Overlapping Text with a Photo {how-to}

michelle shefveland. supplies

Time for another fun digital art how-to! You see them on most magazine covers…those cool titles that look like they are setting behind the cover photo. Let’s see how easy it is to do. I’ll be using Adobe Photoshop Elements here, but any version of Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, or Corel PaintShop Pro Photo will work too (any image editor with layers and blending modes).

  1. Open Photoshop Elements
  2. Open your desired photo, which should have a sharp subject easy to separate from background. A silhouette image is perfect! 
  3. Crop the image to 12×12 or size of finished layout
  4. Open the papers you would like to use for blending/adding texture. In this sample I used a jumbo chevron from Be Bold and and 2 Photo Art Blends from set 6.
  5. Drag and drop the papers onto the photo.
  6. Experiment with blending modes and opacity of each layer until you get desired effect.
  7. Here is how the Layers Panel looked at this point showing the Blend Modes and Opacities.
  8. Add poster-sized word art, which fills your page. I used Soul3 from our Inspirational Poster Scrap.Words set. 
  9. Experiment with blend modes. I set mine to Screen at 70%.
  10. Now for the magic. There are different methods to get the same result and we’ll use what I believe to be the easiest. Using the Magic Wand Tool click on your subject on the photo layer and keep clicking until the subject is totally selected. You can use another favorite selection tool for this step such as the Magic Selection Brush. Whatever works best for you. I smoothed my selection by about 5 pixels to get a more smooth selection (Select>Modify>Smooth>5>OK). 
  11. Now simply copy this selection onto its own layer (Ctrl+J; Cmd+J for a Mac).
  12. Move this selection layer above your word art layer, and voila…magic! 

So that’s all there is too it. Really cool, right?! Very fun to use on sports pages, as well as full page blended photos.

Happy creating! Michelle and team

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