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Photoshop: Create & Personalize Obama’s HOPE Poster Design

September 7, 2019

This tutorial is sponsored by Fotophire, the easiest and most user-friendly way to perfect your photos with just a few clicks. In just seconds, you can remove unwanted objects,
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is giving everyone a $50 discount off its price. Click the link in my video’s description! Hi. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. Politics aside, I’m going to show you how
to recreate the iconic “HOPE” poster of Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential campaign
designed by Shepard Fairey using a different headshot. This is an update of a tutorial I did many
years ago on a much earlier version of Photoshop. Before we begin, I want to mention that I’ll
be moving a bit faster for more advanced users. I provided a Photoshop template that you can
download, so you can follow along. Its link in located in my video’s description or project files. It includes the original “Hope” poster design
and a separate layer of the framed border including the bottom shape that your text
will be placed onto. In addition, I included the link to the font,
“Nevis Bold”, which is relatively close to the original font, “Gotham” used in the poster. “Gotham” isn’t free, but “Nevis Bold” is. Open a photo of someone that you’d like to
use for this project. It can be color or black and white. The first step is to make a selection around
your subject. Since I want the selection to be as sharp
as possible, I drew paths with the Pen Tool and then converted it into a selection. I did an in-depth tutorial of the Pen Tool,
so if you’d like to watch it, I provided that link, as well. Once you made a selection around your subject,
click the Layer Mask icon to make a layer mask of the selection next to your subject. We’ll convert he entire layer into a Smart
Object, so we can modify it non-destructively. To do this, click the icon at the upper, right
and click “Convert to Smart Object”. With your Move Tool active, drag the subject
onto the tab of the poster template. Without releasing your mouse or pen, drag
it down and release. Drag the subject below the frame. We’ll make a new layer below the subject by
Ctrl-clicking or Cmd-clicking the New Layer icon. In this empty layer, we’ll create a two-tone,
gray background behind the subject. But first, go to View. If “Rulers” and “Snap” aren’t checked, just
click on them to make them active. Go to the ruler on the left and drag out a
guideline to the middle until it snaps in place. If you don’t see the guide line, press Ctrl
or Cmd + H. If your foreground and background colors aren’t black and white respectively,
press “D” on your keyboard. Click the foreground color to open the Color Picker. In the Brightness field, type in 50%. The, click OK or press Enter or Return. Open your “Rectangular Marquee Tool” and drag
a rectangular selection over the left side of the poster, making sure it snaps to the
middle guide line. Fill it with the foreground color by pressing
Alt or Option + Delete. Deselect it by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + D. Click the foreground color again and type in 25% for the Brightness. This time, drag your tool
over the right side of the poster, making sure it snaps to the guide line. Fill it with the foreground color and deselect it. Make the frame visible. Hide the guide line by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + H. Go to View and click “Snap” to deactivate it. Make your subject active. We want the top of our subject’s head to go
beyond the frame. If it’s not, just drag it up. If you want to enlarge your subject instead,
open your Transform Tool by pressing Ctrl or Cmd + T. Go to a corner and when you see
a diagonal, double-arrow, press and hold Alt or Option + Shift as you drag it out. Go to Filter, Blur and Surface Blur. Type in 10 for the Radius and the Threshold. Surface Blur essentially blurs an image while
preserving the edges. Go back to Filter and click “Filter Gallery”. Open the “Artistic” folder and click “Cutout”. Make the “Number of Levels”: 5 because the
poster has 5 colors. Make the “Edge Simplicity”: 5 and the “Edge Fidelity”: 1. To save some space in the Layers panel, click
the small arrow icon on the right of the layer, which collapses the effects. Click the Adjustment
layer icon and click “Channel Mixer”. Check “Monochrome”, which makes all the colors neutral gray. If your photo is already black and white,
it’s still a good step to use, since there may be a subtle color cast to it. Click the Adjustment layer icon again and
click “Posterize”. Make the Levels: 5. This sets the number of tonal levels (or brightness
values) for each channel in an image. Open your Magic Wand Tool. Make the Tolerance: 10, check “Anti-Alias” and make sure “Contiguous” is not checked. Click on the second lightest tone of your subject to make a selection of it. Go to Select and Save Selection. Click OK and deselect it. Click the Adjustment layer icon one more time and click “Gradient Map”. Click the gradient bar to open the Gradient Editor. Click the lower, left Stop. This will be our darkest color. Click the color box and in the hexadecimal
field, type in 00324D. Then, click OK or press Enter or Return. Click below the gradient bar to create a new Stop. For its Location, type in 25%. Click the color box and type in E01825. Make another Stop and for its location, type in 50%. For its color, type in 7498A4. Click the lower, right Stop and for its location,
type in 75%. For its color, type in FDE5A9. Click the right corner under the bar to add
another Stop. Notice this Stop’s location is 100% and it’s
color is the same as the one to its left. To save more space in the Layers panel, we’ll
place all of the Adjustment layers into a folder. To do this, Shift-click the bottom adjustment
layer to make all of them active and press Ctrl or Cmd + G. Name it “Adjustment layers”. We’ll make a new layer below the folder by
Ctrl-clicking or Cmd-clicking the New Layer icon. Click the foreground color and for Brightness, type in 50%. Fill the empty layer with the foreground color. The reason it’s not gray is because the gradient
map adjustment layer delineated the 50% gray tone into this specific blue color. Go to Filter and Filter Gallery. Close the “Artistic” folder and open the “Sketch” folder. Click “Halftone Pattern”. The Pattern Type is: “Line”, the Contrast
is: 50 and the Size is: 1. Open the Channels panel. If you don’t see it, go to Window and “Channels”. Ctrl-click or Cmd-click the the thumbnail
of “Alpha 1”, which makes a selection of it. Open back your Layers panel and click the
Layer mask icon to make a layer mask of the selection next to the line pattern. We’re ready to add the text. Make the frame layer active. Our text will be placed above it. Open your Horizontal Type Tool and pick “Nevis
Bold”, which is the font I provided the link to. I’ll make the size temporarily 225 points,
Sharp and Center Alignment. Click the color box and click the blue background
to pick up its color. Click on your document and type out your text. To adjust the space between two characters,
click between those characters and press and hold Alt or Option as you press the right
or left arrow key on your keyboard. To resize it, click your Move Tool and open
your Transform Tool. Position and resize it over the dark blue
panel. Then, press Enter or return. To center it, press Ctrl or Cmd + A to select the canvas and click the “Align Horizontal Centers” icon. Then, deselect it. Lastly, make a composite snapshot of the poster
by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Alt + E on Windows or Cmd + Shift + Option + E on a Mac. Doing this, results with a stronger line pattern
in the poster. Flattening the layers also creates the same effect. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. Thanks for watching!


  • Reply Binty McFrazzles January 8, 2018 at 12:23 am

    Good morning, Marty!

  • Reply allen paul January 8, 2018 at 12:24 am

    👍 great

  • Reply Eric January 8, 2018 at 12:46 am


  • Reply Devika Bajaj January 8, 2018 at 2:16 am


  • Reply AHoboWithAHome January 8, 2018 at 2:34 am

    Just wanna thank you for doing these amazing tutorials

  • Reply Christopher Ivicic January 8, 2018 at 3:07 am

    Thank you… awesome as always.

  • Reply uch sawin January 8, 2018 at 6:09 am

    Thank you!

  • Reply françois francois January 8, 2018 at 7:14 am

    very nice work, but it misses the iris of the eye , merci MARTY

  • Reply David Hurley January 8, 2018 at 11:57 am

    Excellent as always. A lovely tribute to the king on what would have been his 83rd birthday today.

  • Reply Miroslav Vincelj January 8, 2018 at 12:56 pm

    Nice as always. 🙂

  • Reply yaso yaso January 8, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    you are the best thank you

  • Reply Ismaeil MAZZI January 8, 2018 at 11:11 pm

    Perfect as always sir thanks so much and please keep it up

  • Reply diverandy77 January 8, 2018 at 11:16 pm

    Is it possible to use the image as a smart object to quickly replace one image with another?

  • Reply Anggi Pistol January 10, 2018 at 1:14 pm

    oh dude , i get it ♥

  • Reply Yegeda Music January 11, 2018 at 3:58 am

    Nice. I knew Elvis wasn't dead but i never imagined him doing photoshop tutorials

  • Reply Agami Miri January 11, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    help me .. I cant add background color via alt + Del .. says samrt object cannot be directly edited

  • Reply A. S. García January 12, 2018 at 12:56 am

    Implacable trabajo !!!

    Gracias maestro por compartir tus magníficos conocimientos.

  • Reply Ciise Carabey 7 January 13, 2018 at 3:26 am


  • Reply shane mahoney January 22, 2018 at 10:53 am

    Your videos are awesome, as they are clear and very informative. Thankyou.

  • Reply Samiron Barai January 23, 2018 at 4:57 pm

    Can you create an tutorial about kfc logo?

  • Reply Abhishek Singh January 30, 2018 at 10:41 am

    Hi Marty! After applying all the described adjustment layers, the features such as eyes nose in my portrait are not visible like in yours.

  • Reply codeName_KC February 5, 2018 at 5:59 pm

    I've started a photoshop-series on my channel where I want to make tutorials on interesting Photoshop effects. Check my out for some photoshop goodnes, and soon some app development talk aswell 😉

  • Reply Pauline Merlin February 8, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    Hi. Thanks for this tuto. If you explained a bit more how things work it would be perfect.

  • Reply Zach Springer March 16, 2018 at 4:26 pm

    At 3:40, make sure you have Layer 2 (the newly created layer) selected before using Alt+Delete…

  • Reply Zach Springer March 16, 2018 at 5:15 pm

    Great tutorial!!! I would highly recommend this tutorial as each step is completely explained (well see my comment below at the 3:40 mark). Really good. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply sharokina isho March 19, 2018 at 11:09 pm

    Lmao, I freaked out a little cuz I thought I had to open the "Artistic" folder and find the "Sketch" filter, but then I realized he said "Close the "Artistic" folder and open the "Sketch" folder." x3

  • Reply Rey Robles March 21, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    I just followed your instruction and success. Thank you Marty! You Rock!

  • Reply Vnhln MC April 13, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    your voice so nice

  • Reply CrashTheZebra 78 April 14, 2018 at 12:13 pm

    Yo the link doesn't work, can I get a new one?

  • Reply Luke Austria April 19, 2018 at 5:17 am

    One of the greatest online tutorials i’ve ever watched. Thank you so much and please keep making these types of videos! Just subbed

  • Reply Sam Collins May 9, 2018 at 7:28 pm

    Anyone having problems when downloading the image as a jpeg? the lines wont show when i do so

  • Reply John Doe June 10, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    Can I do this with CS6?

  • Reply ARI EKO PRASETYO June 13, 2018 at 9:30 am


  • Reply ahe gaos June 18, 2018 at 8:34 pm

    You make the best tutorials. Thank you!

  • Reply About That Image June 27, 2018 at 7:35 pm

    You skipped a step after Convert to smart object. I’m lost after that

  • Reply David.Ed Carbonell June 30, 2018 at 11:56 am

    sorry but, when you tech something do not say "go to my other video to see how to convert or do that" explain everything from A to Z, and not by piece.

  • Reply Khải Trần Tuấn Nguyễn July 2, 2018 at 3:30 am

    thank you so much for this!

  • Reply rhys ku August 15, 2018 at 5:47 am

    good job

  • Reply Katy Yeung August 28, 2018 at 10:20 am

    The nose and mouth is gone though (cuz there's no edge?)

  • Reply Âncora Channel August 30, 2018 at 10:08 pm

    what this name effect?

  • Reply ThatGuyMich September 23, 2018 at 8:34 am

    Really useful, thanks!

  • Reply σon of Μεσοποταμία September 24, 2018 at 9:57 am

    thanks >>>شكرا

  • Reply calvan candy September 27, 2018 at 11:56 pm

    Brilliant tutorial thanks for this

  • Reply Vitor Cavalcanti October 3, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    Mine doesn't get the colors, it's just blue at the 10:00 part after a create the mask

  • Reply Abigail Ogle October 4, 2018 at 8:17 pm


  • Reply Geomtics 2016 October 15, 2018 at 8:36 pm

    thanx u de man

  • Reply Alia October 17, 2018 at 8:42 pm

    what type of art is this called when someone paints like this??

  • Reply Captain_Gooner October 23, 2018 at 3:08 am

    Can someone please tell me what this effect is called ? 😭😭

  • Reply Infinituum Prime October 29, 2018 at 3:20 am

    Loooooooooooved it!!!! You're my new heroe!!

  • Reply shaftoons October 30, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    thank you very much

  • Reply Havoc November 11, 2018 at 9:04 am

    ok, I'm done, I just can't do it.
    If there's anyone here who enjoys doing that stuff: can you do the same with a picture I found?

  • Reply matthius23 November 20, 2018 at 10:31 am

    Outstanding tutorial!!!

  • Reply Pandabutt Cosplay December 5, 2018 at 3:49 am

    I have followed your tutorial to the letter four times over and somehow I'm still stuck with a completely grayscale poster at the end of it, no red/blue/beige like in yours, I don't believe I'm missing any steps shown in the video, is there possibly a setting I've got changed somewhere else? ):

  • Reply Android Bani December 6, 2018 at 1:21 am

    great and Outstanding tutorial
    i like this

  • Reply Maximus Gigantos December 20, 2018 at 10:34 pm

    George W Bush, is that you speaking?

  • Reply Rohan Creation January 25, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    Free ( Nevis font ) Link :-

  • Reply Saleh Jasser February 1, 2019 at 3:56 pm


  • Reply Riley Heasley February 2, 2019 at 7:57 pm

    Now I've finished my Pewdiepie propaganda.

  • Reply Gonzo Der 3 February 17, 2019 at 8:26 pm

    i dont know what to do my picture is always only in grey and doesnt have any colour.i cant do the step at 5:40

  • Reply My Thoughts February 24, 2019 at 4:59 am


  • Reply Philani Mphayise March 3, 2019 at 8:57 am


  • Reply WR Doss-Johnson April 3, 2019 at 1:33 am

    Whenever I try to do the surface blur effect it just makes and outline of the person and the middle is transparent. I followed the instructions, am I missing something?

  • Reply yak kos May 30, 2019 at 5:57 pm


  • Reply Chippity Chopp June 19, 2019 at 5:38 am

    This tutorial was truly epic, I just wish my laptop could run the link you supplied us with. Could someone help me with a photo involving this?

  • Reply Aislinn Phillips June 21, 2019 at 11:39 pm

    Marty doesn't respond! I'm having the outline issue as well when I go to apply the blur filter. Tried this tutorial three times. Moving on….

  • Reply Halfdan Kristofersson June 27, 2019 at 9:26 pm

    When i merge layers, the lines disappear and it instead just fills with the colour underneath! What have i done wrong?

  • Reply amandeep kaur July 19, 2019 at 2:56 am

    where is the frame

  • Reply Dona Lim July 23, 2019 at 1:35 pm

    I love your teaching from whole ps tutorial, it is step by step. Like it

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