How to Make a Andy Warhol Pop Art Inspired Picture in Photoshop

Everyone loves Andy Warhol’s collection of Pop Art pictures, they are fun and stylish and make awesome gifts for your friends or family or even yourself and will brighten up any room in your home.

Final Image

Follow these easy steps and you can make your own Pop Art portrait in no time!

Step 1. Open up your selected image in Photoshop (I have used this stock image from and make sure the layers panel is visible. Now you will need to click on the adjustment icon (the half black half white circle icon) at the bottom of the layers palette and select threshold.

Step 1

(This adjustment will simplify your image, it will allow you to see the brightest and darkest part of your image by moving the slider from the left to the right. The threshold layer posterizes your image into a pure black and pure white image making it instantly more pop art.)

Step 2. What we need to do next is control the threshold slider for various parts of the image so we can achieve a line art effect which is the basis of pop art. We can’t get all the details at once as if you move the slider to get detail in the eyes then other parts of the image become too dark and the detail is lost. So we have to create 2/3/4 threshold adjustments and then blend them together to get the perfect basis for our pop art image.

Step 2

On the first adjustment layer work on the hair highlights, move your slider to the left until you can see sufficient detail in the hair, when you are happy click ok or click back onto your background image.

Step 3. Now select the adjustment and threshold again and move the slider to get the detail in the face. Now you will need to bring the hair highlights out, so select a hard brush with the colour black and paint the highlights back in on the mask layer attached to the threshold layer. If you make a mistake and take to much detail out you can sway your colour to white and paint it back in. Play around with the brush tool until you are happy with the effect.

Step 3

Step 4. Now we need to get body detail in the image, so click on the background layer again then click on the adjustment icon again and then the threshold icon. Adjust the slider until you are happy with the detail being shown. Repeat the process above to mask out the other areas, so all the correct adjustments are visible.

Step 4

Step 5

Once you have sufficient detail in all areas of the image so the threshold masking is complete. Now it is time for the fun part!!

Step 5. The next step is to paint in the colour. The first thing we are going to do is paint in the skin. Create a new layer and make sure it is positioned at the top of the layers palette. Change the blending mode to multiply and you are ready to go!

Step 6. Now you need to choose a colour for your skin tone, from the colour tab use the eye dropper to select the skin tone you want. Pop art always uses a hard edge brush, so select your paintbrush with 100% hardness and start painting in your skin tone. Be careful not to paint over the eyes and mouth but if you do just use the eraser tool to correct it.

Step 7. Now it’s time to select a hair colour a bright yellow is always a good choice for pop art. Paint in the hair everywhere you know it is supposed to be, you can refer back to your original image if you need to.

Step 5

Step 8. Once you have painted in the hair it’s time to add some colour to the clothing or other aspects of your image. Try to limit your colour palette to keep a true pop art feel. The final thing to do is to paint the background, choose a nice bright colour and get stuck in!

Step 6

Step 9. Once you happy with the way the final image looks you need to flatten the image, so from the main toolbar at the top of the screen select Layer > Flatten image.

Now you have created your basic image there are lots of things you can do with it. A lot of Andy Warhol’s famous artworks are the same image reproduced into a grid. So I will show you how you can achieve that.

Step 10. Let’s work on a four grid style image (2 x 2 grid). You will need to make 4 copies of your image so select your background image and press CTRL + J to make a copy, do this until you have 4 layers.

Step 11. Now we need to edit the size of our canvas, make sure the foreground and background colours are set as black and white. Select Image from the toolbar and then Canvas Size...  enter width 100cm and height 100cm make sure the relative box is checked and the anchor box is in the corner.

Step 7

Step 12. Zoom out and re position the layers until they are in a 2 x 2 grid. Crop the canvas size if necessary to fit the new image.

Step 8

Step 13. If you want you can change the colours for each individual portrait to create a real pop art inspired image. Click on the selected layer and select from the toolbar, Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation. Move the sliders around until you have some interesting colours, repeat this step for each image.

Step 9

And there you have it your completed Andy Warhol Pop Art inspired image!!

Final Image

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