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How to Make a Halftone Pattern in Photoshop

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

Halftone is a technique that simulates a gradient of shades with a limited number of tones—traditionally, black and white. Although it was created as a result of the limitations of print media, a halftone pattern effect can be also used on purpose, to make the image more interesting. In this tutorial, I'll show you how to create a halftone texture in Photoshop using three different methods.

Follow along with us over on our Envato Tuts+ YouTube Channel:

1. How to Create a Halftone Pattern, Method 1

Step 1

Go to Filter > Filter Gallery. Go to the Sketch tab and find Halftone Pattern.

halftone pattern filter

Step 2

Here, you can adjust the settings to achieve the look of a halftone effect.

halftone pattern options
simple halftone pattern

Step 3

This method is the easiest and it provides a real-time preview, but the dots are blurry and the effect is not really convincing. To make it sharper, you can add a Threshold adjustment.

threshold adjustment

Step 4

Adjust the Threshold Level to get the contrast you need.

create halftone with threshold

2. How to Make a Halftone Pattern, Method 2

Step 1

Go to Image > Adjustments > Desaturate.

desaturate image

Step 2

Go to Filter > Pixelate > Color Halftone. Change the Channel values to 0. Set the Radius—this will be the maximum size of the dots in your pattern.

color halftone filter

This effect is quick and natural, but because it doesn't provide a preview, it may require a few takes to get the result you want.

halftone texture

3. How to Create a Halftone Pattern, Method 3

Step 1

Go to Image > Mode > Grayscale. Click Discard.

discard colors

Step 2

Go to Image > Mode > Bitmap. Set the Resolution to the current one or higher. For the Method, select Halftone Screen.

bitmap halftone screen

Step 3

The Frequency controls the density of the dots. The Angle affects the direction of the rows of dots. You can also use shapes other than dots for your halftone pattern.

halftone screen settings
halftone pattern realistic

4. How to Make a Colorful Halftone Pattern

Step 1

If you want to colorize your halftone pattern in Photoshop, just go to Image > Mode and change the mode to something with colors.

Then take the Gradient Tool (G), pick a colorful gradient, and change its mode to Screen.

gradient tool settings

Step 2

Drag the tool over the canvas to colorize the pattern.

colorize blak and white
colorized halftone pattern

Halftone Pattern Actions

Colorful Halftone Photoshop Actions

As you can see, it's quite easy to create a halftone pattern in Photoshop. But if you want to make it a little more interesting, you can do it with special actions from Envato Elements. For example, this action applies a halftone effect to your image, and it adds multiple color effects that you can choose from. There are a few actions in the set, each with different-sized dots.

Colorful Halftone Photoshop Actions
Colorful Halftone Photoshop Actions

Pinhole Halftone Photoshop Actions

This set contains multiple actions with a variety of halftone pattern effects, all in black and white. You can run them one by one to pick the effect that you like the most. It's fast and easy!

Pinhole Halftone Photoshop Actions
Pinhole Halftone Photoshop Actions

Dot Grid Photoshop Actions

This action is a modification of a traditional halftone pattern. It creates an artistic effect that keeps the colors intact. You can choose between various dot sizes, as well as between two dot styles: fixed and variable.

Dot Grid Photoshop Actions
Dot Grid Photoshop Actions

Good Job!

Now you know how to create a halftone texture in Photoshop. If you're interested in halftone patterns, you may enjoy our other tutorials as well:

how to make halftone pattern
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