A Textural Tag Tutorial

Patrick Donnelly
Thursday, Oct 27, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Microsoft Tags are great in that they can be easily customized with pictures or textures. Having a custom Tag can connect your users to a great mobile user experience in seconds.

2ergo Tag image

Here is one technique that I have used in some of my professional work to make Tags (like the one above) stand out in print pieces and match the look and feel of your brand. This technique can be great if you are doing a photo overlay or just want to have your tag explore similar hues. 

Follow these simple steps and you should end up with a cool custom Tag that can activate your print piece. Note: I used free textures in this example to illustrate the technique, but you can use this process with photos or other digital images. This is just one of many techniques you can use to customize your Tag.

  1. Create a tag in Tag Manager.
  2. “Render” your Tag.
  3. Check the black and white option.
  4. Select any of the “Standard Tag types” (codes) and then download the Tag.

  5. get tap app step 4 image
  6. Open your code up in Adobe Photoshop or other graphics program.

  7. step five magic wand image

  8. Use your “magic wand” to select the dark area.

  9. step 6 image

  10. Either delete out this area or apply a layer mask.
  11. Find a dark texture or picture to replace the black area of the code.

  12. clear tag step 8 image

  13. Paste this as a layer behind the code.

  14. step nine image

  15. Delete excess parts of this image so it doesn’t stick out. (At this point, you can also add some slight tints to the lighter portions of the code if you want.)  
  16. Select the white areas inside the code with your magic wand as we did in Step 6.
  17. Select the paint bucket tool.

  18. step 12 image

  19. Pick a color and fill this area with that color.
  20. Test your code to make sure it works.

Congratulations, you just learned a novel new way to add color and texture to your Tag. To make your code pop, there are two other considerations that we can apply. Background images and simple layer effects.

  • Merge existing layers.
  • Add an image to the background behind your tag for some excitement.

  • add an image Tag image

  • Add a drop shadow to the entire tag to create a special effect.

    Final Tag image

    Patrick Donnelly is a Mobile Solutions Architect at 2ergo. If you liked this post, check out some of Patrick’s other blog posts on the Tag Blog here.

    What others ways would you customize a Microsoft Tag? Let us know with your comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.


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