How To Create a Painted Watercolor Effect in Photoshop (+ FREE PS Action)

How To Create a Painted Watercolor Effect in Photoshop (+ FREE PS Action)

August 18, 2019 7 By Peter Engel


Hello everyone this is Chris from Spoon Graphics
back again with another video tutorial. Today we’re going to take a look at how to create
a realistic watercolour painting effect in Photoshop, using a bunch of filters to replicate
the kind of mottled look that is produced by watercolour paints. This effect works particularly well with landscapes,
which are popular subjects for real life watercolour paintings too. Find yourself a base photograph
and open it up in Adobe Photoshop. Duplicate the background layer twice by pressing
the shortcut CMD+J. Then turn off the visibility of the top layer. Select the first background copy and go to
Filter>Filter Gallery. Select the Dry Brush option from under the Artistic category then
configure the settings to 10 for the brush size, 10 for the brush detail and 1 for the
texture. Hit OK then rename this layer to Brush Marks. Turn on the visibility of the second layer,
then go to Filter>Filter Gallery again. This time select the Cutout effect. Configure
the settings to 5 as the number of levels, 4 as the Edge Simplicity and 1 for the Edge
Fidelity. Change the blending mode for this layer to
Pin Light. Then rename it to Edge Bleed. Select the Brush Marks layer and duplicate
it by dragging it over the New Layer icon, or using the shortcut CMD+J. Move it to the
top of the layer stack then give it the name Smart Blur. With the layer selected, go to Filter>Blur
>Smart Blur. Use 5 for the Radius, 100 for the Threshold and make sure the Quality is
set to High. Hit OK, then change this layer to the Screen
blending mode and reduce the opacity to around 60%. Make a new copy of the original background
layer, move it to the top of the stack then give it the name Sketch Lines. Head to Filter>Filter Gallery, then under
the Stylize folder select the Glowing Edges option. Change the settings to 1 for the Edge
Width, 20 for the Edge Brightness and 15 for the Smoothness. Use the shortcut CMD+Shift+U to desaturate
this layer, then CMD+I to invert it. Change this layer to Multiply to render the
white areas transparent, then reduce the opacity to around 60%. Press CMD+A to Select All, then CMD+Shift+C
to Copy Merged. Paste this selection onto a new layer at the top of the layer stack. Next, go to Filter>Filter Gallery, then
under the Texture category select Texturizer. Change the dropdown to Sandstone, then enter
100% Scaling and 2 for the relief. Reduce the opacity of this layer to around
75% and name it Paper Texture. All that’s left is to add a Vibrance Adjustment
Layer, then tweak the settings so the vibrance is +100 and the Saturation is -15 to bring
out the colours of the image. So that finishes off the watercolour effect
in Adobe Photoshop. The mix of filters is what really mades this
effect look so realistic by reducing the detail and blending the colours to look like painted
brush strokes. If you want to save some time, I actually
have this effect available as a ready made Action, alongside other artistic effects that
turn your photos into painted, inked and sketched works of art.
The link to the download page is down in the description. If you enjoyed my video tutorial I’d really
appreciate a thumbs up to help spread the word, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube
to be the first to see my future videos before they’re published on my website. As always thanks for watching, and I’ll catch
you all later.