Create Cool Retro Style Text

Every project calls for different texts and font styles, and this week I am going to show you how to easily and quickly create cool retro style text, the techniques you learn in this tutorial you can use to adapt and enhance any design or typography in future projects.


Follow the steps below to create your own retro style text.

1. Open a new canvas in photoshop size 600px by 800px and fill the canvas with black using the  paint bucket tool.

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2.  Now it's time to insert your text, you can use any cool retro text of your choice of you can download this old sega style font from Once you have your font downloaded and saved into your windows fonts folder (you will need to restart photoshop before the font appears) we are ready to insert it. So select the T text tool and enter your text around font size 100-120pt colour white.

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3. Now you have your text entered it's time to change it up a bit, I went for the retro but you can choose anything you like. Select the character panel (looks like a little notepad) from the text tool bar along the top. From here we can change the colour the size and other properties. I have changed the colour to a lime green and made the text slightly larger.

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4. The next step is to add some cool layer styles to the text to make it pop! Follow my pics below to see what styles I added and what settings I set them to. I used an inner shadow for depth, an inner glow to help enhance the inner shadow, a bevel and emboss to bring the text to life and feel more 3 dimensional and finally a gradient overlay to make the colour of the text really come alive.

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5. Add perspective to the text by using the edit > transform > perspective. First rasterize the text layer by right clicking and selecting rasterize type. Then edit the perspective, drag the upper right corner up holding the shift key to create the illusion of the text being slanted and futher away near the start of the word.

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6. To add depth to the image duplicate the text layer and move the bottom layer slightly to the right, this will create a shadow type look. Set the fill to 0% on the bottom text layer and double click the layer to bring up the layer styles. On the gradient overlay choose a cool colour I went for orange and yellow and select ok.

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7. I added a cool retro style background of lines by adding a new layer and using the rectanglular marquee tool to create a serious of horizontal lines which i filled with white colour. Then I added a colour overlay in the styles options and changed the colour to purple. I used the edit > transform > perspective to change the perspective of the lines to go against that of the text.

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8. Finally I added a new layer at the top of the layers panel and filled it with black then set the mode to screen. I then added a filter > render > lens flare at brightness around 110-130 choose what you feel is right for your image, I selected the flare to go at the bottom of the O in retro. Then I duplicated this layer to make it stand out more and increase its impact.

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And there you have it, see the final image below.


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