Add a fluffy effect for text in Photoshop

In this tutorial, you will learn how to create a fluffy text effect in the style of the fairy tale “Alice in Wonderland” using brushes, adjustment layers and selection tools. Let’s start!

I was inspired to create this effect by the numerous layer styles available on GraphicRiver.

1. Create a grass background

Step 1

Create a new document with a size of 1250 x 800 pixels and above the layer. Background (Background) paste the grass texture.

Adjust the size of the texture to the size of the document and call the layer “Grass”.

Step 2

Move on Image – Adjustments – Shadows/ Highlights (Image – Correction – Shadows / Lights) and customize Highlights (Sveta):

  • Amount (Effect): 100
  • Toone (Tone): 60
  • Radius (Radius): 50

Step 3

Next, set up Image – Adjustments – Hue/ Saturation (Layer – Correction – Hue / Saturation):

  • Hue (Color tone): 5
  • Saturation (Saturation): -30
  • Lightness (Brightness): -10

Step 4

Now apply the filter Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur) and set Radius (Radius) by 0.3.

Step 5

At the bottom of the layers panel, press the button Create new fill or adjustment layer (Create a new fill or adjustment layer) and select Gradient (Gradient).

In the gradient settings panel on the left, select the color # 8e8b88, and on the right – # 444342. Install Style (Style) on Radial (Radial) and Scale (Scale) – 150, then put a tick in front of Dither (Dithering).

Switch the blending mode of the gradient layer to Soft Light (Soft light) and reduce Opacity (opacity) up to 80%.

2. Create text and work path

Step 1

Write the text in large letters using the Montserrat Light font. On the panel Window – Character (Window – Symbol) set the size to 350 pt and Tracking (Tracking) – by 75. If you have more than one line of text, then increase Leading (Interlaying) to 350.

Step 2

Take Pen Tool (P) (Pen) and on the top panel select the mode Path (Circuit).

Draw a work path in the shape of letters.

Once we click the left mouse button to add a reference point. If you pull it without releasing the button, then we will create a curve. Having finished creating the outline of the first letter, hold down the Ctrl key and click anywhere on the working canvas, then go to the next letter and repeat the process.

Step 3

Via Direct Selection Tool (A) (Partial selection) we can select and correct any anchor point, including its position and curvature.

3. Save the work path

Step 1

In order to reuse the work path in the future, we must save it. To do this, open the panel Window – Paths (Window – Outlines) and double click on the layer with the outline. In the window that opens, enter the name of the contour “Center” and click OK.

Step 2

Right click on the text layer, select Create Work Path (Create a work path) and save the second work path with the name “Stroke”.

4. Create and save the brush

Step 1

Activate Brush Tool (B) (Brush) and open the panel Window – Brush (Window – Brush).

Then select the fur2-nathiesbrushews brush from the “Wool” set and customize it:

Brush Tip Shape (Brush print form)

Shape Dynamics (Dynamics of the form)

Color Dynamics (Color dynamics)

Step 2

To save the customized brush, in the lower right corner of the panel click on the button Create new brush (New Brush) and call it “Brush 01”.

Step 3

Without changing the brush, return to the settings panel, go to the section Color Dynamics (Dynamics of color) and set Brightness Jitter (Brightness variation) by 15%. Save the new brush with the name “Brush 02”.

Step 4

From the set of “Wool” choose brush fur6_nathiesbrushes 1 and customize it:

Brush Tip Shape (Brush print form)

Shape Dynamics (Dynamics of the form)

Color Dynamics (Color dynamics)

Save the brush with the name “Brush 03”.

Step 5

Select the Dune Grass brush and set it up:

Brush Tip Shape (Brush print form)

Shape Dynamics (Dynamics of the form)

Scattering (Scattering)

Color Dynamics (Color dynamics)

Save the brush with the name “Brush 04”.

5. Circling the work path

Step 1

Hide the text layer by clicking on the eye icon opposite the layer name. Then create five new layers (Ctrl + Shift + N).

Step 2

Set the foreground and background color to # e9e0d9 and # c3b9ad respectively. Select “Layer 1” and on the panel Paths (Contours) click on the thumbnail of the working contour to activate it.

Take Brush Tool(B) (Brush), select “Brush 01” and press the Enter button to stroke the work path.

Right click on the layer “Layer 1” and select Convert to Smart Object (Convert to smart object).

Step 3

Move on Filter – Sharpen – Smart Sharpen (Filter – Sharpness – Smart Sharpness) and configure the filter as shown below. Or pick up your values ​​so that the result looks quite clear.

Step 4

Select “Layer 2”, take the “Brush 03” and press the Enter key to stroke the working path again.

Step 5

Double click on the layer “Layer 2” to open the window Layer Style (Layer style), and apply Inner Shadow (Inner shadow) with the following settings:

  • Blend Mode (Overlay mode): Linear Burn (Linear dimmer)
  • Color classification: # 400f14
  • Opacity (Opacity): 10%
  • Distance (Offset): 0
  • Size (Size): 5

6. Create a multi-layer stroke.

Step 1

Set the foreground and background colors to # f0b8b9 and # c0b4a6, respectively. Activate the work center “Center” and select “Layer 3”.

Take the “Brush 03” and circle the work path.

Step 2

Switch the layer blending mode “Layer 3” to Color Burn (Blackout basics) and decrease Opacity (opacity) up to 70%.

Step 3

Set the foreground and background colors to # d9cfc6 and # aaa094 respectively. Select “Layer 4”, then activate and outline the “Stroke” contour.

When finished, we transform the layer “Layer 4” into a smart object.

Step 4

Move on Filter – Sharpen – Smart Sharpen (Filter – Sharpness – Smart Sharpness) and configure the filter as shown below. Or pick up your values ​​so that the result looks quite clear.

Step 5

Move on Filter – Noise – Add Noise (Filter – Noise – Add noise), set Amount (Effect) on 5, Distribution (Distribution) – on Uniform (Uniform) and tick opposite Monochromatic (Monochrome).

Step 6

Switch the layer blending mode “Layer 4” to Luminosity (Brightness) and decrease Opacity (opacity) up to 70%.

Step 7

Set the foreground and background colors to # d9cfc6 and # aaa094 respectively. Select “Layer 5”, then take the “Brush 04” and circle the contour “Center”.

Switch the layer blending mode “Layer 5” to Soft Light (Soft light). Take Direct Selection Tool (A) (Partial selection) and again press the Enter button to get rid of the work path.

7. Group and style the layers.

Step 1

Group (Ctrl + G) all the layers with a stroke and call the group “Text”.

Step 2

Double click on the “Text” group and add a layer style. Drop Shadow (Shadow) with the following settings:

Blend Mode (Overlay mode): Color Burn (Blackout basics)

Color classification: # 1b1610

Opacity (Opacity): 35%

Distance (Offset): 0

Size (Size): 25

Step 3

Above the “Text” group we add an adjustment layer. Levels (Levels) and transform it into a clipping mask (Ctrl + Alt + G) for the group.

Set the top slider Shadows (Shadows) by 5 and Highlights (Light) – at 235, then lower Shadows (Shadows) – by 15.

8. Select the object

Step 1

Open the picture with a ribbon of hearts and with Quick Selection Tool (W) (Quick selection) select one of the hearts.

When finished with the selection, click on the button on the top panel Select and Mask (Selection and mask).

Step 2

Adjust the selection and click on the OK button.

Then go Edit – Copy (Edit – Copy) to copy the selected heart.

9. Insert and merge elements of the composition

Step 1

Go back to the main working paper and go Edit – Paste (Editing – Paste).

We convert the inserted layer into a smart object, then activate the free transformation (Ctrl + T) and adjust the size, position and rotation of the heart at our discretion.

When finished, press the Enter button to accept the changes.

Step 2

Activate Brush Tool (B) (Brush), select “Brush 01” and in the settings panel remove the check mark opposite Color Dynamics (Dynamics of color).

Step 3

At the bottom of the layers panel, press the button Add layer mask (Add layer mask), check that the added mask is selected on the layers panel, and switch the foreground color to black (D key). Carefully hold around the perimeter of the heart to put a little wool on top of it.

If necessary, in the process, you can adjust the diameter of the brush.

Step 4

Repeat the previous steps to add more hearts throughout the text. After that we group all hearts (Ctrl + G) and call the group “Hearts”.

Step 5

Double click on the “Hearts” group and apply the layer style Drop Shadow (Shadow) with the following settings:

  • Blend Mode (Overlay mode): Linear Burn (Linear dimmer)
  • Color classification: # 1b1610
  • Opacity (Opacity): 25%
  • Distance (Offset): 0
  • Size (Size): 15

This will allow more realistic to combine hearts with text.

10. How to cut a simple object

Step 1

Open the photo with a pocket watch and using Elliptical Marquee Tool (M) (Oval selection) select the watch without a cover.

Step 2

Via Quick Selection Tool (W) (Fast selection) (and with the Shift key held down) select the top of the clock. Thanks to the Shift key, we will add a new area to the already existing selection.

If, on the contrary, you need to delete a part of the selection, then hold down the Alt key.

Step 3

Copy and paste the clock on the working paper, convert the layer into a smart object, add a mask and draw wool over the clock, as we did with the heart.

11. Lighten and tint the clock.

Step 1

Via Elliptical Marquee Tool (M) (Oval selection) select the inside of the clock.

Step 2

Above we add an adjustment layer. Hue/ Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and transform it into a clipping mask (Ctrl + Alt + G). A mask will be created automatically according to the shape of the selection.

Install Hue (Color tone) at -56 and Lightness (Brightness) – at 41.

Step 3

Add a fill layer Solid Color (Color) and set the color for it #ffefbe. Transform the fill to a clipping mask (Ctrl + Alt + G) for the clock and switch the blending mode to Linear Burn (Line dimmer).

Step 4

Hold down the Alt key, left-click the mask of the adjustment layer Hue/ Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and move it to layer Solid Color (Color) to copy.

Step 5

Duplicate the mask, press Ctrl + I to invert its colors. Now the fill only affects the outer contour of the clock.

12. Add more details.

Step 1

Open the picture with the chains, select the gold chain, copy and paste it on the working document.

We convert the layer with the chain into a smart object, place it above the clock and, if necessary, transform it.

Step 2

Add a mask on the layer with the chain and gently combine it with fur.

Step 3

Apply to chain Image – Adjustments – Levels (Image – Correction – Levels). Set the black slider Shadows (Shadows) 25 and gray slider Gamma (Gamma) – 0.75.

13. Add a shadow

Step 1

Double click on the layer with the chain and apply the layer style Drop Shadow (Shadow):

  • Blend Mode (Overlay mode): Linear Burn (Linear dimmer)
  • Color classification: # 1b1610
  • Opacity (Opacity): 60%
  • Distance (Offset): 0
  • Size (Size): 15

Step 2

Under the layer with the clock add a new layer and call it “The shadow of the clock.” Switch the blending mode of this layer to Linear Burn (Linear dimmer) and decrease Opacity (opacity) up to 80%.

Activate Brush Tool (B) (Brush), set the foreground color to # 615c56 and draw a shadow under the clock with a soft round brush.

If the shadow is too saturated, decrease the opacity of the layer. You can also use the eraser (E) to remove extra shadow details.

Step 3

Group all layers with watches and chains and name the group “Watch”.

14. General color correction

Step 1

Duplicate the “Grass” layer and place a copy at the very top of the layers panel.

Hold the Alt key and at the bottom of the layers panel, press the button Add layer mask (Add layer mask) to add an inverted mask.

Brush “Brush 01” with disabled option Color Dynamics (Dynamics of color) slightly spend on the grass around the letters. This will allow us to better combine the text with the background.

Step 2

At the very top of the layers panel, add an adjustment layer. Gradient Map (Gradient map). In the gradient settings, select colors # 2f4996 on the left and # 9e727f on the right, also activate Dither (Dithering).

Switch the blending mode of the gradient layer to Soft Light (Soft light) and reduce it Opacity (opacity) up to 60%.

Step 3

Create a new layer and call it “Noise.” Move on Edit – Fill (Edit – Run Fill).

In the window that appears, install Contents (Content) on 50% Gray (50% gray) and click OK.

Step 4

Convert the “Noise” layer into a smart object and switch its blending mode to Soft Light (Soft light).

Step 5

Move on Filter – Noise – Add Noise (Filter – Noise – Add noise). Install Amount (Effect) on 5, Distribution (Distribution) – on Uniform (Uniform) and tick opposite Monochromatic (Monochrome).

Congratulations, we are done!

At the beginning of the lesson we created a background with grass texture. Then they added text, saved the work path, and set up the brushes needed to create the effect.

After that, we made a stroke of the work path, added hearts and clocks, then combined all this with additional effects. In the end, we applied a general color correction and got the finished result.

Feel free to leave comments, suggestions and share your results.

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