Glowing Glass Button

A simple, elegant, glass button that looks as if it is glowing.

10 Steps
Important Tools:
  • Elliptical Marquee Tool
  • Rectangular Marquee Tool
  • Polygonal Lasso Tool
  • Blending Options

Step 1 - Preparation
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Today we will be making a glass button. However this is not an ordinary glass button because well, you probably know because you clicked the link!

Now there are two ways to start this tutorial:

A. You can start making the button in a layout you already have
B. You can create a new image and make the button on that

I would highly suggest choice B because once you learn how to do this, it will be a piece of cake to do it again.

For reference, steps 1-9 are preparation while step 10 is application of the button.

First, create a new image say 150x50px and Fill ( Edit > Fill ) the background with the color Black ( Hex #000000 ) You will be able to change this color later so do not worry about it now.

Step 2 - Creating the Layer Set
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Create a new set and name it “glowing glass” You will be making your button in this set. Create a new layer in the set and name it “glass”

P.S. Don’t know how to make a set? Go Layer > New > Layer Set

Step 3 - Two Circular Selections
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Take the Elliptical Marquee Tool and change its settings to what is shown below.

Now make a selection on the left side of your image. You should notice how the circle does not change size hence the “fixed size”. Fill ( Edit > Fill ) this circle with White ( Hex #ffffff ). Do not deselect at this point.

While pressing the Shift key, press the right arrow key. You will see the selection move 10 pixels at a time. Move the selection as many times right as you want your button long. I went for 9 moves.

Fill ( Edit > Fill ) the selection with White ( Hex #ffffff ). Deselect the selection.

Step 4 - Finalizing the Button Shape
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Now comes the fun part, the button is not looking like a buttons shape so we have to make it look like one.

Take your Rectangular Marquee Tool and change the settings back to the default.

Now what you want to do is create a selection of the buttons insides. You will see what I mean from the image below:

Image is Zoomed In

Fill the selection with White ( Hex #ffffff ) and deselect.

Step 5 - Applying Blending Options
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Yay you have a button looking shape! Time to make it look like a button now!

Right click layer “glass” on your Layer Palette and open the “Blending Options...” for it.

Insert the following settings:

Click Images to Enlarge

The Blue I use is #00FFF7

You may be thinking “hey that looks really stupid.” Yes it does. But we can change that!

Invert ( Ctrl-I or Image > Adjustments > Invert ) the colors of the image. Change the Blending Mode of layer “glassto "screen".

Step 6 - Adding a Reflection
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Time to create the reflection on the top. Create a new layer and name it “reflection”.

While pressing Ctrl, click on layer "glass". Press D to reset the Color Palette and choose your Gradient Tool. Make sure your settings are the image below.

Using the Gradient tool, while pressing shift, click and drag from the bottom of the button to the top. Change layer "reflections" Blending Mode to “screen” and turn down the Opacity to 32%.

Take the Elliptical Marquee Tool and make a selection like the image to the right. The selection will be a large circle so you may have to zoom out or make the window larger.

P.S. Need help on this? Start the selection about the width of the image left of the image and drag down and right until it looks right.

Press delete and deselect.

Step 7 - Adding Text
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The button is done and it is time to add the text. You can use any text you want but I highly recommend using BitDust 2.

BitDust 2 [ DOWNLOAD ]

Take the Horizontal Type Tool and write something on your button in White ( Hex #ffffff ).

Looking a little blank isn’t it? Let’s add a blending option. Open up the Blending Options for the text layer. Apply what is shown in the image to the left.

Yay the button is done. You can skip to part II now if you want but If you want to make your button even better, keep reading.

Step 8 - Adding a Text Reflection
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We are going to add a reflection of the text. Duplicate the text layer and Flip the text vertically ( Edit > Transform > Flip Vertical ).

Now move it down until it is 1 pixel under the original text

Go layer > add layer mask > reveal all. Take the Gradient Tool and while pressing shift, drag from the bottom of the text you just made to the top of the right side up text.

You should have a nifty reflection of your text.

Step 9 - Adding a Divider
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Now we are going to add a divider and an arrow to the button. Create a new layer and call it “divide”.

Take the Rectangular Marquee Tool and make a 1x18 pixel selection (in other words make a selection that is 1 pixel wide and goes from 1 pixel away from the top to 1 pixel away from the bottom of the button).

Now Fill ( Edit > Fill ) this with Black ( Hex #000000 ) and move the selection 1 pixel over to the right and Fill ( Edit > Fill ) it with White ( Hex #ffffff ) Change the Blending Mode of layer “divide” to “soft light”.

Create a new layer named “arrow”. Take the Polygonal Lasso Tool and make a selection of an arrow like the image to the left.

Fill ( Edit > Fill ) it with White ( Hex #ffffff ).

Yay you are done with the button and the extras!

Step 10 - Application
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So far you are probably thinking “Why did he say this was a simple button! It is so many steps!” Well here is a surprise. Making it takes some time but after that it is really easy to use everywhere. That is why this last steps is the only step necessary for applying the button.

When you want to use this button somewhere, just drag the layer set “glowing glass" into any image as many times as you want buttons. It is that easy. If the background of the image is very bright, change the text to black. If you did the reflection, remember to change that text too.

To change the text, just use the text tool.

To change the color of the button, just go into the Blending Options of layer “glass” and change all the colors.

Simple isn’t it? Thank you for following through this tutorial and have a great time using your new buttons!

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