Click by Click: Create a Gradient Bevel Filter with ActionScript
See Full Version: This is a shortened click by click version of a: Full Length Tutorial
The Gradient Bevel Filter lets you add a bevel effect to a variety of objects in Flash including Movie Clips, Buttons & Text. A Gradient Bevel creates a beveled edge highlight, enhanced with gradient color, on the outside, inside, or top of an object. Beveled edges may make objects look three-dimensional. A Bevel gives a three-dimensional edge effect applied to the border of a graphic. Adding a beveled effect to a graphic image gives the image a raised appearance by applying highlight colours and shadow colours to the inside and outside edges. Bevel effects are often used on buttons to make them stand out from the web page:
Example: Download the Flash file Draw 216a
3D button effect created with a Gradient Bevel Filter.
In this tutorial you will learn the ActionScript needed to apply the Gradient Bevel Filter to Text, Movie Clips and Button symbols. In addition to this I will describe the settings which enable you to customise the Gradient Bevel Filter.
Here is an example of what you will create in this tutorial:
Example: Download the Flash file Draw 216b
Flash Movie Clip with Gradient Bevel Filter applied.
Step One: Setting up the Document
Step Two: The ActionScript
// Makes the filter available to use in the Movie.
// The Arrays (lists) below must all have the same number of entries.
// Lists the colors to use in the Gradient.
var colors:Array = [0x990000, 0xFFFFFF, 0xFF99FF];
// Sets the transparency of each color.
var alphas:Array = [0.3, 1, 0.3];
// Set the position of each color.
var ratios:Array = [0, 100, 255];
// Creates a variable with info about the Filter settings.
var myGradientBevelFilter = new GradientBevelFilter (3, 225, colors, alphas, ratios, 8, 16, 6, 1, "inner", false);
// Applies the filter to the object named myObject.
myObject.filters = [myGradientBevelFilter];
Step Three: Gradient Bevel Filter Settings
In this section detailed information is given on each of the Gradient Bevel Filter Settings:
[0x990000, 0xFFFFFF, 0xFF99FF]
[0.3, 1, 0.3]
[0, 100, 255]
(3, 225, colors, alphas, ratios, 8, 16, 6, 1, "inner", false)
This is what each of the above settings does:
[Lists the colors to use in the Gradient]
[Lists the Alpha or transparency of each color]
[Lists the Ratios or position of each color]
(Distance, Angle, Colors, Alphas, Ratios, Blur X, Blur Y, Strength, Quality, Type & Knockout)
Distance: Any Number - Default = 4
The offset value set the distance from the edge of your shape. This defines when the gradient starts and ends. Note that the spread and look of the gradient is not simple as it is based on the values of the blurX, blurY, and ratios as well as the distance value. The default distance is 4.
Angle: 360 to -360 - Default = 45
The angle, in degrees. Valid values are 0 to 360. The default is 45. The angle value represents the angle of the theoretical light source falling on the object. The value determines the angle at which the gradient colors are applied to the object: where the highlight and the shadow appear, or where the first color in the array appears. The colors are then applied in the order in which they appear in the array.
Colors: 0x000000 to 0xFFFFFF - Default: None
The Colors are set in the color Array. This is a list of RGB hexadecimal color values to use in the gradient. For example, red is 0xFF0000, blue is 0x0000FF. The colors, alphas, and ratios properties are all related. The first element in the colors array corresponds to the first element in the alphas array and in the ratios array, and so on.
Alphas: 0 to 1 - Default = 1
An Alphas are set in the Alphas Array. They change the alpha (transparency) values for the corresponding colors in the colors array. Valid values for each element in the array are 0 to 1. For example, .25 sets a transparency value of 25%. The colors, alphas, and ratios properties are all related. The first element in the colors array corresponds to the first element in the alphas array and in the ratios array, and so on.
Ratios: 0 to 255 - No default but try first number 0, last number 255, intermittent numbers evenly spread. ie: 0, 128, 255
The ratios are set in the Ratio Array and control the color distribution. The Ratio spreads the colors through the gradient. If the numbers are close together the colors will be close together, if the number are far the colors will be spread apart. Valid values for each element in the array are 0 to 255. The colors, alphas, and ratios properties are all related. The first element in the colors array corresponds to the first element in the alphas array and in the ratios array, and so on.
Blur X: 0 to 255 - Default = 4
The amount of horizontal blur. Valid values are 0 to 255. A blur of 1 or less means that the original image is copied as is. The default value is 4. Values that are a power of 2 (such as 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32) are optimized to render more quickly than other values.
Blur Y: 0 to 255 - Default = 4
The amount of vertical blur. Valid values are 0 to 255. A blur of 1 or less means that the original image is copied as is. The default value is 4. Values that are a power of 2 (such as 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32) are optimized to render more quickly than other values.
Strength: 0 to 255 - Default: 1
The strength of the imprint or spread. The higher the value, the more color is imprinted and the stronger the contrast between the bevel and the background. Valid values are 0 to 255. A value of 0 means that the filter is not applied. The default value is 1.
Quality: 0 to 15 - Default: 1
The number of times to apply the filter. Valid values are 0 to 15. The default value is 1, which is equivalent to low quality. A value of 2 is medium quality, and a value of 3 is high quality. Filters with lower values are rendered more quickly. For most applications, a quality value of 1, 2, or 3 is sufficient. Although you can use additional numeric values up to 15 to achieve different effects, higher values are rendered more slowly. Instead of increasing the value of quality, you can often get a similar effect, and with faster rendering, by simply increasing the values of blurX and blurY.
Type: "outer" or "inner" or "full" - Default = "inner"
The placement of the bevel effect. Possible values are:
Knockout: true or false - Default = false
Specifies whether the object has a knockout effect. A knockout effect makes the object's fill transparent and reveals the background color of the document. The value true specifies a knockout effect; the default is false (no knockout effect).
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