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Tutorial for Creating Graffiti Art and Text in Photoshop

written by: Dianna Monda Dill•edited by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•updated: 11/12/2010

This step-by-step guide will show you two methods you can use to create graffiti artwork in Photoshop.

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    Creating Graffiti Text

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects This graffiti-style text can be created against a plain background or you can use an image of a brick wall for your background. For the purposes of this tutorial, we shall use a brick wall for an authentic effect. There are two methods you can use to create your graffiti artwork.

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    Method #1

    1. Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects Open your brick wall image. Select the text tool and then choose a font and font color. Type in your desired text onto the image.
    2. Rasterize the text: right click on the text layer and then select rasterize.
    3. Select the text using the Magic Wand tool.
    4. Expand your selection using by 3px (Select > Modify > Expand).
    5. Add a new layer behind the current text layer (Shift + Ctrl + N).
    6. Fill the selection with a color of your choosing.
  • slide 3 of 6

    Giving Graffiti Text a Worn Look

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects Give the graffiti text a worn or faded look;

    1. Select both of the layers (text and background layers).
    2. Merge the two layers together (Ctrl+E).
    3. Select the erase tool, and choose a round brush 250px size.
    4. Adjust the brush hardness to 0.
    5. Erase some of the text edges and portions of text. Reduce the fill to 90%.
    6. Save your image. And you are done!
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    Method #2

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 1. Select a font and font color, and then type in your desired text onto the image.

    2. Rasterize the text: right click on the text layer and then select rasterize.

    3. Expand your selection using by 3px (Select > Modify > Expand).

    4, Add a new layer behind the current text layer (Shift + Ctrl + N).

    5. Fill the selection with a color of your choice.

    6. Select the text layer. Select the text color using magic wand tool, and then delete the color.

    7. Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects Select the gradient tool. Adjust the settings to create a funky gradient scheme.

    8. Add this scheme to your selection.

    9. Give it a worn look by following the steps in Section #2 above.

    10. Save your image. And you are done!

  • slide 5 of 6

    Give Your Graffiti Text Some Flair

    Add graphic elements s to your graffiti to add some flair. For the purposes of this tutorial, we will add a love heart.

    1. Create a heart shape using Photoshop’s custom shapes.

    2. Feather the shape’s outline by 6px (Select > Feather).

    3. Fill the heart with a color of your choice. We have used orange in our example.

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 

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    4. Contract the selection (Select > Modify > Contract) by 3px.

    5. Fill the selection with more of the same color

    6. Give the heart a 3D-look by adding a white portion to the upper left or right corner of the heart shape.

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects  subht2  Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 

    Photoshop Tutorial - Graffiti Text Effects 7. Add the completed heart to your graffiti art. And you are done!