Adding a Colorful Block of Negative Space to your Image in Photoshop
This tutorial will walk you step-by-step through adding a colorful block of negative space to your image in Photoshop. This technique is useful for display on Social Media or for creating graphics or flyers. It makes for a great place to add text, such as your business logo or website information. You can even use the space as a place to add your clients name to personalize their sneak peeks.
Step 1. Find and Open the ‘Canvas Size’ Menu
To do this, find the ‘Image’ tab at the top of your screen. Then, from the flyout menu, select ‘Canvas Size’.
Step 2. Adjust ‘Canvas Size’ Settings
When the ‘Canvas Size’ box pops up, decide whether you’d like to add the block of color off to the right, left, or even to the top or bottom of your photo. For this image, I chose to extend to the left side.
– Change the width of your image. I chose to change the width from its original value of 13.2, to the new value of 19.8 so that my photo would now be a square. You can choose any values you like.
– Next, under the ‘Anchor’ section of this popup box, be sure to change the display to represent the area you’d like your Color Block to be. I anchored by placing the dot on the right hand side (where I want my image to be) and then the arrows point to the left (showing how the canvas will be extended by the new block of color)
*There is a spot in this box called ‘Canvas Extension Color’, which would allow you to select the color you want to add off to the side. I choose not to select the color at this point, I choose black instead. I do this so that I can preview and sample different colors later on before making a final selection.*
When you’ve finished, click OK.
Step 3. Grab the Magic Wand Tool
Choose the Magic Wand tool from your tool bar. (You may need to right-click on the Quick Selection Tool to find it.)
Step 4. Make your Selection
– Once you’ve chosen the Magic Wand tool, click the black area of your photo to select it.
– Next, add a new blank layer to your image by selecting the button at the bottom of your layers panel that looks like a sheet of paper.
Step 5. Choose and Add your Color
– Select the Paint Bucket tool and hold down the Alt key (Opt for Mac users), this will turn your paint bucket tool into an eyedropper as long as you are holding this key down. Click anywhere in your photo to select a color. I chose the deep grey in the lowest clouds behind my subject.
– Once you’ve selected the color of your choice, release the Alt (Opt) key and then click over in the black selected block to drop your new color.
Since we created a new layer in Step 4, your color should be on its own layer. This means you can change this color again later without having to worry about the color bleeding onto your photo.
Once you’ve decided on the final color, you’re finished! Place your watermark or add your text, save, and share away.
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