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50 Stunning Photoshop Text Effect Tutorials


Photoshop’s text and layer tools can be used to create some really awesome effects. We’ve put together a list of 60 of the best tutorials we could find to help you stay up to date on the latest trends and techniques. You’ll find some really cool grunge and glass styles (plus a few surprises!) and learn how some of the best designers create their unique effects.

Courtesy: LemonDesign1

Instead of listing 100 plus tutorials that you’ll bookmark never to come back, we’ve decided to take you through the basics of typography, hopefully inspiring and then teaching you. Typography is an art just like any other. You have to feel the form, admire the curves and connect with the flow.

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

Introduction to Typography Link


Typography is the art of arranging type, designing type, and modifying type glyphs. The arrangement of type involves the selection of typefaces, point size, line length, line spacing (leading), adjustment of space between groups of letters (tracking) and adjustment of space between pairs of letters (kerning).

Here are some resources to give you further insight:

The Wisest Mind Has Something Yet to Learn Link


And we, too, never stop being inspired, learning and creating:

How to Choose the Right Type Link

types of type

Guess if you can, choose if you dare. Typeface can make or break your design. Let the type speak for itself: its dimensions, curves, strength and space should define your purpose.

Resources to Live by Link


Finding quality fonts can be overwhelming because there are literally millions out there and finding the right one is a painful process. Here are a few resources I use to find a font for a project I am working on.

Here Come the Tutorials Link

Now that you understand the importance of typography, let’s move on to the awesome Photoshop tutorials we were talking about. The above resources on type were pretty general, whereas these tutorials deal mainly with text effects that you could use in posters, magazines or whatever you wish. The basics of typography apply to most of the work you will do with the tutorials below.

Go Crazy with 3D Link

3D texture
Create amazing 3D-textured text with Illustrator and Photoshop in this in-depth tutorial.


Create a spectacular flaming meteor effect on text23
Take typography one step further by having text falling from the sky in a burning inferno. Yes, this is the text-on-fire tutorial to end all text-on-fire tutorials. It uses a little Illustrator for the text and a lot of Photoshop to burn up the screen!

Flaming Meteor Effect on Text24

Funky 3D-style letters25
A straightforward guide to creating funky 3D-style letters.


How to create high-quality metal 3D text in Photoshop27
This tutorial shows you how to create 3D text and give it a high-quality metal look using only Photoshop.

Metal 3D Text in Photosop28

Light and shade29
In this tutorial we are going to take some very basic principles of light and shade to make a rather impressive-looking text effect.


Create Destructive Black and White Lettering with a Dramatic Splash Effect31
Learn how to make some expressive lettering, which includes thoughts connected with a central word. You’ll turn standard text into a stunning, destructive illustration, and give it a final unique look.


Chunky 3D letters33

Create big chunky 3D letters with this colorful tutorial!


Stunning 3D effects in 30 minutes35
Together, with a pinch of this and a dash of that, we’ll figure out how to create this cool effect in just 30 minutes.

Stunning 3D effects36

How to Quickly Create a Stylish Retro Text Effect37
Learn how to create a quite cool retro text effect. You will learn how to use the Perspective tool to create depth and how designers can use default gradients in unusual ways.

Stunning 3D effects38

3D text with a touch of grunge39
A pretty detailed tutorial that shows you how to create grungy 3D text.

3D Grunge Text40

Design soft stylized 3D type41
Learn the basics of creating polished 3D type using Illustrator and Photoshop.

Stylized 3D42

Create a 3D flowery text effect

3D Flowery Text Effect

Create a dream-like design with 3D typograph43
This detailed tutorial shows you how to create a 3D typography-based design. All the elements revolve around the theme of dreaming.

Dream 3D Typography44

Elements of Nature Link

Quick and dirty Photoshop text effects from scratch45 (six tutorials in one)
Learn how to make six different effects using just layer styles. So really, this is like six tutorials in one!

Gold Text46

Create a spectacular grass text effect in Photoshop47
In this tutorial, you will learn how to create a rather cool-looking grass text effect.

Grass Text Effect48

Plastic text49
Turn text into plastic using Photoshop’s layer styles.


Icy cold51

Get ready for winter: create icy cold text!


Text in stitches53
In this Photoshop tutorial, you will learn how to convert text to a path and stitch that path using a custom brush set.

Text In Stitches54

Wet watercolor55

A watercolor on wet paper effect. Experiment to create different painting effects.


How to create a gold text effect in Photoshop57
Learn how to create a gold text effect. I personally love this effect, so subtle yet powerful.

gold text58

Colored chrome59
Make chrome text and then color it!


Reflective liquid type61

Create liquid text, a very handy trick.

Reflective Liquid62

Wood inlay63
A decorative wood-inlay text effect.


Paper-craft text effect65
In this tutorial, you will learn how to create paper-craft text effects.


Dramatic text-on-fire effect in Photoshop67
Learn how to use a photograph of fire to strike text to the match. This is a beautiful tutorial, a must-see.

dramatic text on fire effect68

Grunge & Co. Link

How to Create a Copper Photoshop Text Effect69
This is a strong and eye-catching text effect, though relatively simple to create. You’ll be using bevel and emboss styles, pattern overlays, and combining different techniques to mock-up the text into a related background.


Vanity License Plate71

In this tutorial you’ll learn how to create a custom vanity license plate using a few basic Photoshop tools a piece of reference material and some creative layer stylings.


Star Wars text effect
A step-by-step guide to creating a Star Wars text effect.


Create a trendy typographic poster design73
Using simple shapes, you can produce some great-looking contemporary designs that create a big impact on posters; another good example being the recent Trendy Geometric Lines74 tutorial.

poster design75

Graffiti with Photoshop76

When you don’t have the guts to pull this off in the real world, Photoshop to the rescue. Learn how to make graffiti with Photoshop.


Super-cool frilly bits typography78
In this tutorial, you will learn how to mix some vectors with letters to create a really nice design. This one is a personal favorite.

frilly bits typography79

Typography wallpaper in Photoshop80
Why not design your own typographic wallpaper from now on?

Typography Wallpaper81

Dirty grunge text82
Create dirty grunge text in Photoshop.


Learn how to make stylish floral typography.


Worn and torn86

Create worn and torn text with this easy-to-follow guide.


Grunge rubber stamp.88
Create a grunge rubber stamp effect in seven simple steps.


Distorted letters90
Learn to distort letters using Photoshop brushes with this amazingly easy tutorial.


Decorative text

Learn how to decorate text with colorful floral patterns in this tutorial.


Light and Glass Link

A slick supernatural text effect92

Create a smoky night effect with text, giving it an eerie supernatural feel. It’s a good exercise in using the wave distortion filter.

Supernatural Text Effect93

Smoke type in Photoshop in 10 steps94
Learn how to create a smoke typography effect by playing with some brushes and adjustment layers. It’s a very easy tutorial, and you will be able to finish the whole process in 5 to 10 minutes.

Smoke Type.95

Moonshine effect96
In just a few simple steps, you can add a soft, calm, easy-going moon-like text effect.


Transparent glass lettering in Photoshop98

In this tutorial, you’ll use some super layer effects and a bit of magic to make a lettering style that looks transparent and stunning.

Transparent Glass Lettering99

Scan-line text100
Create a style dubbed “Scan-Line Text,” which is basically text that glows like bright scan lines, with a smart reflection as well. Learn how to create this amazing yet simple effect with this easy-to-follow tutorial.

Scanline Text101

Create a layered glowing text effect102
In this tutorial, we will create this effect using very basic Photoshop tools and layering effects.

Layered Glowing Text103

Vibrant pop text effect104

In just a few moments, you can add a vibrant splash to your text that will really give your design a pop-culture flavor!

Vibrant Pop Text105

Slow-shutter effect106
Learn how to create this beautiful slow-shutter text effect.

shutter effect107

Colorful glow108
A colorful, glowing text effect, great for integrating in designs with dark backgrounds.


Retro and Vintage Link

Colorful retro text
A colorful retro text effect using both Illustrator and Photoshop.


Colorful watercolor110
Learn to make a colorful and distinctive watercolor text effect with this tutorial.


Experiments Link

Furry text112
Create a tactile, furry text effect that looks like the real thing!


Barbed wire114
Wrap your text in barbed wire!


Light burst116

An amazing light-burst effect!


Flower text118
Create a pretty floral text effect. It looks difficult but is surprisingly easy!<!–


Further Resources Link

You may want to take a look at the following related round-ups:

You’ll find even more tutorials on these websites:

Smashing eBooks Link

Also, you may want to take a look at some of our Smashing eBooks:


Footnotes Link

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  2. 2 /2010/09/22/round-up-of-useful-adobe-photoshop-techniques-tutorials-and-tools/
  3. 3 /2009/06/01/60-amazing-poster-and-advertisment-tutorials/
  4. 4 /2008/12/07/50-excellent-digital-photography-photoshop-tutorials/
  5. 5 /2008/11/03/photoshop-tutorials-to-improve-modeling-skills/
  6. 6 /2008/10/14/30-beautiful-vintageretro-photoshop-tutorials/
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  10. 10 /2010/11/16/web-typography-100-educational-resources-tools-and-techniques/
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  13. 13 /2008/02/25/breathtaking-typographic-posters/
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  16. 16 /2011/03/24/how-to-choose-a-typeface/
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  18. 18 /2010/12/14/what-font-should-i-use-five-principles-for-choosing-and-using-typefaces/
  19. 19 /tag/free-fonts/
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  120. 120 /2008/12/07/50-excellent-digital-photography-photoshop-tutorials/
  121. 121 /2008/07/15/70-beauty-retouching-photoshop-tutorials/
  122. 122 /2008/11/03/photoshop-tutorials-to-improve-modeling-skills/
  123. 123 /2008/10/28/40-beautiful-grunge-photoshop-tutorials/
  124. 124 /2008/10/14/30-beautiful-vintageretro-photoshop-tutorials/
  125. 125 /2008/04/03/adobe-photoshop-tutorials-rainbows-glows-and-light-effects/
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SmashingConf New York

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Andrew Gibson is a photographer and writer. He runs Magical Places Fine Art, an online photography magazine and another great photography resource.

  1. 1

    Wow!!! Great Collection of Text Effects Tutorials. Two thumbs up for SM.

  2. 3

    inspiring! …cool sm!

  3. 4

    lot of nice stuff here. will be playing around with some of these in the future during designs

  4. 5

    Michael Chacon

    March 4, 2009 6:19 pm

    great! Thanks so much!

  5. 6

    Webnip Jonathan

    March 4, 2009 6:38 pm

    Nice, some of these could be usefull ! People ofter underestimate the importance of typography ;-)

  6. 7

    wow that’s cool.
    like them all


  7. 8

    this is awesome. thank you so much.

  8. 9

    Great list, very useful !

  9. 10

    Very Cool! Good job SM.

  10. 11

    Wtf… AWESOME dude! Very, very and VERY awesome list.

    Thanks! :D

  11. 12

    really gorgeous

  12. 13

    Anyone have a mirror for the “Super-cool frilly bits typography” tutorial? Site seems to be MIA and it looks interesting. Awesome list, by the way!

  13. 14

    Hey! Thanks for featuring my tutorial. It’s an honor. I haven’t had time to write many tutorials lately, maybe I’ll find time now :)

  14. 15

    Chetan Kumar N

    March 4, 2009 8:42 pm

    Amazing mind blowing thks a lot for the collection

  15. 16

    Ejaz Siddiqui

    March 4, 2009 9:22 pm

    Great List, I would love to see more tutorials on typography. Thanks

  16. 17

    Houssam Zein

    March 4, 2009 9:39 pm

    I am getting addicted to this site – Smashing

  17. 18

    Rahul Acharya

    March 4, 2009 9:42 pm

    Great collection, thanks for this awesome list.

  18. 19

    Ohh! Glad to see mine – C for Creativity being featured on Smash! Thank You!
    And awesome list as always!

  19. 20

    Dan Whitmore

    March 4, 2009 11:43 pm

    No offence, but how many MORE times do we need to see a ‘text effect photoshop tutorials’ list showing the same old tutorials again?

    Unique content please!

    • 21

      Why don’t you stop being rude and obnoxious and stop coming to this website if you are just gonna be a big meanie!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m offended.

  20. 22

    Allahverdi Sefihanov

    March 4, 2009 11:52 pm

    effect of CRAFT is simple but awesome… really stunning…

  21. 23

    “Papercraft text effect” is mentioned twice. Fix it! :)

  22. 24

    Rene Kriest ProBloggerWorld

    March 5, 2009 12:04 am

    Great list.

    However the Papercraft Text Effect is shown twice.

  23. 25

    two thumbs up!

  24. 26

    I really like the watercolor effect.
    Great list, thanks!

  25. 27

    nice round up…. THNX

  26. 28

    There are some fantastic text effects here, really inspiring stuff. Love the mix of stitching and type think they work great together, also the organic mix of images and textures here blow me away. Nice to see a lot of psdtut’s quality work being showcased.
    Keep up the good work!

  27. 29

    amazing!!! great effects!!

  28. 30

    I’ve always been using fireworks, but this time i think i gonna have to start learning photoshop.

  29. 31 is suspended is not found (to me at least)

    Amazing article trough!

  30. 32

    Absolutelly stunning! Thanx a lot!

  31. 33

    Nice collection of tutorials!

    I just wanted to point out that currently, the “Floral” tutoial’s picture’s link adds these two quotation marks at the end, causing a 404 error… But the actual “Floral” text link above it is correct.

  32. 34

    Nice collection. Thanks!

  33. 35

    Words can’t describe the awesomeness

    Some of sites are down/suspended

  34. 36

    Amy Stoddard

    March 5, 2009 3:29 am

    I usually love the Smashing posts, but I agree w/ a couple of others who said this feels like a post you did before.

  35. 37

    fernando filho

    March 5, 2009 3:55 am

    I made a Colorful glow text for my blog using this tutorial. Amazing

  36. 38

    Way too much AWESOME stuff coming out at the moment, I can’t keep up with it all. Another 10/10 post!

  37. 39

    Thanks for this fantastic post! So educational and so useful. This type of post is why I keep coming back to Smashing.

  38. 40

    I’m really enjoying this site at the moment – I feel it went downhill a little for a bit, but it’s right back up there now with my top daily reads :)

    Thanks for the compilation.

  39. 41

    awesome ! I bookmarked this site !

  40. 42

    isnt this an old post? I’ve seen just the same collection either its one of your old post or you ripped someone elses work.


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