In this post, originally published on the Fotolia blog, I take a look at the trend toward adding text to images;
Its very fashionable to add text to images and Photoshop has some tools that make this relatively easy. Adding logos however has a few ‘secrets’ to getting it the way you want it, lets jump into Photoshop and see how its all done;
Adding text, maybe your contact details, a quote or saying is easy in Photoshop and there’s a few tweaks that can make it a lot easier too.
To add text simply click the Text Tool, click on the image and start typing.
What you might find though is that your text goes off of the screen as there is no carriage return when using this technique.
To push the text to a new line you’ll need to decide where the carriage returns should be and add them manually.
To add text that’s constrained to an area use the Text tool again, but this time click and drag a box out.
Once you release the mouse a box remains with a flashing text cursor. Typing here constrains the text and will wrap around to the shape.
Spreading Out The Lines of Text
The Character Panel has a lot of ways to tweak your text once you’ve typed it. Often times you’ll want to increase the space between the lines of text. To do this open the Character Panel. (If you can’t see it on screen, choose Window > Character from the main menu.)
Using the leading dialogue box we can increase the space between each line. This works better than writing each line separately as we can be sure that all the lines are aligned and spaced equally.
Quick Formatting Text
Wanted all your text in capital letters and forgot to press Caps Lock? Don’t worry, there’s no need to retype the text. At the bottom of the character panel are some handy buttons, the third one along puts your text into caps, you can see I’ve done that already for my example text.
Adding Colour Bars Behind The Text
To really make your text stand out its good to have a coloured background to the text. Select the layer below your text then click the Rectangle Shape tool.
Click and drag out a rectangle that covers the first line of text (it’ll be on a new layer);
Don’t draw anymore. Instead choose the move tool and then press Alt key and click and drag down the box you just made. You’ll get a double arrow to indicate you’re making a copy of the layer.
Do this again until you have enough bars for your lines of text. Don’t worry about getting them equally apart at the moment, we’ll get Photoshop to do that.
Space Out The Bars
For this technique the top and bottom bars need to be properly aligned. If you’re familiar with selections and the Align part of the Move tool you may prefer to work that way. Here though I’m keeping it simple and working by eye.
With the bars made, and the top and bottom bars positioned correctly I can select the top bar in the Layers Panel and the Shift and click the bottom bottom bar. This selects them all.
Select the Move tool and then from the contextual menu click the button to Distribute Vertical Centers.
Because the text is equally separated the bars and text should line up perfectly!
Remember you have the Layer effects at your disposal to spruce up your text and bars should you wish. The choices are endless!
Pick colours from the image for the text and / or bars.
Swap bars for solid blocks or gradients.
Be wary of ‘handwritten’ fonts, they can be difficult to read.
If you quote someone, make sure you attribute it to them.
Adding Your ‘I Thought It Was Transparent’ Logo
‘I saved my logo with the background turned off but when I put it on another image the background is back, what can I do?’
When you create your logo make sure that the background is transparent before saving. You can do this by simply clicking the eye next to it’s layer.
Now, rather than Save or Save As go to File > Save For Web. In the dialogue box that appears change the file type from jpg to PNG.
And that’s all there is to it! Now you can add your logo to your images for that extra bit of branding with a nice professional touch.
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