Paint a thou­sand words

Dis­cover how to com­bine por­trait pho­to­graphs with flow­ing text for a stun­ning spe­cial ef­fect – just fol­low James Pater­son’s ex­pert tu­to­rial

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They say a pic­ture paints a thou­sand words – com­bine both in Pho­to­shop

This stylish type ef­fect was re­cently seen on the fan­tas­tic posters for the film Tinker,Tai­lor, Sol­dier,Spy. It may look com­pli­cated, but it prob­a­bly takes as long to type the stream of num­bers (or paste some in from an­other source) as it does to com­bine the text with the por­trait.

The key to suc­cess is the use of a Clip­ping Mask. Clip one layer to the layer be­low it and the only parts that show through are those that are di­rectly above. This is hugely use­ful here, as we can make a layer filled with type, then sim­ply clip our im­age to it for an in­stant spe­cial ef­fect.

We’ve pro­vided an im­age for you to use, but why not try shoot­ing your own? The text will show in any light ar­eas, so for the best re­sults pho­to­graph people or ob­jects against a dark back­ground. This way the text ef­fect will be con­fined to the shape of the sub­ject.

This is great for an al­ter­nate wed­ding photo – use the words of a poem or song that the cou­ple used as part of their big day.

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