Join Julieanne Kost for an in-depth discussion in this video Placing a pattern along a path, part of Photoshop CC 2018 Essential Training: Design.
- [Instructor] Photoshop makes it really easy to create your own custom pattern and then place that pattern along a path like you can see in this illustration. In order to do this we'll start by creating a new document. Under file I'll choose new, and then, under the photo area, I'll choose the default Photoshop size. In order to create the shape that we want, I'll select the custom shape tool and then use the downward pointing triangle in order to access the gear icon in order to load all of the shapes.
Because by default, only a selection of the shapes that Photoshop has to offer are loaded and I want to see them all. So I'll choose all. I don't need to append it because I don't have any custom shapes. I'll click OK, and here we have the chevron shape that we need to create our pattern. I'll select it, but before I draw with it, I want to make sure that I have my option here changed to pixels. Now we can click and drag out a shape, but I can also just click in the background.
However, if I add the shape to the background, it's going to combine it with white and I don't want to do that, so I'm going to create a new layer by clicking on the new layer icon. We can see that this new layer has transparency. So I'll click anywhere in my image area and I'm going to create a custom shape that's 200 by 200 pixels. I'll click OK, and we can see, there's our custom chevron shape. Now I need to select this with the marquee tool, so I'll tap the M key in order to select the rectangular marquee tool, and then click and drag out a marquee around the shape.
I'll choose edit, and then define pattern in order to define this shape as a pattern. I'll call it chevron and tap OK. Then I no longer need this shape. So I'll tap the delete key while it's still selected to delete it, and then choose deselect, or use Command + D. Now in order to place this shape or this pattern that we're going to create along a path, I need to draw the path. So I'll select the pen tool from the toolbar, click once on the left hand side of the image, hold down the shift key, and click on the right side of the image.
In order to see what we're doing a little bit more clearly, I can toggle back on the visibility of the background layer. I want to make sure that my foreground color is black. So, if it's not, just tap the D key in order to set your default foreground and background color. Then I'll choose edit, fill, and for contents I'll select pattern. I'll choose the custom pattern that we just created and enable the script and select place along path.
I'll choose OK, and in the place along path option, I'll leave the pattern scale to one, leave the spacing to zero, I'll make sure that I adjust the spacing to fit, otherwise it might not fit along the path. You can adjust the angle from path for fun. In this case I don't want to adjust the angle though, so I'll set it back to zero. The distance from path is another unique slider, but again, I'm going to set it back to zero for this instance.
I want to set the scale progression to 90%. I'll uncheck the skip symbol rotation and leave the color and brightness randomness to zero. When I click OK Photoshop creates that pattern along the path. I no longer need the path so I'll access the paths panel. If the paths panel isn't showing you can use the window menu and then select paths. We have a work path that we created.
Because it's selected I can just tap the delete key once. That deletes the first anchor point in the path. There's still an anchor point here though so I'll tap the delete key again. I'll return back to my layers panel and I'm going to make a duplicate of this layer by using the keyboard shortcut Command + J. In order to use the move tool I'll tap the V key. I'll make sure that auto select layer is toggled off and click and drag to reposition it. I want to give it a little bit of space because I'm going to make another duplicate.
Again using Command + J. This time I'll transform the duplicate. I'll use Command + T or edit free transform, and then flip it horizontally and scoot it up to reposition it and tap return or enter. Once it's in position, if I need to I can use the arrow keys in order to nudge it. Now, in order to create that rainbow effect across all three of these layers, I'll put all three of the layers into a single group.
On the layers panel, the first layer is selected on top. I'll hold down the shift key to select all three, then I'll drag them down to the new group icon, and I'll add a color gradient fill layer. I'll choose layer, new fill layer, and then gradient. I'm going to want to clip this to the chevrons so I'll check use previous layer to create clipping mask. I'll click OK. Then I'll use the downward pointing triangle in order to select this default rainbow gradient, and then change the angle to the left so that we see more of the colors.
In order to apply that I'll click OK and then moving down to the background layer, I'll do a quick edit, fill. This time for my contents I'll use black and click OK in order to have those chevrons just stand out a little bit more from the background. If I need to reposition them I'll select the group and then just drag them up and over to the right to center them in the image area. So there you go, a great way to create patterns along paths in Photoshop.
Photoshop CC boasts tools and features for making tonal and color adjustments, applying effects and treatments to type and graphics, and distorting, filtering, and layering elements—all while maintaining the highest-quality output. In this course, Julieanne demonstrates how to efficiently perform common design tasks, including editing images, drawing shapes, and working with type and fonts. Along the way, she shares the secrets of nondestructive editing using Smart Objects, and helps you master features such as layers, filters, blending modes, typography, custom brushes, vector masks, and much more—increasing your productivity every step of the way.
- Working with Smart Objects
- Linked vs. embedded Smart Objects
- Creative transformations and warping
- Essential filters for designers
- Emulating traditional drawing techniques
- Working with shape and fill layers
- Pen tool basics
- Applying layer effects and styles
- Type essentials
- Creative brush techniques
- Working with libraries and artboards
- Exporting files and sharing images