In today’s tutorial I’m going to take you through the process of creating a blueprint effect in Adobe Photoshop. If you don’t fancy spending hours construcing a technical drawing from scratch, this is a great technique for faking it. We’ll use some built in Photoshop filters to produce the basic outlines from a source photograph, then mix in some grid patterns and textures to enhance the realism.

How To Create a Blueprint Effect in Adobe Photoshop

The realism of this blueprint effect tutorial all depends on the base images you have to work with. For best results, use pictures of your subject from the front, side and top, combined into one document. Authentic blueprints are drawn as exact plans, whereas a photograph will always include unwanted details, perspective, and reflections. Wireframe 3D renders or vector illustrations can be used directly without any Photoshop adjustments, but in this tutorial I’ll show you how to create this example based on a photograph of a house.

Open up your base image in Adobe Photoshop. This particular house photograph is a free image named House Lights Turned On.

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41 Comments

  1. Great work, Chris, I’ll try it with a human figure “Vitrubius” style!!

  2. This tutorial is right up my alley. I am a residential designer and just started writing blog posts about the residential design process. This technique will be a great option for my post featured image. Thank you very much.

    Have you ever done anything where you can convert an image to a silkscreen / block print look? I tried, but not getting exactly what I’m looking for. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

  3. Chris,
    Tried this out when I got home today. Took a bit longer than I had hoped, but it turned out great! Thanks for sharing this! I am going to post in on my Instagram page for people to check out. If you would like to check it out, my Instagram page is oldestyle_design_co

  4. Nice tutorial–very easy to follow, and gives a nice effect.
    You only missed one thing–a well-worn blueprint is sure to have one or more coffee-mug rings!

  5. im having problems in making the grids. i have copied every settings and steps so far but when i add the pattern in the blue picture, only white borders in left and top side will show. not the grids

  6. This is so cool looking! Thank you very much!
    Just as an aside, I knew an artist who would set blueprint paper down outside, lay stuff on it, or pose on it, until it ‘developed’ an image. She created art this way and it was awesome!
    Thank you, again!
    Su

  7. That’s amazing and beautiful work, loving it! Your adobe photo shop blueprint is easy to understanding. I am a graphics designer, I am optimistic that I’ll create this type of effect with adobe photo shop ingredients. Thanks you for this naturalistic tutorial.

  8. Thank you so much! This is such a wonderful tutorial, very well explained and easy to follow. You know when you need something, and it comes to you in just the right time? This tutorial was that to me, so thank you so much for taking the time to do it!

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