Do you want to learn how to create photo overlays in Adobe Photoshop? In this tutorial, I will show you how to add a texture overlay in Photoshop.
This complete texture overlay Photoshop tutorial will guide you step by step. You'll create a realistic paper texture overlay on your images. But what if you want to save time and still achieve professional results? What if you don't have time to create your own textures?
Here's where Photoshop background textures come in handy. If you want some ready-to-use paper texture Photoshop sets, scroll down after this tutorial. You'll find a selection of texture overlay Photoshop packs from Envato Elements and Envato Market.
Watch How to Add Texture in Photoshop
Do you prefer to learn how to add a texture overlay in Photoshop via video? You can check out our lesson on the Envato Tuts+ YouTube channel:
What You Will Learn in This Paper Texture Photoshop Tutorial
- How to add texture in Photoshop
- How to create a photo overlay
- How to use textures in Photoshop with different blending options
You will need the following in order to complete this texture overlay Photoshop tutorial:
1. How to Prepare the Document
Let's start this Photoshop paper texture overlay tutorial with the basics. Press Control-O and then select the image you want to use.
Hit Alt-Control-I and resize the image to 3000 x 2000 px.
After that, go to File > Place and put the overlay texture above the background layer.
Create four duplicates of the texture and the background by pressing Control-J.
Sequentially place each texture over each image layer.
2. How to Create a Photo Overlay
Now that you have all the necessary files and layers, let's learn how to add a texture overlay in Photoshop. Make all the layers except the first two Invisible, and then change the Blending Mode of the texture to Multiply.
After that, press Alt-Shift-Control-B and then hit OK to convert the texture to black and white.
Press Alt-Shift-Control-L to add auto-contrast to the texture.
To make the image look brighter, let's go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Brightness/Contrast and choose the following settings:
- Brightness: 65
- Contrast: 20
This is how our image will look after all the manipulations listed above:
Now, let's try another blending mode. Make a second pair of layers visible, and change the Blending Mode of the texture to Screen.
Convert the image to black and white by pressing Alt-Shift-Control-B, as we did before.
Hit Control-I to invert the texture, and then add auto-contrast by pressing Alt-Shift-Control-L.
Let's create another style of photo overlay. Make the next pair of layers visible, and then select the texture layer and change the Blending Mode to Overlay.
Convert the texture to black and white, and then add auto-contrast to the texture, as we did before.
And for the last couple of layers, let's make the grunge texture overlay more obvious. Select the image layer, and then go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Hue/Saturation and create a new layer with Saturation of -25.
After that, change the Blending Mode of the texture to Multiply and the Opacity to 85%.
Add auto-contrast to the layer, and then go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Brightness/Contrast and choose the following settings:
- Brightness: 110
- Contrast: 20
As you can see, in this case our texture works as a vintage photo overlay and gives our photo an old, grungy look:
Awesome Work, Your Paper Texture Photoshop Overlay Is Done!
Here is our final result! Now you know how to create a photo overlay in Photoshop. Using this simple technique, we can add texture to any image in Adobe Photoshop and create cool photo overlays using blending modes and adjustment layers.
5+ Photoshop Background Textures From Envato Elements and Envato Market
Looking for some more professional texture overlays? Envato Elements offers unlimited Photoshop paper texture overlays with a subscription. You'll also have access to add-ons, graphic templates and more digital assets.
If you don't like subscriptions, you can get professional Photoshop background textures from GraphicRiver, part of Envato Market. Just browse the huge library of texture overlays and get the one you need for your project.
Here's a hand-picked selection of the Photoshop paper texture overlays you can find in these premium marketplaces:
1. 30 Dust & Scratch Overlay Textures (JPG)
Grunge texture overlay packs are an essential tool for creating vintage effects. This pack of 30 dust and scratch textures could be a handy tool for creating a faded or old look for your photos. Besides the textures, you will find a Photoshop action that helps you work with the texture layers.
2. Textured Geometric Masks (PSD, PNG)
If you're looking for something more creative and unusual, then check out this pack of cool photo overlays with geometric and grunge elements. In this pack, you will find 15 high-quality transparent PNG files in A3 (297 x 420mm) size.
3. Paper & Card Mask Effects (PSD)
This paper texture overlay Photoshop bundle contains 30 textures in one PSD template, so the process of selecting textures becomes easier than ever. The PSD file is 18 x 24 inches, with high resolution and RGB color mode.
4. Vintage Letterpress Texture Effects (PSD)
If you want to add overlay textures not only to your photo, but also to your text and vectors, check out this grunge texture overlay pack with ten smart PSD templates. It's very easy to use and has fully editable effects.
5. 10 Soft Grunge Gray Textures (JPG) (Envato Market)
Now that you know how to overlay photos in Photoshop, this pack of ten soft grunge textures could be a great tool for creating a vintage photo overlay. All of the textures come in 3000x2000 px, with 300 dpi high-quality resolution.
6. Vintage Nostalgia Photo Overlay Textures (JPG) (Envato Market)
If you're looking for a paper texture overlay Photoshop pack, this collection of photo overlays is a great choice. It contains 18 complex paper textures with different vintage elements such as letters, notes, and illustrations.
Discover More Photoshop Overlay Tutorials and Resources
You've learned how to add texture in Photoshop and where to find top Photoshop paper texture overlays. Do you want to learn more about how to overlay photos in Photoshop? Check out these awesome tutorials:
- How to Make a Distressed Effect Photoshop ActionIvan Gromov22 Jul 2021
- How to Create Textured, Geometric Objects in Adobe PhotoshopMelody Nieves16 Jan 2017
- How to Create a Sparkle Overlay Effect in PhotoshopMonika Zagrobelna18 Nov 2020
- How to Create a Vintage Photo Effect Action in PhotoshopMarko Kožokar11 Mar 2019
- How to Create a Dusty Texture From ScratchIvan Gromov04 Jun 2021
- How to Sharpen an Image in PhotoshopMonika Zagrobelna28 May 2021
- 48 Best Photoshop Text Styles (Download Layer Effect PSDs Now!)Nona Blackman24 May 2021
- 40 Creative Photoshop Text Effects—With Vibrant StylesSean Hodge14 Jun 2021
Editorial Note: This post has been updated with contributions from Maria Villanueva. Maria is a staff writer with Envato Tuts+.