Photoshop offers up a few different ways to create tiled patterns. In this tutorial, we'll have a look at the simplest, most direct way to create a tiled image. These tiled images are perfect for backgrounds, either for a website or for a print layout.
If you're intending on creating a tiled background for use on the web, just be sure to keep your file low resolution (72ppi) and in the RGB color space. If you're creating a tiled background for commercial print output, then be sure to set up your file as a 300ppi CMYK document. Okay, let's get started!
Here's how to create and apply a pattern...
Open the file that you'd like to use as a pattern.
This file can be any sort of image you have -- a photo, a logo, a cartoon...even text will work. That said, keep in mind that smaller images typically work best. Sure you can tile a 5x7" photo, but a smaller image would be much more effective.
Using the Rectangular Marquee tool, select the area of the image that you'd like to use as a pattern.
For example, you may only want the top portion of your image to be used as a pattern, or maybe a corner. Go ahead and select that area. Be sure that Feather is set to 0 on the Options bar. Alternatively, if you want to use the entire image, select everything by choosing Select > All.
Choose Edit > Define Pattern.
In the Pattern Name dialog box that appears, go ahead and give your new pattern a name, then click OK.
Create a new blank Photoshop document.
Once again, keep in mind where you want to use your pattern and set your document's resolution, color space, and dimensions accordingly.
Choose Edit > Fill.
From the Use pull-down menu at the top, choose Pattern.
Next, from the Custom Pattern drop-down, choose the pattern that you just created; then click OK.
Want to learn more? Check out these Photoshop tips and tricks.