In this tutorial, you’ll create different versions of a simple poster in Adobe Photoshop. Along the way you’ll learn some basics like working with artboards, and placing images.
You can apply these skills to making other posters or whatever else you want in Photoshop….Artboards are useful for creating multiple versions of any design in Photoshop.
To start your project, you can use one of the sample images available from the tutorial page or a photo of your own. You can also use Adobe mobile apps like Lightroom for mobile to capture and edit images on your smartphone or tablet and bring them into Photoshop.
Choose File > Open and navigate to an image. Select it and click Open.
In order to create several versions of the poster, we’ll use artboards. Artboards let you create multiple layouts with different content or in different sizes, lay them out within a single document and see them all at once.
We’ll start by creating an artboard that displays this first image.
Select the Background image layer in the Layers panel and choose Layer > New > Artboard from layers. Name the artboard “Leaf” and click OK. A new artboard is created that’s the size of the image.
Now we’ll add some text to the poster design. Select the Horizontal Type tool. Go to the tool options bar (up here) and select the size, type in a new value so you can be sure to see the text initially, and press Enter or Return.
Click somewhere in your design. Let’s write The Blue Ridges Autumn Tour - In capital letters, type “THE” press Enter or Return type “BLUE” press Enter or Return type “RIDGES” press Enter or Return type “AUTUMN TOUR”
Select the text by clicking and dragging over it. Choose a font from the menu here, picking any font you have. I chose a Typekit font that comes with my Creative Cloud subscription. Typekit is a service offering access to a vast library of fonts for use in desktop applications and on websites.
Let’s change the color of the text so it’s more readable. Select a light color in the Swatches panel to apply it.
Now we’ll make the “AUTUMN TOUR” text a different size to make it stand out. Click just to the right of “TOUR” and drag over just the “AUTUMN TOUR” to select it. Up in the Options bar, select the size, type in a new value, and press Enter or Return.
To move the text into place in the design—select the Move tool… drag the text into the center of the design here. You may see magenta lines appearing temporarily. These lines are called Smart Guides. They are temporary snap-to guides that help you align objects relative to the artboard or to other objects.
That looks good. But we want another version of the poster design too. So we’ll just copy this artboard and make a few changes to the copy.
Click the “Leaf” artboard name in the Layers panel to select it. Choose Layer > Duplicate Artboard. Name the new artboard “River” and click OK.
Choose View > Fit Artboard On Screen to make sure you can see the whole River artboard.
Let’s use a different image for this version of the poster. Click the eye icon to the left of the image layer—Layer 0— on the River artboard to hide the leaf image. Choose File > Place Embedded. Select another image, like this Yosemite-river photo, and click Place. Choosing “Place Embedded” will add the river image at a size that fits inside the artboard. Then click the checkmark in the Options bar.
Next, we’ll change the color of the text to make it more readable. In Photoshop, you can sample color from an image to use. Select the Eyedropper tool. Click in this area of the leaf image over in the Leaf artboard to sample a brown color.
Now we’ll save the color in the Libraries panel so it’s easy to access in the future. Click the Libraries tab or Choose Window > Libraries to open the Libraries panel. Creative Cloud libraries let you capture and organize assets like colors, text styles, images, and more, that you can access across other desktop apps like Adobe Illustrator and Adobe InDesign and mobile apps like Adobe Capture CC, Adobe Comp CC, and Adobe Photoshop Mix.
Click the Add Foreground color button at the bottom of the Libraries panel to save the color you sampled with the Eyedropper tool into a library.
Select the text layer in the Layers panel and click the color in the Libraries panel to apply it to that text. No matter what document is open in Photoshop, that library will always be accessible to you when you’re logged in with your Adobe ID. To learn more about working with libraries, including sharing them, make sure to check out the Creative Cloud Libraries tutorials on adobe.com.
In PS, you can save or export or both. Saving saves all the artboards intact in one file along with the layers. Exporting allows you to save each individual artboard separately in a flattened format. We’ll save our project by choosing File > Save. Choose a destination and click Save.
Now let’s export the individual posters. Choose File > Export > Export As. In the Export As dialog box, you can choose the file type and set any settings necessary. Click Export All and choose where to export the file, then click Export.
We now have two different versions of our poster ready to go. Feel free to explore further by creating another version of the poster… You can take the skills you just learned here to create your next project in Photoshop. be creative and have some fun!