How to Ghost Your Type in Photoshop CS6 - dummies

How to Ghost Your Type in Photoshop CS6

By Barbara Obermeier

Need some ghostly, semitransparent type for your project in Photoshop CS6? You can twist, transmogrify, and transform your text by using Photoshop’s arsenal of features. Create your type from scratch in an empty document or add the type to an existing picture or background. These steps show you how to add ghostly writing to an existing image. Just follow these steps:

  1. Open the background image you want to overlay with the ghost type.

    Any image, ectoplasmic or not, will do.

    [Credit: ©iStockphoto/sykadelx Image #7275870]
    Credit: ©iStockphoto/sykadelx Image #7275870
  2. Select the color you want to use for your text from the Swatches panel.

    Black and orange are good Halloween colors, but you can use any contrasting color.

    You can also sample a color from your image by using the Eyedropper tool. Simply click your desired color, and it then becomes your new foreground color.

  3. Select the Horizontal Type tool from the Tools panel and then click the area where you want to add the text.

    The vertical cursor that appears is the size that the text will be.

  4. Select a font, style, and size from the drop-down menus on the Options bar.


  5. Select an anti-aliasing method to help smooth the edges of your type.

    Anti-aliasing softens a hard edge by adding partially transparent pixels.

  6. Type your text.

    The text appears on top of the background.

  7. Click the Commit button (the check mark icon) on the Options bar to insert the text you’ve typed into a layer of its own. You can also press Ctrl+Enter (Command+return on the Mac).

  8. To change the opacity of the type, adjust the Opacity setting in the Layers panel.

    To make additional changes to the text, use a filter. For example, if you want to make the text wavy, select the Wave filter from the Filter→Distort menu. Or you can use other filters. Just remember, when you use a filter, a warning pops up, informing you that the type layer must be rasterized (converted from editable text to pixels) first. Click OK, and you’re on your way.

  9. When you’re satisfied with the look, save your image for additional editing later or choose Layer→Flatten Image to combine the text and background.

    [Credit: ©iStockphoto/sykadelx Image #7275870]
    Credit: ©iStockphoto/sykadelx Image #7275870