Election 2012 Poster Design Tutorial – Photoshop Tutorial

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poster layer

It’s election year once again folks, so here’s a tutorial if you’re the type to strongly campaign for the political party of your choice. In this tutorial, I will teach you how to design a constructivist, election type poster. It should be easy if you just go about it step by step.

Step #1

First up, you must prepare your images. Whoever your candidate is, you will want to get a clear photograph with a nice blank background. Then you will want to lift ONLY the face and body of the candidate so that we can easily paste it into our poster layer. Make sure that you confirm that they have a transparent background by removing the visibility of the background to reveal the gray and white squares that represent a transparent background.

poster layer

Step #2

Next, we create our poster document. Set the dimensions as needed by your printer or preferred poster printing vendor. Make sure you use a value of 300ppi or higher for the resolution.

poster document

Step #3

Next, copy and then paste your candidate images into our document. Once there, first adjust the brightness and contrast of the image. Just go to Image -> Adjustments -> Brightness/Contrast and adjust the values a bit, making things a bit bright.

candidate images into our document

Step #4

Now, we shall use some filters. To make our first candidate look more like a poster image, we go to Filter -> Artistic -> Poster edges. Use 10 for edge thickness, 0 for edge intensity and 1 for posterization. You may of course adjust this depending on how “posterized” you want your candidate.

image posterization

Step #5

Next, set your foreground color to BLACK and your background color to WHITE. Then, with our candidate selected, go to Filter -> Sketch -> Halftone Pattern. Use a size value of 1, contrast of 2, and a Pattern type dot.

candidate selected go to Filter

Step #6

Finally, go to Image -> Adjustments -> Photo filter, and apply a color to our image, depending on what party he or she is in.

Image -> Adjustments -> Photo filter

Step #7

Now do the whole process again for our other candidate. Apply the brightness/contrast adjustment, the poster edges filter, halftone pattern filter and the final color photo filter.

brightness contrast adjustment

Step #8

Next, we use the same filters and adjustments again for the American Flag and the Apache Helicopter.

same filters and adjustments

Step #9

Finally, we prepare a silhouette of a crowd to represent voters. It was just a matter of using the magic wand tool on a free image from the Internet to get the graphic, Download Large Photo.

crowd to represent voters

Step #10

Now we have all the crucial elements for our poster. You can now assemble them in a nice block colored layout like so just like a constructivist poster.

crucial elements for our poster

Step #11

Afterwards, we use the type tool to create write their names via the text tool. A white color is better for now.

type tool to create write

Step #12

Now, we create a new layer and hide the rest of our poster first. Using some grunge brushes and shapes from Photoshop we created this grungy type background.

grunge brushes and shapes

Step #13

We add this just on top of the helicopter and flag layers. Then change its blend mode to saturate and its opacity to around 60%. Then we unhide everything again to get this special effect.

helicopter and flag layers

Step #14

Finally, Create a new layer on top of all the other layers. Fill this with white, BUT change the fill value to 0%. Then go to the blending options and apply an inner glow. Change the values as directed below:

  1. Blend Mode: Multiply
  2. Color: Black
  3. Technique: Precise
  4. Size: 120px

blending options and apply an inner glow

Step #15

Once you have done this, you will now have finished our Constructivist poster. For a more complete set of campaign materials, you can also apply these steps in designing postcards you can hand out to complement your poster.

Constructivist poster

Author Bio

Kate Manhaven is a graphic artist who works with PrintPlace.com, an online printing company that offers business cards, postcard printing and poster printing services. She spends her free time either wakeboarding or snowboarding whenever the season permits.

  1. Posted by John

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