How to Make Sticker Outline Effect in Photoshop

Tumbnail Image by Freepik

There are few techniques on how to succesfully make sticker effect or sticker outline effect in Photoshop. Two techniques I frequently used was Expand Selection and Stroke Technique

In this tutorial any Photoshop version will do both of the techniques, so please don’t mind if you’re using an older version of Photshop because most of the technique will still be available


1. Expand Selection Technique

Expand Selection Technique

Step by Step to Create Sticker Effect

  1. Prepare Image
    For this technique, I will be using this elephant image from Freepik as an example image (Find it here)

  2. Check Image
    Before that, please make sure you had a transparent image and created a canvas to try this method

  3. Insert your image
    Elephant Image from Freepik
  4. Create Selection
    Create selection from your image by clicking Ctrl + Left Click on the Layer of your image
    Select Layer
    After this, the cursor icon will change to selection mode and your image will be selected (white and black strips outside the image)
    Elephant Selected
  5. Expand the Selection
    To start making the outline mode, we need to expand the current selection. To do that, go to Menu > Select > Modify > Expand
    Select Expand
    A popup box will appear. Here you can control how wide the outline will be. For example, I like it to be 30px wide then click OK
    Expand Popup
    After that your selection will appear more wide, something like this
    Select Expanded
  6. Smoothing the Edge
    The current selection is pretty rough, so we need to smoothen out the selection. To do it Go to Menu > Select > Modify > Smooth
    Select Smooth
    A popup box will appear, here you can change and experiment with the amount of smoothness of the selection. For example I will be using 20px then click OK
    Select Smooth Popup
    The result will look something like in the left image where it appear to look more smooth and rounded than the image on the right (before smooth modifier)
  7. Coloring the Outline
    After we succesfully created the outline selection, you can now bring a background color within the selection. Make sure you created a new layer under your image (New Layer Shortcut: CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + N)
    New Layer
    Lastly you can fill with the color that you want with Paint Bucket Tool (G), in this example I will be using white as the color

    Then you can deselect the selection by using CTRL + D
  8. Final Result
    Final Result 1
    You can add a drop shadow and background color to make look bit more realistic.

    Overall this step has a few steps to get the outline, but you can control how smooth the outline is. Next we’ll going to try the next technique, the Stroke Technique to achieve a
    similar result

2. Stroke Technique

Step by Step to Create Sticker Effect

For the stroke method s pretty straightforward for this step (look at the video)

  1. Stroke to Make Sticker
    You can go to Layer Style > Stroke
    Select Stroke
  2. Change the Value

    You can change the stroke width via the Size controller and set to your needed
  3. Done!
    The result is much the same. But you cannot change the smoothness of the stroke

Any questions? Ask in the comment! Thanks!

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