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Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card

In this tutorial, I will show you the steps I took to create a stunning Merry Christmas background using colourful shapes in Photoshop CS5. We will use advanced compositing techniques, Layer styles, custom shapes and brushes to get an greeting card. Layered PSD file included. Let’s get started!

Final Image Preview

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Start working by creating a new document (Ctrl+N) in Adobe Photoshop with the size 1900px by 1200px (RGB color mode) at a resolution of 72 pixels/inch. Use the Paint Bucket Tool (G) to fill with #462500 color the new background layer.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Then use the Rectangle Tool (U) to draw a rectangle with #1C1200 color.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Set Fill to 90% for this layer.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Now we’ll draw a Christmas bauble, use the Ellipse Tool (U) to draw the next shape.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Gradient Overlay.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Using the same tool, try to represent the next shape as shown.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Gradient Overlay.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Continue representing the Christmas bauble, draw the next shape using the Ellipse Tool (U).

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Gradient Overlay.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Next we’ll make the next bauble’s layer, using the Ellipse Tool (U).

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Gradient Overlay.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Now we’ll draw the highlight on lowest part of the bauble, use the Ellipse Tool (U) to draw the first ellipse. Press Alt button or select Subtract from shape area (-) from Options bar and draw another ellipse to cut the top part as shown. Foreground color is #320000.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Inner Shadow.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Apply Gradient Overlay:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

On the highlight’s right side we’ll draw a reflection, use the Ellipse Tool (U) to draw the first ellipse with white color. Press Alt button or select Subtract from shape area (-) from Options bar and draw 2 another ellipse to cut the reflection two times as shown.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Set Fill to 11% for this layer.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Next we’ll draw the lateral highlight on the right side. In this case use the Ellipse Tool (U) to draw the first ellipse. Press Alt button or select Subtract from shape area (-) from Options bar and draw another ellipse to cut the left side as shown. The Foreground color is #FCFBFB.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Take the same tool to represent the top highlight on the ball.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Click on Add a layer style icon from bottom part of the Layers panel and select Gradient Overlay.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

We’ve got the next result:

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Using the same method of representing the highlight on the right side, we have to make the same element on the left side.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Now we’ll represent the bauble’s support, choose the Pen Tool (P), set the drawing mode on Shape Layers in Options bar and draw the next shape as shown. Place the layer under the previous made layers.

Create a Stunning Merry Christmas Background with Red Baubles for Greetings Card in Adobe Photoshop CS5

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