Photoshop Torn Edges Effect
Photoshop 911 reader "Joe" from California using a Mac and Photoshop CS, posted this question to the Photoshop 911 Emergency Room, and even supplied the photos so we could diagnose and provide a cure:
I need to create a similar torn edge effect. It was created for a photo previously and now I need to use the effect on a current photo for a new project. The effect is applied to the first photo on the page and the second photo is the one which is needing the edge effect applied.
Use what you have
But Joe... you have everything you need!
This is not a tutorial for this specific problem, but one all Photoshop users should keep in mind.
When faced with a problem, ask "What elements do I already have?" and "How can I utilize what I've got to get me where I want to go?"
Here you've already got the border texture. All you have to do is divorce it from the current photo and turn it into a reusable layer mask. Once you've got that, you can make as many frames as you like.
1) Isolate the frame using Select by Color: as pictured, we used Select > Select by Color to select all the pure white in an 8-pixel range. Notice it picked up most of the white, but left some pixels which are still white, but outside the 8-pixel range.
2) Magic Wand Adds to Selection: Using the Magic Wand, with "Continuous" turned off, we held down the SHIFT key (adding to the already existing selection) to include the pixels missed by the first step. Note that now we've got all the white outside the picture frame texture.
3) Fill selection with BLACK: Once the selection is complete, start a new layer by clicking the New Layer button at the bottom of the Layers Palette, then with the foreground color BLACK, fill the selection.
Once filled, investigate it carefully to make sure there are no white holes in the field of black. If there are, simply fill those too.
4) Substitute the New Photo & Mask: Now we use the Move Tool (Tap V) to drag the new photo into the file. It arrives on its own layer. (Where it arrives, in the stacking order, is of no consequence. We moved it below so we could 'see' the mask.)
Again, using the 'non continuous' Magic Wand, we once again select the WHITE portion of the black mask layer.
5) Deleting the Background Creates the Border: with the active selection of the background, we turn off the mask layer, and make the layer with the new photo the active layer.
At this point, either DELETE the background to form the border frame, or merely fill with white.
The results are the new picture with a matching border to the old picture. To generate more pictures with the same border, just drag in the next photo and apply steps #4 and #5 again.
Many of the Photoshop gurus will complain that I should have used a layer mask for this job. However, this method is actually faster, and works in ALL versions of Photoshop since long before Layer Masks were invented. Why reinvent the wheel each time a new version of Photoshop comes out -- when this easy technique has worked since the late 1990s.
Return to the Photoshop Madness
Photoshop Department, or the Design Center Index
Participate in your Design CenterLots of fun and information for all... don't forget, any community is only as good as the participation of its members. We invite your tips, tricks, comments, suggestions and camaraderie.
- Ask for the DT&G Monthly: to receive DT&G newsletter each month, happenings in the Design Center and regular columns like the "Mail Bag" and "Cool Sites"
- SUBSCRIBE : to the Designers' CAFE email list
- Link to this site, and then show us the link. We'll send you any of our current door prizes, just for your trouble.
- SUBSCRIBE: to the Web Design & Review email list
- SUBMIT: a news link, new font, or product review
- SUBMIT: a link to a Photoshop web site