Hello everyone, Chris here from Spoon Graphics
back with another video tutorial. Now the kinds of tutorials I love creating
are those that produce a really cool result from quite a simple tool or technique. The
artwork I’ll be showing you how to create today fits right into that category. It makes
use of Photoshop’s Liquify tool, along with a few additional edits to make the kind of
trendy artwork that’s popular on album covers or as abstract backgrounds that could form
part of a brand. One of the fun things about this process is
you can achieve a different result every time, either by using an alternative base image,
or even by just using the Liquify brushes randomly. So let’s get started and I’ll show
you how it’s done. Begin with a stock photo of some kind. The
contents of the image don’t really matter at all, it’s more so the overall colours and
contrast that will affect the final result. I’m using this free image of some waves from
Unsplash.com Photoshop’s Liquify tool can be quite CPU
intensive, so one trick is to first downsize the image. Go to Image>Image Size and enter
1000px or smaller. Next go to Filter and select Liquify. Using
the default Warp brush, increase the size so the tip fills a large portion of the image,
then randomly scribble around the canvas to distort the picture. There’s no right or wrong way to do this step.
It’s just a case of going mad with your mouse and seeing what the effect looks like. As
you begin to create waves of certain colours you can then move them around and even out
the overall effect. If you remember we added this Liquify effect
on a small scale image. Go to Edit>Step Backward, or use the CMD+Alt+Z shortcut twice
to remove the Liquify filter and revert the image size changes. Immediately go to the Filter menu and the
previously used Liquify effect will be sat right at the top. Click this and the same
effect will be applied to this large scale image, without it bogging down your computer
like it would if you were doing it live on a high resolution document. There’s a few extra tweaks we can add to tailor
this artwork into more of a trendy album cover. First add a Black and White adjustment layer,
but reduce the opacity to around 80% to allow some of the original colour to show through. Add a Levels Adjustment Layer and drag the
shadows slider inwards to darken the image, followed by the highlights slider to boost
the overall contrast. One trick to achieve the retro style washed
out look is to move the shadows Output Levels slider inwards, which moves the darkest areas
from black to a dark grey. Open up one of my free Photocopy Grunge Textures
in Photoshop. Press CMD+A to Select All, CMD+C to Copy then switch over to the working document
and press CMD+V to Paste. Use the shortcut CMT+T to transform the image
and scale and rotate it to fit over the artwork. Change the blending mode to Screen to render
the black background transparent, leaving just the white grain. You can boost the impact of the texture by
increasing the contrast. Go to Image>Adjustments>Levels and drag both the shadows and highlights
sliders inwards, keeping an eye on the preview to find the best result. Press CMD+A to Select All, then go to Edit
>Copy Merged. Paste this selection at the top of the layer stack then go to Filter>Other
>High Pass. Set it up with a 1px radius, then change this layer’s blending mode to
Linear Light. Toggle this layer off and on to see the sharpening effect it produces to
bring out the fine details. Use the Type to to create some wording for
your artwork. Here I’m using the font Bluescreens which I picked up from a recent font bundle
I wrote about on my website. Use Photoshop’s snapping to align the text centrally to the
document. Create a new layer, then select the Rectangle
tool. Hold Shift to draw a perfect square, then use the CMD+T Transform shortcut to adjust
the scaling and positioning so it fits around the text. In the top toolbar, add a white stroke then
increase the stroke size so it roughly matches the weight of the typeface to balance it all
out. The final result makes a great piece of abstract
artwork that would look great as an album cover, a website header or part of a cool
corporate identity such as a background that might cover the reverse of a business card
or inner page of a brochure. It could even be a piece of artwork in itself if it was
split into a series of three canvases. Whatever it’s used for, it’s a nice simple technique
you can remember for whenever you need to create a colourful abstract background for
your design work. If you enjoyed this tutorial a thumbs up to
help spread the word would be really appreciated. If you’re new to my video tutorials be sure
to subscribe and check out some of my other videos on my channel. If you’re watching this
on YouTube, head over to my website at spoon.graphics if you want to find more written tutorials
and free design resources, otherwise thank you very much for watching and I’ll see you
in the next one.