Greetings! I’m Alexis Alvarez, and today I’d like to share an easy technique on how to create a book ad for Facebook using Photoshop. You can do the same thing in Photoshop Elements; although my screen shots will look a bit different from what you see, the steps will be the same. I know you can use many programs to create graphics, but I’m an Adobe Girl because I’m also a photographer, and I need the Adobe platform for image manipulation.
I have a subscription at Fotolia, because I like their assortment of images and find their prices to fit in my budget. I found a photograph there that was perfect for my ad, so I licensed it through my subscription and downloaded it.
Note: Please make sure that any image you use is properly licensed! It’s usually not expensive, and it’s the right thing to do. As authors, we know how much work goes into our craft, and we’re horrified if we find our books available on free/hack sites. Let’s make sure we all consistently role-model professional courtesy and respect for our fellow artists by paying for the images we use.
I used the medium-sized version of the image because a larger one is not necessary for ads.
Here’s the general process. First, I opened the photograph from Fotolia in Photoshop and duplicated the background layer; that’s a habit from photography work and I always like working on a duplicate. Then I created a brand new layer, a blank one, on top of that. I duplicated just the white part of the phone screen in the image into a new layer, resized my book cover and clipped it into that new layer, and added text. I flattened the image, resized, and saved as a .jpg. Here are the directions so you can do it, too.
- Duplicate the background layer
- Create a brand new layer. Select Layer –> New.
- Highlight the background layer copy in the layers tab. Then, select just the white part of the phone screen within your picture.
5. You will now have a new layer that is an exact duplicate of the white screen part of the phone in the photo. Leave it where it is; if you move it around for fun, be sure to put it back exactly on top of the original.
6. Now open the file with your cover art and drag it into your working document. You will need to resize it to fit. Use the Transform tool to do this (CTL T or CMD T) to make it larger, smaller and tilted to the right angle.
7. Clip the cover art to the white box layer so it looks like it is part of the screen. Because this particular screen is tilted slightly out of horizontal, you could use the warp feature if necessary to adjust the image; I didn’t bother. It’s good enough without additional tweaking. However, if the screen was more slanted, it would absolutely be necessary to adjust the image to make it look good.
9. Flatten the image, resize for web usage (I like to keep the width around 800 or 1000 pixels), and save an a .jpg file.
10. Upload to Facebook.
There you have it! It’s really very easy – it took longer to write this tutorial than it did to create the ad. Once you get the hang of it, you can crank these babies out like a Twinkie factory — a million a minute (probably, right?)
If you are stuck and want some additional advice, please add a comment below or message me through Facebook, and I’ll do my best to help.
Happy writing (both ad and book!)