sure both foreground and background colours are set to be solid colours.

  • On the Tool Options, make sure Create As Vector is ticked and that Retain Style is NOT ticked

  • From the pull down list on the Tool Options pallet, choose the Rectangle tool.

  • Point somewhere in the upper left area of your image and drag diagonally down to the right lower area to draw a rectangle.


  • Click on the Object Selector tool

  • Click on your rectangle (you will know it is selected when there is a fine line around it with handles on the corners and sides)

  • Adjust the size/shape of your rectangle (by dragging the handles) so that there is some space all around it.   Even if it looks OK, practice changing its size/shape.

  • You can move your rectangle by pointing to the center spot and dragging it to a new position.

  • Click on the Properties button on the right hand end of the Tool Options pallet.

Or, click the Objects menu and choose Properties there.

  • Change the Stroke Width to 12

  • You can change your line and fill colours in this window at any time.

  • When you are happy with your settings, click OK



shown 50%

Add some text:

  • Click on the Text tool

  • On the materials pallet, set the background colour to the darker shade of the colour you are using, or whatever colour you want you text to be. If they have not changed from when you drew the rectangle you can just swap them over by clicking the curved arrow pointing between the two colour swatches.

  • Turn off the foreground colour by clicking on the symbol

  • Click somewhere on your image above or below the rectangle.  This is important: If you click inside the rectangle PSP will try to fit your text around the inside edge of the rectangle.

  • Type in the text you want e.g. “Congratulations”, “Great Work!”, or your name, in the text box.

  • Highlight the text and then choose your text size and font.  I used size 26, Lucida Calligraphy, Bold, kerned at –65 to push the letters closer together.  To see the Kerning setting, click the arrow at the far right end of the option pallet.  The middle of the pallet is squeezed up to make room to show it (to see the middle again, click the arrow next to the alignment options)

  • Click OK



click arrow to show kerning options

click the center arrow to show B I U instead of kerning options


Position The Text:

  • Click on the Object Selector tool

  • Point at one of the letters in your text and drag it into the middle of the rectangle.

  • Point at the Rotation handle for your text.  When you see your mouse pointer change shape to rounded arrows, press the mouse button down, and hold it down while you drag the rotation handle to make the text go diagonally from the bottom left corner to the top right corner of the rectangle. 

  • Drag the handle on a corner of your text object to adjust the size of the text so it fits just inside the rectangle without touching the dark line around the edge.  You will probably need to adjust the angle of the text using the rotation handle again once you are happy with its size.


shown 50%

shown enlarged 200%



Draw A Star:
  • Click the Preset Shape tool.

  • Set your foreground colour to the dark version of your colour (if its not already set to it) and set the background colour to white.  Make sure they are both set to be solid colours and not set to null.

  • On the Tool Options, scroll down the preset shapes to find the four pointed star (Star 1) and click on it.

  • Set the Width to 1 (on the Tool Options pallet)

  • Point somewhere in the upper left part of your picture and drag diagonally down to the right to draw a star about ½ the height of the rectangle.

  • Click the Object Selector tool

  • Point at the center of the star and adjust its position so that the left and top points go over the outer edge of the rectangle.

shown 50%


Tutorial continues on another page....

Part B

© AnotherJo