Give your words a painterly feel with Fabio Sasso’s guide to finding your way around Photoshop’s brush and layer options

In this tutorial, Fabio Sasso shows you how to create a beautiful, watercolour-type effect – inspired by the work of illustrator Florian Nicolle – using brushes and layer styles in Photoshop. Aside from looking great, it’s a really simple technique to learn. You’ll discover how to use brush effects to give vector text a hand-painted feel, mastering Photoshop’s extensive set of Brush controls. You’ll also see how subtle use of some of Photoshop’s filters can complete the effect.

It’s highly recommended to have a graphics tablet to follow along this tutorial –you’ll still be able to recreate the effect if you don’t, but some details will be missing. 

Fabio has used some commercially-available textures from Shutterstock, but you can use free versions from the likes of

Step 1 Create a new document in Photoshop and import an old paper texture. The one I used came from Shutterstock at, although you can use your own if you prefer.

Using a serif font with some vector frills and vector birds I created this composition in Illustrator. Place the (available from the Download Zone) in the centre of the document.