On a side note...Delux the black gradent is actually 3 layers set at different opacity...I wouldn't have a clue how to set a gradent in there..The lighting is pretty much what I was TRYING to do with my vinny sig from the contest..I just didn't get it right the first time...How do I soften the BG effects? maybe make another layer copy and change the blending styles on it?? What would you suggest?
the gradient tool is located on the left in your tool bar, its circled:
the two that are circled above are the main settings you deal with, but i generally use the ones that are set to in this picture (it gives a single color gradient with a transparent background). just pick what color you want and drag the point across your sig however far you want the gradient to go. play around with it a bit, gradients are super usefull.
you can soften your background effects in this sig just by using the blur effect. the edges are just too rough, if you blur it a tad, it will make it appear softer.