How to Make a Metal Sheet in Photoshop

Written by steve heap
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How to Make a Metal Sheet in Photoshop
Brushed metal sheets can be created in Photoshop (Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Adobe Photoshop is a comprehensive image editing and graphics system that is used by photographers and designers around the world. A common problem that occurs in creating a design is that the underlying photograph has a distracting element in the background, and the designer would prefer to replace the background with a smooth metallic surface to properly highlight and focus attention on the subject. You can create such a metal surface by reproducing the texture and reflections of a brushed metal sheet.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Select "File>New" to open the window for a new Photoshop file. Enter "800" for width and height in pixels, "Color Mode" should be "RGB Color" and bit depth set to "8 bit." Choose "Transparent" for "Background Contents." Click "OK" to create the document. Select the "Rectangular Marquee" tool from the main toolbar and drag out a rectangle for the metal sheet on the screen.

  2. 2

    Click in the top colour swatch at the foot of the main toolbar and in the pop up window enter "108" in the "R" box and, similarly, "108" in "G" and "B" to create a dark grey colour. Click OK to close the dialogue box. Click the double headed arrow to the top right of the colour swatches and click in the top colour box again. In the pop up, enter "190" in the "R," "G" and "B" boxes to create a lighter grey.

  3. 3

    Press "G" to access the "Gradient" tool. Set the Gradient type to "Foreground to Background" by selecting the first choice in the drop down gradient option box in its toolbar. Select "Reflected Gradient" which is normally the fourth icon along the bar. Drag a line with your mouse from the centre to the bottom right of the image to create a banded gradient in light and dark grey.

  4. 4

    Select "Filter>Noise>Add Noise" and choose "12.5 per cent" as the "Amount," "Gaussian Distribution" and check the "Monochromatic" box. Click OK to add noise to the metal sheet. Select "Filter>Blur>Motion Blur" and set "Distance" to "20 pixels" leaving "Angle" set to zero. Click OK. Press "Ctrl and D" on your keyboard to unselect the image.

Tips and warnings

  • Change the colour of your metal using "Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation," checking the "Colorize" box and sliding "Hue" to adjust the colour.
  • Crop the image using the "Crop" tool to get a sharper edge to the metal sheet.
  • Save your image using "File>Save As" to avoid overwriting any existing files.

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