Home > Apple, Photo Effects, Text Effects, Tutorials, Wallpapers > Create the Mac OS X leopard wallpaper

Create the Mac OS X leopard wallpaper


Whenever Apple comes up with a new product, they also make sure that new dimensions of creativity is also enlightened upon us. It is such a pleasure to design wallpapers relating to Apple products. In this tutorial, we will be doing the Mac OS X (Leopard) campaign wallpaper which was introduced at the WWDC 2007.

Step 1
Create a new document with a resolution of 1280 x 800px: Fill the background with black.

Step 2
Create small stars by adding Noise(Filter>Noise>Add Noise). Add a noise>15%>gaussian>monochromatic.


Step 3
Adjust the Brightness/Contrast settings as shown below to decrease the intensity of the stars


Step 4
Duplicate the small stars layer and apply a Brightness / Contrast settings again.


Step 5
Scale it like three times its size, so as to create bigger stars.

Step 6
Apply Images>adjustments>Threshold: This will show only a few stars. Change the blending mode options to Screen


Step 7
Refining the stars: Apply a mask on the layer(from the bottom of the layer palette) and with the eraser tool, with a size of 200px start deleting some parts of the layer. after that the stars won’t be too uniform anymore (to give a more realistic appearance of the space).


Step 8
Create some light: Add a new layer and create Clouds. Filters>Render>Clouds. Your background color has to be white and the foreground black or vice-versa.

Step 9
Apply a Hue/Saturation in the cloud layer and COLOR DODGE as a blending option.


The result should look something like this:


Step 10
Now apply a Hue/Saturation in the big stars layer using settings similar to what is shown below.


Now we shall some curve adjustments( there are too many stars if you view the image in its proper resolution). Adjust the values to get a desirable blend of the small stars. Use the settings as shown below.


Step 11
Create some Stars with flares. Download any Star brushes available on the web(Try Deviant Art). Change some presets like Diameter, Spacing and play with that, testing the Shape Dynamics, Scattering, Other Dynamics and etc… Don’t forget to add some glow in the stars through the Layer Styles.


Step 12
Creating the Starburst Light: Create a Custom Shape, like the one I chose in white, apply a Gaussian Blur and after that a Twirl. Scale it down until it gets a perfect circle (use the free transform tool (CTRL + T)).






Step 13
Create a new Layer: Fill it in black and merge it with the Starburst layer.(make sure the black layer is below the starburst layer). Then change the blending mode to SCREEN.


Step 14
Add a Radial Blur to the Starburst and after that change the Hue/Saturation. Colorize it until you get a purple color.




Step 15
Duplicate the first Starburst Light, reduce its size and apply again a Hue/Saturation, this time set a dark purple color to it. (You can observe that I have changed the Hue/Saturation Levels of the star layer to somewhat purple in color, to give it the authentic MAC OS X look.)

Step 16
Adding the Text: Type X using a size of 200 px (I used Arial ‘BOLD’ Fontface). Double Click the text layer and apply a simple Bevel and Emboss plus the Contour option.




Step 17
Creating the internal shine: Create a new layer and Add a layer mask. Now CTRL + Click the Text Layer ( Try rasterizing the text layer after the previous step) and using a elliptical marquee tool and setting the view percentage to 25%, draw a huge circle(using SHIFT).

Step 18
Now, Go to Select>Inverse. Click on the Mask in the newly created layer and go to Gradient tool and apply a White to transparent gradient as shown. Try reducing the opacity of the layer to desired value.


Finally, You can add the Apple logo and place it at the top giving it a grey gradient. If you want, you can also merge all the layers and give a lighting effect or a lens flare. It will give an awesome look. Thanks to abduzeedo for this awesome tutorial. I have added a few alterations of my own.


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  1. November 9, 2009 at 3:10 PM
  2. December 14, 2009 at 7:16 PM

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