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In this tutorial, I will show you the process I took to create this rather cute, unique Style “Play” Button in Photoshop. It’s a simple (aimed for PS beginners) but fun tutorial, have a try :)

The primary goal for this tut is to show you the functionalities behind the draw tools, selection tool and the use of layer blending options. I also added my own design ideas to make this play button a bit unique. Hope you enjoy it!

Here is a preview of the final effect for this tutorial: (click to enlarge)


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OK let’s get started!

Step 1

Create a new document sized 1000 x 600px. Fill the background with the following gradient:

1 fill

Duplicate the background layer once, resize and rotate the duplicated layer, use a big soft brush to erase the left and right side, and position it as shown below:

1 resize and rotate

We now have a reasonably good-looking background to work on. Personally I feel sometimes a nice background help creating the mood we need to continue working on the graphic.

Step 2

Create a new layer named “circle”, grab the “Ellipse Tool” from the toolbox:

2 ellipse tool

Make sure your setting is set to below: (white fill color)

2 e setting

hold down the “Shift” key and draw a white circle on the layer:

2 draw

Apply the following layer blending options to this circle layer:

Drop  Shadow

2 drop sha

Inner Shadow

2 inner sha

Bevel and Emboss

2 bevel

Color Overlay

2 col over

Gradient Overlay

2 gra over

and here is the effect so far:

2 effect

The colour I chose for this play is orange, however you can try out different colour such as blue, green, purple – the choice is yours.

Step 3

Now we can add a glossy overlay to the circle background to make it more attractive :) To do this, create a new layer on top of the “circle” layer, name it as “glossy overlay”. Load the selection of the “circle” layer by Ctrl + left click the thumbnail on the layer pallette, as shown below:

3 load selection

Click on the “Glossy Overlay” layer, then select the “Elliptical Marquee Tool” and choose the “subtract from selection” option:

3 subtract

Then draw a selection around 50% the height of the original “circle” layer on the “Glossy Overlay” layer, you will have the following effect:

3 after sub

Fill the selection with white colour, then change the blending mode to “overlay”, opacity around 30%.

Press Ctrl + T and use the Free Transform Tool to rotate the selection clockwise a bit, you will have the following effect:

3 effect 2

Step 4

Create  a new layer on top of  the glossy overlay layer, grab the “polygon tool” from the toolbox, apply the following option to it: (Make sure to choose “3” for sides, because we’re drawing a triangle!)

4 poly sides 3

After drawing, rotate it a bit clockwise so it matches the angle of the background:

4 after draw

Apply the following layer blending options to it:

Drop shadow

4 drop shadow

Inner Glow

4 inner sha

Bevel and Emboss

4 bevel

(Ingore the gradient overlay setting, I decided not to include it in the end)

Add a layer mask to this triangle layer, use a smalll soft brush, erase the joint points a bit:

4 effect

You will have the following effect:

To add a bit depth to the play button, we can duplicate the triangle layer once, disable all layer effect on the duplicated layer, reduce its height and width a bit, you will have following effect:

4 effect 2

Step 5

To add a bit creativity to the button, I decided to add some smaller circle around it, with a different colour. To do this, I simple duplicated the original circle layer once  and put the duplicated layer below it. On the duplicated layer, cancel all layer blending effects except the Bevel and Emboss and Gradient Overlay options:

Bevel and Emboss

5 bevel

Gradient Overlay

5 gradient

Use the free tranform tool to resize it to a smaller size, then duplicate it for another three times, scatter those layers around the circle as shown below

5 effect

Then we can add shadow onto the image to make it deeper – To do this simply create a new layer on top of the “background copy” layer, and grab a big black brush around the same size as the circle layer, do a single click on it, then resize the layer as shown below:

5 resize shadow

Reduce its opacity a bit and position it behind the circle, and here is the final effect: (click to enlarge)


That’s for this tutorial! Drop me a comment if you have any trouble with it, I will try my best to help you out :)

Have a great day!

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