Creating concentric pond ripples

I don't know about you, but when I think of zigzags, I think of cartoon lightning bolts, wriggling snakes, scribbles — anything that alternately changes directions along an axis, like the letter Z. The ZigZag filter does arrange colors into zigzag patterns, but it does so in a radial fashion, meaning that the zigzags emanate from the center of the image like spokes in a wheel. The result is a series of concentric ripples. If you want parallel zigzags, check out the Ripple and Wave filters, described in the next section. (The ZigZag filter creates ripples and the Ripple filter creates zigzags. Go figure.)

When you choose Filter ^ Distort ^ ZigZag, Photoshop displays the ZigZag dialog box, shown in Figure 11-20. The dialog box offers the following options:

4 Amount: Enter an amount between negative and positive 100 in whole-number increments to specify the depth of the ripples. If you enter a negative value, the ripples descend below the surface. If you enter a positive value, the ripples protrude upward. Examples of three representative Amount values appear in Figure 11-21.

Wave Concentric Photoshop
Figure 11-20: The ZigZag dialog box lets you add concentric ripples to an image, as if the image were reflected in a pond into which you dropped a pebble.

Pond Ripples

From

Center

Around Center

Pond Ripples

From

Center

Around Center

Amount = 10

Figure 11-21: The effects of the ZigZag filter subject to three Amount values and the Pond Ripples, Out From Center, and Around Center settings. In all cases, the Ridges value was 5.

Amount = 10

Figure 11-21: The effects of the ZigZag filter subject to three Amount values and the Pond Ripples, Out From Center, and Around Center settings. In all cases, the Ridges value was 5.

* Ridges: This option box controls the number of ripples in the selected area and accepts any value from 1 to 20. Figure 11-22 demonstrates the effect of three Ridges values.

* Pond Ripples: This option is really a cross between the two that follow. It moves pixels outward and rotates them around the center of the selection to create circular patterns. As demonstrated in the top rows of Figures 11-21 and 11-22, this option truly results in a pond ripple effect.

Pond Ripples

From

Center

Around Center

Pond Ripples

From

Center

Around Center

Ridges = 5

Figure 11-22: The effects of the ZigZag filter using three Ridges values and each of the three Style pop-up menu settings. In all cases, the Amount value was 20.

Ridges = 5

Figure 11-22: The effects of the ZigZag filter using three Ridges values and each of the three Style pop-up menu settings. In all cases, the Amount value was 20.

♦ Out From Center: When you select this option, Photoshop moves pixels outward in rhythmic bursts according to the value in the Ridges option box. Because the gradation image I created in Figure 11-15 was already arranged in a radial pattern, I brought in Moses to demonstrate the effect of the Out From Center option, as shown in the second rows of Figures 11-21 and 11-22.

♦ Around Center: Select this option to rotate pixels in alternating directions around the circle without moving them outward. This is the only option that produces what I would term a zigzag effect. The last rows of Figures 11-21 and 11-22 show the effects of the Around Center option.

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