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  2. Text Effects
Design

How to Create a Retro Chrome Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

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Difficulty:BeginnerLength:ShortLanguages:
This post is part of a series called Grease Movie Week.
How to Create a Summer Lovin' Digital Painting With Natural Adobe Photoshop Brushes
Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

Chrome text effects are used quite a lot in different design projects. This tutorial will show you how to use a couple of layer styles and texture images to create a very easy, 1950s-inspired, chrome text effect. Let's get started!

Tutorial Assets

The following assets were used during the production of this tutorial:

1. Create the Background

Step 1

Create a new 600 x 350 px document. Place (File > Place Embedded) the Vintage retro car interior image on top of the Background layer, and resize it as needed.

Place the Background Image

Step 2

Go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur, and set the Radius to 10.

Apply Gaussian Blur

Step 3

Click the Create new fill or adjustment layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel and choose Hue/Saturation.

Add a Hue Saturation Adjustment Layer

Step 4

Click the Clip to layer icon, and change the Saturation value to -20.

Hue Saturation Settings

2. Create the Text Layers

Step 1

Create the text using the font Dymaxion Script. The Color is #a4a4a4 and the Size is 150 pt.

Create the Text

Step 2

Duplicate the text layer, change the copy's Fill value to 0, and duplicate the copy layer.

Duplicate Layers

3. Style the Original Text Layer

Double-click the original text layer to apply the following layer style:

Step 1

Add a Bevel and Emboss with these settings:

  • Technique: Chisel Hard
  • Size: 7
  • Gloss Contour: Cone
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
  • Highlight Mode: Vivid Light
  • Opacity: 50%
  • Shadow Mode - Opacity: 50%
Bevel and Embos

Step 2

Add a Contour with these settings:

  • Contour: Cone - Inverted
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
Contour

Step 3

Add a Drop Shadow with these settings:

  • Opacity: 90%
  • Distance: 3
  • Size: 7
Drop Shadow

This will style the first text layer.

Styled Text Layer 1

4. Style the First Copy Text Layer

Double-click the first copy text layer to apply the following layer style:

Step 1

Add a Bevel and Emboss with these settings:

  • Size: 7
  • Gloss Contour: Rounded Steps
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
  • Highlight Mode: Vivid Light
  • Opacity: 50%
  • Shadow Mode - Opacity: 20%
Bevel and Emboss

Step 2

Add a Contour with these settings:

  • Contour: Cove - Deep
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
Contour

This will style the second text layer.

Styled Text Layer 2

5. Style the Second Copy Text Layer

Double-click the second copy text layer to apply the following layer style:

Step 1

Add a Bevel and Emboss with these settings:

  • Size: 7
  • Gloss Contour: Ring - Double
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
  • Highlight Mode: Vivid Light
  • Opacity: 70%
  • Shadow Mode - Opacity: 20%
Bevel and Emboss

Step 2

Add a Contour with these settings:

  • Contour: Cone
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
Contour

Step 3

Add a Drop Shadow with these settings:

  • Opacity: 70%
  • Distance: 3
  • Size: 7
Drop Shadow

This will style the last text layer, adding more details and finishing off the chrome-like effect.

Styled Text Layer 3

6. Add the Text Texture

Step 1

Add the Luxury vintage car side image on top of all layers and rename its layer to Text Texture. Resize it as needed, and then Command-click a text layer's thumbnail to create a selection.

Add the Text Texture

Step 2

Click the Add layer mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to remove the parts of the texture outside the text selection.

If you want to move the texture around, you can click the link icon between the layer and mask thumbnails to remove it, and then click the layer's thumbnail, and move the texture inside the mask.

Add a Layer Mask

Step 3

Change the Text Texture layer's Blend Mode to Color Burn and its Opacity to 30%.

You can pick the Move Tool to move the texture until you like the result you get.

The texture will add some nice coloring and detailing to the effect, and make it look more realistic.

Adjust the Texture Settings

7. Adjust the Coloring of the Final Result

Step 1

Click the Create new fill or adjustment layer icon and choose Gradient Map.

Add a Gradient Map Adjustment Layer

Step 2

Choose the Violet, Green, Orange gradient fill and check the Dither box.

Change the adjustment layer's Blend Mode to Color and its Opacity to 15%.

Adjsutment Layer Settings

This will add a more vintage-like feeling to the final result.

Adjusted Coloring

Congratulations! You're Done

In this tutorial, we used a stock image to create a simple background for our text effect. Then we created a couple of text layers and styled them to achieve the chrome-like effect.

After that, we used another stock image to add some subtle texturing and detailing to the chrome text. Finally, we added a gradient map adjustment layer to create a more vintage-like coloring for the final result.

Please feel free to leave your comments, suggestions, and outcomes below.

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