How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

In this tutorial I will give you some tips on how to create and decorate Christmas tree with balls and stars. You will learn how to add a Layer Style, draw Christmas balls with Ellipse Tool, apply brushes, customize brushes etc. So let’s get started!

Create a new document (Ctrl+N) in Photoshop with the size 1920px by 1200px (RGB color mode) at a resolution of 72 pixels/inch. Using the Paint Bucket Tool (G), fill the new background layer with #050043 color.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Take after that the Pen Tool (P) to create the shape of the Christmas tree.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Inner Shadow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set the Outer Glow

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Add Inner Glow

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Also set the Gradient Overlay

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Click in the color bar to open the Gradient Editor and set the color stops as shown. Click OK to close the Gradient Editor dialog box.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next fir tree:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next step we’ll download a set of brushes for in Adobe Photoshop, named: grunge procedural. Create a new layer and select the brush out of the earlier downloaded set. Set the Opacity to 10% in Options bar.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Paint with color #4D80E8 as shown. Place this layer containing the brush under the tree’s layer:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next we’ll draw several shapes, using the Pen Tool (P). The shape’s color is #020353. Place this layer under the Christmas tree’s layer:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Outer Glow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next shape:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Using the same tools, we’ll represent one more colored shape with #0B2A80 color. This layer will be situated under the tree’s layer:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

… and one more shape, colored with #1038AA. The tool applied in this case is the same with the previous ones. The layer will be situated under the tree’s layer:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Go to Layer Style and select Inner Glow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next background:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

On the next layer (Create new layer) we’ll use the brush out of the grunge procedural set of white color (Opacity 10%) to make lighter the background behind the tree’s top.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Create a new layer and choose the Soft Round brush of white color, set Opacity to 80% in Options bar.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Using Soft Round brush represent the snowflakes. This layer needs to be placed under the layer containing the tree.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

On the next new layer we’ll paint again with brushes (two types - the hard and soft round brushes) of white color to add more snowflakes. The layer will be also placed under the layer having the Christmas tree on it.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next background:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Create a new layer to represent here the snow on the tree. Select Spatter brush from Brush Tool (B).

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We need to customize our brush in Brushes panel (F5), select the Brush Tip Shape. Click and drag any of the sliders to change the size, the roundness and brush angle as show. The Preview window displays the changed brushstroke.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Go to Shape Dynamics:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Now you can paint the snow as shown on the Christmas tree.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Drop Shadow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next snow on the fir tree:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

On the next new layer we’ll apply the earlier brush of white color (Opacity 20%) to paint several more lines, representing the snow on the tree.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Take the Ellipse Tool (U) now to represent a Christmas ball for the tree. The layer has the color #0375E0

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Drop Shadow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Add the Inner Glow

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next sphere:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Now we must draw a highlight on the ball’s surface, applying the same Ellipse Tool (U).

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set the Fill to 0% for this layer and go to Layer Style > Gradient Overlay. Click in the color bar to open the Gradient Editor and select Foreground to Transparent gradient. Click OK to close the Gradient Editor dialog box.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next decoration for our fir tree:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next we’ll combine in a group all the layers composing the ball (press CTRL button to select the corresponding layers and then hold on the left mouse’s button while dragging the selected layers on Create new group icon from bottom part of the Layers panel). Make several copies of the recently got group, changing the colors of the copies’ layers (the basic color of the ball). Finally apply the Free Transform (Ctrl+T) to place the copies exactly the way represented below:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next we’ll represent a small star, using the Custom Shape Tool (U), the color is #F5CE28

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Using the Convert Point Tool, select the anchor points of the star. Then apply the Free Transform (Ctrl+T) click on Maintain Aspect Ratio and drag the anchor points to the central part of the star to change the shape form.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Outer Glow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next star:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Select now the Pen Tool (P) to draw next shape on the star.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set Fill to 0% for this layer and go to Layer Style > Inner Shadow

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set also the Gradient Overlay

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Click in the color bar to open the Gradient Editor and set the color stops as shown. Click OK to close the Gradient Editor dialog box.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next effect on the star:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Make four copies of the last made layer and choose the Free Transform (Ctrl+T) to place the copies the way it is shown on the next picture.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Create a new layer which will be processed with the Soft Round brush of white color.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Draw several highlights on the star.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Press Alt button and click simultaneously between the highlights’ layers and the very first layer of the star (on the Layers’ panel) to apply highlights just for the star.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next we’ll combine in a group all the layers composing the star (press CTRL button to select the appropriate layers and hold on the left mouse’s button when dragging the selected layers on Create new group icon from bottom part of the Layers panel). Make ten copies of the last made group and select after that the Free Transform (Ctrl+T) to change the copies’ sizes, placing them as below:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Make a copy of one group, on your choice, containing the stars and choose the Free Transform (Ctrl+T) to enlarge the star and place it on the top of the Christmas tree.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Next we have to draw the shining rays coming out of the star on the tree’s top, using the Pen Tool (P).

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set the layer Opacity to 80%. Select Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and click to Outer Glow:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set the Inner Glow

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

We’ve got the next effect:

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Create a new layer and use on it Soft Round brush of white color to represent this time the luminescence lower than the layer containing the star on the top.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4
How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Using the same brush on a new layer we can create a kind of luminescence above the star’s layer.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

Set the layer Blending mode to Soft Light on Layers panel.

How to Create and decorate Christmas tree in Photoshop CS4

The final result!