Source & Mix Botanical Illustrations with Typography to Create Trendy Designs | Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand | Skillshare

Source & Mix Botanical Illustrations with Typography to Create Trendy Designs

Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand, Graphic Design & Photography

Source & Mix Botanical Illustrations with Typography to Create Trendy Designs

Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand, Graphic Design & Photography

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7 Lessons (24m)
    • 1. Class Overview

    • 2. Sourcing & Cutting

    • 3. Arranging Elements

    • 4. Adding Type

    • 5. Working with Masks

    • 6. Developing Colour Variants

    • 7. Print Preparation & Conclusion

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About This Class


Bold and simple type combined with nice floral or botanical illustrations—I bet you’ve seen a lot of it around lately on cards, clothing, wedding stationery and posters! It is a very simple, but very effective way of creating elegant designs with a sense of volume and sophistication.

I am Evgeniya Righini-Brand and in this class I will go through the process of combining found vintage botanical illustrations with type in Adobe Photoshop to create captivating designs which can be used in a wide range of projects: from personal greeting cards, wedding stationery or party decor, to any marketing materials and visual identity.

This class is suitable for pretty much any skill level and follows up on skills covered in my previous classes* Source & Mix: Digital Collage from Vintage Encyclopaedia Illustrations and Mastering Typography 1: The Beginner's Guide to Creating Stunning Designs – Typographic Contrast.


In this class you will learn:

  • how to work with layer masks;
  • how to work with artboards in Photoshop;
  • how to effectively use colour adjustments to create multiple variants of your designs;
  • how to use a brand new Photoshop Match Font feature;
  • and how to prepare work for print with bleeds and crops marks in Photoshop.

I will be very excited to see what you can create! Join me in this class to make something trendy to celebrate summer and beautiful typography!

If you are an absolute beginner at using Photoshop, please enrol in my class Source & Mix: Digital Collage from Vintage Encyclopaedia Illustrations to familiarise yourself with the Photoshop basics and selection and cutting techniques. Don't hesitate to join my class Mastering Typography 1: The Beginner's Guide to Creating Stunning Designs – Typographic Contrast if you want or need to learn basic principles of creating visually appealing typographic compositions, selecting and pairing typefaces, and familiarise yourself with the settings available on the Character and Paragraph panels.

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Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand

Graphic Design & Photography

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1. Class Overview: Bold and simple type combined with nice floral or botanical illustrations. I bet you've seen a lot of it around lately on cards, clothing, wedding stationery and posters. It is a very simple but very effective way of creating elegant designs with a sense of value and sophistication. This is Eugenia from Attitudes Creative and in this class, I will go through the process of combining found vintage botanical illustrations of this type to create captivating designs which can be used in a wide range of projects, from personal greeting cards, wedding stationery or party decor to any marketing material and visual identity. This class covers a new bunch of Photoshop techniques such as working with layer masks, color adjustments, and the brand new Photoshop match type feature. I will be very excited to see what you can create. Join me in this class to make something trendy, to celebrate summer and beautiful typographic. 2. Sourcing & Cutting: Before you start, browse around and find some inspiring images. If you want to check out my Pinterest board, type in flowers to get started. Then find some nice source images which you can use in your design. Anything floral or botanical can work very well in this class. It doesn't need to be a flower. It can be leaves, branches or it can be some fruits or berries. I really like the look of this rose so that's what I'm going to use. I'm getting images from biodiversity and if you don't know where to find images, check out the list of resources in this class, and watch my previous class on digital collages from vintage encyclopedia illustrations, where I have shown a range of sources of this images. Make sure that the image you want to use in your design is not copyright protected and download the largest size available. Now, I will open the downloaded image in Photoshop and re-save it as it is right away in the source folder for this project. This file I am going to keep as a source file. So I always have the original file in case I need to go back and do something else with it. Then I'm going to receive it in the other folder where I'm going to keep the cutout. I'm going to save it in PSD format because I wanted transparency. I'm going to keep the same filename for now, and I will embed the color profile and I'm going to click "Save". Now what I need to do is to cut the rose out of its background. I'm going to use the polygonal lasso tool. But if you want to use some other method, you can do that. If you don't know how to cut things out, go back to my previous class on digital collages where I cover and show a range of different ways of cutting things out in Photoshop. Before I start cutting, I want to duplicate the layer. So I've got it just in case and I will create another layer here with a bright color so I can see how my cuttings work. Now, I'm going to zoom in quite close and start cutting. When I have cut my image, I need to duplicate this layer a few times and separate a few elements onto different layers to be able to mask things out easily and to use little bit scattered around my design. So I want to separate this flower, a few buds and a few leaves. Now, I am going to quickly rename all of the layers so I can quickly navigate through my file and save it. After I have separated my rose into separate elements, I will save this file as a master file and I won't make any more changes to it. I am going to keep the master in its original size, but for this class, I want to resize this image. So I'm going to go to menu, image size, and I will change the resolution to 300 dpi. I'm going to keep re-sampling to preserve details. I'm going to change the units to centimeters and change the size of my image. I don't need it to be so big because the final design is going to be much smaller. So I will go down to 20 centimeters in width to have a good-quality image. At this point, make sure not to overwrite your master file, but rather, save layers of individual elements as separate files. So I'm going to go through layers one by one, removing anything I don't need and save each element in a separate PSD document. Now, I'm ready to start working on my design. If you have more than one source imaging to cut, go through the same process and then move on to the next stage. 3. Arranging Elements: After you have cut out all of the illustrations you want to use in your design, it is time to start putting them all together. Let's create a new file in Photoshop. Since for this class project we are going to be creating a greeting card, we need to keep it in mind when setting up the document. Standard sizes of greeting cards can vary slightly from country to country, but generally they keep somewhere around a six or a five mark if they are large or can be square based on the longest side of the A6 format. Since we all are in different countries, I suggest that you decide on the size for yourself, based on what is used in your country. I will go along with standard A sizes for now. I'm usually quite resourceful when working and think ahead about how else I can use what I'm working on. Now, knowing that I'm actually working on the card, I'm going to create an a free file instead so I can also use this work for someone else. Using A formats is also quite good because I can quite easily proportionally scale my work down to get to the desired A6 size of the final card. I will use RGB color mode because I am going to be uploading in my work just society six and that's what they use, but if you want to use CMYK and print your work professionally, go for it. Click "Okay" and let's save this file right away. I will put it into my development folder, rename it, make sure that this NPSD format and click save. Now I can start placing my card out into this file. You can do it any way you want to, and I will be placing linked files so I will go through all my cut outs one-by-one and place them into my document. Make sure to click "Enter" to place the image. I have all the elements I need in one file. I've got the full rules and all the individual elements as separate layers. They are all in the same place as they are on their original rules, which will be quite handy at the future masking stage. I am going to group all the individual elements and hide them because I don't need them at the moment, and then I'm going to start working on the overall composition of the card. The roles is actually quite small in comparison to the overall format and it's good because it will make it easier to mask things out otherwise the type would be hidden too much by the elements of the rose or vice versa. In terms of the overall composition, you can do whatever you want. You can have just one element on a colored background, you can have an over sized image if you format is like that or you can duplicate your images and scatter them around the whole canvas. You decide how you want your card to look. This looks nice. Now I want to change the background. I am going to go for something nice and [inaudible] , which will work well with this flowers for now, and I will get back to it later in any case to finalize my design. You can use all delete shortcut to fill the layer with the foreground color set on the tools panel or use paint bucket tool. Now I can start thinking about how I can add type to this composition. 4. Adding Type: Go back to your research and decide what writing you want to have on your card. This can be anything. You can include just a few words to set the mood. You can use a quote. You can write, congratulations, happy birthday or thank you. You can write someone's name or initials. It's up to you. I'm going to go for something simple and multipurpose. Now, I need to make my typography look nice. The first thing I'm going to do is actually set the color of my text, something that I can see well and work with, but it might not be the final color I'm going to use just yet. Then I need to pick some nice typeface or typefaces. If you are not very confident working with type, check out my first class in the mastering topography series, which covers basic principles of creating visually appealing typographic compositions, selecting and pairing typefaces, and settings available on the character and paragraph panels. Since all this stuff is covered there, I'm not going to get deep into the subject in this class. So head to my class, the beginners guide to creating stunning designs for more information about working with type. For this project, I would like to have some reasonably simple typeface which will create a nice contrast with a very detailed illustration. You can notice if you look at my type of flowers board on Pinterest, most of the compositions feature bold Sans serif typefaces, and in most cases it is also set in white. It is not surprising because white allows to add more air and sophistication into composition, and make it look quite soft and elegant. So if this is what you want to go for in terms of style, go for it. If you're using type like I did, there are plenty of typefaces for these purposes there. So have fun. Also, if you have the latest release of Photoshop, there is an awesome new feature there, which is called match font. This feature allows you to match fonts found in any image or photograph to your font library and fonts available via Typekit. So here how it works. Let's say you like the look of the typeface on this picture, but you don't know what typeface it is and you don't know whether you have anything similar in your library. Let's open this picture in Photoshop. Using the rectangular marquee tool, select font which we want to identify. Then go to menu type, match font. There you'll see the list of fonts similar in appearance which can be found in your library or are available to sync via Typekit. You can move the selection around or resize it to select different areas and see how the list of fonts changes. This is a very new feature in Photoshop, and it is not perfect, and it can give you some pretty wild matches. But generally, it can be a cool starting point. Give it a go and share your experience if you want to. If you want to use one of the fonts in your design, sync it from Typekit, select within the list and click "Okay". Now, you can start typing with it and see how it looks in comparison to the original typeface in the image. Using match font feature, I have found this really nice typeface, which is actually very different from the typeface in the image, but I really like the look of it, especially the letter R. I think it works very well together with these roses. I'm going to use it in two different ways to add some contrast and sophistication to the composition. Now, I will quickly typeset this and place it roughly where I want it to be. This looks quite good. Now, I'm in a position to develop it further by adding some volume to my composition by masking out parts of the type. 5. Working with Masks: After I have set my type and the position on the illustration, which is good for hiding some parts of type behind the illustration, I can start working on adding some imaginary volume to my design. Looking at the image, I can analyze what elements are closer and what can be considered to be further away. I can also use the cutouts of separate images from this group to help me understand on what imaginary plane I want to put my texts and what elements I can have in front of it and what elements are definitely going to be behind it. If you have smaller elements in your flower or botanical illustrations, you will have more freedom when masking things out than I did. I don't want to hide letters to the point of them being unrecognizable and on the other hand, I also don't want to destroy the flowers too much. So I'll start and make up my mind as I go along. I will hide the group with the individual elements for now and I will go back to them when and if I need to. Now, I need to add a layer mask to my type layer. So I need to select the type layer on the Layers panel and click on this button here. Layer masks are an extremely useful, non-destructive way of hiding parts of the layer or blending different layers together, if you're working with a Photomontage or Photo manipulation. Also, if you want to, you can use layer masks to cut elements out when you are dealing with the collages. So masks control the opacity of the layer they are applied to. White areas on the layer mask are opaque. Black color on the mask makes the layer transparent and shades of gray create different levels of opacity. You can select color on the Tools panel and paint in different levels of transparency using the brush tool. Regardless of the color mode of your document, 100 percent white would be 255 in all three RGB channels and black will be three zeros. You need to make sure that you are working with 100 percent black and 100 percent white if you want to have complete transparency or complete opacity. Otherwise, you will have different levels of transparency, which is useful in some cases, but definitely not in this class. To make it easier to hide some parts of MyType behind the elements of the flower, I need to go to the first layer I want to build my mask upon and command click on its thumbnail on the Layers panel. Now the contents of the layer is selected, and I will be able to use this selection to paint in the transparency on the mask. Then I need to select the type mask on the Layers panel. Make sure that the foreground color is set to black. Zoom-in close so I can see all of the details and using the hard brush of the appropriate size, paint away the parts which I want to appear to be behind the leaves. At this stage, I can also use my Pre-cut elements to make it faster to select different bits like this from flower. So I will make a selection from its shape and paint it away on the mask here. When I'm done with the selection, I need to go and make a selection from another illustration which I want to be in front of my type. I need to do it with all the elements which I want to be covering my type. If I want my type to be hidden by the small elements on the illustration like this bit of a petal, for example, I would quickly hide the type layer and using the Polygonal Lasso tool, select the part which I want to hide. Then reveal the type layer, select the mask and paint within the selection. You can do it also by turning down the opacity of the type layer and using the brush tool to follow the lines in the illustration. But it might not be as precise as using the Polygonal Lasso tool. When you're done masking things out, group all your images on the Layers panel, and make sure to save the file. The next step is to finalize the colors. 6. Developing Colour Variants: You might already like what you've done, but at this point it is always a good idea to develop your work further and try out different color variants. To do this and to preserve the original work, if you have the latest version of Photoshop CC, you can use Artboards. If not, you'll have to save individual files for each version. I am going to quickly walk you through working with Artboard in Photoshop. On the Layers panel, select the background layer which defines the size of your work and then go to Menu Layer, New, Artboard from layers. This will put all your visible layers together in an Artboard folder on the Layers Panel. Now you can duplicate your Artboard as many times as you want, the same way as you would copy a layer, so that you can create a different color version of your design on a separate Artboard. There is also an Artboard tool on the Tools panel which allows you to work with the Artboard size, position, and settings. Don't go too crazy with a number of Artboards because they will increase your file size. keep it manageable and make sure to save your work as you make changes. The first thing which you might want to modify is the capacity of your type. Having a solid color is nice, but turning down the capacity to 90, 80 or 70 percent, can make a big difference to the way it looks. I quite like this tissue or tracing paper look because it makes the whole design lighter and more airy. Next easy thing to do is to play around with the background color and see how it affects the overall perception of your design. I like using hue saturation adjustment layer to tweak the color of the background, because this way I can see the changes I apply in the real time and I can always turn it off if I want to. You can also use hue saturation to adjust the colors of the illustration or to colorize it in one here, you can make it affect only illustrations by linking the adjustment layer to the group, or you can make it effect illustrations and the background by placing the adjustment layer here, or you can make it effect the whole art board by placing the adjustment layer above all other contents in the Artboard Folder. You can also get a very nice effect by using Gradient Map Adjustment. Place it on the Layers Panel where you wanted to be in relation to the image and link it to what you want to effect, then go and play around with the colors of the gradient. Click on the gradient to open Gradient Editor window, then either pick a gradient from the Presets or set your own colors by clicking on the Color Stops and selecting colors on the Color Picker. Two colors look very nice, but if you want to have more, you can add more color stops to your gradient. At this point, you might also want to mix in other adjustments such as brightness and contrast or levels. When you're happy with the results, save the developmental PSD File, and then go to Menu File, Export artboards to Files. Here, you can export individual Artboards as separate PSD Files, which can be useful if you want to take any specific version further, or you can export individual Artboards for print or web and be done with it. If you want to make a fold-able card for print, export Artboards to PSD Files with the settings, and move on to the next stage of preparing your design for print as a folded greeting card. 7. Print Preparation & Conclusion: If you want to print your card and make it foldable, there are a few things you need to do. Open the PSD file, which you want to use for the card, and then go to menu image, image size, and scale down your work. For example, I want to have an A6 card and there is a preset for it. I will also change the resampling method to bicubic sharper, which is better for size reduction. Let's click ''Okay.'' Since the card needs to be foldable, we need to add the back to it. Let's go to the Layers panel and ungroup our art word contents. Click Command Shift G a couple of times so we can see all our layers as there should be. Now group all the images and texts. If you have any adjustments applied to the whole image, make sure to keep the adjustment layer outside of this group. Now command click on the ''Background layer thumbnail,'' then select your group on the Layers panel and add a mask from the selection to it. You cannot see any changes yet, but you'll see why I'm doing it in a moment. Now go to many image Canvas size, and then if you have a vertical card as I do, set the anchor to the right by clicking on this arrow and double up the width. If you have a card which opens along the horizontal edge instead, set the anchor to bottom and double up the height, click ''Okay." So this is the back edit. Now you can see that I added the mask to hide elements which are outside of the front part. Of course, at this point you might actually want to remove the mask and bring them back or even add more illustrations on the back, it's up to you. I just want to make the background color fully cover at the back of my card, so I'll quickly resize it. You might also want to add your name or your logo or something else on the back, so go for it if you want. It seems like we are almost there, but I actually want to do one more thing. Regardless whether you print at home or at the print shop, it is a good idea to have cropped marks to cut your printer to the final size. It is a professional way of doing things because this way you can cut to the desired size and leave room for error. You add blades, which will be cut off, which ensures that the edge of your print looks perfect, especially if your print goes over the edge like in my case. Let's add blades and crop marks. Photoshop doesn't make it easy, so we'll have to do it manually. If you rulers are hidden, reveal them by clicking Command R or Ctrl R in Windows and then go and drag guides out of them and align them to the edges of your Canvas. If you have snap enabled, it will make it easier. Go to many view snap and make sure it is on. Also add a vertical guide in the center of your canvas or a horizontal one if your card opens up a different way. Now go to menu image, Canvas size, makes sure that anchor is set to center, change units two millimeters and add six or 10 millimeters to both width and height, click ''Okay.'' Now we need to extend our image into the blade area, so resize the background with a free transform tool, and then select the front side of the card from the edge to center, select the mask, and fill the selection with white color. It doesn't really matter that it doesn't look balanced because this is the part which we are going to trim anyway, that's our blade sorted. The last thing we need to do is to add crop or trim marks. Crop marks normally goes slightly over the edge. Let's go to the menu image Canvas size again and add another five millimeters on either side. Now create a new blank layer above all other layers, and using the rectangular marquee tool, draw a selection between the edges and the guides like that. Then right-click on the selection and in this menu select ''Stroke," Set width to 0.5 points and set color to black. Align stroke to the outside and click ''Okay." Then do the same with the other three corners. At this point, you can also add fold marks. When you have all four corners and the full mark credit Command click or Ctrl click in Windows on the thumbnail of the background layer to set the selection. Invert selection by present Command Shift I or Ctrl Shift I in Windows. Select the layer with the crop marks on the Layers panel and add a layer mask to it. Save this file as a PSD, converted to C away key if you need to, and save it as a PDF for print and put it in the print folder. Now you can print your card using some nice paper or card stock folded according to the fold marks. Trim the blades using a ruler and a craft knife for scalpel and give it to someone special. That's it for this class. I hope you've enjoyed it and learned something new. If you liked this class, please leave a review so more people can discover it. I will be very excited to see your cards. Post your work in the project section for this class and if you are going to share your work on Instagram, please take attitudes skills so that I can see it there too. If you have any questions leave a comment on the community board for this class, and I will happily answer and provide feedback. Thank you for enrolling in this class, and I hope to see you in my other classes.