Having fun with text and Photoshop CC 2018

In the past, I have shown many of our staff members how to put an image into text. It’s fun, easy and looks really nice, particularly if you are trying for some wow (i.e. poster title, etc.). Photoshop CC has made it a lot easier to not only add the image to the text, but you can add it to multiple text layers at the same time. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. tulips-smFind a photo that you really like or that fits your subject matter. The image should be colorful and really make a statement if you want your final result to make a statement. I chose a spring tulip photo I had.
  2. Open the photo. It will be your background layer.
  3. Add some text. I chose to add Spring has Arrived! I textadded the text one word at a time, so they are three layers. I used the font, IMPACT. I chose it because the letters are big and thick and will take a good amount of the image, which is what I want. The text should also be black (#000).
  4. When I originally showed people how to do this, I would have to add the image to the text line by line. Now, I can show you how to add the image to all three at once. A much easier process!
  5. text-on-whiteFirst, we want to add a solid color fill layer above the background layer. Choose the background layer, by clicking on it > Click on the “New Fill or Adjustment Layer” icon (it looks like a black and white circle). Choose solid color from the list. Open the color picker if it is not already open and choose white (#FFF) for your background. You should now have a background layer, a color fill layer above it and the three text layers above that. You should see only the white background and the three words.
  6. Next, let’s make a copy of the background layer. You can do that a few different ways. You can right click the background layer and choose duplicate layer or you can drag the layer to the “New Layer” icon (looks like a page with the bottom left corner turned up and drop it. A duplicate layer will be created. The name of the duplicate will be “Background copy”. Click on the copy layer and drag it above the layers of type. If you accidently drop it below a layer of text, simply click on it and drag it until it is at the top of the layers.
  7. Now, we get to adding the image to all three layers. If you create a clipping mask, it will put the image in the layer directly below it. In this case, that would be Spring. In order to have it go into all three layers, you need to group the layers.
  8. Click on the top text layer and then holding the shift key click on the bottom text layer to select all three layers.
  9. Click on the menu icon (looks like four lines) to the right of Layers, Channels, Paths. Click on “New Group from Layers”. Give the group a name. I chose text but it doesn’t matter what you call it. You will see the group or text layer and below it you will see the three individual text layers, the color fill layer and the background layer.
  10. text-fillClick on the Background copy layer (top) > the menu icon > “Create Clipping Mask”. Now that the text layers are grouped directly below the background copy, the image will be in all three text layers.
  11. Next, you can add a stroke and drop shadow to the text. There are two ways to add the effects. Either double click to the right of the text group in the layers panel or while the text group is highlighted, click on the fx at the bottom of the panel. First choose the stroke. It will show a thick black stroke. I change it to 1 or 2. Give it a try and see what you like. You want it to define the text, but not take over. I also changed the color to a dark green.
  12. Click on fx again to add a drop shadow. Experiment with the settings to see how much of a shadow you like and what size, angle and distance you prefer. There is no right answer here, just what you feel looks best.
  13. color-backgroundYou can also change the background color. I like to choose a color from the picture. To do so, double click on the color swatch to the left of Color fill and choose the color picker tool (looks like a dropper) and then click in the text on a color you like. The background will change to that color. Keep doing it until you get a color that you like. I chose yellow but green or pink would have worked as well.
  14. If you want the background image to show through (a little is really nice), change the opacity on the fill color to around 75%. Slide it around until you get it to look how you want.

And that’s it! Here’s my final image. I recommend you save it as a PSD so the layers are all separate. Once you save it as a .jpg or a .png the layers will flatten and cannot be changed. It’s always a good idea to safe it with layers just in case.


Give it a try! Have some fun!


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