Quick and Easy Backgrounds with Textures: PHOTOSHOP #92

Quick and Easy Backgrounds with Textures: PHOTOSHOP #92

Hi, Glyn here, back with another video for
you. This is episode ninety-two and this time we’re
going to be talking about textures and how we can use them very quickly and easily to
create bespoke backgrounds. I’m sure there are some of you out there watching
this video that already know that kind of stuff that I’m going to go through. If you do, just treat it as a bit of a reminder. For those of you who don’t, if you just watch
for the next few minutes you’re going to see how very easily you can use textures to create
completely bespoke backgrounds when you’ve originally photographed your subjects on a
grey paper background, like you can see the guys are here. Before we do that I just want to show you
one thing first before we actually talk about textures, and that’s this picture over here. Again, you can see this model here, she’s
been photographed on grey paper. Just so you know about the lighting, we had
two lights, we had a strip light on either side of the model and to the front I think
it was about a one meter square soft-box with the grid in front of it but with the outer
diffusion taken off. As the light comes through it it hits the
grid and that’s when you get all these nice shapes and patters on the floor with all the
shadows. What I wanted to talk about now is just literally
how to use the grey paper, because that’s really important when it comes to textures
later on. Here’s our model Jessie. Here is a picture of a door which I photographed
over at Heidelberg Castle in Germany. When we do compositing ordinarily we think
we have to do lots of intricate cutting out using things like refine edge, and it can
get quite tricky when we’re picking up hair. However, when we photograph somebody on a
grey background … Let’s just take this background now, drag it over into our picture containing
Jessie. When we photograph people on the grey background
we can do things a heck of a lot quicker, but the background does have to be solid like
it is here with this door. Over in the layers panel you can see the first
layer is Jessie, uppermost layer is the actual door here. Now, if I wanted to make it look as if Jessie
had that door behind her, rather than doing cutting out, because I’ve used grey when I
photographed her I can just use a blend mode. On the layer here containing the door I’m
going to change the blend mode from normal to something like overlay, and you can see
straight away we’re not actually that far from having her already composited into the
scene. All I need to do here is just add something
like a layer mask. Get a brush with a black foreground colour
and just quickly very very paint away areas where we can see that the actual texture of
the door is showing through on Jessie’s skin in particular and on her hair and a little
bit on the wings. You can see how quickly I’m doing this here,
not paying much attention while I’m chatting away to you folks, but you can see it’s pretty
much she’s in there. Zoom back in. Pretty much she’s now composited in the scene,
and it’s taken literally about a minute. Now we can spend time doing the interesting
stuff, adding the effects, the lighting, the color and so on, but if I zoom in, take a
look at the wings here. I’ll just take the paint off a little bit
there. Can you see how we’ve not even used refine
edge, but all these intricate bits of the feather all of that has come through fine,
all her hair is fine, but the great thing is if we just zoom down to the bottom here,
look at the shadows on the floor that have hit Jessie, the shadows going across here. If I turn the background layer off now you
can see they’re exactly the same. One of the hardest things we do when we composite
is actually paint in the shadows once we’ve actually done the cutting out and put the
person into the scene. With this effect when we use grey to photograph
them on, put the background above them, then use an overlay blend mode, or maybe even soft
light but the effect isn’t quite so contrasty then, the original shadows stay in there so
we don’t even have to think about doing them. That’s a little bit of a sidetrack. Let’s go back over now and talk about textures,
because it’s pretty much a similar kind of thing that we’re going to do. Here’s the picture of our two guys, we’ve
got Mack on the left and Sam on the right. These guys belong to an organization called
The Bearded Villains. Here’s the final picture. You can see, if I just get rid of all these
layers here you can see that originally we’ve just got the two guys who’ve been photographed
on the grey background. I just want to add some texture to it, and
texture you can get from all manner of places. If I just go to File and Open I can show you
that I’ve got loads and loads of textures saved already onto my computer. ‘Photoshop Bits And Bobs’ is the folder I
keep them in, let’s just double click on that and then we’ve got textures here. You can see as I scroll through loads and
loads of textures, and these are photographs of floors, of walls, of doors, of brick, of
dust, you name it, all manner of different textures that we can use in our pictures. If I just click on this one, just bring it
forward, you can see this one here is just a bit of marble that’s been photographed which
is great for adding onto a picture later on. Another place that you can get them from is
from the Adobe Add-ons. If I just go over to the website, just go
over to Chrome and Adobe Add-ons. Now, I’ve put the actual URL, the web address
in the description part of this video, so make sure you check it out. In here we’ve got loads of different things
that we can actually either get for free or add in to our Photoshop to allow us to do
many many different things. One of the things that’s available to us is
this one where loads of textures. If I go to the search area, type in ‘Texture’,
this is going to bring up lots of the Add-ons that have some kind of texture in with them. The one I’m talking about today is this one
just here. This is one that’s available to those of you
who subscribe to the Creative Cloud, it’s a free one to download. Don’t worry if you don’t subscribe to the
Creative Cloud, if you’re something like Photoshop CS6 or maybe an earlier version, you’ve got
a version over here which you can also download as well. You’re not being excluded, it’s for everybody
to make use of. I’ve got this one over here, the one that’s
called the Fly taster for the subscriber. When you actually get that and install it
you’ll notice that you can actually get hold of it when you go to the Window menu, Extensions,
and it will show here. You can see Adobe Paper Texture Pro. When you first use it you’ll notice it comes
up over on the right hand side here. Can you see this little fly icon with the
blue background? This is where all those textures are actually
embedded now into Photoshop, you see all them different ones here. If I wanted to add these on to the background
all I simply need to do is just click on one of them, and what you’ll find is it creates
a brand new layer, it adds a layer mask onto it as well and it also applies the blend mode. If I just change that back to normal you can
see here’s the solid texture, but they’ve just simply now by changing it to overlay
you can see that it starts to attach itself to the actual grey paper background. Obviously it’s over the subjects as well,
but all you can simply do there, like we did with Jessie the girl there where we put the
door behind, is just get a black brush and paint it off the guys so that you’re only
going to leave it on the actual background. On this example here what I actually did do
was you can see just here, I actually made a selection of the guys so it’s very quick
and easy for me now as I add textures to remove them off. You’ll notice some of these textures do in
fact have some color in them as well. One word of warning, if you’re going to add
a texture that has color onto a grey wall it’s going to look a little bit funky, so
what I tend to do is just desaturate it. When you’re clicked on the actual layer container
texture, just go to Image, Adjustments, and then desaturate, take the color out of it
and then you’re going to be left with a nice simple texture on that back wall. Already we can start to see that it’s building
up there, but you don’t have to stop with one texture. In the final image of these guys here I went
back in, chose another texture … Let’s just go for maybe this one here, and again we can
see there’s color in there, that’s now almost like a material effect there but it might
work. Let’s just click on the thumbnail, Image,
Adjustments, Desaturate, obviously there’s a keyboard shortcut there as well, click on
that to remove the color out of it and you can see straight away that makes it better,
and then we can actually start playing around with opacity to bring down the texture effect
just there as well. You can start to build them up, put as many
as you want in there to create a completely bespoke background. If I want to take it off the guys here, I
could build up many many different textures in here, then I’ll just simply highlight so
that all those textures are selected and then go to the fly-out menu on the right hand side
and go New Group from Layers and we’ll just call that Texture, and I’ll simply add a layer
mask to it. The layer mask is white which means we can
still see the effects, we can still see it on the guys there, but if I then go to where
my selection was saved, hold down my command key and click on that little channel there
you can see my selection is now active. Again, this is just purely a reminder here. All I need to do now is just go to Edit, Fill,
and fill that selected area with black to remove or to hide that effect off the guys,
and then we’ll just de-select. You can see you can start to very very quickly
build up those texture layers just there like so. Keep going until you get the kind of look
you want. That’s one thing you can do with it, and just
as a little bonus before we finish off, here’s one little thing that I remember seeing years
ago, blimey, it must have been about ten years ago when I first went to Photoshop World in
Las Vegas and I saw photographer Eddie Tapp show this and he called it Cookie Lighting. All he does is he goes through add a curves
layer, go to the upper right hand corner and drag it down just a bit so that your picture
starts to darken something like this. Okay, we’ll close that down, then we get a
brush, we’ve got a black foreground color. Let’s just make sure there’s no settings in there
that are going to make the brush behave a bit odd. All we simply do is just quickly dab down
in various parts of the picture with this brush. We can click down that size, let’s make it
a little bit smaller, little dabs like this all over the place, and all that’s doing is
just making it so that the lighting isn’t even. Obviously later on we can add a vignette,
but by adding all these little dabs of black here to bring back the original picture it
just adds a little bit more interest. If I turn that on and off you can see the
light’s not even, it’s the shadows that make the picture interesting, and that’s just a
very quick simple way that you can something that Eddie called Cookie Lighting. If we just look at the actual layer mask that’s
all we’re doing, we’re just hiding the dark parts by putting those little black dots all
over it. There you go, real simple quick way of using
textures. It’s definitely something that’s worth doing,
it’s actually cheaper than buying textured backgrounds because then you can just do whatever
you want to your background now and make a brand new different looking one every single
time. You’ve also got the compositing trick in there,
definitely give it a go. For those of you who want to know what kind
of grey you should get, just get a grey, don’t worry too much about how light or how dark
it is, because you as the photographer can control how much light is on it anyway, so
you can make it as dark or as light as you want to. Don’t forget I’ll put the actual address where
you can get those Adobe Add-ons in the description part of the video. If you haven’t subscribed already to this
channel please make sure you do so, just click on that subscribe button, it’s just a real
quick way of giving us a bit of support. That’s it pretty much, I shall finish now
and I’ll see you next time.


  • nw10photography says:

    I have had the Fly Paper textures for a few years now. Amazing what they can do to your photos. Simple and very effective

  • Entubatu Mahumasu says:

    haha cute spelling of heidelberg – thanks for the useful tutorial and greetings from germany 😉

  • Jacek Popławski says:

    I think soft selection is better, please notice when you applied pre made mask – they look like pasted it. That's the reason I still can't find good balance in this method on my photos.

  • Inatlos01 says:

    could you also show how you got that green color, i would love to see how you do it. thank Glyn… 🙂

  • Barry King says:

    anybody know why I cant find the textures in Photoshop 2015 CC when installed?

  • Teri Egts says:

    Thank you for letting us know about the Adobe Add-ons and how they work. I have always used my own texture shots and have never even researched the Adobe collections, but will give these a try. Your images are so deep and full-bodied with this effect.

  • Javier Lukarelly says:

    Gracias .
    Saludo .

  • David Wilson says:

    Thank you for sharing this with us Glyn. It was a little refresher on using Texture Backgrounds, but I always come away learning something new – here it 's the desaturation in the Texture and the lighting techniques. Thank you.

  • carey lee says:

    Wow! Your awesome! Great work!

  • Nilo Anjos says:

    Many thanks!!!

  • Auricelia Oliveira says:

    What a amazing tutorial. I loved it. I just wanted to check if the white background for this purpose, works very diferently or not.
    Thanks a lot. I love your channel!

  • Ray Fidler says:

    Top quality as usual Mr D, Ive just caught up with this episode. I really like the Cookie lighting trick and it will be going into my "special notebook". Ray

  • Arash Azadi says:

    Great tutorial

  • 1BigBucks1 says:

    There's a ton of recent tutorials for this paper texture add on which is great, but if you have CC 2015 the installs won't work unless you know the trick and no one tells you! I spent hours Googling and re-downloading and it was so frustrating. I finally found the the fix but it was a few months ago so I'll try to remember it here…

    Go to your Adobe CC Application manager. From the widget pulldown select Preferences, Creative Cloud tab and then files. Turn Sync ON. I think it is off by default which prevents PS from reading add ons. Once turned On the texture add on worked for me. Hope that helps.

  • Photonerd says:

    thanks, that is grate

  • Adrian Hyde Photography says:

    Thanks for posting. Great video Glyn.

  • MLCreations says:

    Great Tutorial… Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

  • José Parcerisa says:

    Glyn as usual…Extraordinary congratulations.

  • poradnik fotograficzny Zapytaj Fotografa says:

    Easy and effective idea, thanks!

  • Martin Heeren says:

    again a great video glyn, thanks 😉

  • Alex Aguirre says:


  • mecky1963 says:

    Thanks guy for the pretty clear explaining. Regards from Germany…

  • Henrik Nagy says:

    A very straightforward tutorial and I learned a lot! Thank you!

  • Rafael Alvarez Ramírez says:

    Thank you so much Glyn that last one Cookie Light was a KILLER tip, amazing! Thanks again master

  • dcartier100 says:

    I like the effect you have accomplished. Can this effect be applied to a video in After effects. I am looking to do this to a video. Any suggestions.?

  • Gareth Jones says:

    Is there a limit to how dark or light the grey background should be? Also when you say flat grey I assume that doesn't mean the lighting has to be flat and a gradient would be ok to work from. Great video

  • Sylvia Vervest says:

    Hi Glyn, Am I right in assuming that a wall that is painted grey will do the same as paper? Btw your tutorials are bloody brilliant.


    Wow, I never knew about the "Cookie Light" technique. It adds so much character. Thanks to you and Eddie as well!

  • JBHelms Photographic says:

    Dude, you just saved me $400 bucks on a backdrop with this! Thanks friend.

  • misha3215 says:

    You are truly amazing to share those techniques for free!
    THANK YOU and congrats- you have made internet better! 🙂

  • Francisco Ortega says:

    Glynn question for you. I tried to access the textures via CC but it states that i need Dreamweaver. Did you encounter this issue and if so would you know of a work around? I know your not PS support but they take 10 forevers to get help.


  • Laura Halfpenny says:

    Thank you for the great tips on add ons and the cookie technique

  • beingelmo says:

    I learned so much from this tutorial! Great information. Thank you!

  • sooty999apr13 says:

    Glyn, Great video really enjoyed it. We didn't know about the textures and other things that can be downloaded. We managed to download the fly paper textures to the desktop but they are not showing in photoshop. Do you have any suggestions?

  • Najee Williams says:

    Gotta tell you, I've been using Photoshop for about 20 years now, but ever video I've watched of yours has taught me something that I did not know. Kudos to you!

  • Michael Breskin says:

    Thanks very much. Very informative. Greatly appreciate it. Michael Breskin

  • 1mollymom says:

    Excellent tutorial, thank you! So glad to learn about the Adobe add-ons as well.

  • Deirdre Legg says:

    Thank you so much for that. One thing us beginners have a problem with is that we don't know what stuff is called. So when we want something in particular we are stuffed. You took a problem of mine and turned it into a new community. I can now execute everything I've been seeing in my head and lay it out in printable form. You mighta heard me sigh…lol I didn't know about addons or that it's been sitting beside me as I work for the past 2 years. guna lock you in my youtube closet now.

  • Bharani Govindasamy says:

    Excellent Video tutorial, glad I visited your channel, thank you!

  • Luke Hodgkins says:

    Great tips Glyn, I've used textures for a while but I never knew that you could download textures from adobe, Its really opened up doors for me so thank you 🙂

  • Tobias W. says:

    Thank you very much, Glyn! That is just amazing!!

  • Richard Gingras says:

    Just what I was looking for. Nice, simple explanation. Thank you so much.

  • Jules Moyaert says:

    Glyn, you are SO good!!!!

  • Heidi Tweedell says:

    Love the antique look of this.

  • Dave Chillman says:


  • Ken Haines says:

    Hi Glkyn, is there an update as I can't seem to find the Fly Taster

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