Photoshop: How to Create a Classic, Vintage, Matchbook Cover

Hi. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. I’m going to show you how to replicate the look of classic, vintage, matchbook cover images. I provided a Photoshop file template that
you can download, so you can follow along. Its link is in my video’s description or
project files below. It includes a retro linoleum background, a
closed matchbook and an image of smoke that we’ll apply later. In addition, I included a channel of the shape
that we’ll use later to place our portrait into. Open a color photo that you’d like to use for this project. I downloaded this one from Shutterstock. The effect works great on any subject. It be a person, place or thing. The first step is to crop your subject to
a specific size and resolution in order to give us the best result. Open your Crop Tool. For its Width, type in 935 “px” for pixels. For its Height, type in 625 px and for its
Resolution, type in 150 pixels per inch. Go to a corner and when you see a diagonal,
double-arrow, drag it in or out. Continue to drag corners until your image
is cropped to your liking. You can also reposition your image by going
inside the Crop’s bounding box and dragging it. To accept it, click the checkmark at the top
of press Enter or Return. To fit it back onto your canvas, press Ctrl or Cmd + 0. If you’re photo is of a person, the effect
will look best if you separate your subject from its background and replace the background
with a solid color, however, if you prefer to keep your photo, as is, convert it into
a Smart Object, so we can modify it non-destructively and replace it with another image without
having to redo the effects. To do this, click the icon at the upper, right of the Layers panel and click “Convert to Smart Object”. Then, fast-forward to 5 minutes and 34 seconds in the video, where you can pick it up at that point. To separate the subject from its background,
we’ll make a selection around the subject. For this example, I’ll use the Quick Selection
Tool with a radius of 10 pixels. If you’re using this tool as well, drag your
tool over the inside of your subject. To remove areas, press and hold Alt or Option
as you drag over those areas. If you’re using version CC 2015.5 or later,
click the “Select and Mask” button or go to Select and “Select and Mask”. If you’re using an earlier version, click “Refine Edge”. I did in-depth tutorials on both filters,
so if you’d like to watch them, I provided their links, as well. If you want to use Refine Edge instead of
“Select and Mask”, Shift-click “Select and Mask” and the “Refine Edge” filter will open. Check, “Smart Radius” and drag the Radius until the hair of your subject looks as soft as this example. Check “Decontaminate Colors”. This prevents color fringe, which is happens when the background colors encroach onto the soft edges of your subject. I’ll keep the default amount at 50% and output
it to a “New Layer with Layer Mask”. We’ll make a new layer below the active layer
by Ctrl-clicking or Cmd-clicking the New Layer icon. We’ll fill the empty layer with a color, which
will be the background behind out subject. Click the foreground color to open the Color Picker. Pick a color for your background. Since I already know the color I want, I’ll
type it into the hexadecimal field: 90B7B8. To fill the empty layer with the foreground
color, press Alt or Option + Delete. Next, we’ll brighten our overall image. Make the top layer active and click the Adjustment Layer icon. Click “Levels”. In the Input Highlights field, type in 221. We’ll make a new document of this layer, which
we’ll utilize later to add an effect. To do this, make the layer active and click
the icon at the upper, right. Click “Duplicate Layer”. When you see this window, open the Document
fly-out list and click “New”. Name it, “Subject”. Then, click OK or press Enter or Return. Open back your original subject document. We’ll convert it into a Smart Object. To do this, make the top adjustment layer
active and Shift-click the bottom layer to make all the layers active. Click the upper, right icon and click “Convert
to Smart Object”. Go to Filter, Pixelate and “Color Halftone”. Make the Radius: 4 pixels. Go to back to Filter, Blur and Gaussian Blur. Blur it 1 pixel. Next, we’ll intensify the yellow in the warmer colors. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click
“Selective Color”. Open “Reds” and drag the Cyan all the way to the left and the Yellows all the way to the right. Open Yellows and drag the Cyan also all the
way to the left. If you separated your subject from its background,
open the document of the layer that you saved earlier and press “v” to open your Move Tool. Drag it onto the tab of your original subject
and without releasing your mouse or pen, press and hold Shift as you drag it down and release. Pressing & holding Shift kept your cutout
subject aligned with the document you dragged it onto. Drag the “Fill” to 0%. This makes the layer invisible, but it’ll
retain the full visibility of the effects that we add to it. Double-click the layer to open its Layer Style window. Click “Outer Glow” and the color box. In the hexadecimal field, type in: FFE400. Then, click OK. The Blend Mode is “Multiply” and the Opacity is 100%. The Technique is “Softer”, the Spread is 0,
the Size is 10 pixels and the Range is 50%. This added a subtle, yellow outer glow around
our subject that simulates the effect of the off-registration printing of many inexpensive,
vintage matchbook covers. Next, we’ll increase the color saturation. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click “Vibrance”. For the Saturation, type in 40. We’ll convert our visible image into a Smart
Object by Shift-clicking the bottom layer to make the layers active and converting them
into one Smart Object. Drag your matchbook cover onto the tab of
the matchbook template and without releasing your mouse or pen, drag it down and release. Open your Channels panel. If you don’t see it, go to Window and Channels. Ctrl-click or Cmd-click the thumbnail of the
“Inside Shape” to make a selection of it. Open back the Layers panel and click the Layer
mask icon to make a layer mask of the selection next to the active layer. Click the chain-link icon to unlink the layer
and the layer mask. Now, we can reposition and/or resize the layer
or the layer mask independently of the other. Drag the layer below the Smoke layer. To reposition and resize your subject, open
your Transform Tool and drag it into position. The layer mask will keep it within its boundaries. Then, press Enter or Return. Make the Smoke layer visible and active and
change its Blend Mode to “Screen”. Make your subject active and change its Blend
Mode to Linear Burn. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click
“Vibrance” again. This time, we want the adjustment layer to
affect only the subject and not the matchbook, nor the background. To do this, we’ll need to clip it to the subject. Either click the Clipping Mask icon or by press Ctrl + Alt + G on Windows or Cmd + Option + G on a Mac. Drag the Vibrance all the way to the left
and the Saturation all the way to the right. As I toggle back and forth, you can see the difference. To angle your entire matchbook, make your
subject active and relink the layer and the layer mask, so they’ll move together. Shift-click the matchbook to make it active,
as well, and open your Transform Tool. Go to a corner and when you see a curved,
double-arrow, rotate it to an angle your like. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. Thanks for watching!

14 Replies to “Photoshop: How to Create a Classic, Vintage, Matchbook Cover”

  1. Hi Marty thanks for all your great tutorials. You have no idea how thankful i am for them and how much better i am getting a photoshop thanks to you. Im not seeing the file in the description you mentioned however i found a video that i guess you made some time earlier that had the matchbook in it. OK time to get busy with this tutorial. 🙂

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