Create an Outline Sketch Text Effect

This tutorial will demonstrate an easy way to create an outline-sketch Photoshop text effect using simple layer styles, a brush, and a blur filter.

Final Image

As always, this is the final image that we’ll be creating:
Outline Sketch Effect

Tutorial Details

  • Program: Adobe Photoshop CS6 (CS3+ versions will work as well)
  • Estimated Completion Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Beginner


Step 1

Create a new 1000 x 500 px document with all the default settings, then fill it with color #d7c7a8.

Outline Sketch Effect 1

Create the text in Black using the font “Hall Fetica” and the font Size 350 px.

Outline Sketch Effect 2

Change the text layer’s Fill value to 0.

Outline Sketch Effect 3

Step 2

Double click the text layer to apply a Bevel and Emboss effect. Change the Depth to 103, the Size to 2, un-check the Use Global Lights box, change the Angle to 170 and the Altitude to 32, then change the Highlight Mode Opacity to 0 and the Shadow Mode Opacity to 74.

Outline Sketch Effect 4

This is how the text should look like.

Outline Sketch Effect 5

Step 3

Duplicate the text layer.

Outline Sketch Effect 6

Select the Move Tool, then move the duplicated text 5 px to the left and 5 px upwards, by clicking the Left Arrow Key (on the keyboard) 5 times, then clicking the Up Arrow Key 5 times as well.

Outline Sketch Effect 7

Step 4

Double click the copy text layer to adjust the Bevel and Emboss values, by changing the Angle to 0, and the Altitude to 37.

Outline Sketch Effect 8

This is what you should get.

Outline Sketch Effect 9

Step 5

Now pick the Brush Tool, choose a hard round 1px brush tip, set the Foreground color to Black, and create a new layer on top of all layers then call it “Vertical”.

Outline Sketch Effect 10

Next, you’ll need to draw vertical lines over the vertical edges of the text. To create straight lines, click and hold the mouse button, press and hold the Shift key, then drag the brush. When done, release all, then repeat to create the other lines.

You can also use the Line Tool for that, but you’ll need to merge and rasterize all the line layers when done.

Outline Sketch Effect 11

After adding all the vertical lines you want, go to Filter -> Blur -> Motion Blur. Change the Angle to 90 and the Distance to 29. This will make the lines fade vertically.

Outline Sketch Effect 12

Step 6

Create a new layer on top of all layers and call it “Horizontal Lines”.

Outline Sketch Effect 13

Create horizontal lines over the horizontal edges of the text.

Outline Sketch Effect 14

Go to Filter -> Blur -> Motion Blur. Change the Angle to 0 and the Distance to 29. This will make the lines fade horizontally.

Outline Sketch Effect 15

Step 7

Select all layers (click the one at the top, then Shift + click the Background layer), and go to Layer -> Merge Layers.

Outline Sketch Effect 16

Go to Filter -> (Filter Gallery) -> Brush Strokes -> Spatter. Change the Spray Radius to 4 and the Smoothness to 15.

Outline Sketch Effect 17

This will make the sketch effect more messy and realistic.

Outline Sketch Effect 18

Go to Filter -> (Filter Gallery) -> Texture -> Texturizer. Choose Sandstone, set the Scaling to 67, the Relief to 3, and the Light to Top Right.

Outline Sketch Effect 19

This will add a paper-like texture.

Outline Sketch Effect 20

Finally, go to Filter -> Noise -> Add Noise. Change the Amount to 3, select the Gaussian button, and check the Monochromatic box.

Outline Sketch Effect 21

And We’re Done!

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial and found it helpful.

Outline Sketch Effect