We write portraits in Photoshop

This lesson was made at the request of readers. As we know, typographic-style artwork requires a lot of effort. Here I gave an example which, I hope, will push you to interesting ideas for a start. In this tutorial, I will show you how to create your brush and fill pattern. You will also learn more about selection and the Posterize tool.

Open the image with which you will work. There is no need to create a new document, we will work directly with the image itself.

Using tool Pen remove the black background that is below the ears on both sides. Double-click on a layer in the Layers Palette to form a layer, rename it, for example, to “Portrait”. Create a new layer below “Portrait” and fill it with white. Select the face layer and go to the menu Image – Adjustments – Posterize (Image – Correction – Posterization), set the value to 4.

Hide the “Portrait” layer for a while, click on the Eyes icon on the Layers Palette near the desired layer. Select Type tool (T) (Horizontal text tool), use a font of your choice, color is white, write a few words as shown below.

Now we will create a new brush for Photoshop. Make a simple selection around the first word as shown below. Then select Edit – Define Brush Preset (Editing – Define a brush). The brush is ready, it can be found at the very bottom of the brush selection palette. Do the same with the rest of the words.

Next we will create a pattern. To do this, merge all the text layers together into one layer. Resize Edit – Free Transform (Edit – Free Transform), make the words small as shown below. Now hide the other layers except these words. Create a selection around and execute the command Edit – Define Pattern (Editing – Define a pattern). A new pattern can be found in the pattern selection palette.

We no longer need layers with words, so you can hide them. Turn back the eye near the “Portrait” layer and the white back layer. Make a small selection around the black area around the girl’s neck.

Then go to the menu Select – Similar (Selection – Similar shades), this will allow you to select an area with the same color.

Before going further, select Brush tool (B) (Tool “Brush”) and right-click on any part of the document. This will allow you to more quickly refer to the size and type of brush. Hide the face layer, only the selection will remain. Create a new layer and start applying everywhere with the brushes we created earlier. Take note: before applying the brush, change the size so that the print does not go beyond the selection. Do some time: right click with the mouse, resize and overlay. Soon you will get a result like the one below.

It is clear that in those places where a small distance is not always convenient to impose a brush. In this case, you can do this using the fill pattern that we created. Create a new layer below the brush layer. Via Paint bucket tool (G) (Fill tool) fill the selection with a pattern, change the Primary color in the tool settings.

However, our fill slightly hides the brush overlay. CTRL + left click on the thumbnail of the brush layer to make a selection around the words, Select – Modify – Expand (Selection – Modification – Expand), set a radius of 1 pixel. Then Select – Inverse (Selection – Inversion). Select the patterned fill layer and create a layer mask for the selection. This will create a 1 pixel frame around the words.

Repeat for the remaining two gray tones all previous steps.

We are done! This is about how your final result should be.

Even though I like the black and white style, you can add texture and paint it in color the way you want. I hope you enjoyed the lesson. Good luck!

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