Floral wreaths are very popular right now. You can use them on anything from whimsy logos to romantic wedding invitations. They are easy to draw using pen and paper or a graphic pad, but did you know you can also make a laurel wreath in Photoshop using your mouse?
This tutorial will teach you how to work with the Pen Tool and layers in Photoshop. If you are not familiar with the Pen tool, read this tutorial first.
Open a new document and choose the size and resolution you want. I’m working on a 400x400px canvas at 72ppi. If your wreath is meant for printing, work at 300ppi. In the Layers panel, make 2 folders (Leaves and Branch). Every element you make should be on a separate layer so you can move and recolor it.
How to make a branch
First, we need to make a curved line that will be our branch. We’ll only make half of the final wreath and then duplicate it.
- select the Branch folder and make a new layer inside it
- using the Pen tool, make two points
- select the Convert Point Tool and make a curved line
- right-click on the canvas and select Stroke Path from the menu (choose the Brush size and color before that)
You might have noticed that the path doesn’t disappear. You can either delete it or go to the Path menu (Window/Paths) and make a new, empty path that will hide the other one.
How to make leaves
Go to the Leaves folder and make a new layer inside it. I’m going to make the leaf directly on the branch. You could draw it anywhere on the canvas and then move it.
- make an anchor point on the branch and another one above it
- click again on the first point to close the path
- using the Convert Point Tool, move the handles until you create a leaf shape
- you can use the Free Transform Tool (Ctrl+T) to move and re-size the path
- to color it, you can Stroke the path, Fill it, or use both options (you can use Stroke on a layer, then make a new layer and fill it with another color)
How to make a laurel wreath
Fill the branch with leaves by either:
- drawing new shapes
- duplicating the leaf path you’ve drawn before, then changing its shape and size
- duplicating the rasterized leaf, moving and flipping it (Edit/Transform)
Make a new folder (Branch 1) and add the Wreath and Leaves folders inside it.
- right-click on the folder and select Duplicate Group (name it Branch 2)
- select the new folder (Branch 2) and go to Edit/Transform/Flip Horizontal
- drag the branch
- save the final result
Do you have any questions?