This tutorial describes how you can easily create a seamless cow texture in Adobe Photoshop using the Lasso Tool and the Offset Filter.
The first thing you should do is go Google images to find some picture of cows. It’s not really necessary to complete this tutorial, but I recommend you do it anyway to get some original results.
Open Photoshop and create a new document of 600×600 pixels. Set White as the background color. Rename the Layer of the document to White by double clicking the Layer.
You can use a different size, but make sure your document is square and not to small otherwise the cow spots will repeat itself too often when you tile it.
Select the Zoom Tool and choose Fit on Screen.
Create a new Layer by clicking the Create a new Layer icon and rename this Layer Corner spots. Your Layers Palette should like like this:
Set Black as the Foreground color.
Select the Lasso Tool and use the following settings:
Select the first option (red square) so you will create a new selection each time you draw. The second option is to add to your selection, the third is to subtract from your selection and the fourth option is to intersect with your selection.
Set Feather to 0 pixels and check Anti-aliased. Anti-aliased smoothes the jagged edges of a selection by softening the color transition between edge pixels and background pixels. Feathering blurs edges by building a transition boundary between the selection and its surrounding pixels. This blurring can cause some loss of detail at the edge of the selection.
With the Lasso Tool you can draw freehand selection borders and straight edged-selection borders. To draw straight-edged borders you need to hold the Alt key down. For the cow spots we will draw a freehand selection border. Just drag your mouse after you have selected the Lasso tool and draw a nice medium sized cow spot. When you reach your starting point again the selection will be closed. Use the second and third option to adjust your cow spot if your not happy with a part.
Here is my result:
Select the Paint Bucket Tool and fill the selection with black, press Ctrl + D to undo the selection. Your Layers palette should know look like this:
Go to Filter option in the Menu bar and select Other, select the Offset Filter. The Offset Filter moves a selection a specified horizontal or vertical amount, leaving an empty space at the selection’s original location.
After you selected the Offset Filter you will get a dialog box where you need to set the horizontal and vertical offset. If the document is 600×600, use the following settings so the cow spot will appear in the four corners of the document. If you choose a different size for the document, use half the document width and height for the horizontal and vertical offset. Also make sure you selected Wrap Around in the Undefined Areas section.
After applying the offset filter:
Create a new layer and rename it to Middle spots. Select the Lasso Tool again and create one or two cow spots in the same spot where you created the first spot. Fill the selection with the Paint Bucket tool and use black as your color.
For two spots create a second new layer. Make sure this layer is above the Middle spots layer and after you created the second spot, press Ctrl + E to merge the two Layers together.
Press Ctrl + E to merge the Middle Spots Layer on the Corner Spots Layer. Your Layers Palette should look like this:
We now have all the cow spots on the same layer. Go to the Filter menu again, select Artistic and select the Palette knife Filter. I want to make the corners a bit rounder and more natural looking. There are several filters you can use for this, but I found the Palette knife gives the best result. If you prefer, you can also try the Paint daubs Filter or the Poster Edges Filter just see for yourself.
I used the following settings for the Palette knife Filter:
Save your file as .psd by selecting File and Save as. Save it as a .jpg by selecting File and Save for the Web.
Save it as Pattern in Photoshop by selecting Edit and choose Define Pattern. Name your Pattern cow.
Create a new document and make it the size of your desktop. Mine is 1024×768.
Choose Edit and select Fill or press Shift + F5. You will get a pop up screen. Choose Pattern, Custom Pattern and select your cow pattern. Leave the Blending options at default (Mode to Normal and Opacity to 100%). Press Ok and your pattern will seamless fill your document.
You can also select the Paint Bucket Tool and use the following options:
You can also choose the Layer Style; Pattern Overlay. To do this double click, next to the Layers name, on your Layer in the new document you just created. You will get a pop up screen. Choose Pattern Overlay and click on the name Pattern Overlay so you will see the options for this Style. Choose your Cow pattern. Leave the Blend mode to normal, Opacity to 100%. You can play with the scale option until your find something you like and press ok.
You can also use this option to give your text a cow pattern. Make sure the text is on a separate Layer if you want to do this.
You can save the pattern by choosing the brush option and select the little arrow you see when choosing your Pattern. You can also save it by going to the Preset Manager. I wrote a tutorial about organizing your brushes with the Preset Manager but the same applies for Patterns.
This tutorial is created originally for 3Dvalley.com. You are not allowed to redistribute this tutorial in any form.