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Create a Colorful Cake Illustration in Photoshop

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Read Time: 8 min

Photoshop is a very powerful illustration tool and today we will make a wonderful, tasty, and colorful cake without having to do the dishes afterwards. I had based this tutorial on the cake from my set of icons that I created earlier and which enjoys great popularity. This illustration was created using Photoshop shapes and a bit of painting. If you don’t know how to work with Pen Tool you can first get acquainted with this lesson that fully explains all the functions of this tool. Let’s get started!

Tutorial Assets

The following materials were used during the production of this tutorial.

Step 1

Create 1000x1000px document in Photoshop (Cmd/Ctrl + N).

Step 2

I made a quick sketch in Photoshop and choose the color palette. Colors we will use: 1 - #f1d4af, 2 - #f7f1dc, 3 - #805841, 4 - #462513, 5 - #ff96af, 6 - #f55480, 7 - #a5c5c0, 8 - #c5e0dc.

Set sketch layer opacity to 10%, blending mode to Multiply, put it above all other layers and lock it.

Step 3

Create an ellipse on the top of the cake using Ellipse Tool (U) and color #2.

Duplicate the ellipse to the bottom of the cake, scale it and set color #3.

Now make sure the path of the bottom ellipse is chosen (the Vector mask should be chosen on the layer), pick the Pen Tool (P) and click Add to shape area icon (+) on Pen Tool menu palette. Then create a path as shown below.

Step 4

Create a new shape as shown below with color #1 and create a clipping mask (hold alt and click between the layers or choose Create Clipping Mask from layer menu).

Duplicate this shape, then choose Direct Selection Tool (A), select 3 bottom anchor points and lift them up as shown below. Fill this shape with color #5.

Step 5

Using the Pen Tool (P), create top cream, color #5.

Step 6

Now create the cake stand.

Duplicate last ellipse and scale it.

Using the Pen Tool (P), add to the shape as shown below.

Step 7

Using Pen Tool (P) ,create frill on the top of the cake, color #2. Set this layer as a clipping mask.

Now create the holes in the frill layer. Click Subtract from shape area icon on Pen Tool menu palette and create shapes of holes.

Step 8

Using a hard brush with 9px size and color #6, draw candies on new layer. And more candies on the top with color #5

Step 9

Using the same brush and color #3 paint chocolate stains on new layer as shown below.

And some more chocolate on the bottom.

Step 10

We are now finished creating the base shapes, you can make the sketch layer invisible. Using a large soft-edge brush with color #4 paint shadows on the sides of cake, set layer opacity to 25% and blending mode to Multiply.

Now paint on the middle of the cake with color #2 to create highlight. Set layer opacity to 20% and blending mode to Overlay.

Add a shadow under the frill and candies, using small hard brush with color #4 and 20% opacity, set layers blending mode to Multiply.

And more shadows under chocolate stains.

Step 11

Lets add a volume to the candies. Draw the highlights and shadows as shown below.

Now draw the highlights and shadows on chocolate drops.

Don't forget top candies. Add highlights and draw shadows under candies layer and set shadows layer blending mode to Multiply.

Step 12

Duplicate the top ellipse, and lift it 2px up. Fill the bottom ellipse with light yellow #fffbef.

Step 13

Using large soft-edge brush with color #5 paint shadows on the top cream of cake, set layer opacity to 30% and blending mode to Multiply.

Add highlights on layer with 10% opacity and Overlay blending mode.

More highlights on cream.

Step 12

Now create shadows from the cream. Hold Cmd/Ctrl and click on top shape layer to create a selection. Make new layer and add mask on it. On this layer draw ellipse shape with color #3 as shown below.

Set layer opacity to 10% and blending mode to Multiply.

Duplicate this layer, scale it and set opacity to 30%.

Step 13

Using hard brush and color #2 draw stripes above the cream. Set layer blending mode to Soft Light.

Step 14

Select top ellipse of cake stand, duplicate it and lift 2px up, fill bottom ellipse with lighten color.

Step 15

Hold Cmd/Ctrl and click on cake stand top ellipse layer to create selection, make new layer and create mask on it. Draw shadow ellipse with color #3 and set layer opacity to 10% and blending mode to Multiply.

Duplicate shadow ellipse twice, scale them and set first ellipse layer opacity to 20%, and second ellipse layer to 30%.

Create new ellipse with color #8 above the cake stand top and set layer style by double-click on layer to Inner Shadow as shown below.

Step 16

Using large soft brush with color #7 paint shadows on cake stand as shown below, set layer opacity to 20% and blending mode to Multiply.

Now on new layer paint highlights and set layer blending mode to Overlay.

More highlights with white, layer opacity 15%, blending mode Overlay.

More shadows with color #7, layer opacity 15%, blending mode Multiply.

Duplicate cake stand side shape and lift it 2px up, fill bottom shape with lighten color.

Draw a white highlights on the edges of the stand.

Step 17

Select Custom Shape Tool (U) and choose rays shape from the tutorial assets section. Scale it using Transform > Perspective, and make it clipping mask like shown below. Set layer blending mode to Soft Light.

Hold Cmd/Ctrl and click on top ellipse of cake stand to make selection. Then press Cmd/Ctrl + Shift + I to inverse selection. Choose rays shape layer and create mask.

Step 18

Using a soft brush add shadows on the stand leg. Set layer opacity to 10% and blending mode to Multiply. Don't forget to paint shadows on new layers above each part of stand with clipping masks.

Now add highlights with white color and set layers opacity to 30% and blending mode to Overlay.

In the same way add shadows and highlights on the bottom ellipse stand. Set layers opacity and blending mode as shown below.

Step 18

Duplicate top ellipse of stand bottom, make it clipping mask. Then lift it 2px up. Fill bottom ellipse with lighten color. Add white highlight spot.

Add Gradient Overlay layer style to top ellipse of the stand bottom as shown below.

Create more shadows using Ellipse Tool and Pen Tool as we done before.

Step 19

Create one more rays shape. Scale it and make clipping mask, set layer blending mode to Soft Light.

Hold Cmd/Ctrl and click on top ellipse layer to make selection. Right-click, choose Transform Selection and scale it. Then create the mask on rays shape layer.

Step 20

Now we will paint dots. Use small hard brush with 100% opacity and paint small dots with colors and layers modes as on images below.

Step 21

At this point, I suddenly realized that I really need another layer of jam. So duplicate pink layer, move it few pixels down, and fill it with color #6. Note that all layers stay clipping masks.

Step 22

Now let's make a shadow from the stand. Create few ellipses with color #5c6967 and different opacity as shown below.

Step 23

Now add a few splashes. Use Ellipse Tool holding Shift to create circles with color #ffc5ce. And Pen Tool to create drops with color #5.

Choose one of splash shapes and add Inner Shadow layer style as shown below. Right-click on layer and choose Copy Layer Style, then select all splash shapes layers, right-click and choose Paste Layer Style, it will apply same layer style for all selected layers.

On two different layers draw a flare on drops using white color as we did on candies. Set layers opacity to 50% and blending mode to Soft Light.

Step 24

Our cake is ready, now make him a decent background, and as we know the best for the cakes is polka dot background. Create new 70x70px document.

Make 5 small white circles and place them as shown below. One full circle right in the middle of the canvas, and 4 quarters in the corners. You can go and choose View > Show > Smart Guides, that will help you to align circles. Now hide background and go to Edit > Define Pattern. Click OK and new custom pattern will be added to your pattern palette.

Create a new layer above background layer, fill it with color #e3f6f3. Add Pattern Overlay layer style, and choose our new polka dot pattern from patterns palette, it is on the bottom of the list. Scale pattern size to 50% and set opacity to 50%.

Step 25

Now we are making the table. Create a rectangle using Rectangle Tool (U) with color #2. Then set layer style as shown below.

Step 26

Next create the stripes on the tablecloth, draw a new rectangle with color number #1. Pick Path Selection Tool (A) and select the shape, then hold Alt and drag the shape to duplicate. Make 8 rectangles, select them all with Path Selection Tool (A) and click on Distribute horizontal centers icon to make the distance between the rectangles equal.

Create a clipping mask from stripes shape and scale it to perspective using Transform > Perspective.

Step 25

Now add word Cake with font Vtks Black and color #3, font size 200-205pt. Tape "Ca" and "ke" on different layers.

Set layer style as shown below.

Right-click on "Ca" layer effects choose Create Layer, that we make separate layers from each layer style effect.

Select Ca's drop shadow layer and add Drop Shadow. Do the all same for "ke" text layer.

And final touch. Using small hard brush, 20% opacity, draw some white dots over the letters and set layer blending mode to Overlay.

Final Image

That's it, our cake is ready!

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