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Glowing Textured Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

Updated on July 22, 2019
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Denise has been mastering photography and Photoshop for many years and sells some of her work. She hires out her skills to help people.


Text Effect Possibilities

This is really easy to follow tutorial on creating a rainbow glowing effect for text and images in Adobe Photoshop. I have Adobe Photoshop CS6 but you can also use this technique with older versions. I’m using the Gradient Layer Style to create the rainbow glow and my own paintdrips and splatters to get the really great grunge quality. To do this you can photograph or scan your own paint splatters using watercolor or acrylic, then save the scans as jpegs so that they can be used later, or you can retrieve your own splatter brushes for Photoshop from Brusheezy for free. Once you have created one of these, you can use the technique for a number of other projects in the future.

There are many avenues to the same function in Photoshop. I found after months of going the long direction (up to the toolbar, click an option, wait for the drop-down menu, choose one, get another drop-down menu, choose one, etc.) that there are shortcuts to almost all the functions. I will try to give some of these short cuts because the more you use them the easier they are to remember. However, if you can’t remember a shortcut, you can always go the long direction to get to the same place.

This tutorial makes a really beautiful text heading for your flyers or business cards, or even a cover for an e-book. The application possibilities are virtually endless. So let’s get started.


Step 1.

Create a New document 1280 x 720, 72 dpi, and black background.


Step 2.

Use the Type Tool from the left-hand toolbar or by typing T you can get the type tool. The color picker set for white, size 400 pt, and the font Bebas Neue or any font you like. The larger the better to show off all the colors. Impact will work fine for this also. You can look for some fun fonts at DaFont for free. I used Bauhaus 93.

Type any word or phrase you like, and select move tool to position font in the middle of your artboard.

5 out of 5 stars from 2 ratings of Adobe Photoshop CC

Step 3.

Right-click on the Text layer and select Rasterize Type. Duplicate the layer by pressing Control/Command+J twice. You now have three text layers. Rename the bottom one “glow,” rename the middle one “text” and rename the top one “Clouds.” This way you can keep from being confused.

Gradient Overlay


Step 4. Layer Style Window

Double click onto the text layer to get the Layer Style dialog box. Choose Gradient Overlay. Click the gradient bar to edit the gradient. Choose black to white, but change the color of the white to dark (deep blue) blue or any color of choice.

Change black to a lighter blue. With this Layer Styles dialog box still open, choose Bevel and Emboss. Leave the default settings: Style is Inner Bevel, Technique is Smooth, Depth is 100%, Direction is Up, Size is 6 px, and Soften is 0, Angle is 120 degrees, Altitude is 30 degrees, Use Global Light is clicked. Click okay.

Can you think of any uses you would have for these special text effects?

See results



Step 5.

Make sure black and white are selected for your foreground and background color or press Control/Command D for default colors. Choose the top “Clouds” layer. Go to Filter>Render>Clouds, and change the Blend Mode to Color Dodge.

After the Clouds, It Looks Like This


After the Gaussian Blur


Gaussian Blur

Step 6. Select the Glow layer, go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur, and change the Radius to what you like, about 80 pixels will do. Click okay.


Step 7.

Create a new layer and place a texture layer on top. I used a watercolor paper with blue and light pinks, stretched to fit the artboard using the Free Transform Tool or Control/Command+T. Then change the Blend Mode to Overlay.

Right Click and Copy This Bark For Your Texture


Step 8.

Create a new layer and place the bark texture on top. This is a photo I took of a large old tree at a nearby lake. Go to the Text layer and press Contol/Command and click onto the text layer at the same time. This makes the text a selection. Go back to the bark layer and click onto the mask icon at the bottom of the layers panel. This should automatically clip the bark into the text for you.

After the Texture Overlay


Step 9.

With the bark layer still selected click onto the FX icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to bring up the Layer Styles dialog box and click onto the Bevel and Emboss. Leave the settings the same as before except bringing up the Size just a little to 9 px.

Stucco Wall Texture to Copy


Step 10.

I added another texture layer of an old stucco wall. This photo I stretched to fit the artboard then I dragged it under the text layer so that it only affects the background. Change the Blend Mode to Multiply.

More Texture


Step 11. Splatter Brushes

After this, I created another layer above the stucco wall photo. I used some splatter brushes I got from Brusheezy for free and using white, light green and a light blue I randomly splattered paint around under my text. This is absolutely optional but I liked it because my theme is art. Add highlights with some special splatter brushes only if you like.

Paintdrips For You To Download



And that’s it. A glowing textured text for a multitude of possibilities and purposes. I hope you liked this one as much as I enjoyed playing with it.


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