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Convert Image to Vector Shape Silhouette in Photoshop

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Tutorials Photo Effects 20839 Views February 28th, 2014

In this tutorial we will learn how to create vector shape silhouettes in Photoshop from any image. All you have to do is to make some photo treatments to create the vector effect. The shape silhouettes are great for printing as they are vector based shapes, so they can be easily edited and resized without loosing quality. Use the silhouettes for T-shirt prints, for greeting cards and so on.

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In this tutorial we'll learn how to create vector shape silhouettes in Photoshop using some simple techniques. You can save the vector silhouettes as Photoshop custom shapes as I will show you in the next steps.

First you have to choose your image carefully to obtain a good result. I only use images with very light background or cutout images. For this tutorial I will use this girl with gun stock image. As you can see it already has a white background so I dont's have to remove the background.

You have to use this quick tutorial to convert the Image to Vector in Photoshop; follow all the steps without the colorize part. Your photo will be transformed into a vector line art effect like shown in the image below.

Open the layer style window of the Photo Layer and hide the white areas making this setting.

Now you have to turn this layer into a smart object or you can simply rasterize the layer styles. Keep the CTRL key pressed and click on the layer/smart object thumbnail to make a quick selection.

Go to the Select menu and choose Refine Edge; make these or similar ones depending on what image you choose. The reason we do that is to obtain a smooth selection without jagged edges. Because we want to obtain a vector shape this will help you to reduce the number of anchor points and to optimize the silhouette.

Make Work Path from this selection and go to Edit menu and choose Define Custom Shape.

That is all, you have created a silhouette in Photoshop. That way you can convert any photo into a vector shape silhouette. Pick the Custom Shape Tool and in the list you have the new created vector shape, ready to be used.

Custom Shape Photoshop Creator

This set contains 1 layerd PSD file that will allow you to create a vector shape silhouette out of any photo/graphics/image. The pack also contains a Photoshop action that you can use to create custom shapes.

Vectorizer - Vector Magic Photoshop Creator

If you're looking for amazing textures and backgrounds for Photoshop, explore Textures4Photoshop where you can find 1000+ unique images. You can download all these textures and backgrounds for free to use in personal or commercial projects!

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1 comment(s) for "Convert Image to Vector Shape Silhouette in Photoshop"

Mary Holmes
Mary Holmes
8:50 AM Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Thanks for being so helpful. I was looking for similar post online all day long. Can you please upload a tutorial on how to an image into a vectorise image? reply

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