Muntz’s Texture Mask Trick

I mentioned this masking method to a friend on Flickr the other day. Since Carrie mentioned it in her description of her design, I’ve decided to write it out. It’s pretty simply, but it works well for me.

It requires a good set of textures. I’m using these from Lost & Taken for the tutorial.

Here is my original art. The text layers are separate from the background texture.

Open up one of the textures and go to Select > Color Range.

You can click anywhere on the thumbnail, or on the image itself. Try to choose a nice balance even balance of black and white. You can add to or subtract from the selection by holding shift and alt (respectively) while selecting colors. The fuzziness allows you to select partial pixels for a more natural feel. Like typical masking, white reveals and black hides.

Once you’re happy with your balance, click OK and you’ll see the selection on your image. I’ll force the selection into a mask using a solid color layer. It makes it easier for me to move the mask between files.

Now we just have to move the layer to our original document. That’s just a click and drag.

I resized  and repositioned a bit to get as much of our cool mask as possible.

Now, in the Layers panel, drag the mask from the Color Layer to the Type Layer.

That’s it. Pretty simple, right?

Do you already do this? How does your process differ?


~ by mitchbolton on July 23, 2010.

4 Responses to “Muntz’s Texture Mask Trick”

  1. Sometimes add a mask to my text, then I do a color range, click back onto the mask and hit it with a brush. Gives more control over where the texture is.

  2. Thanks, Mitch, for putting this together. My process is a bit different. I typically:
    * Convert my texture to bw
    * Make contrast/brightness adjustments
    * Set to be a clipping mask of whatever I want to texturize
    * Create vector mask and paint (with different brushes) to show/hide more/less texture

  3. I usually just put a layer mask on my text and use brushes to distress. Multiple brushes, different sizes. I also usually clip a texture inside of the text to help grunge it up a bit.

    I like this idea though… I’ll have to give it a go sometime. 🙂

  4. Up until this trick, I was just using brushes, but often times they didn’t offer the variety that I wanted/needed (found myself with repetitive texture areas). This is a great effect for something that covers a lot of the page. Thanks again for sharing it!

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