Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Technique Tuesday - Canvas Effect through Blend Mode Changes


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Giving your photos a Canvas Effect

Easy tutorial for Photoshop and Photoshop Elements Users.



You can download a pdf version of this tutorial from here

Recently I created a layout using a photo I took at Bodie, a preserved ghost town in California.



I wanted to give the photo an old world effect that would fit in well with the kit and so I gave it a canvas effect.





This effect is a very simple one to achieve and you only need two items.

Your photo, and a Canvas texture image or background.

For this effect you need to use a light coloured canvas background or image.


My Forgotten Roads Kit includes a dirty cream canvas background.


This one works well because it is wrinkled and stained in addition to the canvas texture. The more variation in texture the background or texture image has the more defined the final result will be.



Start with your canvas background and paste your photo into a layer above it



At this point you can crop and frame your image if you wish or you can leave this part till the end . I have chosen to crop and frame my image before creating the effect





On the top of the layers panel you will see a tab with the word Normal in it.

This indicates the blend mode of the selected layer.






The blend mode changes how the selected layer is affected by the layer underneath.

The results will be dependant on the colours and tones of each layer.

The best way to decide which blend mode will work for your layout is to experiment and scroll through each of the modes till you find one that achieves the effect you are looking for.


Multiply in my example lets the canvas texture show through but retains and darkens the colours in the photo. Its a nice effect but not quite what I want for this layout









Overlay lightens and fades the photo and this is also a nice effect but not quite what I want for this layout






For this layout the most effective result was achieved using a Color Burn blend mode







This effect is not limited to canvas textures. Wood and other textured backgrounds also work well


In this example below I used a crackled effect background ( from my lined with gold page kit )






For this background I liked the effect I got from a Linear Burn Blend mode



I hope you have some fun creating some great canvas and other effects for your photos.

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