How to Create Colourful PNGs with Photoshop

The paint brush tool in Photoshop is an quick and flexible way to recolour your png or overlay files.

Today’s video will show you how to easily recolour png files in multiple colours, no matter how detailed the png file, while keeping everything on one layer.

 
The paint brush tool in Photoshop is an quick and flexible way to recolour your png or overlay files. Today’s video will show you how to easily recolour png files in multiple colours, no matter how detailed the png file, while keeping everything on one layer.  itsorganised.com | photoshop for small business & bloggers
 

 

Photoshop Brush Tool

If you're new to Photoshop, you'll soon learn that there are many ways to achieve the same thing. Recolouring is a good example of this.

When you buy or download png/overlay files, you usually receive a black file with a transparent background. Adding a single colour to a png file is easy. You simply add a colour overlay layer.

If you'd like to create more colourful overlays, however, or you'd like to use more than one of your brand colours to style your blog images, this brush technique is perfect.

Using the brush to recolour files relies on taking advantage of the lock transparency option. This protects any areas of your png that are transparent, i.e. don’t have any pixels in them. When you paint, the colour only appears where your overlay appears. 

It also means you don’t have to be too precise with your painting, which speeds things up!


PERSONALISING OVERLAYS

Today's video uses a #tbt overlay (available in the Resource Library) to demonstrate how you can take a single-colour PNG file and 'paint' on any number of colours. You can download this, or one of the other overlays in the Library, if you’d like to play along.

This technique works equally as well with more intricate designs. You’ll just need to keep reducing and increasing the size of your brush as you paint. Getting used to using the square brackets for this speeds up your workflow. When you get to more detailed areas, just zoom right in and make your brush smaller.

 

VIDEO Tutorial

The video will show you how to:

  • protect the transparency of your overlay,
  • select your brush tool and set the brush size, and
  • choose and change colours.

 

THE STEP-BY-STEP

You can either paint the individual png file or drag and drop it into place on your photograph before you start. This can help when you’re choosing colours, as the overall design is easier to see with the png sitting on top of the photograph.


LOCKING THE LAYER TRANSPARENCY

  • Before you start to paint, you’ll need to protect the transparency of your png file.
  • With your png layer selected, click on the Checkered Square icon at the top of the layer stack next to the word Lock.
  • You'll see a padlock appear on the right side of your png layer.


SELECTING A BRUSH

  • Select your Brush Tool (shortcut B) from the Tool Bar on the left.
  • On the Options Bar at the top, select a Hard Round Brush.
  • Set the Size of the brush by hovering over your layer and using the square brackets: left (smaller) and right (larger).
  • Click on the Foreground Swatch at the bottom of the Tool Bar to set the first colour.
  • Or, use your Swatches Panel if you are using brand colours you’re previously saved.


PAINTING THE PNG

  • You can now start to paint your overlay.
  • If you find the paint is going everywhere and not just colouring the pixels, click Cmd/Ctrl + Alt Z to undo and check you have the transparency locked.
  • Keep changing the colour of your paint and brush size as you go.

 

The paint brush tool in Photoshop is an quick and flexible way to recolour your png or overlay files. Today’s video will show you how to easily recolour png files in multiple colours, no matter how detailed the png file, while keeping everything on one layer.  itsorganised.com | photoshop for small business & bloggers

HAVE A GO

If you have overlays tucked away in your files, you can now give them a new, colourful lease of life!

If you don’t have anything to practice on, you can download the #tbt overlay, a quote and a frame png to practice on in the Resource Library.

Another way to add multiple colours to a file is to use the Photoshop Gradient Tool

If you’re looking for a single colour with a bit of sparkle, find out how to do that with Clipping Masks.

 

Image Source: Shutterstock