Draw a 3D Umbrella with Photoshop

Preview

This is what we will be creating in this tutorial.

Preview

Step 1: Setup the document

Create a new 512px by 512px canvas and fill the Background layer with a shade of grey (#666666). Having a grey background will let us see our work better as opposed to the traditional white background.

Setup the document

Tip: to help you draw symmetrical shapes and make perfect alignments, create two guides at center of the canvas.

Step 2: Create the umbrella handle shape

Select Pen Tool (P) from the Tools Panel and draw a handle-like shape as shown below.

Setup the document

Give the umbrella handle some layer styles by double-clicking on its layer in the Layers panel to open the Layer Styles dialog box.

Add an Inner Shadow layer style with these settings:

Setup the document

Continue to add an Inner Glow layer style with the suggested settings shown below.

Setup the document

Next, add a Gradient Overlay that’s oriented horizontally—this will give the umbrella handle its wooden-textured, three-dimensional shape.

Setup the document

Here is our umbrella handle after adding the layer styles.

Setup the document

Step 3: Give the umbrella handle some stripes

Let us draw some details on the handle to make it look as close to a real umbrella as possible. We will create 1px horizontal stripes on the handle; many umbrellas have these stripes to help give its user a better grip on the handle. Create a new layer (Ctrl/Cmd + Shift + N) on top of the current layer.

Ctrl/Cmd + click on the handle shape layer to load a selection surrounding it.

Move the selection 4px up with the Move Tool (V) and your keyboard arrow keys.

Fill the selected area with black (#000000).

With the selection still loaded, press the Up arrow key on your keyboard to move the selection 1px up.

Now, clear the area beneath the selection by hitting the Delete key.

Give the umbrella handle some stripes

With the stripe still selected, copy it (Ctrl/Cmd + C) and paste (Ctrl/Cmd + V) it on the layer a few times to make more stripes, moving the copied stripes up the umbrella handle such that all of them are equally spaced from one another (about 5px between them is good).

Give the umbrella handle some stripes

Change the blending mode of the stripes layer to Soft Light and reduce its opacity to about 30%.

Give the umbrella handle some stripes

As an added touch, give the stripes a Drop Shadow layer style using the suggested settings below.

Give the umbrella handle some stripes

Step 4: Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Pick the Ellipse Tool (U) from the Tools panel and draw an oval on the top portion of the handle of our umbrella; make sure to set your foreground to black (#000000) before drawing the shape.

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Now, add a couple of layer styles by double-clicking the oval shape layer in the Layers panel to open up the Layer Styles dialog window.

First, you can add a Drop Shadow layer style to give the shape some depth.

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Then give the shape a Gradient Overlay to match the gradient of our handle.

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Create a new layer (name it "thick", which I will refer back to later in this tutorial) and place it below the oval shape layer.

Ctrl/Cmd + click on the oval layer to load a selection around it, and then move the selection 1px down using the Down arrow key.

Now fill (Ctrl/Cmd + F5) the selection with a black color (#000000).

Without deselecting yet, move the selection 1px further down and fill it again with black. Keep doing this until you get a 5px-thick shape.

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

After creating the shape, give it a Gradient Overlay layer style using the suggested settings shown below to give the top portion of our handle a nice 3D look that matches the wooden handle.

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Draw the top of the umbrella handle

Step 5: Give the top handle a subtle drop shadow effect

Create a new layer and place it below the "thick" layer.

Ctrl/Cmd + click on the "thick" layer to make a selection around it then move the selection 2px down.

Fill (Ctrl/Cmd + F5) the selected area with a very dark brown color (#1A0B00).

Give the top handle a subtle drop shadow effect

Now apply a motion blur filter onto the layer (Filter > Blur > Motion Blur) at an Angle of 90o and with the Distance of 3px.

Press Ctrl/Cmd + F (Filter > Last Filter) to reapply the same Motion Blur filter with same settings.

Using Rectangular Marquee Tool (M) and remove the part of the layer that lies outside the handle. As you can see, we’ve given the top handle a bit of a shadow to make the lighting of our umbrella realistic—it is these details that truly make or break a drawing piece.

Give the top handle a subtle drop shadow effect

Step 6: Create the umbrella pole

Select the Rectangle Tool (U) in the Tools panel and make a shape as shown below.

Name this shape layer as "pole" (I’ll refer to it as such from this point on).

Create the umbrella pole

Give the "pole" shape layer a Gradient Overlay layer style that consists of dark shades.

Create the umbrella pole

As you can see, a simple gradient overlay gives our pole a 3D metallic effect that is consistent with the umbrella’s handle.

Create the umbrella pole

With the "pole" shape layer selected, go to Layer > Add Layer Mask > Reveal All.

Using the Rectangular Marquee Tool (M), drag a selection around the handle as shown, and fill it with a grey color (#828282).

Create the umbrella pole

You can use different shades of grey to adjust the opacity of the selected part.

Create the umbrella pole

Step 7: Draw the canopy of the umbrella

The next step of our tutorial is the canopy (or "drapery") of the umbrella—the part that shields you from the rain (or the sun depending on how you use umbrellas). For this tutorial, I am going to use five panels to complete the drapery of the umbrella. Start drawing the canopy by first creating a new layer group (Ctrl/Cmd + G) and naming it "drapery".

Draw a shape for the left-middle panel of our drapery as shown below using Photoshop’s Pen Tool (P). This is where your Photoshop guides can come in handy to help you draw the shape.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Next, we will color in our panel using two layer styles.

Let us give the panel a shadow inside it using an Inner Shadow layer style (suggested settings shown below).

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Next, we will give the panel its blue shades using a Gradient Overlay layer style with the following settings.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

When you add a Gradient Overlay with the Style option set to Radial, you’ll notice that the center of gradient radiance is positioned at the middle of the panel by default. To fix that, while you are still in the Gradient Overlay dialog, click and hold on the panel in the canvas to move the center of the radial gradient; move it towards the right bottom of the drapery.

Shown below is what the left-middle panel of our drapery looks like with the two layer styles we have applied above.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Step 8: Duplicate the panels of the canopy

Make two more panels using Pen Tool (P).

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

The layer styles for each of the panels are flexible so play around with them until you get an effect that you like. For example, you can change the opacity of Inner Shadow and the position of radial Gradient Overlay as you see fit.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

To complete the canopy, a flipped duplicate copy needs to be added on the right side of our canvas. The layer group that we made for the left panels makes this job much easier. Instead of duplicating all three panel layers that we made on the left side, just right-click on "drapery" group and choose Duplicate Group from the contextual menu that appears.

With the duplicate group selected in the Layers Panel, press Ctrl/Cmd + E to merge all its visible layers into single layer.

Now go to Edit > Transform > Flip Horizontal to reorient the duplicated panels, and then move them rightward to finish our canopy’s shape.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Step 9: Add a shadow to the pole

There is a need to add a shadow on the pole of the umbrella to make it seem like the canopy is casting a shadow on it. To add the shadow, create a new layer above the "pole" layer and Ctrl/Cmd + click on "pole" layer to load a selection around it.

Pick the Gradient Tool (G) from the Tools panel and then choose the Black, White gradient preset. Create the gradient as shown below, starting from the top.

Set the blending mode of the layer to Multiply and reduce its opacity to 95%.

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Draw the canopy of the umbrella

Step 10: Draw the canopy top

Create a new layer above the drapery and draw a small vertical rectangle on top of it.

Draw the canopy top

Give it the same Gradient Overlay that was used on the "pole" layer. A shortcut here would be to right-click on the "pole" layer and then picking Copy Layer Style from the contextual menu. After copying the layer style from the "pole" layer, right-click on the layer where the rectangle was drawn, and then choose Paste Layer Style.

Draw the canopy top

Create a new layer and then add a dark grey oval shape at top as presented below.

Draw the canopy top

Create a new layer and draw a shape using Pen Tool (P) that will serve as the base of the canopy top.

Draw the canopy top

Give the base of the canopy an Inner Shadow layer style using the suggested settings below.

Draw the canopy top

To finish up the base of the canopy, add another layer style to it—a Gradient Overlay with the settings shown below.

Draw the canopy top

Draw the canopy top

Add a subtle drop shadow to keep the lighting consistent.

Draw the canopy top

Step 11: Add a shadow to the base of the handle

Let us finish our drawing by giving the handle a nice detailing touch: a drop shadow. Create a new layer and place it below "handle" layer.

Select Elliptical Marquee Tool (M) and fill the selection with black (#000000) as shown.

Add a shadow to the base of the handle

Reduce the opacity of the layer to 70%.

We will apply three filters onto this shadow layer:

  • Filter > Blur > Motion Blur (Angle: 0, Distance: 30px)
  • Filter > Blur > Motion Blur (Angle: 0, Distance: 30px)
  • Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur (Radius: 1.5px)

Add a shadow to the base of the handle

Conclusion

That’s it! In this tutorial, we drew an umbrella using some basic Photoshop shapes and the Pen Tool. We used many Layer Styles to color in our drawing. We added some realistic lighting effects such as shadows using a variety of techniques. I hope you enjoyed the tutorial and learned something new from it. If this tutorial has inspired you, please share in the Design Instruct Flickr group pool.

Download Source Files

  • Really cool, love the style neat and original!

  • Great tutorial yet another time Asher 🙂

  • Nice tutorial, very well explained

  • very good tutorial. I feel you could go even farther on the top of the unbrella, but very well written. Thanks!

  • I love the chrome against the dull Grey background. make’s it pop

  • To me, what I loved to the most about Asher’s tutorial were the little details–things I’d never think to do when drawing something (that’s probably why I’m not an illustrator). For example, I’d never think to place a drop shadow on the top part of the chrome pole, where the canopy/drapery is supposed to cast a shadow on it. I also like the simple technique of having the pole reflect onto that black top part of the handle.

    The details truly can make a piece go from “OK” to “Awesome”, and often the easiest to overlook.

    More than just simply learning how to draw an umbrella, the biggest thing I took away from reading Asher’s tutorial was, “Always remember the details”.

  • impressive….
    you are a real photoshop master.
    i wish i could draw like you…..
    well done.

  • mintheinhtun

    Very Fantasy design, I think

  • I like the metal effects!

  • Asher, It’s really superb tutorial and it’s step by step explanation too.
    Keep it up.

  • Just awesome work. I`ll try this on my own too..

  • I love the attention for the details! Great job!

  • Friend, you’ve made my day, this is so damn cool. I am so glad that I found this tutorial.

    Keep up the good work.

    Regards.

  • Wow…thanks for this wonderful tutorial 🙂
    great job

  • some of the steps are really vague. i tried at step 3 several time and exhausted 5 hours to no avail. i think you need a little more explanation cause mine said rasterize layer before nudge.
    sorry but i guess a negative comment is the best i can do

  • I wish you had left a comment asking for help before chalking it up as failure. The benefit that I see in web-based tutorials/instructional material is that it’s two-way (as opposed to reading a book, where the flow of information is one way).

    For us, we can see where the tutorial is failing and iterate on it. For you, you can ask us and the Design Instruct community for tips and suggestions and get the information you need or feel is lacking in the original tutorial. Win/Win for everyone.

    If it wasn’t clear the first time around, drop a comment, send us an email, don’t be shy to ask for help.

    And negative comment or not, we’re listening – just that I’m a bit disappointed because our goal is to build a community of designers that are willing to help each other out, but that you didn’t feel like that was the case in this instance, as shown by you hesitating to comment asking for help the first time you experienced trouble.

    But to answer your question:
    So your handle is a Shape layer, right?

    1) Ctrl/Cmd + click on the shape layer’s thumbnail in the Layers Panel. Since it’s a shape layer, there should be two thumbnails, so click on the second thumbnail that has an outline of your handle’s shape. This will put a marquee selection around it (dashed lines that surround your shape).
    2) Create a new layer (click on the Create a new layer button towards the bottom of the Layers Panel). Make sure that the active layer is that new layer (it should have a blue highlight over it in the Layers Panel).
    3) Nudge your selection (not shape) 4px up. In the Tools Panel, make sure that the active tool is the Marquee Tool and not the Move Tool. Your shape shouldn’t move, only the dashed lines.
    4) Now, fill the selection with black (Shift + F5 or Edit > Fill).
    5) Nudge up your selection again, not the filled area (make sure again that your active tool is the Marquee Selection tool and not the Move Tool).
    6) Hit Delete to remove the excess area.

    We’re assuming the people following these tutorials are somewhat familiar with Photoshop. It is difficult to find a balance between giving enough information and also not annoying the intermediate-advanced readers who already know the basics.

    So for true beginners, I’m asking you to ask for assistance in the comments. If there are enough people having trouble with a particular step – then we will update the instructions so that future readers won’t encounter the trouble anymore.

  • Excellent tutorial,Thanks for sharing.