How to Create Print Distress

How to Create Print Distress

Digital art has come a long way in recent years. Now you're able to create near perfect designs for your illustrations, designs, and more. But, it's that perfection which can cause your designs to look a little cold. How do you bring life back into your work?

Traditional prints are vulnerable to weatherization, age, and handling causing it to chip off, scratch, or become otherwise distressed. Recreating this effect in your digital art can be a quick and easy way to make your work come alive.

Watch or read the instructions below to learn how you can simulate print distress digitally using some quick tips and The Complete Mid-Century Brush Collection for Procreate.

Note: Although this technique is demonstrated in Procreate, you can follow along in most image software.

Can't Watch the Video? Here's what You missed:

  1. The Eraser Method: Select a distressing brush from your brush window and utilize it is an eraser to erase parts of your design. If you are using Photoshop, you can press and hold the ~ key and this will allow you to use a brush as an eraser.
  2. The Layer Mask Method: Create a layer mask over the layer you would like to distress. Select a distressing brush, and then making sure the brush is set to black, tap over the layer mask to conceal parts of the layer.

💡Top Tip: As with other techniques of this kind less is more. You can always add more distressing later if you will that it needs it.

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