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Insomnia – Create a Horror Movie Poster

In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to create a horror movie poster in Photoshop CC using free resources. You can use any Photoshop version to make this simple movie poster because we will use only basic techniques like some adjustment layers and blend modes.

Resources used

Creating a movie poster in Photoshop

In order to create this horror movie poster in Photoshop, I used an image of a “monstrous girl” which formed the base of the poster.

Because it’s a horror movie I wanted to have the classic red color overlay on the whole artwork so I used a solid color for it and with simple blending and masking I also added a second image to the base. Let’s go through some more details.

Final result – Insomnia Movie poster tutorial

Horror movie poster photoshop tutorial
Click on the image to see full size

Step 1

Open the image of the monster and move it a bit higher on your canvas so you have some room to add the secondary photo of the forest or whatever you want to use.

Add your secondary image above the monster image and create a Layer Mask for it. Use the Gradient Tool to create a linear gradient and blend the two images.

Movie poster free photoshop template

Step 2 – Base color

I wanted the monster to have a red color cast before creating the color over the whole poster so I created a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer in order to achieve that. Use the settings shown on the image below.

Step 3 – Overall color and shadow

Create a Solid Color adjustment layer above all layers and use the color #D70D0D and change the blend mode of it to Darken. I also added a Gradient Map with the Sepia 1 preset from the Photographic toning set with the Lighten blend mode.

I wanted to have more darkness on to top and bottom of the poster because that’s where the text will be, so I created a Gradient adjustment using the Radial style. I increased the radius a bit and changed the gradient transition and I set the blend mode of this adjustment to Soft Light.

This is how it looks after creating the gradient

Step 4 – The grunge effect

I wanted my horror movie poster to have a grungy effect on it so I used a texture. Download texture 1 and paste it on your canvas above the rest of the layers and change its blend mode to Multiply.

Create a Levels or Curves adjustment layer above it and clip it to the texture 1 layer and increase the contrast as shown below to get a grunge effect on the poster.

Step 5 – Title and text

The title is very important for every movie poster and also for horror movie posters as well. The font, size and location of the the title and the rest of the text will make your poster look unique.

For the main title I used the font “Face your fears” which you can download for free (links at the top of the post) but you can use any font you like. The rest of the text was added randomly based on real movie posters. You can look for a real poster and get inspired there.

I used Texture 2 and Texture 3 clipped to the title. On texture 3 I used the Hue/Saturation to create a red tint on it activating the Colorize option and i set it to Multiply. If you want to add realistic credits on the bottom of your poster, simple make a google search: “movie poster credits PNG” and you will have lots of them to use.

Horror movie poster tutorial Photoshop CC 2017

Video tutorial – How to create a horror movie poster in Photoshop

Tag your version of the horror movie poster with the hashtag #psdbox_insomnia on instagram to see it on the list below

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