Photoshop has pre-installed patterns, however you may not find what you need. You can simply make your own patterns. Here is a quick and easy tutorial on how to make a simple pattern – symmetrical circle pattern in Photoshop. This is the first of the how to “making patterns series” presented by Kelly Richardson.
SIMPLE ONE SHAPE SYMMETRICAL PATTERN DIRECTIONS
STEP 1: Open a new photoshop document: go to File- New. Use a square dimension such as width: 300 pixels x 300 pixels resolution 72, make background contents transparent.
STEP 2. Add Guides Through The Center Of The Document. This will indicate the exact center of our document. Go to View > New Guide.
Select Horizontal for the Orientation, then enter 50% for the Position. Click OK (you’ll see a horizontal guide appear through the center of the document)
Go back up to the View menu and choose New Guide. This time select Vertical for the Orientation and again enter 50% for the Position.
STEP 3. Make your pattern. You can create very complex patterns in Photoshop, or they can be as simple as, say, a repeating dot or circle. In this example we will use a circle to create a polka dot pattern. Draw a circle in the center of the document by click and hold on the Rectangular Marquee Tool, then select the Elliptical Marquee Tool. With the Elliptical Marquee Tool selected, move the crosshair directly over the intersection point of the guides in the center of the document. Hold down Shift+Alt (Win) / Shift+Option (Mac), click in the center of the document, then with your mouse button still held down, drag out a circular selection. Holding the Shift key as you drag will force the shape of the selection into a perfect circle, while the Alt (Win) / Option (Mac) key tells Photoshop to draw the selection outline from the center.
STEP 4. Fill the Circle with color. Go to Edit > Fill. This opens the Fill dialog box, choose a color to fill the selection with. Click OK to close out of the dialog box. Photoshop fills the circular selection with color. Go up to the Select menu at the top of the screen and choose Deselect.
STEP 5. Make a copy of the layer Go to Layer > New > Layer via Copy.
STEP 6. Apply the Offset Filter. (With just this one circle added in the center of the tile, we could save the tile as a pattern, but let’s make it look a bit more interesting before we do that- Apply The Offset Filter. When designing tiles to use as repeating patterns, there’s one filter you’ll use almost every time, and that’s Offset.) Go to Filter > Other > Offset. This opens the Offset filter dialog box. The Offset filter moves, or offsets, the contents of a layer by a specified number of pixels either horizontally, vertically, or both. When creating simple repeating patterns like the one we’re designing here, you’ll want to enter half the width of your document into the Horizontal input box and half the height of your document into the Vertical input box. In our case, we’re working with a 300 px x 300 px document, so set the Horizontal option to 150 pixels and the Vertical option also to 150 pixels. At the bottom of the dialog box, in the Undefined Areas section, make sure Wrap Around is selected. Click OK to close out of the dialog box. In the document window, we see that the Offset filter has taken the copy of the circle we made in the previous step and split it into four equal parts, placing them in the corners of the document. The circle remaining in the center is the original circle we drew on Layer 1: One of the circles has been offset by 50%.
STEP 7. Define The Tile As A Pattern. With the tile designed, let’s save it as an actual pattern, a process Photoshop refers to as “defining a pattern”. Go to Edit > Define Pattern.
Photoshop will pop open a dialog box asking you to name the new pattern. It’s a good idea to include the dimensions of the tile in the name of the pattern in case you design several similar tiles at different sizes. In this case, name the tile “Circles 300×300″. Click OK when you’re done to close out of the dialog box. The tile is now saved as a pattern!
STEP 8. Create A New Document We’ve designed our tile and defined it as a pattern, which means we can now use it to fill an entire layer! Let’s create a new document to see if it works! go up to the File menu and choose New. File- New enter 1000 pixels for both the Width and Height. Leave the Resolution set to 72 pixels/inch, and this time, set the Background Contents to White so the background of the new document is filled with solid white. Click OK.
Step 9. Add A New Layer
We could simply fill the document’s Background layer with our pattern, but that would seriously limit what we can do with it. Place the repeating pattern on its own layer. Click on the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel: A new blank layer named “Layer 1″ appears above the Background layer:
A new layer has been added to the document.
Step 10. Fill The New Layer With The Pattern With our new layer added, let’s fill it with our pattern! Go to Edit > Fill > Pattern. This opens the Pattern Picker, which displays small thumbnails of all the patterns we currently have to choose from. The circle pattern we just created will be the last thumbnail in the list. Select the “Circles 300×300″ pattern in the Pattern Picker. Click OK to close out of the Fill dialog box. Photoshop fills the blank layer in the document with the circle pattern, repeating the tile as many times as needed.
Stay tuned for the next free tutorial coming next month on how to create the photoshop patterns seen in this image below: A basic, overall toss pattern using many shapes.