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How to Create Text with a Photo or Pattern Background

How to add a photo or pattern to your text in Photoshop

Want to create those trendy leopard print or buffalo plaid letters? It takes just three steps! This text effect can be done in any graphic design program with a clipping mask feature. Below the tutorial is a video where I show how to do it in Photoshop.

Option 1: Using a clipping mask to add a background to text

A clipping mask can be use to show a layer only where there are pixels on the layer below. It’s a quick way to add photos, patterns, or textures to another layer without have to use a selection tool. A clipping mask will automatically update when the main layer is edited. Here’s the short tutorial:

  1. Create a text layer
  2. Add a layer ABOVE the text layer with the photo, pattern, or other art you want to fill the text with
  3. Enable the clipping mask on the top layer that contains your fill content

Here’s more information on using clipping masks in different graphic design programs:

Option 2: Using the Pattern feature in Photoshop to add a seamless pattern to text

Using the Pattern feature is a a great way to fill text with a repeating pattern while leaving both the text and pattern editable. Here’s how to create a pattern and add it to text in Photoshop:

Create a repeating pattern

  1. Open an image in Photoshop
  2. Select > All
  3. Edit > Define pattern

Fill text with a repeating pattern

  1. Create a text layer
  2. Double-click on the text layer to open the Layer Style dialog
  3. Click the Pattern Overlay option
  4. Click the drop-down next to the pattern to select your pattern
    • Use the Scale option to resize your pattern
    • Click and drag on the layer to move the pattern around (must still have Layer Style dialog open)
  5. Click Okay to apply the pattern

Video: Adding a photo or pattern to text in Photoshop

How to add a photo or pattern to your text using Photoshop.
How to create leopard print letters and other seamless patterns in Photoshop. A tutorial by The POD Files
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How to Increase Sales of Your Low-Content Books (Part 1: Quality Product)

Increase your low-content book sales, part 1: product quality
How to Create Quality Low-Content Books: Size Matters, Usable Layout, Value-Added Content, Decorative Theming, Color Interior. | The POD Files | #KDP #LCB #selfpublishing

Lately it seems like everyone in jumping on the low-content book publishing bandwagon, and the marketplace is flooded with products for customers to choose from. How do you make sure your books stand out and get purchased?Three things to work on:

  • make sure your book can be found,
  • make sure it looks like the best option so customers buy it, and
  • make sure it is a quality product so that you get good reviews and brand reputation.

In this first post of a three-part series, I’ll discuss factors you should consider if you want to create high-quality no-content / low-content books.

Size Matters

Bigger is not necessarily better.

It can be tempting to reuse the same interior or cover template for all of your no-content and low-content books (NCB/LCB) in order to produce as many products as possible, but different purposes call for different sized books. A mileage book should be small enough to fit in a glove compartment, but an academic notebook should be larger to allow for long-form writing.

Before you design your interior or purchase a template, think about where the book will be used and research what is already out on the market – reviews can be especially informative about what your target market thinks about book sizes.

The number of pages is also something to consider, as people may not want a thick, heavy book if they are going to be traveling with it. Longer books also make it harder for perfect-bound books (e.g. KDP paperbacks) to lay flat and stay open when writing.

Usable Layout

Better there be extras space, than not enough.

Related to the size of your book, is how you layout your interior. Some LCB interiors call for lots of different data entry on one page, but don’t squeeze so much in that there’s not enough room for a user to write.

To fit more content on a page without crowding consider:

  • Stacking a table layout vertically with rows, rather than columns.
  • Remove side borders to allow a user to write to the page edge.
  • Spread a layout across multiple pages.
  • Reduce page margins (most word processors have huge default margins)

Value-Added Content

There is a plethora of lined notebooks and simple log books for sale – add value to your LCBs by adding unique content like instructions, tips, and examples. This is especially important if you are using templates available to other publishers; a unique cover alone may not be enough for a customer to choose your book.

Decorative Theming

Consistent theming through out a book can give a professional appearance that elevates it above books that can be easily replicate by any user with word processing. Try decorating your books by:

  • adding subtle visual textures behind content, e.g. a swash of watercolor behind page title,
  • using font styles related to your content, e.g. brush scripts on a guided journal, or
  • including doodles and illustrations.

Go to a store that sells journals and other LCBs to see the kind of books publishers invest in manufacturing – rarely do they product books that are just plain text and tables.

Color Interior

The extra cost of printing in color can be off-putting for many print-on-demand authors and publishers who are trying to keep costs low, but with the right kind of book, the extra cost can lead to more sales.

It’s easier to get a return on the investment of adding color with shorter books (40 pages or fewer on KDP), especially with books geared toward creative pursuits or children’s activities. A simple mileage log probably doesn’t need color, but parents may find a black and white kid’s book too boring.

When deciding whether to print in color, consider your audience, printing costs, and whether color adds any value.

Increasing Low-Content Books Sales, Part 1: Quality | The Pod Files | #selfpublishing #KDP