In this tutorial you will learn how, using Photoshop, you can create simple and original abstract wallpaper for your desktop. In this paper we will use shapes, textures and brushes.
Materials for the lesson:
Step 1. New document
Open Photoshop and create a new file with a transparent background, put the size of the document corresponding to the resolution of your monitor, in my case it is 1680 x 1050 pixels. My other settings you see in the screenshot below. Do not forget that the characteristics of the document can be adjusted in further steps.
Step 2. We work on the background
To start working with the background fill it with white. To do this, go to Editing – Fill White (Edit – Fill – White.). To vary the background, add to it Layer styles (Layer style). Double-click on the white background to go to the Layer Style (Layer style). In the dialog box that appears, select a style. Gradient overlay (Gradient overlay). To adjust the gradient, use the parameters shown below.
Step 3. Add a background texture.
For this paper we will use the grunge texture of Old Paper. Download this resource, open the texture in Photoshop and drag it into the main working document. Place the textured paper layer over the gray background layer. In my work I will use the top of the texture. You can choose the old paper item you like, scale it, expand it or transform it as necessary. To do this, activate by pressing the key combination Ctrl + T, tool Free transform (Transform).
Lower opacity (opacity) layer with paper texture to 20%, and set the blending mode (blend mode) to Multiplication (Multiply). The resulting layer name “paper texture”.
Step 4. Create a paper triangle
Create a new layer on top of the previous ones. Activate the tool Arbitrary shape (Custom Shape Tool), select a triangle in the shapes view palette.
If, by opening the tool selection palette, you did not find the desired shape, you need to add a new set. To do this, click on the mini-icon “circle with a triangle in the middle”, you will have a submenu in which you need to select “Everything” (Select all).
Select the shape of a triangle, hold down the Shift key (to get an equilateral triangle) and draw a shape on a new layer.
Then take the scuffed grunge texture.
Open the texture in your working paper and place it above the triangle layer, stand on this layer. Hold key Ctrl and click on the thumbnail of a triangle to get the active outline of the shape. Then click on the “Add Vector Mask” icon (at the bottom of the layers panel). As a result, the “Faded” texture will only be visible on a triangular shape.
Let’s beat the shabby texture using Layer Style (Layer style) – Shadow (Drop shadow). To go to these settings: Layer – Layer Style – Shadow (Layer – Layer Style – Drop Shadow). Values are shown in the screenshot.
Also, add a newspaper texture to the triangle. For this we will use the free image “VintageNewsPaper”. Download this image and move it to a working paper. Place the image with the newspaper above the triangle-shaped layer. Activate the Free Transform tool (Transform) (Ctrl + T) and with it, resize the image with the newspaper to the desired. Rename the newspaper layer to “Vintage Paper”.
Place this layer above the “Scuffed” texture layer and apply the “Vintage paper” layer as a clipping mask to the “Scuffed” layer (right-click on the image of the newspaper layer – Create clipping mask (Create a Clipping Mask)).
Step 5. Draw circles
Create a new layer. Activate the tool Ellipse (Ellipse Tool (U)). Holding the key Shift draw a black circle. Right-click on the circle layer and select Rasterize layer (Rasterize Layer). Then go to Layer Style (Layer style) and add parameters to the circle Shadow (Drop shadow) and Gradient overlay (Gradient Overla). Settings you can see below.
Place a circle in the lower right corner of the collage. Name the “Orange Circle” layer. Duplicate this layer and apply to it. Gaussian blur – 50px (Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur)).
Rename the blurred circle layer to “Orange Shadow” and add a layer mask to it. Make sure that this layer should be located under the layer “Orange Circle”. Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)), set black in the brush settings; stiffness – 0%. Standing on the orange shadow layer mask draw the area where the circle intersects with the triangle (you can see the area worked by the brush in the figure below).
In order to create the next circle, simply repeat the previous steps of this item. Change colors for Layer Style Gradient Overlay (Gradient Overlay), as shown below:
Name the resulting layer with the circle “Purple Circle” (“Purple Circle”), and a layer with its shadow – “Purple Shadow” (“Purple Shadow”). Place these layers as shown in the image below. Then select both layers, and move the purple circle and its shadow to the upper left corner of the canvas.
Step 6. Use grunge brushes
Using grunge brushes, we add a simple but beautiful effect to the orange circle. Go to the Orange Circle layer and add a layer mask to it. Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)). Set the brush color to black.
Tip: To set the colors to black and white, just press the D key.
From the list of brushes, select any grunge brush you like. If there are no such brushes on your list, you can easily find them on deviantart.com. Now just draw the layer mask of the orange circle as you like.
Step 7. Add a rainbow
Create a new layer and activate the tool. Rectangular area (Rectangular Marquee Tool (M)). Using this tool, draw a selection about half the size of the canvas.
Then go to the tool Gradient (Gradient Tool). In the Gradient settings, select 5-7 different colors so that it looks like a rainbow. Draw a gradient, in the previously defined rectangular area. Press the key combination Ctrl + D in order to deselect.
Apply a filter to the received rainbow. Gaussian blur (Gaussian Blur Filter). Blur radius set 150 pix
Standing on the rainbow layer, press the key combination Ctrl + T, to go to the transformation. Rotate and scale the rainbow (reduce it). Place the rainbow on the upper left side of the canvas and create a layer mask. Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)). Choose a soft round black brush, large size (about 600 pixels). Mask the edges of the rainbow. Place a layer with a rainbow under the “Purple Shadow” layer.
Step 8. Draw a transparent triangle
Create a new layer and select the tool. Arbitrary shape (Custom Shape Tool) with a triangular shape, as in Step 4. Holding the key Shift draw a triangle.
Go to Layer Style (Layer style) and apply External glow (Outer Glow). Settings for this parameter are shown in the screenshot.
Lower Fill layer (Fill) with a triangle to 0%. Rename this layer to “Neon Triangle”. The “Neon Triangle” layer should be located above the rainbow layer. Activate the tool Free Transform (Free Transform Too (Ctrl + T)). Turn the triangle over and place it on the canvas under the purple circle in its left side.
Step 9. Add abstract shapes
In this step we will work with the tool. Pen (Pen Too).
Create a new layer. Activate the Pen Too tool. Draw the outline of any shape (for example, a square or a triangle). The tool settings you see below.
You can easily change the color of the shape by double clicking on the little “box” color in the layers panel. For my work, I painted triangles, each on a separate layer.
Then, added to them a few Layer Styles (Layer style), such as Shadow (Drop Shadow) and Gradient Overlay (Gradient Overlay).
Rotate the forms and place them where you want.
Step 10. Create a brush
Create a new layer and draw a black triangle on it using the tool Pen (Pen Too). Right-click on the layer and select in the submenu Rasterize layer (Rasterize).
Create a selection around the triangle shape. Switch to Editing – Define a brush (Edit – Define Brush), give the brush a name and click OK.
Then activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)) and open the brushes panel, select the brush you just created. In the panel of brushes set the settings that are shown in the images below. You can adjust the settings for your brush at your own discretion. When the result suits you, save the new brush.
Your brush is ready. In order to apply it, create a new layer, and with the tool activated Brush (Brush Tool) draw arbitrary strokes in areas where you think they are appropriate. If you want, you can also add a Layer Style (Layer style) Gradient Overlay (Gradient Overlay).
Copy the “Paper Texture” layer and place a copy above the layer with small figures (painted with your brush). Scale this texture (reduce it). Set the blending mode for the layer copy with paper to Multiplication (Multiply) and apply this layer as clipping mask (clipping mask) to the underlying layer.
Step 11. Draw Spray
Create a new layer above the “Purple Circle” layer. Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)). In the brushes palette, select any brush you like and paint small splashes in any color. Give the name to this layer “Paint Splat”.
In order to place your new wallpaper on your desktop, there is only one step left! Just save the collage in JPG or PNG format.
On this my lesson is over. I hope you will apply these skills in your work!