SigTutorials > Photoshop Signature Tutorials > Free Style Signature Tutorials > Mystic female bowmen

Mystic female bowmen

Posted on May 13th, 2013. Written by JaspervD.

In this tutorial by MARKCAPE you will learn how to create the following signature:


This tutorial will teach you how great render and background selection together with some adjustment layers can create an amazing looking signature!

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It is fully labeled, this way you can exactly see what I did when creating the signature, even steps that I didn’t explain in the tutorial.

Never again you will get stuck because you don’t understand something in the tutorial, just take a look inside the .psd file and boost your signature making skills with new technique’s and ideas!

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1. Render and background selection

A big part of your outcome will be determined by the render and background you choose in this step. For the render pic something that has some nice action going on it. Explosions, or special effects in the render is what you are looking for! Cartoonish like renders work great for this type of signature.

I have made a small selection of some great renders you can use to create your signature:

For the background try to pick something in a similar style: If you pick a space render, try to go with something tech like. Since I picked an archer I'm going for some tree/forest like render. Look for a render that has interesting parts which you can use for your background.

2. Adding the render and background

Create a new document (I used 500px x 280px) and add your render. Go to sharpen > smart sharpen and sharpen the render with 25%.


Now add your background on a layer behind your render.

Duplicate and rotate the background a couple of times and erase / move parts around to fill the entire background.

If the color in the background don't match that of your render (my background was green while my render is blue), recolor the background. To do this first merge all your background layers into one big layer and edit the Hue/Saturation (CTRL+U) so it matches that of your render.


3. Adding color highlights to the background

Create a new layer between the background and your render. Using the bucket tool, fill it with black. After this take out your brush tool and select a soft round brush (size around 50px) and brush in certain area's to create highlights. Set this layer on color dodge (you can also lower the opacity of this layer, I changed it to 75%)


Keep adding layers like this where you brush with color or black to highlight certain parts or make other parts darker. Try various brush sizes and layer blending modes and take your time! A good signature is never made with just a couple of layers, during the rest of the tutorial you will see that every now and than more and more color highlights where added to the sig.

My result after this step:


4. Blending the render with the background

The render still looks like it is on top of the background, and not part of it like it should be.

To blend in the render we are going to add parts of the background on top of the render.


As you can see I once again added more blue highlights on various parts of the background.

5. Adding text and C4D renders

Now we will add some text and C4D renders to the signature. While both of these can really improve your signature, they can also ruin your signature. It takes some practice to really get good at these!

For the text always try to keep it simple and never ever use outer glow or bevel and emboss! Go with easy to read fonts and perhaps a subtle gradient.

Don't tuck away your text in a corner, place it around the main focal point. Our main focal point in the signature is the face, so place the render up/down and left/right of this render. Since there was some nice space left near the bottom right of the focal point, this is where I placed the text.


You can find some great C4D renders in our C4D render gallery. I picked an orange bubble C4D render and added it on top of all other layers, after this I removed parts of the C4D render which I didn't like using the eraser tool.


6. Gradient Maps

Now I added some Gradient Maps using Layer > New adjustment layer > Gradient Map. You can create your own gradient maps, or pick some of the default maps. Pick gradient maps that match the colors in your sig and play around with the blending modes and opacity!

I used three gradient maps:


To get the following:


6. Final adjustments

I can't really help you with this step, since it really depends on your signature what kind of final adjustments you need. Here are some things you could try:

  • Various filters (I used the topaz filter, which you can download just google it)
  • Sharpen / blur parts of the signature
  • Color dodge to make parts of the signature lighter.
  • Color burn to make parts of the signature darker.

This is what I did:


and here is the signature all finished (I also added a simple border)



In this tutorial I showed you how you can make a great looking signature with some basic technique's. Don't forget that the biggest part of your outcome is determined by the render and background you pick!

Tutorial and signature originally made by Markcape, republished with his permission.

77 Responses »

  1. Really helped! Thank you for the tutorial. This is my first photoshop signature. I’ve made this kind of stuff on Gimp forever but I’m starting to learn Photoshop now and wow it’s so much better.

  2. Thanks for cool tutorial bruh!

  3. So I figured it out kind of on another site, but I really got confused at Step 4. HOW exactly did you get some of the background to the foreground in front of the render? And the text, I have no idea how to get the great effects and nice fonts as some of the people have. Could someone assist me?

  4. I like it!

    • This is the image,

  5. thx helped me

  6. I tried it. Cool!

  7. i did it in a different two shapes .
    i know i’m suck at choosing fonts xD

  8. Made it as a banner for my gaming forums

  9. i’m kinda pleased with how this came out

    • Nice i think

  10. Don’t like my text, still working on how to make it look good. I deviated from rotating the background, but like the overall outcome of the colors.

    • I am also still honing my skills with this style xD So if anything is off, I shall work on improving through tutorials and tips:)

      • You have some great effects and colors, but it’s a little overbright; darken up the background some and then add some dark spots in different places in the background (where shadows would be, for example) to increase the contrast.

        Overall, very nice job!

  11. I also made an attempt at this one, thank you for the clearly written tutorial! Very well done 😀

    I can’t get the upload image system to work, so I’ll try some BBCode and hope it works lol

    Here’s my result:


    • Whenever I try to upload the image using the form, it says “Sorry, you can only upload images.” I’ve tried using a both a JPG and a PNG, is there something I’m doing wrong?

  12. My attempt. Wil be douing more of these to hone my skills. Hope you like it.

    • Was not the final version of the image 🙂

  13. Thank U So Much!!

  14. Guys where Can I get those type of BGs!?

    • You don’t have to find those backgrounds just download any of the given backgrounds and use it again and again by rotating it only, simple

  15. I’m really happy with how this turned out 😀

    • can i use this for my Forum Signature?
      so cool

  16. Thanks, this is my output 😛

  17. Thanks 😀

  18. Thanks 😀

  19. Thanks mate!

  20. OOPS

    • Which background is this?

      • Looks like the second one, to me. They both have cars, that central light, and a little (Spiderman?) in the background.

  21. ty my design

  22. Very cool tutorial. I’m a bit lacking since I’m stuck with only gimp, but it was easy enough to swap over. Thanks a lot man! 😀

  23. So there’s my entry.

  24. I tried 😀

  25. Thank you so much 🙂

    • where did u get the background from

  26. I started with your tut and kinda went off on my own like halfway through. Here’s my outcome.

  27. I didn’t use a background, I made my own with brushes but used all the techniques above.

  28. Realy awesome tutorial!
    Loving it 🙂


  29. Wow, thanks man. You’ve just inspirated me to return to making graphics 🙂

  30. My attempt 😀 Thank you for a wonderful tutorial :}

  31. My Outcome 😉

  32. Damn, great tutorial! Thank u!

  33. My outcome (: Thank you very much for this tutorial! It helped me alot <3

  34. Great tutorial, here’s my outcome.

  35. Thank you!!

  36. Thanks for this tutorial! Helped me a ton!

  37. Très réussi comme tuto 😉

  38. Thank you!

  39. Thanks man, good tuto.

    • Nice! Maybe add some more colors to the background and add some C4D renders to spice up the left side of the sig

  40. 4. Blending the render with the background

    The render still looks like it is on top of the background, and not part of it like it should be.

    To blend in the render we are going to add parts of the background on top of the render.

    Can you Explain in a Little more Detail?

    • Create a new layer on top of the render layer and add parts of the background on that layer, look at the pictures to see what I did (or download the .psd to see what exactly was done)

      your layers should look like this:

      (1) background on top of render
      (2) render
      (3) background

  41. Very good job Jasper, I have been checking out your tutorials for a month now. You are pretty awesome dude, I hope you keep on showing us such tutorials!

    • Thanks for the compliment, don’t forget that Markcape made the signature and original tutorial. Props go to him not me!

    • Cool signature mate.

      • This is my Try at it, it’s not very good though.

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