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How to Create a Postal Themed Gig Poster in Photoshop

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This quick tutorial will show you how to design a postal themed gig poster in Photoshop, and then add some flair and texture using items from The Vintage Creation Collection by Le Paper Cafe.

Don't forget to check out this week's deal if you want to follow along using the exact same resources.


What We'll Be Creating

Our poster design is based on this wonderful template with permission from the talented designer Indieground. Visit their portfolio for a TON of other amazing designs.


Step 1

Create a new document at 1500 x 2100 pixels at 300DPI (5" x 7").

Using simple vector rectangles, create a blue background (#6991A2) and add some light (#D8C3A2) and dark (#4B3224) brown bars where you'll place your text.


Step 2

Use the type tool to create your main headline and some subtitles within the rectangles we created in Step 1.

Add some subtle flair by creating some separators with the rectangle tool.

We're using the sans-serif font Bebas Neue and the script font Mission Script for everything in our poster.


Step 3

Using the Rectangle tool, create a blue vector shape.

Important: Switch to the Move Tool and click off of the blue rectangle to deselect it, then click on the blue rectangle to re-select it.

Switch to the Ellipse tool, and in the top toolbar under Path Operations, choose Subtract Front Shape.

Draw and place four small circles in the corners of the rectangle to create a "ticket" shape.


Step 4

Add some text for the cost of tickets within the ticket shape.


Step 5

Create a light tan (#EAE4D9) rectangle with the Rectangle tool. Using the same method we used to create the ticket, create a bunch of circles to make it look like a big stamp.

Once you create one circle, you can use the Direct Selection tool (A) to select, copy, and paste multiple copies to make things a little quicker.

On another layer, create an even lighter (#F6F0E6) rectangle. Right click this rectangle in the Layers panel and convert it to a Smart Object.


Step 6

Double click the Smart Object you just created to open it in another window. Paste an image into the new window and close it. Hit yes when it asks you to save.

We're using a free, public domain photo by PublicDomainPictures from pixabay.com.


Step 7

Just above your photo Smart Object, create a Brightness/Contrast Adjustment Layer and give it a Clipping Mask so it only affects our photo layer.

Set Brightness to 35 and Contrast to -25.

Above that, create a Gradient Map Adjustment Layer and give it a Clipping Mask as well.

Within the Properties panel, click the down arrow next to the gradient strip. Click the little gear icon and select Photographic Toning to load the Photography Toning presets into the gradient picker.

If you hover your mouse over a preset for a few seconds, you'll see their names. Select the gradient named "Sepia Midtones". Set the Opacity to 75% in the Layers panel.


Step 8

Double click the "stamp" layer in the Layers panel to open the Layer Style dialog. Give it a Drop Shadow using the following settings.


Step 9

Select the stamp and photo layers in the Layers panel and press CTRL + T to enter Free Transform mode. Rotate them counter-clockwise slightly and hit enter.


Step 10

Our design is done, now it's time to add some authenticity.

If you have The Vintage Creative Collection deal, drag in Objects & Clipart > Vintage Postcard Clipart > EiffelPostmakerVintage.jpg.

Move and resize it within your canvas. Set the Blend Mode to Linear Burn and the Fill to 55% in the Layers panel.


Step 11

Do the same thing with Objects & Clipart > Vintage Postcard Clipart > Return2 sender.jpg, except this time set the Fill to 75% in the Layers panel.


Step 12

Drag in Digital Papers & Textures > LPC Burn Pile Textures Collection > LPC Burn Pile 6.jpg. Scale it to match the size of your canvas exactly and hit enter to finishing placing it.

Set the Blend Mode to Overlay and the Fill to 40% in the Layers panel.


Step 13

Above that, create a Brightness/Contrast Adjustment Layer and give it a Clipping Mask. Set Brightness to -50.


Step 14

Create a Gradient Map Adjustment Layer and use the "Gold-Sepia" gradient from the Photographic Toning presets.

Set the Opacity to 35% in the Layers panel.


Final Image

Since everything in our design is a vector shape or Smart Object, you can easily go back and make adjustments without having to redo any steps.


This tutorial does a good job showing off how much a few small elements can take a design to the next level.

Make sure you grab The Vintage Creation Collection by Le Paper Cafe so you can create cool stuff like this.

What did you create? Show us your version in the comments.

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