In this article, we are going to design a cool social media advert. This graphic has been created for a UK based training company (www.lovesocialmedia.com) along with other banners combining typical English objects with social media icons and logos. In this tutorial we will go through the design process of the main graphic, which is an improved version of the company’s logo.
This is how the final design will look:
We will need some social media icons first of all. I collected them so you don’t have to look for them.
You can download the icons as Custom Shapes.
Once you downloaded the icon set you should have a file on your computer called ‘social_media_icon_set.csh’. All you need to do with this (and it applies to any Photoshop preset or settings file) is to double-click on it. If you have Photoshop installed on your computer, than the Custom Shapes will be automatically loaded into your presets library. You can check if you select the Custom Shape drawing tool located in the Tool bar under the Shape tools (Rectangle, Rounded Rectangle, Ellipse, etc.) and click on the little image box on the options bar (top) next to the word Shape.
You should have a couple of standard Photoshop custom shapes plus 15 social icons at the end. If you want to get rid of the standard icons you can go to Edit > Presets > Preset Manager, select the icons you don’t need and click on Delete.
When ready with this you can click on Done.
Time to create the document for our design. I used the following dimensions, but it’s up to you to choose what size you prefer for your design:
This step if very simple. Select a red color for your foreground swatch (bottom of the Tool bar) and then press Option/Alt-Backspace to fill in your Background layer with red.
We will need a heart shape for our design, which will be the frame for the social media icons. You can use this image below (PNG file with transparency) or you can draw a heart shape if you are familiar with the Pen tool.
If you want to draw it, start with the left half of the heart and draw it straight like this:
Then you can duplicate the shape by using the Path Selection tool, click on the path and then hold down Shift-Alt/Option while moving it to the right:
Once you have both sides, you can flip horizontally one of them. Select the path and then use Edit > Transform Path > Flip Horizontal.
Now we can join these two paths together. Move them close to each other until their straight line overlaps each other in the middle. Once that is done you can select both of them together.
Next step is to choose Merge Shape Components from the options bar:
Your heart shape is ready. You can now save it as a Custom Shape so you can use it in your next projects as well. While having the path selected choose Edit > Define Custom Shape and save the shape with the name of your choice. Once it is saved, you can select Custom Shape tool, set it to Shape mode and draw a proportional shape by holding down Shift while drawing. Try to make the heart big enough so you can work on the details easily.
When the heart shape layer is ready make sure you set the fill color to white and the stroke to none (in previous Photoshop versions to CS6 you just need to set the foreground color swatch to white and then press Alt/Option-Backspace while having the shape layer selected). The last thing you need to do is to rotate clockwise the heart by 30 degrees. To do this you will need to press Command/Control-T (Free Transform) and hold down Shift while rotating the shape.
I added a text layer saying ‘Share the love’ in all capitals using DIN Bold font with white color. I also rotated the text layer by 30 degrees anticlockwise and placed it below the heart shape to the right following its edge.
This step will be the most time consuming one. We will have to fill up the heart shape with the icons and to make it look interesting we will have to try to cover as much area as possible without having the icons overlapping each other.
Let me show you how to add the first icon and then you can just continue doing the same procedure several times.
Select the Custom Shape tool and set the foreground color to the same red as your background. Select one of the social media icons from the option bar and draw the shape while holding down Shift to keep the original proportions. It is also important to have the drawing mode of the Custom Shape tool set to Shape. Once you have your Shape layer ready you can use the Free Transform tool to resize it, move it and rotate it around.
The last thing you will need to do is to make sure you have the whole heart nicely filled up with icons. You might find it difficult to reselect previously added icons. After a while you will have several dozens of layers and the easiest way to quickly reselect a previously created shape layer is to use the Move tool and Control/Command-click on a shape to select it. This can save you a lot of time in finishing this design
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and well done for your hard work :)