The 50 Best Photoshop Tutorials of 2009

Dec 26 2009 by Callum Chapman | 68 Comments

Looking back this year (2009), we have had some incredible tutorials that have taught hundreds and thousands of people new skills in Adobe Photoshop. We’ve been searching the web from America to Germany to the UK and have managed to compile a list of the 50 of the very best Photoshop tutorials this year.

Happy learning and wishing you all the luck in 2010!

Top 50 Adobe Photoshop Tutorials of 2009

1. How to Mold Paint Splatter to a Face in Photoshop

Use various tools such as the Cloning tool to remove facial features and the Brush tool to create a realistic splatter merged with professional blending techniques to mould the paint splatter over a face.

How to Mold Paint Splatter to a Face in Photoshop

2. How to Create a 3D Text Photo Manipulation

Learn how to combine vector art with pixel art in this superb tutorial here at Six Revisions. Use various blending modes and manipulation techniques to make a flat-looking 3D object really pop out.

How to Create a 3D Text Photo Manipulation

3. Manipulate Smoke to Create Hyper-Real Images

Learn to apply the Warp tool effectively (as well as a few other tricks) to manipulate real smoke to look like a skull. You can use the technique on other various mediums such as water and clouds.

Manipulate Smoke to Create Hyper-Real Images

4. Combine Photo Elements to Create a Surreal Photo Manipulation

Use color balances and levels to change the overall feel of a stock photo, and the Burn tool to make certain areas of an image darker than others to make them appear correctly in any given environment. Select areas of stock photos using the Magnetic Lasso tool or a quick mask and merge them into your composition.

Combine Photo Elements to Create a Surreal Photo Manipulation

5. Design a Vintage Radio Icon in Photoshop

Use gradients and custom strokes to make flat objects appear three-dimensional – combine this with stock photography and textures to produce a vintage and very realistic radio icon. The same technique can also be used to produce other icons such as guitar amplifiers and televisions.

Design a Vintage Radio Icon in Photoshop

6. How to Create a Retro Hippy Van Poster in Photoshop

Learn how to combine vector art with pixels, add texture to clean artwork, and play with blending modes. A little bit of shameless self-promotion here, but this tutorial did get me a lot of great feedback, and the first part of the tutorial (the vector van) is going to be featured in a top French Design magazine!

How to Create a Retro Hippy Van Poster in Photoshop

7. Create a Funky Perspective of a Model Riding Digital Volume

Use professional manipulation and editing techniques with various stock photos to make a beautiful composition. Use the Warp tool to change angles and shapes to make them fit exactly how you want them in your composition.

Create a Funky Perspective of a Model Riding Digital Volume

8. Create a Realistic Space Scene from Scratch with Photoshop

Follow this tutorial and work with textures, levels and layer styles to create a realistic and incredibly awesome space scene.

Create a Realistic Space Scene from Scratch with Photoshop

9. Create a Vintage Traveler Diary in Photoshop

Learn how to combine stock photos, photography and textures to create a vintage composition whose primary elements are a world map, a diary and a cup of coffee to finish things off.

Create a Vintage Traveler Diary in Photoshop

10. How to Create an Abstract Business Card in Photoshop

Make use of Photoshop’s guides and custom type settings to create an abstract typography-based designer’s business card.

How to Create an Abstract Business Card in Photoshop

11. Create a Simple Vibrant Light Effect in Photoshop

Get your torch and SLR camera out for this tutorial as you’ll be needing it to create some superb lighting effects. Combine that with Photoshop’s excellent selection of image adjustment tools such as levels, curves and the hue/saturation level to produce a stunning vibrant light effect.

Create a Simple Vibrant Light Effect in Photoshop

12. Create a Cool Wet Ink Typography Effect in Photoshop

Combine neat and tidy typography with gradient splats, a handful of coffee-stained textures and some ink brushes, and what do you get? A modern and very cool wet ink typography effect!

Create a Cool Wet Ink Typography Effect in Photoshop

13. How to Create Retro Art in Photoshop

Retro/vintage art is one of the most-loved design trends of 2009 and we’re sure that’s not going anywhere quickly! In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to manipulate stock photographs, work with the Pen tool and make your overall composition look retro!

How to Create Retro Art in Photoshop

14. Create a Slow Motion Bullet Shot Effect

In this extremely detailed tutorial, you’ll learn how to make various components of a television remote control including the back, front, individual buttons and even the circuit-board. Why? Because you’re about to combine the lot together to make an almost life-like motion bullet shot effect!

Create a Slow Motion Bullet Shot Effect

15. Design a Stunning Sneaker Advert

Use the Eraser tool to remove areas of a stock image to nicely combine it around another object. You’ll also create custom lines with the Pen tool and learn how to stroke and skew them and turn them in to little colorful beams of light.

Design a Stunning Sneaker Advert

16. How to Create Remarkable 3D Text in Photoshop

Learn how to duplicate layers by nudging them down to create a remarkable 3D typography effect in Photoshop without the aid of 3D software. Learn how to create a drop shadow and add realistic lighting effects to finish off your newly learned text effect technique.

How to Create Remarkable 3D Text in Photoshop

17. How to Design a Vintage Horror Movie Poster in Photoshop

In this tutorial you’ll learn various techniques and effects on how to reproduce a legendary film poster for the popular horror movie called "Day of the Dead". You’ll be using and manipulating various textures and stock photos to create a great composition.

How to Design a Vintage Horror Movie Poster in Photoshop

18. Combine Textures with Vectors

Sometimes vector art can look a little too crisp and unnatural. In this tutorial, Derek Lea will be teaching you how to combine your vector art with textures to give it an awesome worn-and-torn look!

Combine Textures with Vectors

19. Awesome Milk Typography Effect in Photoshop

After learning how to create some custom typography in Illustrator, you’ll be instructed in great detail how to merge stock photographs of (splashing) milk with your custom type to produce this great milky typography effect.

Awesome Milk Typography Effect in Photoshop

20. Extinction by Chanito

With some help from Cinema 4D to create your text, you’ll be using brushes, motion blurs and various stock photos and textures with different blending modes to create this wonderful piece of typography art.

Extinction by Chanito

21. How to Create a Clean Web 2.0 Style Web Design in Photoshop

Learn how to correctly use a grid layout template when designing a new website. Combine various tools and effects to create a clean and modern "web 2.0" style web mock-up.

How to Create a Clean Web 2.0 Style Web Design in Photoshop

22. Create a Trendy Galactic Poster Design in Photoshop

In this tutorial by Chris Spooner, you’ll be learning how to use advanced lighting techniques and stock photography manipulation to produce a trendy galactic style poster design.

Create a Trendy Galactic Poster Design in Photoshop

23. Retro Geometric Vectors in Space with Illustrator and Photoshop

Effectively combine vector files with pixel art in this great tutorial by Fabio Sasso. You’ll learn how to create custom geometric shapes in Illustrator and then merge them with some great Photoshop lighting effects and noise filters.

Retro Geometric Vectors in Space with Illustrator and Photoshop

24. Colorful Glowing Text Effect in Photoshop

Create some custom-sized type in Photoshop and manipulate it using various techniques such as adding glows, playing with motion blurs, modifying colors and adding reflections.

Colorful Glowing Text Effect in Photoshop

25. Design a Modern and Sleek Web Design Mockup in Photoshop

Follow through the detailed web design tutorial to learn how to create a simple but modern and sleek mock-up in Photoshop.

Design a Modern and Sleek Web Design Mockup in Photoshop

26. Design a Clean Portfolio Site in Photoshop

Learn how to correctly and effectively use guides to your advantage when designing for the web, and pick up several tips and tricks along the way whilst you pay attention to every single tiny detail in the design.

Design a Clean Portfolio Site in Photoshop

27. Space Explosion Photoshop Tutorial

This incredible and inspiring tutorial by Tyler Bramer published on Smashing Magazine is probably one of the most detailed of the year. You’ll learn an endless amount of techniques in the tutorial including photo manipulation, blending techniques, lighting effects and much, much more!

Space Explosion Photoshop Tutorial

28. How to make a Typographic, Retro, Space Face

Create a slightly freakish typography and retro "space face" in this tutorial by following through the detailed steps on how to manipulate typography, add extreme bursts of color and how to effectively use light to make your image stand out.

How to make a Typographic, Retro, Space Face

29. 3D Typography Tutorial in Photoshop & Illustrator

Once again you’ll be using both Illustrator and Photoshop in this tutorial: Illustrator to create the 3D typography, and Photoshop to add some great lighting effects, gradients, shadows and an awesome HDR effect.

3D Typography Tutorial in Photoshop & Illustrator

30. Create a Furious Pink Panther Poster

In this tutorial you’ll be manually tracing a stock photograph in Photoshop (graphics tablet recommended!), adding some awesome colored grungy and splattered areas followed by some great halftone brushes and some strong, bold typography.

Create a Furious Pink Panther Poster

31. Make a Vintage Magazine Ad in Photoshop

Deconstruct and reproduce a vintage magazine advertisement in Photoshop by following this superb tutorial by Danny Outlaw at his blog Outlaw Design. Learn how to professionally combine grungy textures with a clean and professional stock photograph.

Make a Vintage Magazine Ad in Photoshop

32. How to Create a "Worn Paper" Web Layout

Follow this great tutorial written by Matthew Heidenreich to produce a trendy and modern paper-themed web design mock-up. Use various textured photographs and scanned images to make a realistic paper look.

How to Create a "Worn Paper" Web Layout

33. Creative Photoshop Animal King Photo Manipulation Tutorial

In this detailed and (probably) very recognized manipulation, you’ll learn how to manipulate and merge a lion’s head and various other items and creatures into a famous portrait painting of Napoleon.

Creative Photoshop Animal King Photo Manipulation Tutorial

34. Create a Winter Theme Web Design in Photoshop

Although this tutorial by Ionut Ciursa is relatively new, it lands a well-deserved place in this list. You’ll learn some very handy techniques such as making a frosted header banner and how to effectively use guides when designing for the web.

Create a Winter Theme Web Design in Photoshop

35. iPhone Gift Ribbon Tutorial

In this tutorial you’ll learn how to create an Apple-inspired application gift ribbon (as seen in Apple’s latest Christmas promotional period). You’ll be using various tools such as the Warp Transform tool and the Gradient tool.

iPhone Gift Ribbon Tutorial

36. Design a Stylish Mail Icon in Photoshop

Use the Pen tool and several layer styles to produce a modern and stylish mail icon in Photoshop. Icons created using this technique are suitable for the web, print documents, and even application icons.

Design a Stylish Mail Icon in Photoshop

37. Very Easy Heroes Eclipse in Photoshop

The popular TV show, "Heroes", has become a hit for the catchy storylines and the fantastic art that is associated it. This tutorial shows how to produce the eclipse in very simple and easy to understand steps. You’ll learn some great lighting techniques as well as how to apply grungy textures.

Very Easy Heroes Eclipse in Photoshop

38. Master Special Finishes

This could ultimately be one of the best and most helpful tutorials you’ll ever read. Learn simple but superb techniques on how to add special finishes to your print work such as spot colors, spot varnishes and more!

Master Special Finishes

39. Creating an Abstract Watercolor Wallpaper

To make this great watercolor wallpaper effect in Photoshop, you’ll need to know how to use advanced layer mask techniques. Not too sure how to do that? This tutorial teaches it perfectly.

Creating an Abstract Watercolor Wallpaper

40. How to Create a Cool and Stylish Green Poster Design in Photoshop

Combine various blending modes and manipulation techniques in this tutorial to create a stylish and modern green planet with wavy lines.

How to Create a Cool and Stylish Green Poster Design in Photoshop

41. Killer 3D Poster Design with 3DS Max & Photoshop

This tutorial combines both 3D Max (20%) and Photoshop (the remaining 80%) but can, however, all be produced in Photoshop. You will be learning techniques on the basics of lighting, mapping, rendering, applying textures blurs and various other tips and tricks to produce this galactic style poster design.

Killer 3D Poster Design with 3DS Max & Photoshop

42. How to Create a Severed Arm in Photoshop

If you want a way to freak out your other half or one of your friends, this is a great technique to learn. Taught by Simon Rudd, he walks you through the steps on how to separate limbs (nice!) using various tools and techniques such as how to use the Heal tool, how to use layer masks and how to use adjustment levels.

How to Create a Severed Arm in Photoshop

43. Design a Slick 3D Ice Text Effect

Andrew Houle talks you though how to create some great 3D typography in this tutorial. You’ll learn how to color 3D illustrations by using gradients and how to use hue, saturation and lightness levels to productively change the feel of the final image.

Design a Slick 3D Ice Text Effect

44. Creating ‘Broken Link’

In this tutorial, David Cousens takes you through the design process of his digital painting "Broken Link" from sketch to the finalized digital piece of art. Throughout the tutorial you’re bound to pick up on hundreds of little techniques such as light sources, basic drawing techniques and how to add a bit of a dirty feel to your final image.

Creating 'Broken Link'

45. Create a Realistic Grunge Peeling Sticker in Photoshop

In this awesome tutorial you’ll learn how to make a realistic and grungy peeling sticker from scratch using Photoshop’s simple tools such as the Ellipse tool, the Polygonal Lasso tool and feathered brushes. This tutorial is great for making your own icons for web and print, or even for designing your own real stickers!

Create a Realistic Grunge Peeling Sticker in Photoshop

46. Letterpress Text Effect

This effect is known as the "letterpress text effect" and has been a huge design trend of 2009 – the effect is still expanding and I can’t see it going very far in 2010. For that reason, this tutorial by Chris Spooner made it into the list with a well deserved place. Use very simple techniques to create this stylish and effective text effect!

Letterpress Text Effect

47. Super Cool Watercolor Effect in 10 Steps in Photoshop

This piece of art was inspired by the master Scott Hansen. Fabio Sasso walks you through how to create your own digital wallpaper like Hansen’s using a combination of layer masks and watercolor brushes.

Super Cool Watercolor Effect in 10 Steps in Photoshop

48. How to Create 3D Text Blocks in Photoshop

In this tutorial, university lecturer Eren Goksel will teach you how to use the 3D Orbit tool, the Mosaic filter and various other techniques to design a 3D text block type effect in Photoshop.

How to Create 3D Text Blocks in Photoshop

49. How to Create Stunning and Bold 3D Text

To create your own stunning and bold 3D text you will use a combination of Illustrator and Photoshop to create your 3D type and several layer styles and tools such as the bevel and emboss style, Gaussian blurs and layer masks.

How to Create Stunning and Bold 3D Text

50. Create a Leather-Textured Realistic Briefcase Icon

Combine the use of textures, rendered clouds and loads of great tools and techniques to produce a realistic briefcase icon that can be used for various projects, both web and print.

Create a Leather-Textured Realistic Briefcase Icon

Related Content

About the Author

Callum Chapman is a mobile and web user interface designer. He has worked with many internationally known brands as well his own projects such as Dotgrid.co. You can follow Callum on Twitter at @callumchapman.

68 Comments

edgar

December 26th, 2009

great! very useful thanx!

designfollow

December 26th, 2009

great tutorials.

thank you very much.

Tomas

December 26th, 2009

Awesome collection Callum, well done.

Mike

December 26th, 2009

Thank you very much for this post.
Amazing! Now i’m able to create a brand for my blog :)

Jay

December 26th, 2009

Great list! Thanks!

Steven Snell

December 26th, 2009

Great collection, and thanks for including one of my tutorials.

Callum Chapman

December 26th, 2009

Glad you like it guys, and no problem Steven! :)

francodane

December 26th, 2009

Excellent list of tut’s thanks and have a happy 2010

marcel

December 26th, 2009

Nice tutorials, very inspiring!

Arcnerva Florida

December 26th, 2009

Great stuff, congratulations to everyone featured. What a help all of these tutorials have been to everyone.

Sneh Roy

December 26th, 2009

Awesome stuff!

Kresna

December 26th, 2009

This is just great, yeahh! u rock man . .

mupet

December 26th, 2009

Great photoshop tutorial collections, thanks for sharing

honour chick

December 27th, 2009

awesome compilation… thanks for sharing these tutorials ;)

Code_Di

December 27th, 2009

Some are best tutorial of 2009, some are not, some an consider trend, technique rather than best. u somewhat make me feel like u random list…

Tom Ross

December 27th, 2009

Fantastic compilation Callum! Thanks so much for including 2 tutorials from PSDFAN!

Smashing Share

December 27th, 2009

Nice collection Callum.

GFX-Sector

December 27th, 2009

Great compilation of pretty photoshop tutorials, thank you very much :)

Autonomy

December 27th, 2009

Thanks Callum for compiling such a robust list! I am bookmarking this page.

alfredo

December 27th, 2009

holycrap!! I thought this article was written by Austin Powers

Jaan

December 28th, 2009

Fantabulous article !

Jan Cavan

December 28th, 2009

Thanks for including my tutorials on this list! :)

Angel_Ivy

December 28th, 2009

WOW! Really good tutorials. nice. Thanks!

Callum Chapman

December 28th, 2009

Thanks guys. In reply to Code_Di, just because you consider some as ‘trends’ it doesn’t mean you can’t learn new tips and techniques from following the tutorial through. It’s not about the outcome but instead about what YOU do to get to the outcome. You don’t have to complete a tutorial word for word, chuck some of your own techniques in there too!

w3planting

December 28th, 2009

awesome photoshop tutorial collections, thanks for sharing with us.

Rick

December 28th, 2009

Considering the retro-trend that was heavy throughout 2009, and its likely decline coming soon, I was surprised to see a tutorial I wrote not on the list: http://blog.bullseyecreative.net/my-life-in-technicolor-photoshop-tutorial/

Regardless, this is an excellent list of tutorials that I’m finding a lot of inspiration from! The severed arm tutorial is pretty crazy; and the 3D letters in Photoshop are amazing. Great list, Callum!

SmashingWebs

December 28th, 2009

Nice post. Inspiring one :)

TimeDSG

December 28th, 2009

great tutorials man!
Thanks!

Steve Martin

December 29th, 2009

Really awesome bunch of photoshop tutorials with illustration.. A brilliant round-up.. I will surely try some of these techniques.. Thanks for sharing..

Ella

December 29th, 2009

Great tutorials..Those are really cool!

Federico Capoano

December 30th, 2009

I did the number 24 from TUTORIAL9 (Colorful Glowing Text Effect) in september 2008, i checked the date.
Btw nice collection, thanks.

Tyler

December 30th, 2009

Thanks for adding some of my tutorials!

Benjamin Rama

December 31st, 2009

good article Callum glad to see your work around : )

hartnett2008

December 31st, 2009

hi …great job…can i know where i can download this tutorials “pdf files ” ? pleas contact me here : josh.hartnett@hotmail.fr……thanks

Bryan McAnulty

January 4th, 2010

Great list. There are some really impressive and inspiring tutorials in there.

Matt Lewsley

January 5th, 2010

This is a great collection – especially like the website mock-up tutorials – thanks.

Justin Moore-Brown

January 8th, 2010

A ridiculously awesome list! This should keep me busy for a while!

colleen

January 8th, 2010

many, many thanks for the inspiration and motivation that I need…

sacrosact

January 9th, 2010

wooow,.. it’s nice tutorial, thx 4 an article,..

subhankar

January 18th, 2010

Hi……
Nice tutorials, very inspiring….
I want more tutorials…….

putrinipun

February 11th, 2010

thanks for the info! :D

Rosch

March 11th, 2010

Great information and some wonderful work!

Espreson

March 24th, 2010

I liked the Portfolio design above all….

Mustafa Sazak

March 24th, 2010

Awesome tutorials! Thanks!

adjee

March 30th, 2010

Very good list, thank you very much! I hope I would have the time to learn them all.

Bhuwan Roka

April 25th, 2010

Nice ……Good technique.Keep it up

Okinta

May 1st, 2010

Thanks :o

Master

May 7th, 2010

Great Work
i found a fantastic Website for really cool Photoshop Tutorials

http://www.tutorials99.com

where all tutorials have a higher page rank and professional

Tyler

May 18th, 2010

Great list, a ton of good links!

tella

May 27th, 2010

xoxo

Tess

June 30th, 2010

Really great tutorials with some amazing end results :) Great thanks for this share.

Abhilash Thekkel

August 6th, 2010

Great collection. Thanks for sharing

John606

August 8th, 2010

Very nice site!

Rizal

September 2nd, 2010

very cool tutorial. I want to try all of this tutorial. thanks for sharing useful knowledge.

Shahzada Qassimy

November 23rd, 2010

Very Fantastic Collection

Thanks be active as before…!

Zimm Noyelle

January 8th, 2011

The smoke manipulating tutorial is so nice, just to think about it.

BraVo

January 15th, 2011

Thanks for sharing!
I will try “Mold Paint Splatter to a Face” technique at my next work.

BraVo

sam

February 5th, 2011

hai i need original adobe photoshop can anyone help me …..

Nargile

April 12th, 2011

Thank you very much,nice share

meamea

August 3rd, 2011

so cool,so nice,thanks.

Sakthi

August 17th, 2011

great,nice collection thank u

Anuj Sharma

September 3rd, 2011

Jhakkas………..

Tharik Ahamed

September 8th, 2011

Nice and Thanks…

laron

September 15th, 2011

Thanks for share! Very nice work

Alexander

November 27th, 2011

Chapman i really like ur designs please keep it up and i will fellow ur steps goodbyee

Mossanga

August 31st, 2012

Thanks man
I think your very correct and accurate in finding and designings.

thank alot.

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