Using the clipping mask feature in Photoshop

Have you ever wondered how people get that gold foil effect, or their blog header appears in glitter? Or how about those circular blog profile images, or even more unique - triangles or hexagons. How do people create those? 

Clipping masks to the rescue! This was one of the first things I ever learned to do in Photoshop and it still remains one of my very favorite! I use the clipping mask for many things, but my favorites are the gold foil effect and quickly editing profile images for you guys to go along with our blog templates.

I thought it was about time that I put together a tutorial since I get questions about using the profile PSD files in the download you get from us if you purchase one of our templates. But this tutorial will come in handy for anyone! Even beginners!

I'm going to walk through the text effect in the written instructions below, but this concept works for anything! 

I first started out by placing text in a layer, like so:

Next, hit File > Place and find the image you want to clip into your text:

I chose this flowered digital paper that I LOVE. It'll pop up over your text, like so:

Now you have two options. You can either right click on the paper layer and choose "Create Clipping Mask":

Or you can hold down the 'alt' button (option on a Mac) and hover between the image and the text/graphic until you see a box & arrow (or something along those lines depending on which Photoshop version you're using). Then you'll click the mouse and your clipping mask will apply:

You can undo it the same way you created it:


Boom! Easy as pie, right?! Now go forth and create some awesome graphics for your blog! I'd love to see them!

If you want to create a gold foil or glitter effect, here are some digital papers we found on a quick search: glitter, glitter and more glitter! Gold foil and more gold foil! Watercolor/paint is also a fun one for the clipping mask, and here are a few great ones: here, here , here and here.

Feel free to check out our other tutorials here.

Xo! Go be amazing!

Chelsea Hibbard

Greenville, SC