Photoshop tutorial: Digitally create a marble look

Rock on with these brilliant stone texture effects from award-winning digital artist George Patsouras.

Painting and texturing a believable statue such as the amazing illustation on the left is much easier than you might expect. When it comes to painting anything, it’s best to start by breaking it down into the simplest of forms.

Texturing and detailing always come last in a successful painting, whether it’s digital or traditional. In this tutorial, George Patsouras shows how to paint a realistic face, step by step, before texturing and detailing it.
The painting stage is just as important to the finished piece as the texturing – you can’t have one without the other. The statue’s face was based on that of the artist’s brother; Patsouras’s initial sketch is included on the cover CD. Of course, you can base your image on any portrait photo you like.

Before you start, head to and download some textures from the Stone > Marble > Noisy category.

01. When doing a portrait piece, it’s essential you first draw the model as accurately as possible. One helpful trick is to use a grid to nail the proportions, which works especially well for portraits such as this. First of all, open up your reference photograph and create a new document of the same size for your version. Work at a high resolution (300dpi or above) to maintain a high level of detail. When that’s done, you’re ready to activate the grid. If you’d rather use the same image as in this tutorial, open sketch.psd from the cover CD and skip to Step 3.

02. Select View > Show > Grid. You will see a group of boxes which will help you draw the model square by square. If needed, you can separate the boxes further by selecting Edit > Preferences > Guides. Select something you’re comfortable with and begin drawing the portrait box to box. Save the file as sketch.psd.

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