In this lesson we will learn how to create colored grids from a photo. With the help of a ruler and guides to create a natural mesh. Let’s learn how to easily select random squares in the grid with selection tools and color them with the help of adjustment layers and blending modes. In this tutorial, I use Photoshop CS5, but other versions of the program will do.
That’s what we should get.
So let’s get started!
Let’s start by creating a new mesh document. Go to the menu File–New (file-new)
I create a square-shaped document 1000×1000 px and a resolution of 72 pixels per inch. You can enter any sizes. If you plan to print your work, then set the resolution to 240 pixels per inch or higher.
Go to the menu Wiew–Rulers(View-Ruler) orCtrl+R
Mouse over the top edge of the ruler, right-click and select from the list Percent(Percent).
Add vertical guides. To do this, click inside the ruler along the left side of the document and, while holding the mouse button, extend the guide to the 10% mark.
Pull the rest of the guides by 20%, 30%, 40%, and so on to the 90% mark. Your document should be divided into 10 equal vertical columns.
Next, use the same steps to add horizontal guides in 10% increments. To do this, click inside the top ruler and, without releasing the mouse button, extend the guide to the 10% mark. Continue pulling the guides by 20%, 30%, 40% and so on to the 90% mark. When you are done, you should have the same number of horizontal and vertical guides, forming a grid.
Turn off the ruler Ctrl +R, we don’t need it anymore.
Holding Alt click on the icon New Layer (New Layer) on the layers panel.
In the window that opens, name the new layer. Grid (Grid) and click OK.
A new layer will appear above the background layer.
With the help of guides, we broke our document into a grid that serves as a visual reference. Now we need to convert all guides to selection using rarely used selection tools. Single Row Marquee Tool (Horizontal String) and Single Column Marquee Tools (Vertical String).
On the left toolbar, click on the tool. Rectangular marquee tool (Rectangular Selection) and hold for a few seconds. In the menu that appears, select Single Row Marquee Tool (Horizontal String).
To use this tool, just click anywhere in the document, a horizontal selection will be created with a width of 1 px. We are going to convert horizontal grid lines to selections. To do this, move the cursor to the upper guideline, which you have placed at the 10% mark and click. You will see that a selection has been created along the entire guide.
Hold key Shift and click on the following guide. To the existing selection will be added another. And so, with the pressed Shift create selections on all horizontal guides.
We must do the same with the vertical guides. To do this, select the tool on the left toolbar. Single Column Marquee Tool (Vertical String).
Hold the key again Shift and click on each vertical guide until a selection of all guides is created. When you are done, you will have a selection of each guide horizontally and vertically.
Go to the menu Edit-Fill (Edit-Fill)
In the window that opens, select Black (Black) and click ok.
The created grid selection will be filled with black (make sure that a new empty layer is selected in the layers panel). Next menu Select-deselect (Select – Unselect)
Guides are no longer needed. Go to the menu View-Show (View – Show) and uncheck Guides (Guides).
After deselecting, we see our grid on the same layer.
Open the photo for which you will use the grid for the effect. I chose this photo.
If you use Photoshop CS3-photos will automatically open in separate windows. If you use Photoshop CS4 or CS5,depending on how you have configuredEdit-Preferens-Interfase (Edit-Settings-Interface), photos can be opened in tabs. In this case, to make the next step easier, go to the menu Window-Arrange-Float All in Windows (Window-Arrange-Freely move all windows).
In the layers panel, select a layer Background (Background layer). When you drag a photo into the document, the photo layer will be between the layers. Background (Background) and Grid (Grid)
Choose a tool Move Tool (Move)
And holding the key Shift, Drag the photo into the document.
The photo will appear in the center of the document under the grid layer.
If you need to resize the image, go to the menu Edit-Free transform (Editing-Free Transformation).
If your photo is large and the transformation frame is not visible, since the photo is outside the document, go to the menu View- Fit on Screen (View-by screen size).
Holding the keyboard shortcut Shift +Alt (to keep the proportions), pull on any of the corner markers. After changing the photo size, click Enter, to accept the transformation.
If after the image transformation you want to return the actual size, then go to the menu View- Actual Pixels (View-Real Size)
On this all the preparatory work is done. We created our grid and placed the photo inside the grid. Getting to the fun part of the lesson – coloring the grid. In the layers panel, select a layer Grid (Grid).
To color our grid, we need to select individual squares. To do this, select the tool Magic wand tool (Magic wand).
Make sure the grid layer is selected in the layers panel. Let’s start by highlighting the squares around the outer edges of the grid. Click Magic Wand inside the square and holding Shift, add the remaining squares to the selection.
Translator’s Note: make sure that the toolbar on the top panel is a jackdaw on Contiguous (Adjacent pixels).
I added a few more squares to the selection and temporarily tinted them in yellow to show which squares I chose.
We will fill these selected squares with white to create the border of our effect. To do this, create a new layer by clicking on the icon New layer (New Layer) in the layers panel.
Place this layer below the mesh layer in the layers panel.
With the active selection of squares go to the menu Edit–Fill(Edit-Fill), in the window that opens, select White (White).
Highlighted squares filled with white. Deselect Ctrl + D.
Select a layer with a grid.
Standing on a layer with a grid, Magic Wand again select the square you need. Holding down the Shift key, add a few more squares to the selection – (a click with the Alt key held down removes the selection of the selected square). I again temporarily tinted them in yellow.
Select a layer with a photo in the layers panel.
Click on the icon New Adjustment Layer (New Adjustment Layer) in the layers panel.
Choose from the list Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation).
Check the box Colorize (Tint) and slider Hue (Color tone) select the color in which you want to paint the squares. I chose a red tint. To increase the color saturation, set the value Saturation (Saturation) at 55.
Set the blending mode for this layer to Color.
That’s what happens.
Repeat steps 16-20 to color the other squares.
Also with the help of a correction layer Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) you may discolor some squares. To do this, drag the slider Saturation (Saturation) left.
That’s what I got after toning a few squares. In case you want to use the same colors that I have, then I set for a blue tint Hue (Color tone) up to 200, Saturation (Saturation) up to 30. For green –Hue(Color tone) was set to 120, Saturation (Saturation) 25. Violet – Hue (Color tone) 289, Saturation (Saturation) 35. For black and white squares- Saturation (Saturation) -100.
The colors do not look as bright and colorful as I would like. One way to fix this is to change the blend mode of some adjustment layers. If we look at the layers panel, we will see all the adjustment layers that I used to color the squares, including the one I used for the black and white effect:
To add more interest to the image, try changing the blending mode for some adjustment layers. For example, I thought that the red color in my work looks a bit dull and on this adjustment layer I changed the blending mode to Screen (Screen / Lightening).
This blend mode is Screen (Screen / Lightening) – makes the colors brighter, but also tends to decrease the saturation of the color, therefore, to compensate for this, I increased Saturation – up to 70.
This is what happened with the red squares after changing the blending mode and increasing the saturation.
I also changed the blending mode to Screen (Screen / Lightening) – for a correction layer with a violet shade and Saturation – to 55. Other blending modes that can give you a good result are Multiply (Multiplication) – for dark shades, as well as Overlay (Overlapping), which will give a more contrast effect. But you can change the modes to your taste. Here is my result with modified blending modes Screen (Screen / Lightening) – for red and purple flowers.
As a final step, we will change the color of the grid to white. Select layer Grid (Grid), then click on the button Lock Transparent Pixels (Blocking transparent pixels) on the layers panel.
Go to the menu Edit –Fill (Edit-Fill) and in the window that opens, select White (White), click OK. Grid lines will turn white.
If you want to increase the thickness of the grid lines, then click on the icon Layer styles (Layer Styles)
And choose a style Stroke (Stroke)
Size (Size) – 2px, Position (Position) – Outside (Color), White.
And we did it! Here is the final result.