35 Beautiful Vintage and Retro Photoshop Tutorials


By Jacob Gube

With the recent post on retro and vintage in modern web design1, it’s time to put the theory into practice. We’ve scoured the Web to find some impressive Photoshop tutorials that can help you achieve an "old-fashioned" look-and-feel in your designs. In this post, we go back to the 1900’s all theway to the 1980’s to showcase a variety of vintage- and retro-inspired designs that involve poster art, collages and graphical elements. Whether you’re into print design or web design, you’ll find something you can use or build upon.

You may want to take a look at the following related posts:

Without further ado, we present 35 high-quality vintage and retro Adobe Photoshop tutorials that may help your design… well, travel back in time.

Vintage and Retro Photoshop Tutorials

Colorization Tutorial7
This short tutorial showcases a method for colorizing a black and white photo to achieve an aged, vintage look.

Colorization Tutorial8

Wicked-Worn Vintage Pop Art Design9
Mesh vintage pop art with grunge to create a unique mash-up of the two popular design styles.

Wicked-Worn Vintage Pop Art Design10

Retro Grunge Poster11
Wield the Pen Tool and utilize some free brushes and textures to achieve this retro-grunge hybrid look-and-feel.

Retro Grunge Poster12

Vintage Film Style Video13
Use a stock image of an old TV and Photoshop CS3 Extended to play vintage-style video clips inside the TV.

Vintage Film Style Video14

Give Your Photos a Retro Comic Book Effect15
Here’s another method for creating a retro-stylec comic book effect to your photos using Photoshop.

Give Your Photos a Retro Comic Book Effect16

WWII Airplane17
Recreate the World War II airplane brushed-metal texture and paintings in this excellent Photoshop tutorial that involves using Noise and Blur filters.

WWII Airplane18

Cool Vintage Collage Design
19In this Photoshop tutorial, you will learn how to use old advertisements, hand-written text, and patterns to create a vintage design.

Cool Vintage Collage Design20

Pin-up Effect
21This video tutorial showcases how you can create the classic 50’s pin-up effect using some Photoshop filters and Blending Modes.

Pin-up Effect22

Radio Knobs/Dials of the Past
23Learn how to design old-school radio knobs/dials in this Photoshop tutorial by skillfully using of the Marquee Tool in Photoshop.

Radio Knobs/Dials of the Past24

Turn of the Century Vaudeville Poster
25Create a beautiful turn-of-the-century poster geared towards intermediate to advanced Photoshop users.

Turn of the Century Vaudeville Poster26

Virtual Letterman Jacket
27In this Photoshop tutorial, you will learn how to design retro-style varsity/letterman lettering using some ingenious Layer Styles.

Virtual Letterman Jacket28

B-movie poster art
29In this tutorial, you can learn the techniques involved in recreating B-movie posters from the golden age of cinema.

B-movie poster art30

Gigposter Design31
In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to create a retro-styled poster using Photoshop and Illustrator.

Gigposter Design32

Vintage Polaroid Effect
33This photo treatment tutorial shares a method for creating a vintage look using modern, colored digital photos.

Vintage Polaroid Effect34

Photoshop Vintage Effect35
Learn how to age modern digital pictures by adjusting contrast, saturation, and Curves in this short step-by-step Photoshop tutorial.

Photoshop Vintage Effect36

Vintage Fifties Letter
37Create this aged letter envelope by following this Photoshop tutorial that’s aimed at intermediate Photoshop users.

Vintage Fifties Letter38

Vintage Truck
39In this short Photoshop tutorial, you’ll learn some techniques on how to use colored digital stock images to give it a vintage/retro look-and-feel.

Vintage Truck40

Make it worn41
Learn how to create a worn look-and-feel web design background, using detailed from scanned book pages.

Make it worn42

Comic Book Photo Effect
43Learn how to take ordinary photos and give it a retro-styled, pop art comic book effect.

Comic Book Photo Effect44

Vintage collages in Photoshop
45In this tutorial, you can gain insights and learn useful methods on how to achieve a vintage collage.

Vintage collages in Photoshop46

Make your own pop art
47Learn the techniques involved in creating your own classic 50’s style pop art.

Make your own pop art48

Hot Chick on a Muscle Car
49Create a retro-styled post card using stock photos that are linked to by the author of the tutorial.

Hot Chick on a Muscle Car50

Retro Wallpaper/Poster
51This step-by-step tutorial walks the readers through the process of creating a retro wallpaper/poster.

Retro Wallpaper/Poster52

Retro Style Game Controller53
Illustrate an old-school gaming console joystick using Photoshop with this wonderful tutorial.

Retro Style Game Controller54

Retro Stars
55Use the Polygonal Lasso Tool to create stars and then add multi-colored streaks to it, to achieve this popular ’80’s look and feel.

Retro Stars56

Sweet Radio Station Advert Design
57Learn how to create a radio station advertisement with retro curves with the help of Illustrator (or download them from vector stock sites).

Sweet Radio Station Advert Design58

Pop Art Inspired by Lichtenstein
59Create Lichtenstein-style pop art design by studying this Photoshop tutorial geared for intermediate designers.

Pop Art Inspired by Lichtenstein60

Retro Lighting – Ford Mustang
61You can utilize the Custom Shape Tool for elements of the design to recreate this 70’s inspired design.

Ford Mustang62

Mix Cool Retro Curves into Your Photographs
63Combine retro with modern design styles and elements to create this stunning photo effect.

Mix Cool Retro Curves into Your Photographs64

Photoshop Serigraphs
65Learn how you can take a portrait to recreate this Andy Warhol inspired pop-art.

Photoshop Serigraphs66

Retro Sunflower Design
67Remake this sunflower-themed retro wallpaper using ready-to-use Photoshop brushes, the Ellipse Marquee Tool, and custom shapes from the Custom Shape Tool.

Retro SunFlower Design68

Retro Summer Poster Illustration
69Utilize some of Photoshop’s vector tools to create a summery retro poster illustration.

Retro Summer Poster Illustration70

3D Retro Strip
71Use the Pen Tool to create 3-dimensional retro strips.

3D Retro Strip72

Abstract Retro-Pop Wallpaper
73This tutorial shows readers how to design a colorful retro-pop wallpaper using stock photo for texture and the RNS Bobo Dylan Font74.

Abstract Retro-Pop Wallpaper75

Further Resources



  1. 1 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/07/retro-and-vintage-in-modern-web-design/
  2. 2 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/28/40-beautiful-grunge-photoshop-tutorials/
  3. 3 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/07/15/70-beauty-retouching-photoshop-tutorials/
  4. 4 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/12/07/50-excellent-digital-photography-photoshop-tutorials/
  5. 5 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/11/03/photoshop-tutorials-to-improve-modeling-skills/
  6. 6 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/04/03/adobe-photoshop-tutorials-rainbows-glows-and-light-effects/
  7. 7 http://www.worth1000.com/tutorial.asp?sid=161018
  8. 8 http://www.worth1000.com/tutorial.asp?sid=161018
  9. 9 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/create-a-wicked-worn-vintage-pop-art-design/
  10. 10 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/create-a-wicked-worn-vintage-pop-art-design/
  11. 11 http://www.online-photoshoptutorials.com/2008/09/creating-a-retro-grunge-poster.html
  12. 12 http://www.online-photoshoptutorials.com/2008/09/creating-a-retro-grunge-poster.html
  13. 13 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/create-a-vintage-film-style-video-using-photoshop-cs3-extended/
  14. 14 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/create-a-vintage-film-style-video-using-photoshop-cs3-extended/
  15. 15 http://www.photoshoproadmap.com/Photoshop-blog/2007/09/13/give-your-photos-a-retro-comic-book-effect/
  16. 16 http://www.photoshoproadmap.com/Photoshop-blog/2007/09/13/give-your-photos-a-retro-comic-book-effect/
  17. 17 http://pshero.com/archives/wwii-airplane
  18. 18 http://pshero.com/archives/wwii-airplane
  19. 19 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/creating-a-cool-vintage-collage-design-in-photoshop/
  20. 20 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/creating-a-cool-vintage-collage-design-in-photoshop/
  21. 21 http://www.planetphotoshop.com/pin-up-effect.html
  22. 22 http://www.planetphotoshop.com/pin-up-effect.html
  23. 23 http://adreamers.blogspot.com/2008/08/radio-knobsdials-of-past-photoshop.html
  24. 24 http://adreamers.blogspot.com/2008/08/radio-knobsdials-of-past-photoshop.html
  25. 25 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/make-a-turn-of-the-century-vaudeville-poster/
  26. 26 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/make-a-turn-of-the-century-vaudeville-poster/
  27. 27 http://pshero.com/archives/virtual-letterman-jacket
  28. 28 http://pshero.com/archives/virtual-letterman-jacket
  29. 29 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1701
  30. 30 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1701
  31. 31 http://www.gomediazine.com/tutorials/gigposter-design-the-new-sex/
  32. 32 http://www.gomediazine.com/tutorials/gigposter-design-the-new-sex/
  33. 33 http://www.myinkblog.com/2008/06/23/create-a-vintage-polaroid-effect/
  34. 34 http://www.myinkblog.com/2008/06/23/create-a-vintage-polaroid-effect/
  35. 35 http://veerle.duoh.com/blog/comments/photoshop_vintage_effect/
  36. 36 http://veerle.duoh.com/blog/comments/photoshop_vintage_effect/
  37. 37 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/craft-a-vintage-fifties-letter/
  38. 38 http://psdtuts.com/designing-tutorials/craft-a-vintage-fifties-letter/
  39. 39 http://www.x24d.com/blog/2008/01/23/vintage-truck/
  40. 40 http://www.x24d.com/blog/2008/01/23/vintage-truck/
  41. 41 http://www.subdued.net/make-it-worn
  42. 42 http://www.subdued.net/make-it-worn
  43. 43 http://pshero.com/archives/comic-book-photo-effect
  44. 44 http://pshero.com/archives/comic-book-photo-effect
  45. 45 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1699&pn=1
  46. 46 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1699&pn=1
  47. 47 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1729
  48. 48 http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/tutorials/index.cfm?featureID=1729
  49. 49 http://abduzeedo.com/hot-chick-muscle-car
  50. 50 http://abduzeedo.com/hot-chick-muscle-car
  51. 51 http://ubldesignes.co.uk/tutorial-16-A-Retro-Poster-Step-By-Step-Photoshop-Tutorial.html
  52. 52 http://ubldesignes.co.uk/tutorial-16-A-Retro-Poster-Step-By-Step-Photoshop-Tutorial.html
  53. 53 http://psdtuts.com/drawing/how-to-create-a-super-retro-style-game-controller/
  54. 54 http://psdtuts.com/drawing/how-to-create-a-super-retro-style-game-controller/
  55. 55 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2449/1/Retro-Stars
  56. 56 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2449/1/Retro-Stars
  57. 57 http://designblurb.com/radio-station-advertisement-tutorial/
  58. 58 http://designblurb.com/radio-station-advertisement-tutorial/
  59. 59 http://www.melissaclifton.com/tutorial-popart.html
  60. 60 http://www.melissaclifton.com/tutorial-popart.html
  61. 61 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2877/1/Retro-Lighting---Ford-Mustang
  62. 62 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2877/1/Retro-Lighting---Ford-Mustang
  63. 63 http://psdtuts.com/tutorials-effects/mix-cool-retro-curves-into-your-photographs/
  64. 64 http://psdtuts.com/tutorials-effects/mix-cool-retro-curves-into-your-photographs/
  65. 65 http://www.planetphotoshop.com/photoshop-serigraphs.html
  66. 66 http://www.planetphotoshop.com/photoshop-serigraphs.html
  67. 67 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2881/1/Retro-SunFlower-Design
  68. 68 http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/2881/1/Retro-SunFlower-Design
  69. 69 http://psdfan.com/designing/design-a-retro-summer-poster-illustration/
  70. 70 http://psdfan.com/designing/design-a-retro-summer-poster-illustration/
  71. 71 http://www.pstut.info/tutorials/design-a-3d-retro-strip/
  72. 72 http://www.pstut.info/tutorials/design-a-3d-retro-strip/
  73. 73 http://www.tutorial9.net/photoshop/create-a-retro-pop-style-wallpaper/
  74. 74 http://www.impactolaser.com/t01.html
  75. 75 http://www.tutorial9.net/photoshop/create-a-retro-pop-style-wallpaper/
  76. 76 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/12/07/50-excellent-digital-photography-photoshop-tutorials/
  77. 77 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/07/15/70-beauty-retouching-photoshop-tutorials/
  78. 78 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/11/03/photoshop-tutorials-to-improve-modeling-skills/
  79. 79 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/28/40-beautiful-grunge-photoshop-tutorials/
  80. 80 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/10/14/30-beautiful-vintageretro-photoshop-tutorials/
  81. 81 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/04/03/adobe-photoshop-tutorials-rainbows-glows-and-light-effects/

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Jacob Gube is the Founder and Chief Editor of Six Revisions, a web publication for web developers and designers, and the Deputy Editor of Design Instruct, a web magazine for designers and digital artists. He has over seven years of experience as professional web developer and web designer and has written a book on JavaScript.

  1. 1

    Very nice collection, I’ve been trying to locate a decent collection of retro-style tutorials!
    1st post! Sweet!

  2. 3

    These all are so great. I’ve been looking for things like this

  3. 4

    Excellent. You guys never fail to bring the good stuff.

  4. 5

    Is it me or these long collections of design things are becoming a bit boring? Has this website lost its essence somehow?

  5. 6


    October 14, 2008 8:24 am

    i like the Wicked-Worn Vintage Pop Art Design, the no.2,really beautiful.

  6. 7

    I personally think it is great to have those long collections of design, Internet is so vast and it is time consuming to do such a research, I find it really helpful to have these kind of articles and search for them into smashingmagazine rather than on the whole web.

  7. 8

    Nice collection of vintage art. I might try few of these to improve my photoshop skills.
    amazing effects.


  8. 9

    Anyone have good tutorials on creating different types of note paper and sticky notes in photoshop?

  9. 10

    Thank you! i love these retro styles…

  10. 11

    awesome, thanks

  11. 12

    I love retro & vintage !

  12. 13

    Nice list. Very useful! I was surprised to see that they have used my picture/illustration of an old TV! I had no idea of this new function in Photoshop CS3…

  13. 14

    Awesome Collection. Thanks For…

  14. 15

    thank you, not so much for the tutorials but for the collection itself. it’s always useful.

  15. 16

    Awesome retro tutorials. Can’t wait to try some of these out.

    Jad Graphics

  16. 17

    LOL @ the “Ford Mustang” tutorial. The car used is definitely not a Mustang…

  17. 18

    Thanks for featuring my tutorial. Great list you have here, I hadn’t seen a few of these before :).

  18. 19

    Hey, thanks for the mention!

  19. 20

    Great list, thank you! I’ve done a few of these tuts with fantastic results (and learn a thing or two in the bargain).

  20. 21

    Thanks for including my tutorial, great collection, Very Useful!

    Stevie :D

  21. 22

    I thank them for putting it all in one place and making sure I don’t have to trawl the internet trying to find stuff. Cheers!

  22. 23

    This is truly a very pleasant surprise for me… thank you so much for including my tutorial on your list! Like what Tom Ross said, I haven’t seen a lot of these before, and they’re all beautiful! :) I have a strong feeling that I’ll be using some of these someday. :)

  23. 24

    Thank you for linking to one of my tutorials on Design Blurb :) Great roundup.

  24. 25

    WoW! Guys whose tuts. are linked here actually read SM. Can’t say that i am surprised, but wow! SM is the first browse of the day for me.

    Great list btw. There are a few i would definetely use in my designs. [Hot Chick on a Muscle Car] for one… hehe.

    Good job (again) SM…

  25. 26

    nice ..simply great

  26. 27

    Thanks nice post.

  27. 28

    Wow, I’m thrilled to see my work featured on here too (Vintage Turn of the Century Vaudeville Poster)!

    That was the first tutorial I’ve written up, but I hope to do more before too long.

    Thank you! This site is a great resource.

  28. 29

    Yes Jonathan, it is just you. These roundups are great, very helpful. Thanks guys.

  29. 30

    Once again, excellent resources !

    Some effect were still hard to achieve for me, now i will be able to complete my skills.

    Thanx a lot !

  30. 31

    There can never be enough retro and vintage :D. I am so feeling the 3D Retro. Nice!

  31. 32

    AwESOME!!! makes me want to cry :(

  32. 33

    i already knew some of them, but this is a nice bunch, thanx :)

  33. 34

    Nice article, it’s always great to have these tutorials collected together in one place. I’m sure these will be useful in the future.

  34. 35

    Hi everyone! I’m glad you enjoyed this article. Since the vintage/retro trend is (relatively) still in its infancy, it was quite a challenge to find this many high-quality tutorials to share with you.

    To the authors of tutorials featured here, I’d like to thank you for providing us with top-notch tutorials and helping us advance our craft by sharing your techniques and knowledge.

  35. 36

    I’m certainly going to experiment a little with this style, it’s hot.

  36. 37

    Brilliant list – I’m bent double, gagging with the waves of nostagia..

  37. 38

    yogesh lalchandani

    October 15, 2008 4:33 am

    Nice Design styles and coloring tuts

  38. 39

    Armanjac essai délicious

  39. 40

    @Joe. No kidding. I find that more than slightly annoying….

    That’s the only one included that I don’t think matches the quality of the others.

  40. 41

    Nice collection. Where would one use this?

  41. 42

    realy great tuts. They are very helpfull for editing my photos.

  42. 43

    Great Website! Great Tutorials! I just found great brushes on this blog I can use for designing.

  43. 44

    Great list, love the Retro Grunge Poster Tutorial.

    Thx for the post.


  44. 45

    Great tutorials, thanks! I wish I found a post like this before creating the vintage graphics for my blog.

  45. 46

    thanks for posting my tuts (Vintage pop art, and old TV) in the list!!!

  46. 47

    this is one of the better tutorial collections i have come across. nice work!

  47. 48

    Well these fellows are really gems..
    great work when compared to previous photoshop articles..
    I have to take a brief look at all the tutorial in detail.

  48. 49

    Wow thanks a lot mate! These tutorials are really the best once out there.

  49. 50

    Mustang tutorial was great. But I substituted a REAL Mustang in the picture. Someone needs to tell them it’s not a Mustang!!

  50. 51

    Terrific roundup. I’d previously found about 1/2 of them- the beauty of the list, for me, is the other half! Please continue the ‘long list’ concept- I’d enjoy seeing additional topics explored. –Bill

  51. 52

    Nice one!

    Thanks for including my ‘Invaders from Venus’ and ‘Pop Art’ tutorials!

  52. 53

    Olha esse post com muitoooooos tutoriais para design retrô!!!!

    show de bola

  53. 54

    Very nice tutorials,

    thank for the collection

  54. 55

    thanks for the set,

  55. 56
  56. 57

    yo te di una ayuda
    nos vemos tu amigo
    de argentina FEDE

  57. 58

    superb, genius

  58. 59

    Mind blowing collections!!!! I’ve been looking for things like this. Really fantastic collection. Keep it up.

  59. 60

    just marvelous, wonder if i’ll manage to do something similar, or at least respectable hahaha
    just kidding, i know i can…

  60. 61

    nice tutorial, thanks for sharing

  61. 62

    some are good. some are just okay. noting superb. too see an artwork with a couple of vectors and grunge whatever is quite popular and in my opinion should not be the basis of coolness in terms of art.

  62. 63

    The very first tutorial is a broken link. The proper link is http://fx.worth1000.com/tutorials/161018/yet-another-colorization-tutorial

  63. 64

    cool images i really think they are cooool

  64. 65

    Thank you for those WONDERFULL tutorials!

  65. 66

    Great guys thanks for sharing it.

  66. 67

    hey guys check it out! :)

  67. 68

    The WWII Plane Texture and the comic book links appear to be broken.

  68. 70

    Like the retro iv got a thing for. School it’s called retro day and needed some help thanks now I know what I’m going to wear to school

  69. 71

    Thanks for Shared!!!

  70. 72

    Wow brilliant post! Fantastic tutorial dude. It�s insane how many breathtaking tutes you guys post. Absolutely love your site. Thank you very much!

  71. 73

    Amazing isn’t the word………….. to good ya

  72. 74

    Awesome resource. Thanks!

  73. 75

    Hi, please i want to make picnik movie posters effect on photoshop, who can help me? :)

  74. 76

    wow great resource

  75. 77

    i love the pinup effect :)

  76. 78

    Yo dis was gud

  77. 79

    Very creative and amazing


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