The grunge of the 90s was an explosive era in American culture, filled with the sounds of punk rock, heavy metal and electric guitars. In this tutorial, you will learn how to create a grunge retro effect, inspired by the 90s, in Adobe Photoshop.
The final result:
- Texture Watercolors
- Marker Twins Font
1. Create a Background
Open the original texture Watercolors in Photoshop. Let’s go Picture – Image rotation – 90 degrees clockwise (Image> Image Rotate> 90 Degrees Clockwise) to change the orientation of the landscape format to portrait.
We use this watercolor texture as a background, so let’s discolor the image. Being on a layer with a texture, we go Image – Correction – Hue / Saturation (Image> Adjustments> Hue and Saturation). Reduce value Saturation (Saturation) to -100 for the texture to become black and white. Next, with the tool Move (Move Tool (V)), slightly move the watercolor texture down so that a white background is visible at the top of the working document.
Now go to the bottom of the layers panel. Press the button Create a new adjustment layer (New Adjustment Layer) and in the menu that appears, select the option Posterization (Posterize). Set the value Levels (Levels) by 8 to create a beautiful grunge effect.
Once again go to the bottom of the layers panel, this time select the adjustment layer. Gradient (Gradient). In the gradient settings window, set Linear (Linear) gradient, color gradient from dark red # 901026 to white. Next, add a gradient to the grunge background, and then change the blending mode for the layer with the gradient to Soft light (Soft Light).
2. Add Image Models
Open the original image with the model in Photoshop and use the tool Magnetic Lasso (Magnetic Lasso Tool (L)), create a rough selection around the model image. Copy (Ctrl + C) and then paste (Ctrl + V) the selected model image onto our working document.
Create a new layer below the model layer. Using tool Polygonal Lasso (Polygonal Lasso Tool (L)), cut the shape with rough edges behind the model image. When done, fill the shape with white with the tool. Fill (Paint Bucket Tool (G)).
To add a grunge effect to the model image, we need a filter. Go to the model layer, and then go Filter – Filter Gallery – Imitation – Film Grain (Filter> Filter Gallery> Artistic> Film Grain). Make the following settings for this filter, which are listed below:
- Corn (Grain): 0
- Region Sveta (Highlight Area): 5
- Intensity (Intensity): 10
After the first use of the filter, we increased the contrast and saturation. Now apply the same filter again. Film grain (Film Grain) to add some grain to the image. Make the following settings for this filter, which are listed below:
- Corn (Grain): 7
- Light area (Highlight Area): 3
- Intensity (Intensity): 3
3. We carry out color correction of the model
Let’s add some color. Right-click on the layer with the model and in the appeared window select the option Options overlay (Blending Options). Apply layer style Overlays gradient (Gradient Overlay). In the settings window of this layer style, set Linear (Linear) gradient, gradient colors – create a beautiful iridescent copper gradient, as shown in the screenshot below. Change the blending mode to Overlap (Overlay). So we add color to the model image.
To combine the image of the model with a red background, create a new layer, change the blending mode for this layer to Chromaticity (Color). Right click on this layer and in the appeared window select the option Create clipping mask (Create Clipping Mask). Next, using a round hard brush, brush color is bright red # d14456, paint the model’s shirt completely.
Right-click on the red coloring layer and in the appeared window select the option Options overlay (Blending Options). To make the shirt look more attractive, apply a layer style. Gradient overlay (Gradient Overlay). Install Radial (Radial) gradient, color gradient from transparent to black, mode Overlap (Overlay), including other settings that are shown in the screenshot below.
To enhance the saturation of this effect, add a correction layer. Levels (Levels) as a clipping mask. Set the following settings for the RGB channel, which are shown in the screenshot below:
4. Final Strokes
So, the foundation of our grunge effect is complete, let’s add the final touches. First, open the Spray texture in Photoshop. Using tool Rectangular area (Rectangular Marquee Tool (M)), create a selection, as shown in the screenshot below, and then go Editing – Define a brush (Edit> Define Brush Preset) to create your own brush. Feel free to use other Spray brushes.
With the Spray brush we just created, add a splatter effect to our image. First go to the layer Red (Red), paint the spray on the model’s hair using the same shade of red. Then, create a new layer below the model layer, now draw white splashes in the lower left corner.
Finally, we add the text! Using tool Rectangle (Rectangle Tool (U)), draw two white rectangles in the lower right corner of the image.
Add any text you like inside the two rectangles using the free Marker Twins font, or select any suitable Grunge font on the Envato Market website.
Next, duplicate the black and white watercolor texture twice. Apply the first duplicate of the texture as a clipping mask to the layer with a large font, then change the blending mode to duplicate the layer with the watercolor texture to Light replacement (Lighten) to create a grunge look.
To complete the effect, move the second duplicate of the watercolor texture to the very top, placing it on top of all the other layers, change the blending mode for this texture layer to Soft light (Soft Light). This will help add a grunge look to the entire picture.
You can get inspiration for your work by looking at different cultural epochs. Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. I wish you a wonderful time creating your unique grunge effect in the style of the 90s!
The final result: