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Old 04-18-2014, 02:16 PM
chaos blues
Graphics Team

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Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 28,987
Since I don't have my own arts thread, I asked Rae if I could post this here. I thought it might be helpful to people who want to apply.

Simple Background Tutorial
Remember, this is just the way I do it. There are possibly better ways, but this is what works best for me. If you click on the screen caps you will see them in their full size. This tutorial should work with all PS versions.

Pictures I used:
HIMYM Cast, Background 1, Background 2

You shouldn't just use a cast picture and brush off the edges, but I'm being lazy. I already did the colouring, but you can do it in whatever order you like. As you can see I don't work with a 460x200 base first, so you might have to adapt the tutorial slightly if you do.

Find pictures that fit the theme of your show. I chose part of the NY skyline and a bit of the pub where a lot of the show takes place. It's not necessary to use more than one picture, but I think it looks more interesting if you layer a couple. Drag the picture/s into your graphic. Don't resize!

To get the background in the best possible quality, choose your background layer and pick the "Move Tool". Check the box next to "Show Transform Controls" and it should look something like this:

Click on one of the corners of the border and make sure you click on the symbol I circled in red below. Now it's time to resize our layer to whatever size you think looks best. Click on one of the corners of your background border again and drag it until the layer is your desired size. Do the same thing with the remaining background picture/s.

If you use more than one picture for your background you need to change the opacity settings. This varies from graphic to graphic and depends on how many pictures you are using etc. I set the skyline picture (Background 1) to "Normal" 78% and the bar picture (Background 2) to "Exclusion" 51%.

Obviously the graphic can't stay like this, since it doesn't blend, at all. I started softly erasing the edges by using a round circle brush. Make sure the eraser is set to 100%. You don't need to be too careful with this step, but try to only erase the edges.

For the precision work you can use watercolour brushes (click) on different opacity setting. If you use Photoshop CC you will be able to use just one brush from different angles. Here is what my banner looks like now:

It still doesn't look quite right though, does it? Time to change the colouring of your background layers. This graphic is quite orange/red/yellow/brown -toned, therefore the purple of the background stands out too much. I used a color balance, selective coloring and a saturation layer. Again, the settings and the layers you need to use will depend on your graphic. Just play around with them until you are satisfied with your result.

You don't have to stop here. You can add brushes, yellow umbrellas or whatever you want... Go crazy!

Add your font and you're done.

This is what my finished banner looks like:

something about you always lingers
time and space can never seperate us
A&I+2 ♡ | 🎨 | sophia

Last edited by chaos blues; 04-18-2014 at 02:22 PM
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