Photoshop & Illustrator Tutorial: Distorted Lines Effect

Photoshop & Illustrator Tutorial: Distorted Lines Effect

October 7, 2019 13 By Peter Engel


Hello
everyone this is Chris from Spoon Graphics back with a quick video tutorial. One of the
latest free downloads I shared over on my Spoon Graphics website is a set of Abstract
Stripes Backgrounds, featuring a series of distorted lines in a variety of wavy layouts. One of the commenters on the post was curious
to know how they were made, so I figured I’d use the topic for this week’s video tutorial. Follow along with this quick and easy process
using Illustrator and Photoshop to produce these abstract creations yourself, which can
then be used to make artistic posters or to add visually backgrounds to your design work. Start off in Adobe Illustrator. Create a new
document of any size. I’m just using the preset A4 layout in landscape. Clear out the default white stroke, leaving
just a black fill, then grab the Rectangle tool. Starting from the top left corner of the artboard,
drag a rectangle across to the other side. One of the things you can experiment with
is using different sized stripes, or make a blend from a thick to thin rectangle. Switch back to the Selection tool, then hold
the ALT and Shift keys while dragging a duplicate downwards. Leave a bit of space between them.
The amount of space you leave is another factor you can experiment with to achieve different
results each time. Repeatedly press the CMD+D, or CTRL+D shortcut
on Windows for Transform Again, until you have filled the artboard with a series of
evenly spaced stripes. Draw a selection around all the shapes and
hit CMD+C to Copy, then switch over to Adobe Photoshop. Create a new Photoshop document, which will
default to the pixel size of the vector artwork in the clipboard. Chances are it will be quite a small document,
so use the Crop tool to enlarge it, holding Shift to constrain the proportions. Press
CMD+V and paste the stripes as Pixels. Scale the up to fill the canvas before hitting Enter. The main effect is produced using the Liquify
tool under the Filter menu. Zoom out so you can see all of the stripes,
then click and move the liquify tool around to distort the lines into wavy shapes. You can also use the Twirl tool to really
distort the stripes. As they’re rotated they form completely new concentric shapes. You can change the size of the effect tool
as you would a Photoshop Brush, using the square bracket keys to increase or decrease
the size. Switch between the different tools and go
mad bending, warping and shifting things around until you’re happy with the overall effect. In some areas the pixel based distortion has
resulted in blurry edges. To fix this, and to make the backgrounds more versatile as
vector graphics, we’ll take them back over to Adobe Illustrator. Press CMD+A to Select All, then Copy the artwork. Back in Illustrator, delete the straight lines
and paste in the distorted graphic. Open up the Image Trace window to convert
the raster art into vector graphics. Clicking the Ignore White option in the Advanced settings
will convert just the black lines, without the background. To permanently apply the vectorisation, go
to Object>Expand to convert the object into a series of individual shapes. The entire effect is now made of crisp outlines
which can be scaled to any size, making it suitable for all kinds of design material.
You can also easily change the colour by applying a different fill . Experiment with the effect by using thicker
lines, thinner lines, more warping and less warping to achieve different results each
time. You could also use different coloured stripes to create a real psychedelic design! If that sounds like too much hard work feel
free to download my free set of abstract stripes backgrounds from Spoon Graphics. While you’re
there you can join my mailing list to keep up with all my content, and grab my free design
resources bundle. As always thank you very much for watching,
and I’ll see you in the next one!