I LOVE the look of chalkboard art! It is an ART and one that I cannot do freehand! Thankfully, I have Photoshop skills (to quote Peppermint)! I have seen lots of chalkboard Christmas cards on Pinterest and thought our readers might like to create this look on their own. I haven’t really seen this trend pop up on layouts too much…yet! I thought a Sunday, un-digi post would be the perfect time to share this technique . Just like everything in these programs, there are a lot of ways to do things and this is only how *I* did it.
1) Pick your fonts. Katie found this great list of fonts that work great on chalkboards. I also think these would work great too. Check out The Daily Digi’s font pin board for more great fonts.
I used LasVegas and Candy Script for one greating that will be included in the download for members. In this tutorial, I am using Telemark Label. This tutorial will work in Photoshop and Photoshop Elements
2) Type your text.
3) Select your text using the magic wand and clicking on your text.
4) Marching ants will appear around the text (it should appear inside the enclosed letters too (P,R,A,O, etc.):
5) Create a new layer by going to Layer>New or clicking the “New Layer” icon in the bottom of the Layers Stack window:
6) Turn off the text layer, by clicking on the eye.
Here’s what my canvas looked like after turning off the text layer:
7) We’re going to do our brushwork on the new layer so we can delete it if we want to or make changes to it.
8) Here’s the color choice I made (the hex number is the number at the bottom with a # next to it, just type it into the same spot on your color dialogue box to get the same color):
9) I chose the Dry Media brushes. In the Brush window, I clicked on the preset tab, and selected brush 60 or the Soft Pastel Large brush. That automatically changes all of the settings to make some great looking chalk.
I can change the size by using the slider at the top of the box.
10) I just use long brush strokes going across the entire selection. I don’t worry about making it perfect straight or filling everything in perfectly. When chalk artists work in real life, it’s not perfect.
11) CTRL+D to deselect the text and turn the “ants” off.
12) Now, we need to mess it up a little. I will admit, it is easier to do if you have full Photoshop, but it can be done in elements as well.
Taking the same brush, I changed the rotation just a little from 90 degrees to 60 degrees. I also changed the size quite a bit:
13) In PSE, just start dragging the brush around the outer edges. If you hold down the shift key while dragging, you will get a straight line, but the brush will create enough variance for you to make it look good.
14) In PSCS, get your magic wand again, turn back ON the type layer and click on the text (selecting it just like you did before.
15) Click on the path tab in the layers stack:
16) At the bottom of the Paths window, click on the icon for creating a path from a selection:
17) Go back to the layers tab and create a new layer by clicking on the new layer icon in the bottom of that window or going to Layer>New. Make sure that layer is selected. Go back to the path tab and click on the “Stroke Path with Brush” icon:
18) Here’s what it looks like with just the text, before the stroke (the chalked layer hidden):
Here’s what it looks like after I add the brush stroke on the path:
Here’s what it looks like with the type layer turned off and the brushed chalk layer I created earlier, back on:
Here’s a close up:
This helps give it a truly blended and chalked look. Remember, fonts don’t float and this gives the font the depth it needs (but you can follow the linked tutorial to add even more).
Digi Game level members (those with an annual membership or those that pay $7.50 per month) will find a download with the chalkboard background, and two rasterized text files to practice on, as well as the finished chalked greetings. The downloads will expire at the end of November.