How to draw family tree using tree branches in photoshop

Updated April 17, 2017

A family tree is a great way to celebrate your ancestry and teach future generations about the history of your family. It is becoming even easier to look up family information and keep digital copies of priceless old family photos. Photoshop can be an excellent program to design your family tree. Not only does Photoshop feature illustration tools, but it also is a great photo editor for cropping, resizing and utilising scanned images of those old family photos.

Set the brush to 5 pixels and the colour to black. Draw a cylinder with a wider bottom than top. Add three slightly curved diagonal lines to each side for branches. Make the top lines longer than the bottom lines.

Add two curved branches to the middle two branches. Add two more curved branches on the top long branches.

Thicken the tree branches by drawing parallel lines around the branch guidelines. Use the eraser tool to erase the guidelines and leave behind the outline of the tree.

Add the details to the tree with small curved lines inside the tree and along the branches; this will add texture to the tree. You can add a circle in the middle of the tree for a hole.

Click on the autoshape tool and select the rectangle. Drag this out about 1 inch. This will act as the name plate for each name. Copy this shape and paste two at the bottom of the tree and two on each branch.

Scan in or grab digital pictures of your ancestors and open them in Photoshop. Using the selection tool, select the head and copy it. Paste the head over the name tag for each member of the family. You can resize the image by clicking the corner of the picture and dragging it smaller or larger.


Make sure you plan out how far the tree is going to go before you start drawing it; that way it can be the perfect size.


Be sure to save your work often. You don't want to put in a lot of time only to have to redo your work.

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About the Author

Andrew DeWitt is a freelance writer/illustrator and stand-up comic with more than eight years of professional experience. He has written for Chicago Public Radio, Vocalo Radio, Second City Chicago, and The Lemming. DeWitt has a liberal arts degree with a double major in theater and creative writing.