I’m going to do something a little wild and crazy for me lately, write a blog post that actually contains pictures. Crazy, I know. This quarter I have been taking a poster design class. In the class, we are designing one poster every week. The first poster I created was a redesign of a previous poster. It was for a “Cookie Festival.” While the design itself involves mostly vivid, flat colors, I wanted to play around with texture a little bit because that is not something that I commonly do.
I find that I am often drawn to illustrators that combine clean shapes with unique textures. Two of my favorite illustrators that do this (however, in two very different ways) are Takeuma and Sergio Membrillas.
In my poster I experimented with a grainy texture. It is less noticeable than the textures that these illustrators use, but you got to start somewhere. Here is the Cookie Festival poster that I created. It is hard to notice the texture in the poster, however, when you look at it next to the totally flat version, it becomes more apparent.
I created the texture using a very simple technique, I simply added a highlight/shadow layer to the poster, and then with the layer property (is that what that dropdown menu is called next to opacity) set to dissolve I used a very large, soft brush, to draw my highlights and shadows. Then, I clipped the layer to the shape layer that I was drawing on. As simple as that.
Here is a more visual walk through though.
Start with your art, whatever you want to add your texture to.
Add a new layer. On this layer you can either add a gradient or use a brush. Then, you can either chose the layer property of dissolve, or if you are working with a brush you can choose for the brush to have the dissolve property. One advantage of doing that is your opacity will work just as it normally does. If you set your layer to dissolve, then you will lose pixels on that layer, but they won’t be any more or less transparent.
After that, just add a clipping mask to your shape by selecting both layer, holding down “option” and clicking the line between the two layers (your texture will have to be above your shape).
That’s it! Change the settings to solve, paint or gradient away, and then clip your new texture onto your shape. I hope that was somewhat helpful. Have a texturific time!