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Design a Kindle-Style Advertisement Poster with Custom Brushes in Photoshop

In this tutorial we are going to learn how to design an advertisement poster using some special techniques like creating custom brushes, masking and working with typography. The example I used is an unofficial Kindle ad, which I came up with just for the sake of this tutorial. 

Editor's Note: Kindle is a trademark of Amazon Inc registered in the U.S. and other countries. Product names and images within this article are used in editorial fashion only with no intention of infringement of the trademark or trade dress. 

Step 1 - Create a New Document

Press Command-N or choose File > New and create a new document using 1301x2032 pixels and the default settings visible in the image below.

New document

Step 2 - Placing in an image of an open book

First of all, in your new document you should start by placing in an image of an open book. This is the royalty free stock photo that I used:


Royalty free image of an open book

Step 3 - Use the Type tool for the Custom Brush

Let’s select the Type tool and click on the canvas once then type in one random character. You can use any font and style that you prefer. I used DIN Medium with 40 pt size. To finish typing press Command-Return. After accepting typing, you can use the Free Transform option to resize or rotate the character. You will have to repeat this step several times until you get several characters randomly placed next to each other (they are all on separate layers). See my example below.

Characters are randomly placed next to each other

Step 4 - Save the characters as a Custom Brush

Now that you have some random characters next to each other you will have to save it as a Custom Brush. First of all, you have to make a selection around them using the Rectangular Marquee Tool.

Make a selection with the Rectangular Marquee Tool

Now you can choose Edit > Define Brush Preset and save the custom brush with a name that you prefer. I will call mine Random characters.

Save the custom brush

To be able to start using this new custom brush you will have to choose the Brush tool first and then click on the Brush Preset picker icon on the left of the Options bar. From this collection, you will find the custom brush at the very end. Select it and then try drawing with it. You will see something like this:

Drawing with the custom brush

Step 5 - Brush Settings

Now that you have your brush, you will have to set it up properly. For this you will need to open the Brush panel. Click on the icon next the Brush Preset picker icon in the Options bar. You can also access this panel from the Window menu and choose Brush.

Brush panel

First of all, you will need to select the Brush Tip Shape option on the left and set the Spacing to 100%.

Set the Spacing to 100%

Next step is to add randomness to the rotation. You can do this under the Shape Dynamics where you need to increase the Angle Jitter up to 100% and add 100% Size Jitter.

Shape Dynamics

You can now add some randomness in the placement by adding 200% Scattering under the Scattering tab. I used 2 for the Count option.

200% Scattering

It is almost done now, the only thing we need is to randomize the opacity. You will need to choose Transfer and set the Opacity Jitter to 100%. If you have been following everything properly you should get something like this as the result:

Opacity Jitter to 100%

Step 6 - Saving the Brush Preset

You should save all these options together with the brush tip shape so you can use it again next time. All you need to do is to click on the Brush panel options (drop down menu on the top right corner of the panel) and choose New Brush Preset. Once again, the naming of it is completely up to you.

Step 7 - Creating a mask

We have created the custom brush but we still need to create a special mask to contain the cloud of text. I used the following silhouette, but you can use other images too for this step.


Once you have the selected silhouette, place it into your Photoshop document. Use the Magic Wand to click on the character and then create a New Layer. While your selection is active, create a Layer Mask on the new empty layer. You should see the following layer structure at this stage:

Layer Structure

Step 8 - Filling the silhouette with text

Make sure you select the thumbnail of the layer (with the checkered background) and not the mask (black and white silhouette). Select the Brush tool and make sure you have the saved Preset with the random text selected. You can choose any color, I used black as my foreground color. Now you will have to draw over the silhouette and fill it up with text. You can draw the whole character with one long brushstroke or several separate strokes. You should achieve something like this:

Fill up the silhouette with text

It is up to you how much empty space you want to leave, just make sure the outlines of your character are easily recognizable.

Step 9 - Erasing back the foot

Using the Eraser tool with a Soft edge try to erase back the foot, which is placed over the book to get the impression that the character is building up from the characters on the pages of the book.

Erasing the foot

Step 10 - Adding text and product

Finally you can add the message of the advert and the product photo. I used two black rectangle vector layers and white type for the typewriter effect and I turned the Kindle product image into a Smart Object before I reduced its size. This is how my final version looks like:

Final Version

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and well done for your hard work :)

Kindle is a trademark of Amazon Inc registered in the U.S. and other countries. Product names and images within this article are used in editorial fashion only with no intention of infringement of the trademark or trade dress. 

Martin Perhiniak

Martin Perhiniak | Articles by this author

Martin Perhiniak is a Certified Adobe Design Master and Instructor. Martin has worked as a designer with companies like Disney, Warner Brothers, Cartoon Network, Sony Pictures, Mattel, and DC Comics. He is running a series of Workshops in London as well as providing a range of services from Live Online Training to Consultancy work to individuals worldwide. Martin’s Motto “Do not compare yourself to your role models. Work hard and wait for the moment when others will compare them to you”


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