How to add borders/frames in PhotoShop ?

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by marc_schmidtmayer, Dec 12, 2003.

  1. Hi all,

    I'm 'discovering' the digital photgraphy world, and I like to do and
    know a lot of things ... but/and it takes times to learn it
    (all) ! ;-)

    So, now I'm looking a way how I can put some nice frames around my
    photo's (like so many on the gallery here) ?
    How can I achieve this ? I've read that I can buy some software at and Extensis ...

    Are there other 'suppliers' or other ways ?
    But remember ... the borders should be bit 'artistic' ! ;-))

    Just a little question : does anyone from you use "extensis
    photoframe" ?

  2. There are some "actions" that do it, poke around here:
  3. The simplest way to add a digital frame in Photoshop is to use the Image: Canvas Size command, click the "relative checkbox", and enter the amount of pixels, inches, etc., that you'd like to add around the existing image. It will fill the new space with the selected background color (provided you're working on the Background Layer).
    Thus to get a simple white "matte" and black "frame" look, you'd do two separate Canvas Size commands, one with white as the background color and one with black as the background color.

    Hope that helps. Enjoy.
  4. As with most operations in PS - there are often several ways to approach it.

    For simple outline frames in black, white or colors, you can enlarge the canvas size, as already mentioned, with the approriate color slected as the 'background' color. If you then select the outer canvas area only, you can use the filters to create a texture in the 'matte' - add noise to give a speckled Canson-paper look, or add texture filters like canvas or burlap or whatever.

    You can 'select all' and 'stroke' the edge with black or a color, which gives a hard-edged keyline.

    You can also use the Select All/Modify selection/border command one or more times. You just 'fill' the selected border with whatever color you want. By feathering the selection slightly you can get a quite nice approximation of a narrow 'full-frame' black border key-line, with a slightly fuzzy (i.e. natural-looking) edge to the image.

    You can increase canvas size, cut/paste your picture as a new layer over an empty white background, and then play with Layer effects to add drop shadows, internal shadows or glows, etc.

    There are TIFF images available (for sale) of "photographic frames" that replicate the look of prints made with oversized negative carriers (or contact prints) so that you can see sprocket holes, frame numbers, 4x5 (or Hasselblad) edge notches, Polaroid positive/negative edge processing artifacts, etc. They have an empty image area into which you can "paste" your own picture in Photoshop.

    You can also scan your own photo edges if you have a flatbed scanner that can handle film.

    If you have a flatbed scanner - you can scan background materials to use as a digital framing material - cloth, corrugated cardboard, cement blocks (watch the scanner glass!), dead leaves, whatever.

    Finally - you can combine most of the above effects in sequence. And even drop in a digitized signature and edition number on the matte.

    However - don't make the 'frame' so complex that it overpowers the image. It's better to have an artistic photograph in a plain border than a plain photograph in an artistic border.

  5. Here are some quicky examples of "frames" built directly in Photoshop - with a liberal use of the "canvas size", "copy/paste", "layer effects/drop-shadow (and/or bevel)" commands as well as the type tool and texture filters.
  6. Well, there might be an easier way to do it, but this is how I usually do mine:

    1. Work your image to the point where you're done, then make a "duplicate layer"
    2. Go "canvas size" and give it a dimension that will allow a border size you're looking for. For example, if your final image from step 1 is 4" x 6", you may want to make the canvas size a 4.5" x 6.5"
    3. Add a new layer, fill it with black, move the layer behind your original image.
    4. Add a new layer, fill it with white, move the layer behind your original image (but in front of the black layer.)
    5. "Edit" and "transform" the white layer. Adjust the white block by selecting the little square nodes until you're satisfied with the white border thickness.

    That's all there is to it. Sounds complicated, but really is second nature once you've done it. Alternatively, after step 3., you can also use "line tool," select the line thickness (in pixel,) and draw border by hand (keep the "shift" button to keep the line locked in 90-degree inclement.)

    If you do a lot of these, you can "save" and replay the action (I'm not proficient in it yet,) so that you can perform exact same action on different files. I'll try to learn this facet this Christmas break by going on to the "help." If you do manage to get ahead, drop me a note on how it's done!

    Meanwhile, happy holidays to you and keep on clicking.

    Very best regards,

    p.s. My wife, 2 children, and I love Brugge, even though that's where Dr. Evil is from.
  7. I make 'em with Photoshop Elements "effects" and "bevels" and "drop shadow" tools, like this one that was made this month:

    "Brandon's Dad"

Share This Page