The following two tutorials have been primarily designed to cater to the needs of bloggers, however, anyone who wants to learn how to use the Clipping Mask function in Photoshop should find them equally as useful. By following the steps below, you will be able to learn how to create custom photo layouts and great looking typography.
Don’t worry, you don’t need any previous Photoshop experience, we will guide you through all the necessary steps. You don’t even need to own the software, you can download a free trial of Photoshop on the Adobe website to follow the tutorials and get used to the application.
- Using Layer Clipping Masks for Typography
- Open Photoshop and create a new document. When you get the option to set the resolution, keep in mind that if what you want to use is going to be on the web (blog or site), you should set the resolution value to “72”.
- Type the word(s) that you want, and create a new layer. In order to do this, you have two options. Either go to the top menu and choose “Layer”, then “New”, then “Layer” again, or simply click on the icon that resembles a piece of paper next to the trash can in the bottom right of the layers panel. This will create a blank layer on which you can draw anything you like.
- Highlight/select your layer by clicking on it, navigate to “Layer” and choose the “Create Clipping Mask” option. If you’re doing this on a Mac, then hover with your cursor between your two layers, while pressing down the option key (on a Mac); if you click the small arrow that will appear, a clipping mask will be created.
- Enjoy what you just created!
There are some other things that you could insert into the project, instead of creating a new (blank) layer. You can choose a photo or any kind of image, and drag it on top of the text that you wrote, after which you can create a clipping mask by following the steps above. Your words will look perfect for a blog, or any other kind of website.
- Using the Layer Clipping Masks Function for Custom Photo Layouts
If you’re not interested in typography and/or need something a bit different, then you can use the same function in order to create custom photo layouts. The following steps will teach you what you need to know in order to design a grid with four images; however, there are many more things that you can do. The software also lets you create round images, larger grids, and many other things.
- Select the rectangle tool from the toolbar on the left, and use it in order to create a square of any color.
- Create three more identical squares. While it may seem difficult to ensure that they are of the same size, you can more easily do this by right-clicking on the first rectangle layer, and select the option “Duplicate Layer”. This will create an additional identical square, that you can drag in order to align it to the first one. You can either do this three times, in order to get the four rectangles or just duplicate the first two layers again. Once you have the four squares, make sure to align them, and proceed to the next step.
- Drag an image or a photo into the document. The inserted item will then take on the shape of the square that it sits above in the layers panel. Pay attention both to how you align the photos, as well as to how you order the layers in the left panel.
- Go to the menus (like in the first tutorial) and select “Create Clipping Mask”; however, make sure that the top layer is selected (the photo) when doing this. Again, if you don’t like going through the menus, there is the shortcut that can be accessed by hovering between layers and holding the option key (if you’re on a Mac). If you want to move the image, just drag the photo layer until you’re happy with the position.
- The final step is to do the same thing for each photo until the layout is complete. It is a good idea to create the layouts and save them as templates, as you never know when you’ll find a use for them.
You can use these tutorials in order to do pretty much anything you want! Use them to design text or layouts for your blog, website, or create beautiful postcard-style memories with friends and family. The possibilities are endless. Also, keep in mind that the second tutorial does not limit the shape or size of the layout. You can use it to create a template for 20 photos, or make the photos round by drawing circles instead of square.
Hopefully, you will come to the conclusion that you don’t have to be a graphical designer to customize your websites or blogs. You simply need to find good, simple tutorials, like this one and others on E-Online Business Education!