21 May

How to Design A Magazine Cover in Photoshop

written by 12 Comments posted in Tutorials

In this tutorial we will learn how to design a magazine cover in Photoshop. I usually design covers using Photoshop and InDesign, but for this tutorial we will be using Photoshop for everything. When you set out to design your own magazine cover you’ll need to pay close attention to details and carefully lay out the artistic aspect of it, working towards a well planned and complete artistic concept. Taking the time to formulate a strong concept is extremely important to the success of the magazine. I will take you through the process of creating a cover and reveal techniques that designers use to make their covers stand out.

 

Final Image

the apologist

Resources

 

Additional Resource, Includes “City.jpg” and “Lens Flare.jpg” [download id=32]

 

Step 1

Create a new document in Photoshop, 8.5×11 inches, 300dpi (for printing), RGB color, (You can change the color mode to CMYK, after the image is finished and flattened). Begin with a radial gradient, by double clicking the background layer to activate the Layer Styles menu, then apply a Gradient Overlay.

 

circular gradient



Color Codes:

#f25cf4
#570472
#01101b

gradient overlay

 

Step 2

Download and open the Lens Flare I created within Knoll Light Factory plugin, drag it above the gradient layer and change the blending option to screen at 21%.

 

lens flare

 

Open and drag the City.jpg above the lens flare layer and change the blending mode to Soft Light.

 

lens flare city

Step 3

Open the Stock illustration: Planet drag it above the City.jpg layer, use a large, soft eraser bush and erase, the edges. Change the blending mode to Screen.

 

moon

 

city moon

 

Step 4

Duplicate the Lens Flare image and place the duplicate above the “Stock illustration: Planet”. Give the lens flare 5% Gaussian Blur at 83% Opacity. Make sure the blending mode is still set to Screen.

 

lens flare city

 

Step 5

Now we will generate some Photoshop clouds to soften up the background a little more. Create a new layer and fill it with black. Generate the clouds by pressing Filter > Render > Clouds (make sure your colors are set to black and white). I also used a large soft eraser brush to erase the top of my clouds.



clouds

Change the Blending Mode to Soft Light at 35% Opacity

 

clouds

 

Step 6

Now we will create a subtle yellow glow. Create a new layer, draw a circle with the Elliptical Marquee Tool and fill it with yellow #fbc531.

 

Elliptical Marquee

Apply a Gaussian Blur with a Radius of 114 pixels. Lower the Opacity to 45%



opacity

Step 7

Open the Model Face Handsome from PhotoXpress, use the pen tool to cut out the model from the background. If you do not know how to use the pen tool, you can learn how by reading this tutorial .

 

business man

 

After you are done drawing your path with the pen tool. Create a selection from the path. Go to the Path tab in the layers menu and click the Load Path as Selection tool (Third symbol with the dotted lines).

 

Path as Selection

 

Copy the model and paste him inside your magazine document, above all the other layers.

 

magazine document

 

Use the Brush Border Pack -27 from Media Melitia to paint on some dust and scratches. I used brush number 15 in the package. Make a new layer above the model, then start painting the dust and scratches.

 

Brush Border Pack

 

Use a large soft eraser to erase the border of the dust and scratches. lower the opacity between 72%-82%. Duplicate the layer or paint other around the model.

 

dust and scratches

Step 8

Open the Stock illustration: Planet from Stock.Xchng again and drag it above the dust and scratches, use a large eraser brush and erase the planet from the middle.

 

Stock illustration

 

Change the blending mode to screen.

 

blending

 

Step 9

Now we will add some graphic flare to the cover for some extra pop! Create a new layer, use the Rectangular Marquee Tool to draw a rectangular selection. Add a gradient from white to transparent to the selection.

 

Rectangular Marquee

 

Erase the edge of the gradient with a large soft eraser brush.

 

gradient

 

Change the blending mode of the gradient to Overlay. Rotate the gradient and place it in selected areas over the model. I did this by duplicating the layer over and over again and placing them until I feel I had balance in the image.

 

light

 

Add a color balance layer above all the current layers, with the settings below, this will help to brighten the image and tie all the colors together.

 

 

light

 

Step 10

First drag in some margin lines at 0.25 inch to keep your text away from the edge. Create a Masthead for your magazine, (The term “Masthead” is often used to refer to the nameplate of a publication, its designed title as it appears on its front page..). I created a simple but strong masthead with Helvetica Inserat Roman Font. Place the Mast Head behind the model, this overlapping technique, helps to create depth. I also included the publication date and the mission statement of the magazine. (Before you create your Masthead, research some magazines for inspiration on design and placement.)

 

typography

 

Step 11

Create Several story line titles around and over the model.

  • Main Story Title. Here I used a large font to pull the readers eyes.
  • Secondary Story Title. Here I used a smaller font, but color and a transparent box.
  • Here I used different size fonts to separate Title and Sub Titles.

typography

Step 12

Now we will finish up our magazine by adding a barcode. Download the Free Vector Barcode Graphics by Airopia.

barcode

Final Image

the apologist

Conclusion

You can play a little bit more with color to achieve different moods for the magazine, I changed the gradient on the background and other color changes to the model to get the additional samples below. I hope you enjoyed it.

 

Affordable Magazine Templates

Magazine Cover Templates Magazine Template Magazine Template

 


12 Responses to “How to Design A Magazine Cover in Photoshop”

  1. Nathan T says:

    It’s awesome to see some Christians that know how to design well :)

  2. Brian says:

    Great design and tutorial. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Marc_C_889 says:

    Very nicely done! Very nicely done indeed!! And very refreshing to see such a tutorial not using the usual scantily clad model and trite oversexed topics. Awesome tut! God Bless!

  4. Leslie says:

    I am an aspiring designer. You have some great work. Thank you for sharing!

  5. wallpaper says:

    Step 6 helped me alot thanks :)

  6. courtney says:

    This is a great tutorial but the second download is a .rar file and can’t be opened.

  7. nanesh says:

    sutch a great creation good
    i lurn it

  8. daniel says:

    God bless you we need more christians like you who use there gifts for God

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