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How to Create a Fabulous Mirror-Ball-Inspired Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

This tutorial will show you how to create a simple bump texture, and use Photoshop's 3D tools and settings, with a couple of textures and adjustment layers, to create a mirror-ball-inspired text effect. 

This tutorial was inspired by the many Layer Styles available on Envato Market.

Let's get started!

Tutorial Assets

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

1. Create the Bump Pattern

Step 1

Create a new 35 x 35px, white background document.

Pick the Rectangular Marquee Tool, and click the Add to selection icon in the Options bar.

What you need to do next is create a 1 px wide selection at the document's edges. You can zoom in to make things easier.

Create a Frame Selection

Step 2

Fill the selection with the color #020202, and press Command-D to deselect.

Fill and Deselect

Step 3

Next, you'll need to repeat that process to create three more selections going inwards, and fill them with the colors #373737, #bababa, and #f7f7f7, to get the result below.

Create the Inner Selections

Step 4

Once you're done, go to Edit > Define Pattern, type in Bump, and click OK.

Define Pattern

Step 5

Create a new 980 x 980px document, pick the Paint Bucket Tool, choose the Pattern fill in the Options bar, pick the Bump pattern, and fill the document with it.

Save the document under the name Bump Texture, and close it.

Create the Bump Texture

2. Create the Background

Step 1

Create a new 1000 x 1000 px document, and duplicate the Background layer.

Create the Document

Step 2

Double-click the Background copy layer to apply a Gradient Overlay effect with the default settings.

Use the colors #03010c to the left and #240333 to the right to create the gradient fill.

Gradient Overlay

This will apply a simple linear gradient to the background.

Background Gradient

3. Create the Text Shape

Step 1

Create the text using the font Doughnut Monster G. The Color is #ececec, and the Size is 150 pt.

Create the Text

Step 2

Go to Type > Convert to Shape.

Convert to Shape

4. Create the 3D Layer

Step 1

Go to 3D > New 3D Extrusion from Selected Path.

Convert to a 3D Layer

Step 2

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 3

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

5. Edit the Mesh and Cap Settings

Step 1

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

Mesh Settings

Step 2

Click the Cap icon at the top of the Properties panel, and then change the Bevel Width to 2%, the Contour to Half Round, and the Inflate Strength to 10%.

Cap Settings

6. Modify the Material Settings

Step 1

Select all the material tabs in the 3D panel, and change their values in the Properties panel as follows:

  • Specular: 135, 135, 135
  • Shine: 100
  • Reflection: 100
  • Roughness: 10
  • Bump: 20
  • Refraction: 1.3
Material Settings

Step 2

Select the Front Inflation Material tab, and then click the Bump folder icon and choose Load Texture, and load the Bump Texture you created in Step 1.

Load the Bump Texture

Step 3

Click the Bump texture icon and choose Edit UV Properties.

Edit UV Properties

Step 4

Adjust the Tile values so that the texture looks perfectly scaled on the text.

Tile Settings

You should get something similar to this.

Edited Bump Texture

Step 5

Select the rest of the material tabs, click the Bump folder icon, and choose the Bump Texture from the list.

Apply the Bump Texture to the Rest of the Materials

Step 6

You might need to adjust the UV Properties for the Extrusion Material after applying the texture.

Extrusion UV Properties

7. Modify the Lighting

Step 1

Select the Infinite Light 1 tab, and change the Intensity to 20% and the Shadow Softness to 30%.

Infinite Light Settings

Step 2

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

Environment IBL Texture

Step 3

Load the Cheering crowd at concert image, and change the Intensity to 30%.

Environment Light Settings

Step 4

You can use the Move Tool to move the Environment light's texture around until you get a result you like.

Move the Environment Light Texture

8. Add the Background

Step 1

Place the 10637-NMQKXB.jpg image in the abstract disco lights background Free Vector folder on top of the Background copy layer, and resize it as you like to fit within the document.

Change the layer's Blend Mode to Linear Dodge (Add) and its Opacity to 50%.

Add the Background Texture

Step 2

Go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur, and change the Radius to 2.7.

Gaussian Blur

9. Render the Scene

Step 1

Go to 3D > Render to render the scene. The rendering might take a while, but you can stop it any time by pressing the Esc key.

Render the Scene

Step 2

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

Levels Adjustment Layer

Step 3

Click the Clip to layer icon, and change the Shadows value to 45 and the Highlights value to 225.

You can use any other values you think look best for your result.

Levels Values

10. Add the Flares

Step 1

Pick the Brush Tool, choose one of the Stars and Flares Brush Set brush tips, change its Size to something around 100 px, and then open the Brush panel (Window > Brush).

Under the Shape Dynamics tab, change the Size Jitter to 50%, and the Angle Jitter to 100%.

This will help you get different sizes and angles for the flares each time you click to add one.

Brush Tip Settings

Step 2

Create a new layer on top of all layers, call it Flares, and change its Blend Mode to Vivid light.

Change the Foreground Color to #eaeaea, and start clicking on top of the bright areas of the text to add the flares.

Add the Flares

11. Adjust the Lighting and Crop the Final Result

Step 1

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

Gradient Map Adjustment Layer

Step 2

Choose the gradient fill below, check the Dither box, and change the layer's Blend Mode to Color and its Opacity to 5%.

The difference this makes is very subtle, but you can change the gradient fill and/or the Opacity value to get different outcomes.

Gradient Map Settings

Step 3

Finally, save the final result as an image, and then open the image and use the Crop Tool to crop it to the size you like.

Crop the Final Image

Congratulations! You're Done

In this tutorial, we created a simple squares pattern and used it in a texture. Then we created the text and converted it into a 3D layer.

After that, we modified the 3D mesh, material, and lighting settings, added the background, and rendered the scene. Finally, we added the flares and a couple of adjustment layers to finish off the final result.

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

Final Result
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