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Create a Frozen Text Effect in Photoshop

Updated on August 14, 2015
PAINTDRIPS profile image

Denise has been studying and teaching art and painting for 40 years. She has won numerous prestigious awards for her art and design.

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The Frozen Effect

Working with Photoshop text can be fun and very rewarding in certain visual messages or advertisements. Understanding the Photoshop program was one obstacle that took a little longer to learn for me. I found unless you give yourself small achievable projects like this one, what you learn doesn’t stay with you. This step-by-step procedure will explain how easy it is to create icy text effect in Photoshop.

I have Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud, but I did this effect in an older version of Adobe Photoshop CS5. I believe you can do all these effects in even older versions of Photoshop as well.

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Step 1.

Create a new document 8.5” x 11” or as needed, 300 dpi. Go to File>New>choose size, go to Image>Image rotation>90 degrees.

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Step 2.

The background color needs to be darker, (Black or Grey is best) than the text, which should be white or a light color. Choose a color from the pallet; click the Paint bucket from the left hand panel and click onto artboard. I like blue for a frozen effect but any color will do.

Adobe Photoshop

Have you played with the different effects available in Photoshop?

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Step 3.

Choose a light color like white or baby blue, then click on text button from left menu. Click on art board and begin to type the text desired, i.e. “Frozen” or “Winter.”

Any font will work and can be as big or small as needed. Choose the desired font first or after the word is typed, by holding down the mouse button and dragging across the word to highlight it and change the font and/or size as desired.

Step 4.

Click on Filter>Filter Gallery>Texture>Craquelure to give the text a broken appearance.

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Step 5.

Go to Image>Image Rotation>90 degree CW (clockwise). Click on Filter>Stylize>Wind. The wind direction is both right and left so to get the ice cycles to drip down you want the wind from the right. A text box will tell you that you have to rasterize the text image. Click okay.

The wind will give an appearance of ice cycles. Click it a number of times or Command+F until you are happy with the ice cycles.

Go to Image>Rotate>90 degree CCW (counter clockwise).

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Step 6.

Click on FX at the bottom of the layers panel; FX>Inner Glow, choose color, white works. Select glow size and glow brightness and color needed.

Frozen Effect

Step 7.

Go to FX at the bottom of the layers panel again; FX>Bevel and Emboss. Select Structure depth about 150% to 200%, direction UP, Size 32 pixels, and pull soften up to 4 pixels. For Shading, click onto the shadow rectangle and change the color from black to dark blue.

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Step 8.

For fun, on a separate layer I painted several snowflakes in various sizes and opacities by sliding the flow percentage slider for the brush, at the top bar.

You can find these snowflake brushes free at Brusheezy. Once you choose your free snowflake brushes and download them. Go to the brushes file in Applications>Adobe Photoshop CC>Presets>Brushes, then drag and drop your new brush file there.

Step 9.

Save as Photoshop file PSD or JPEG. If you leave it as PSD you can still edit the text later. JPEG flattens the image and won’t allow for any further editing.

Finished

Alternate version


Start another one the same way. Go through the steps 1 through 5 to make the ice cycles. And turn the page back around counterclockwise.

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Step 6.

Go to FX>Outer Glow. Change the color to a teal blue.

Step 7.

Then go to FX>Color Overlay and choose the teal blue again.

Movie posters use text techniques.
Movie posters use text techniques. | Source

Step 8.

Click Command+J to make a copy of that layer.

Step 9.

Go to FX>Bevel and Emboss, under structure technique click Chisel Soft. Change depth to 60%.

Step 10.

Go to FX>Gradient, in blend mode change it to Overlay.

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Step 11.

From here you want to add a pattern. If you only have a few patterns go to Adobe Photoshop>Presets>Patterns, then you can choose among any of the patterns there.

Go to FX>Pattern Overlay and choose a pattern. Size it up if needed. I set mine at 650%. Leave the blend mode on Normal. Set the opacity to 80%.

For this layer go to blend mode at the top of the layer panel and click Overlay.

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Step 12.

For my background, I added a FX>Gradient Overlay and chose a light blue to dark blue gradient from the selections.

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Page 1 of the Serious U News where I created the cover banner.
Page 1 of the Serious U News where I created the cover banner. | Source

The icy technique can be used for different types of messages for example cold products, scary events, or other messages. Creating this text was fun and a great way to use it would be for sending a message to all that cold weather is just around the corner. The icy text is a type of warning for most that it is time to get prepared for the harsh winter months ahead. An advertisement of a broken down car on the side of the road and underneath it states “Frozen” is just one thought. The wind technique could be used in a different way not just to create ice but also to create motion. The wind motion on one side would be seen as fast moving or get it before it is gone type of signage. If the wind stylize was used for a background it would appear as crosshatching and could be a nice texture if used properly.

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    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
      Author

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      teaches12345,

      Thank you so much. You know, no one says you have to learn ALL the bells and whistles at once. I wrote a couple of Introductions to be of help to beginners if you are interested. Thanks for visiting.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 2 years ago

      This is a fun post and so creative! I have played with photoshop but as your poll indicates -- it has too many bells and whistles for me. Your effects for frozen are amazing!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
      Author

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      FlourishAnyway,

      Oh, yes it would. That would be really great plus a hub on how to make costumes from Frozen for Halloween or a costume party, etc.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      I you have some excellent ideas for when to use this. I'm at Disney right now and I sure would love to get a photo with Elsa from Frozen. I could imagine writing a whole hub around an awesome Frozen photo. This text would be a great accent.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
      Author

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      FatBoyThin,

      I'm so glad you gave it a try and it worked for you. Thanks so much for commenting.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
      Author

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      Dana Tate,

      You should give it a try. I really makes some nice banners for hubpages! Thanks for commenting,

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
      Author

      Denise McGill 2 years ago from Fresno CA

      Larry Rankin,

      Cool! lol. That's funny. Thank you for the laugh and the visit and comment.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 2 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      Hi Denise, this is fab - just tried it on my very, very old version of Photoshop and it works really well. I love it when I learn something clever! Great Hub, voted up.

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 2 years ago from LOS ANGELES

      I never really tried to work with photo shop. Thanks for the tips it seems like something I might want to try playing around with.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Very cool. Thanks for the tips.

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