1. Design & Illustration
  2. Text Effects

How to Create a 3D Ornament Inspired Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

This tutorial will show you how to use Photoshop's 3D tools and settings, along with textures, patterns, brushes, filters, and layer styles, to create a sparkling, fun, Christmas ornament inspired 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 a Pattern File

Step 1

Create a new 600 x 600 px document, and double-click the Background layer to convert it into a normal layer.

Create the Main Layer

Step 2

Double-click the layer again to apply a Pattern Overlay effect with these settings:

  • Pattern: Back To School Pattern #6
  • Scale: 25%
Pattern Overlay

Step 3

Place the Glitter texture 4 image on top of the pattern layer, resize it to fit the document's height, and then change its layer's Blend Mode to Hard Light.

Save this file with the name Stripes, and then close it.

Add a Texture

2. How to Create Text

Step 1

Create a new 1000 x 667 px document, and set the Resolution value to 300.

Create a New Document

Step 2

Create the text using the font Intro, and set the Size to 70 pt.

Create the Text

Step 3

Rename the text layer to Text, duplicate it, and rename the copy to Stroke.

Rename the Layers

3. How to Create a Stroke Shape Layer

Step 1

Right-click the Stroke layer and choose Convert to Shape.

Convert to Shape

Step 2

Pick the Direct Selection Tool (A), and then, in the Options bar, change the Fill to None, the Stroke Color to Black, and its Size to 2. Then click the Set shape stroke type icon, and change the Align to Outside.

Stroke Settings

4. How to Create 3D Layers

Step 1

Select the Text layer, and go to 3D > New 3D Extrusion from Selected Layer.

Then, select the Stroke layer, and go to 3D > New 3D Extrusion from Selected Path.

Create the 3D Layers

Step 2

Select both 3D layers you have, and go to 3D > Merge 3D Layers.

Merge 3D Layers

5. How to Work With the 3D Scene

Step 1

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.

The 3D Panels

Step 2

If you select the Move Tool, you’ll find a set of 3D Modes for it to the right of the Options bar.

When you choose one of those, you can then click and drag to perform changes (on the selected element in the 3D panel).

Use those modes to change the Current View into an angle you like.

Move Tool Modes

Step 3

Click the eye icon next to the Stroke mesh tab in the 3D panel to hide it.

Hide the Stroke Mesh

6. How to Modify the Text Mesh Settings

Step 1

Select the Text mesh tab in the 3D panel, and then, in the Properties panel, change the Extrusion Depth to 50.

Extrusion Depth

Step 2

Click the Cap icon at the top of the Properties panel, and then change the Bevel Width to 5 and its Contour to Cone.

Then change the Inflate Angle to 50, and its Strength to 15.

Cap Settings

7. How to Create a Front Inflation Material

Step 1

Select the text mesh's Front Inflation Material tab, and then click the Diffuse folder icon, choose Load Texture, and open the Stripes file you created at the beginning of this tutorial.

Load the Pattern File

Step 2

Click the Diffuse texture icon, and choose Edit UV Properties.

Edit UV Properties

Step 3

Change the Tile and Offset values to get a result you like.

UV Values

Step 4

Change the rest of the material settings as below:

  • Specular: 219, 212, 212
  • Shine: 35
  • Refraction: 1.3
Material Settings

Step 5

Click the Bump folder icon, and select the Stripes file from the menu.

Load the Bump Texture

Step 6

Change the Bump value to 25.

Bump Value

8. How to Save and Re-Apply a 3D Material

Step 1

With the Front Inflation Material tab still active, click the Material Picker box, and then click the pop-up menu icon, and choose New Material.

New Material

Step 2

Type in a name for the material, and click OK.

Name the Material

Step 3

Select the Front and Back Bevel, as well as the Back Inflation Material tabs.

Open the Material Picker, scroll down to the material icon you've just saved, and click it to apply it to the selected materials.

Apply the Material

Step 4

The Extrusion Material will be hidden beneath the Stroke, but just in case it shows somehow, we'll use these material settings:

  • Specular: 219, 212, 212
  • Shine: 35
  • Reflection: 30
  • Roughness: 20
  • Refraction: 1.3
Stroke Material Settings

9. How to Modify the Stroke Mesh Settings

Step 1

Make the Stroke Mesh visible again by clicking the empty box next to its tab, and change its Extrusion Depth to 50.

Extrusion Depth

Step 2

For the Cap settings, set the Sides to Front and Back, and then change the Bevel Width to 3 and the Contour to Half Round.

Cap Settings

Step 3

Select all the Stroke Material tabs, click the Diffuse texture icon, and choose Remove Texture.

Remove Texture

Step 4

Change the rest of the settings as below:

  • Diffuse: 68, 44, 6
  • Specular: 230, 220, 186
  • Shine: 85
  • Reflection: 75
  • Refraction: 1.35
Stroke Material Settings

10. How to Split a 3D Mesh

Step 1

Select the Text mesh tab, and then go to 3D > Split 3D Extrusion. This will create a new group that has the letters of the text split into separate 3D meshes.

Split 3D Extrusion

Step 2

Split the Stroke mesh as well.

Split 3D Extrusion

11. How to Move 3D Meshes

Step 1

What you'll need to do next is select each text mesh tab, along with its corresponding stroke mesh tab, and move them around.

To do so, after selecting the meshes, pick the Move Tool, and use the 3D Axis to move the Text and Stroke meshes in the scene.

The arrows at the ends of the axis move the mesh, the part below them is used for rotation, and the cubes are used for scaling. The cube in the center is used to scale the object uniformly. All you need to do is click and drag the part you want.

Move the Meshes

Step 2

Make sure to change the Current View as you're working with the meshes, and get an angle you like for the final scene.

Move the Camera View

12. How to Adjust a 3D Scene's Lighting

Step 1

Select the Infinite Light tab, and then change the Intensity to 60% and the Shadow Softness to 30%.

Infinite Light Settings

Step 2

Use the Move Tool to move the light, or click the Coordinates icon at the top of the Properties panel to enter numerical values.

Move the Infinite Light

Step 3

Select the Environment tab, click the IBL texture icon, choose Replace Texture, and open the Decorations image.

Replace the IBL Texture

Step 4

Change the IBL light's Intensity to 50% and the Ground Plane Shadows Opacity to 0%.

Environment Light Settings

Step 5

Use the Move Tool to move the texture around until you like the lighting.

Move the IBL Light

13. How to Render a 3D Scene and Add a Background

Step 1

Once you're done modifying the 3D scene, go to 3D > Render to render it. The rendering might take a while, but you can stop it any time by pressing the Esc key.

When the rendering is finished, right-click the 3D layer, and choose Convert to Smart Object.

Render and Convert to Smart Object

Step 2

Place the Bokeh lights 05 image on top of the Background layer, and go to Edit > Transform > Rotate 90° Clockwise.

Then, resize the texture as needed, and rename its layer to Bokeh.

Add the Bokeh Texture

Step 3

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

Add a Levels Adjustment Layer

Step 4

Clip the Levels layer to the 3D layer, and then change the Highlights value to 16 and the Shadows to 220.

Levels Settings

14. How to Create and Style Simple Strings

Step 1

Create a new layer on top of the Bokeh layer, name it Strings, and then pick the Brush Tool. Use a hard round 3 px tip to create a straight line behind each letter you have.

Create the Lines

Double-click the Strings layer to apply the following layer style:

Step 2

Add a Bevel and Emboss with these settings:

  • Size: 7
  • Angle: 30
  • Altitude: 30
  • Gloss Contour: Cone
  • Check the Anti-aliased box
  • Highlight Mode: Linear Light
    • Opacity: 50%
  • Shadow Mode: Linear Burn
    • Opacity: 50%
Bevel and Emboss

Step 3

Add a Contour with these settings:

  • Contour: Ring - Double
  • Check the Anti-aliased box.

Step 4

Add a Texture with these settings:

  • Pattern: Metal Landscape
  • Scale: 25%

Step 5

Add a Color Overlay with these settings:

  • Color: #917149
Color Overlay

This will style the strings.

Styled Strings

15. How to Add Light Spots

Step 1

Create a new layer on top of all layers, name it Light, and change its Blend Mode to Vivid Light.

Then, set the Foreground Color to #a6a497, pick the Brush Tool, and use a soft round brush, with any Size you prefer, to add some light spots all over the text.

Add the Light Spots

Step 2

Command-click the 3D layer's thumbnail to create a selection.

Create a Selection

Step 3

Click the Add layer mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to mask the selection.

Mask the Selection

16. How to Adjust the Coloring and Add Noise

Step 1

Add a Gradient Map layer on top of all layers.

Check the Dither box, and then create the gradient fill using the colors #48406e to the left, #76747e in the middle, and #fbc690 to the right.

Change the Gradient Map layer's Blend Mode to Soft Light and its Opacity to 50%.

Add a Gradient Map

Step 2

Set the Foreground and Background Colors back to Black and White, and then select the 3D layer.

Go to Filter > Noise > Add Noise, choose the Gaussian Distribution, and uncheck the Monochromatic box.

Zoom in until you can see the noise in the background Bokeh texture, and change the Amount value until the text's noise matches the background's.

Add Noise

Congratulations! You're Done

In this tutorial, we used a pattern and a texture to create the main stripes fill for the 3D effect.

Then, we created the text and the stroke, converted them to 3D layers, and worked on the mesh settings and materials.

After that, we adjusted the lighting, rendered the scene, and added the background and the strings. Finally, we used adjustment layers, brushes, and filters to finish off the effect.

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

Final Result
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