Tutorial on how to make letterpress effect in Photoshop

Have you seen some great business cards or logo designs with a 3D text effect and wondered how it’s done? This method, known as letterpress, is a traditional print technique that produces an artisanal 3D effect. Unlike on paper, though, creating a letterpress effect in Photoshop is extremely easy.

Let’s start off with a simple background. I chose a textured background to simulate a real letterpress effect on paper, but any background will do just fine.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 1

Next, type out your text to be pressed. This effect works well on logos, button graphics and header images.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 2

Double click the text layer to open the Layer Style properties and add an Inner Shadow. This simulates the effect of a shadow cast onto an inset shape. Adjust Distance, Size, and Opacity according to the color of your text – greater Distance produces a deeper letterpress, but the resulting effect should be subtle.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 3

Now, add a Drop Shadow that’s a few shades lighter than your background. Adjust accordingly so that you create a thin highlight at the raised edges of the text, where it catches the light. Don’t forget to check Use Global Light – this ensures all the shadows are cast at the same angle.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 4

You can set the shadow to a contrasting color to properly place the shadow before changing it to the correct colour.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 5

By now you should have a nice, clean letterpress effect and you can stop here if you’re working on a modern or futuristic design.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 6

It still looks unnatural and out of place, however, on my textured background. To make the effect more realistic, let’s add a very slight Bevel and Emboss to the text. Adjust the shadow opacity to soften the edges.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 7

Finally, I added a Pattern Overlay to replicate the paper texture. It’s not discernible here but try it yourself in Photoshop and you’ll see the difference in a higher resolution image.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 8

After adding a few decorative touches, here’s the final result. Time for some coffee – the favourite drink of creative folks.

letterpress effect photoshop tutorial 9

You can also letterpress shapes and icons to create a 3D effect – for example, the border around the “paper” here was also given the letterpress treatment. Have fun!

Enjoyed learning how to make letterpress effect in Photoshop? Check out more easy Photoshop tutorials for beginners.

Other Design Articles You May Find Interesting

One Comment | Write a Comment

  1. Nivetha Rajan says:

    wow, very interesting things here….. thanks for these.

17-09-2014 | Comments Off on Top 50 sport wordPress themes
18-06-2013 | Comments Off on 20 sets of free grunge photoshop brushes
21-01-2013 | Comments Off on Free futuristic fonts from urbanfonts.com
06-01-2013 | (2) Comments
24-11-2012 | Comments Off on Make your own business card for free
08-02-2012 | (1) Comment
  • Free Brushes
  • FudgeGraphics
  • CrazyLeaf Design Blog
  • Fuel Your Creativity
  • Photoshop Tutorials and Design Resources
  • touch up photo retouching services
  • Small House Design
  • http://www.webbuildersguide.com/
Follow My Twitter Subcribe Full RSS