Making a menu bar With Photoshop
Navigation system of a website is very much important thing so it should be attractive. You can create your menu bar in various way and you can use different tools Flash, Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver etc. Ours is created by Photoshop. Photoshop is such kind of tool by which you can design with your imagination. If you create anything with Photoshop you have huge option to make it beautiful.
Make a new file with canvas size 500×100, though you can make it longer if your going to use this for a design, but keep in mind that the height of the bar should be very similar to mine to make it work. Don’t mind what I just wrote we’ll just make a fixed selection (which you can change the width of if you have a larger width).
Select the rectangular marquee tool , at the top “options” bar change the style from “Normal” to “Fixed size”, change the width to 500 (if you used the default width in the beginning), change the height to 47px. Then make the selection and a new layer called “menu bar” fill this layer with black with the selection still active obviously.
Now add a gradient overlay, to do this right-click your bar layer in the layers palette > Choose blending options, check the gradient overlay box, and fill it’s properties to the ones below.
That will give you the following result:
Now apply a photo filter to the menu bar, later on we’re coloring all the layers with color balance to tweak it even more. But the photo filter has to be applied now so let’s get going. Click the layer adjustment icon.
and choose “Photo filter”. A new box will appear, change the filter to yellow and leave all the other values as they are. Press OK. Make sure the the photo filter layer is on top of the menu bar layer.
Make a new layer called bottom gradient. Change the foreground color to #184360, take the gradient tool , set the gradient to the foreground to Transparent gradient. Make a selection like the image below.
Then make a gradient from the top of the selection to 3/4 of the selection. And change the opacity to 50%.
Make a new layer called Bar light. Take the brush tool , set the brush to soft brush with 40px size. Ctrl+Click the icon of the Menu bar layer in the layers pallette to make a selection of it. Now brush a stroke on your bar light layer. Make sure though that you have the top of the brush under the bottom of the selectio, this will give us a nice glow stroke. Maybe you don’t get this the same as mine at ones, just try a couple of times and your golden. Now deselect the selection by pressing ctrl+D, take the movetool and press the upwards arrow key once. Change the opacity to 50%.
Set white as the foreground, take the gradient tool again with the same gradient as before (foreground to transparent gradient). Create a new layer called Shine, make a selection of the Menu bar layer, and make a gradient from the top of the selection to 3/4. Change the blendmode to Soft light.
Now take the pencil tool and set the brush to 1px, foreground set to white. New layer called White lines, and draw 2 lines around the menu bar like the below screenshot. You won’t see the top white line yet because the background is white but we’ll change the top background later on in this tutorial.
Repeat step 7 but use black as the foreground, draw the black lines around the white lines like below.
Make a similar selection to mine in the below screenshot.
Make a new layer called top BG and fill it with the selection still active with the following color: #48728b
New layer called Indent black, foreground to black. Take the pencil tool again and make a 1px vertical line, joining sides with the horizontal white lines, Do not go over the white lines! Check the screenshot below for further reference.
Now do the same again but use white as the foreground, draw this line on a new layer called Indent white, and draw it right alongside the black line.
This step is almost done, we have to take care of the blendmodes and opacity settings. For the Indent black layer change the Blendmode to Overlay and opacity to 21%. Set the Indent white blendmode to Soft light and 35% opacity. Then duplicate the lines and move them horizontally to make buttons, like in my progress so far below.
Make a selection of the second button like below. Make sure though that you don’t go over the lines (horizontally and vertically).
Make a new layer called Rollover, with the selection still selectec fill the Rollover layer with #5d6e6e. Change the blendmode to Color dodge and opacity to 35%.
First change the foreground to white if isn’t already. Now let’s add some text, You can choose your own font or can download the one I’ve used, the Visitor font. For fixed menu buttons it’s always nice to use bitmap/pixelfonts, and most of the time I download these on dafont.com.
Set all the text layers to the Soft light blendmode.
Now this step is optional, but It’s allways useful to tweak the colors even more, that’s why I strongly advise you do this. Add a new adjustment layer (like we did in the beginning of this tutorial), but now choose Color balance as the adjustment. Then change the settings to the ones below:
Shadows: 0, 0, +6
Midtones: +41, +14, -9
Highlights: 0, 0, 0