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  2. Text Effects

How to Create a Flat, Faded 3D Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

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Read Time: 4 mins
Final product imageFinal product imageFinal product image
What You'll Be Creating

This tutorial will show you how to use Photoshop's 3D tools and settings, as well as some filters and adjustment layers, to create a simple, flat, faded 3D text effect. Let's get started!

This text effect was inspired by the many Layer Styles available on GraphicRiver.

Tutorial Assets

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

1. How to Create the Background and Text Layers

Step 1

Create a new 1000 x 1000 px document. Click the Create new fill or adjustment layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel and choose Solid Color with the Color #530341.

Solid ColorSolid ColorSolid Color

Step 2

Create the text using the font Artica Light. Set the Size to 300 pt and the Tracking value to 100.

Create the TextCreate the TextCreate the Text

2. How to Create a 3D Layer

Step 1

With the text layer selected, go to 3D > New 3D Extrusion from Selected Layer.

To access the 3D mesh settings and properties, you’ll need to open two panels: the 3D panel and the Properties panel (both found under the Window menu).

The 3D panel has all the components of the 3D scene, and when you click the name of any of those, you’ll be able to access its settings in the Properties panel. So make sure to always select the tab of the element you want to modify in the 3D panel before you change its settings in the Properties panel.

3D Scene3D Scene3D Scene

Step 2

Select the Move Tool to access its 3D Modes to the right of the Options bar.

After you choose one of those, you can click-drag to perform changes on the selected element in the 3D panel.

Use the 3D Modes to change the Current View to an angle you like.

3D Move Tool Modes3D Move Tool Modes3D Move Tool Modes

3. How to Modify the 3D Material Settings

Step 1

Select the 3D mesh's Front Inflation, Front Bevel, Back Inflation, and Back Bevel Material tabs to modify their settings as below (the color values used are in RGB):

  • Diffuse: 233, 233, 233
  • Specular: 77, 77, 77
  • Shine: 20%
Material SettingsMaterial SettingsMaterial Settings

Step 2

Select the Extrusion Material tab, click the Diffuse folder icon in the Properties panel, and choose New Texture.

New TextureNew TextureNew Texture

Step 3

Set both the Width and Height values to 1000 px, and click OK.


Step 4

When the new texture file opens, click the Create new fill or adjustment layer icon and choose Gradient.

Create a gradient fill using the Solid Color layer's fill color, which is #530341 to the left and #e8e8e8 to the right, and check the Dither box.

Save and close the file.

Gradient FillGradient FillGradient Fill

Step 5

Click the Diffuse texture icon to choose Edit UV Properties.

Edit UV PropertiesEdit UV PropertiesEdit UV Properties

Step 6

Make sure that the Tile values are set to 1 and the Offset to 0.

Texture PropertiesTexture PropertiesTexture Properties

4. How to Adjust a 3D Scene's Lighting and Render Settings

Step 1

Select the Infinite Light 1 tab, set the Intensity to 90%, and uncheck the Shadow box.

Infinite LightInfinite LightInfinite Light

Step 2

Click the Environment tab, change the Intensity to 100%, and set the Ground Plane Shadows Opacity to 0%.


Step 3

Click the Scene tab, change the Surface's Style to Unlit Texture, and check both Remove Hidden boxes.

Scene SettingsScene SettingsScene Settings

Step 4

Change the camera angle to one you like, so that the text fades into the background.

Camera ViewCamera ViewCamera View

Step 5

Once you're done, go to 3D > Render 3D Layer to render the scene, which should take a few moments.

After that, right-click the 3D layer, and choose Convert to Smart Object.

Render and Convert to Smart ObjectRender and Convert to Smart ObjectRender and Convert to Smart Object

5. How to Adjust the Effect

Step 1

Go to Filter > Noise > Median, and set the Radius to 2, or any value you like.

Median FilterMedian FilterMedian Filter

Step 2

Add a Vibrance adjustment layer, and change the Vibrance value to 50.


Step 3

Add a Gradient fill layer, and create a Transparent to Fill Color gradient fill using the Color #212121 on both sides.

Change the Style to Radial and the Scale to 300, and check the Dither box.

After that, change the Gradient layer's Blend Mode to Soft Light.


Step 4

Create a new layer on top of all layers, name it Noise, and go to Edit > Fill.

Change the Contents to 50% Gray and click OK.

Gray FillGray FillGray Fill

Step 5

Convert the Noise layer to a Smart Object, and change its Blend Mode to Soft Light.

Noise LayerNoise LayerNoise Layer

Step 6

Go to Filter > Noise > Add Noise. Change the Amount to 2 and the Distribution to Gaussian, and check the Monochromatic box.

Noise FilterNoise FilterNoise Filter

Congratulations! You're Done

In this tutorial, we created a 3D text mesh, modified its material, and adjusted its scene settings to render a flat, faded piece of text.

Then, we used a couple of filters and adjustment layers to finish off the effect.

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

Final ResultFinal ResultFinal Result
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