Easy Watermarks Photoshop Action

I’ve seen a few artists online recently expressing frustration in their work being shared without credit. I, too, used to HATE this. I, too, felt that I was gypped whenever something of mine went viral under someone else’s username.

Over time, I’ve learned that it’s just not preventable. Many people aren’t sharing things with the intention to steal the limelight, many of them just really like what’s been created and are eager to share it with their friends! And the ones that ARE trying to steal? Easily foiled with a good watermark.

Most online sharing isn’t coming from a place of malice, and most online sharing isn’t the type to put in the effort to remove your watermark, so a little extra time and effort can give you the maximum level of credit across all types of shares, and protect you pretty effectively against the shady ones.

The easiest solution, hands down, is to ensure that ALL images you post online include a legible watermark, and are posted in a low resolution.

However, watermarking takes time and energy that is difficult to justify when you’re excited to post your latest work. We’d all much rather get it over with and get started on the next piece. TIME’SA WASTIN’.

Hi, I’m Zhivago, and I’m efficiently lazy. I’m going to share my one-click Photoshop action with you. It take a little bit of time to set up, but I LOVE THIS THING. It’s a habit to click it once I’m done with every piece, and it has saved me SO MUCH TIME.

DOWNLOAD THE ACTIONS

This action is for use with final images. If you want an action for watermarking WIP images, check out my Automatic WIP maker action, which creates sequential, numbered WIPS!

WHAT IT DOES

This photoshop action saves four image files to the same location of the original artwork file.

  • Two unmarked versions, in Full Working Size and Websize
  • Two watermarked images, in Full Working Size and Websize

I’ve used 72 dpi, 1200px for ‘WebSize’ but you can edit this to your own needs.

FILES INCLUDED

This action set includes:

Four Actions:

  • One for dark, wide image
  • One for light, wide images
  • One for dark, tall images
  • One for light, tall images

Scripts: Automatically names your files!

Watermarks: The images & text you’ll be placing over your work.

INSTALLATION AND SETUP

You will need to:

  • Install the Actions
  • Link the Actions to the included files
  • Update the included watermark as desired

Phase One: LOAD THE ACTIONS

  • Put the folder in a safe, permanent location.
  • Open Photoshop
  • Open the Actions Panel, open the hamburger menu within it and click ‘Load Actions’.
  • Navigate to your folder and select the actions to load them.

Phase Two: LINK THE ACTIONS

The steps needed to link all the actions are very similar and once you do the first one, I think you’ll know what to do. I’ve included instructions for all four actions below.

SAVE WIDE // Full & Web Sizes, Marked & Unmarked (Dark Image)

  • Click the arrow to the left of first action to view all the action steps.
  • Go to Step 2, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 4, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 7, marked ‘Place’. Double click. When prompted, navigate to the ‘watermarks’ folder. For a ‘Dark Image’ Action, load ‘Basic_White_Watermark.psd’
  • Go to Step 15, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullSharable.JSX”
  • Go to Step 17, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebSharable.JSX”

SAVE WIDE // Full & Web Sizes, Marked & Unmarked (Light Image)

  • Click the arrow to the left of first action to view all the action steps.
  • Go to Step 2, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 4, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 7, marked ‘Place’. Double click. When prompted, navigate to the ‘watermarks’ folder. For a ‘Light Image’ Action, load ‘Basic_Dark_Watermark.psd’
  • Go to Step 14, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullSharable.JSX”
  • Go to Step 16, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebSharable.JSX”

SAVE TALL // Full & Web Sizes, Marked & Unmarked (Dark Image)

  • Click the arrow to the left of first action to view all the action steps.
  • Go to Step 2, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 4, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 7, marked ‘Place’. Double click. When prompted, navigate to the ‘watermarks’ folder. For a ‘Dark Image’ Action, load ‘Basic_White_Watermark.psd’
  • Go to Step 15, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullSharable.JSX”
  • Go to Step 17, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebSharable.JSX”

SAVE TALL // Full & Web Sizes, Marked & Unmarked (Light Image)

  • Click the arrow to the left of first action to view all the action steps.
  • Go to Step 2, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 4, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebFinal.JSX”
  • Go to Step 7, marked ‘Place’. Double click. When prompted, navigate to the ‘watermarks’ folder. For a ‘Light Image’ Action, load ‘Basic_Dark_Watermark.psd’
  • Go to Step 14, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_FullSharable.JSX”
  • Go to Step 16, marked ‘Scripts’. Double click this. When prompted, navigate to the ‘scripts’ folder and load “SaveJpg_WebSharable.JSX”

Once all the actions have been linked, they should function properly, and all you will need to do is update your watermark.

Phase Three: Update the Watermarks

Pretty self explanatory!

  • Navigate to the watermarks folder. Open “Basic_White_Watermark.psd”
  • Modify your watermark as you see fit.
  • Save

Dark Watermark:

  • After updating “Basic_White_Watermark.psd”, select all layers.
  • Place all the layers into a folder. Add Blending Options: ‘Color Overlay’ to the folder.
  • Choose a dark color.
  • Save as “Basic_Dark_Watermark.psd”

Watermark Design Tips!

Leave ample space around the watermark. The design I’ve included is the max width I would recommend.

Do not crop the watermark unless you want it to be VERY large on your pieces.

Make sure your design’s text is legible and readable after being set to ‘Overlay’ over complex backdrops.

Pro Tips:

I store this action’s files in my DropBox so I can use the action on multiple computers. It still needs to be set up on each device, but once it is, I just update the watermarks as needed.

  • You can edit the actions to create your own overlay/watermarking effects, adding graphics, etc. Go wild!
  • If you edit an action, you can Copy any new/updated action steps and drag them to the other actions. Remember to delete the old action step you are replacing.

Thanks for downloading the action and let me know in the comments if you have any questions! I’d love to see what kinds of beautiful watermarks you guys are adding to protect your artwork now that it’s so easy.

YCH Cuties Tutorial

This tutorial covers the YCH Cuties series of files I’ve released.

You can download them shortly, watch this space! Make sure you follow at one of the social media pages below to find out when it becomes available!

3… 2… 1… GO


wave1Hi! I’m Zhivago and I’m going to show you how to navigate and recolor one of my YCH templates.

Check out my YouTube channel for this tutorial and more in video form: Zhivago on YouTube

If you enjoy the file, you can get new ones delivered directly to you regularly by subscribing on Patreon!

@ArtByZhivago on TwitterInstagram or Facebook -or- Adopt a CatBird on Telegram

CUTIES YCH

This tutorial will cover the Cuties YCH series files.

Variations include: Canines, Felines & Critters

SOFTWARE

Adobe-Photoshop-CC-01First thing you need is the appropriate software.

These files are made to use in Adobe Photoshop CC.

There is a 30 day free trial or you can subscribe to it for as little as $10/mo. These instructions are made for photoshop so I highly recommend you CHECK IT OUT.

NOTE: If you don’t have Adobe Photoshop, that’s okay, but I don’t know how to edit these files in anything else so you’ll need to reference tutorials for your particular software and figure out how to use these files via trial by fire.

REGULAR VS DELUXE

I offer two types of files. It says in the file name which type you have.

The default option is the Regular file. This is a smaller file with less options and it is for personal use only.

The Deluxe file has more options, more use rights and includes markings. Patreon subscribers receive these files as part of their pledge and they are released to the public for purchase after 90 days.

REGULAR FILE INCLUDES

  • Lineart
  • Brush File, if applicable
  • Shading, if applicable
  • Personal Use Rights
  • Instructions (PDF and online)

DELUXE FILE INCLUDES

  • Lineart
  • Brush File, if applicable
  • Shading, if applicable
  • One-Click Markings and Recolor
  • Color Map
  • Personal and Resale Use Rights
  • Instructions (PDF and online)
  • Individual Personalized Support

SETUP

Unzip your file in a safe location.

Save yourself a backup so you don’t overwrite the original.

HIDE THE DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT

This layer gives you information about the file and what you’re allowed to do with it.

Click the Eye icon to hide it and get started.

HOW TO EDIT THE COLORS

Deluxe Files have a variety of preset markings ready for you to edit with one click. This makes editing quick and easy. Deluxe files also include a Color Map to see all marking options.

Regular files do not have these layers and require manual coloring.

  1. Browse the list of layer folders.
  1. BASE COLOR at the bottom of the list is a good place to start.
  1. Either review the color map to locate your desired marking or try various styles by turning layers on and off using the eye icon.
  2. Double click any COLORED SQUARE to edit the color.
  3. Play with the Layer Options in order to get the desired effect. Be aware that some Layer Options may be transparent and may need alteration to look right.

REGULAR FILES

Regular files do not include the additional color layers. They can be colored by hand.

  1. Open the Colors Layer
  2. Double click the white square labeled BASE COLOR to set a main color, if desired
  3. Paint over directly on the layer above BASE COLOR.
  4. Add layers here as desired.colors_exampleofreglayer

WANT TO EDIT THE LINEART?

INSTALL THE BRUSH FILE

panel_brushpresets

  1. Open the Brush Presets Panel 
  2. Top Menu > Window > Brush Presets 
  3. Navigate to the location you unzipped the files to. 
  4. Select the ABR file included with the kit
    For this file it is ‘YCH-CUTIES.ABR’ 
  5. The brush will be added to the end of your list of brushes. 
  6. You may now draw additions over the base.

THANK YOU FOR DOWNLOADING!

WWW.CAT-BIRD.COM

Chain Brush

CHAIN BRUSH ASSEMBLY TUTORIAL

CHAINS CAN BE A PAIN TO DRAW. Here’s how I make it easy AF. Follow the directions below using your own art to develop your own brush.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Download includes ZIP file with one 200px Chain Brush with Presets for Photoshop.

TUTORIAL TIME!

Step One

DRAW A ROCKET. It’s two chain links. I put a gap in the bottom because that is where the pieces will link.

Rocket

Step Two

Rotate it to go left to right. From the Edit menu, Define Brush Preset.

Step Three

Open the Brush Panel and select the new brush (It’s probably at the end). Go to Shape Dynamics and set the Angle Jitter to Direction

Step Four

Set the Size Jitter to Off.

Step FIVE

Go back to the Brush Tip Shape panel and adjust the spacing until it looks right. In my case, 216% is what worked for me.

USE YER BRUSH

You can use it as is, or add Blending Layers to add ‘Lineart’ for a toonier look.

Shown: Chains on separate layer with Blending Layers – Color Overlay set to White, 100% opacity, and Stroke added.

PS Script for Artists: Automatic WIP Maker

Script #1: Automatic WIP Maker

Here is how to create a one-click action that marks and sequentially saves every stage of your project without missing a beat!

The really nice thing about Photoshop is that you can program automatic processes to make your life easier.

Here is a short tutorial on how I make my life a little easier with Actions and Scripts!

These instructions are for Adobe Photoshop CC. If you don’t have it… well, I can’t force you to get it, but scripts like these make me urge you to try it out. You can subscribe to Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $9.99/mo and that’s a pretty cheap price to pay for the ability to automate things like this. There’s a 30 day free trial as well. I will not be making instructions on how to do this in any other programs because I don’t know how to use them!

GET PHOTOSHOP

DOWNLOAD THE ACTION

Download This Action

LIKE THE DOWNLOAD? CONSIDER SUPPORTING!

Please consider supporting me somehow if you like the pack! Every follow, pledge or subscription helps me make more of these!

For those of you who opted to go the analog route and DIY this sucker, onto the tutorial!

CREATING YOUR AUTOMATIC WIP MAKER

Preparation:

Since this is an automated process, you’ll need to set aside a directory where you will NEVER move these files.

I created a directory in my artwork drive that is dedicated to files that are made specifically for automation. That way they don’t get caught in the fray of any other files. Tucked away in a dark corner where they only speak when spoken to is exactly where you want them. Like enslaved podlings except digital files so there’s no ethical questions.

Automation Directory
Automation Directory

THE STAMP

Create a WIP Stamp you’d like to put on your artwork. It will need to be visible on both dark and light backgrounds. I made a black splash and added white text over it with my information. I’ve made this mark nice and big so that it can be used on any size image without a loss in quality. Really big. Like this sucker is 2283×1190 at 150 dpi big. I ain’t kiddin’ around.

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_Screenshot_0005

THE SCRIPT

Before you create your action, you’ll need your script ready to include in the action.

This script will make a JPG image of your file in the same directory as your working PSD file.

STEP ONE: Open up Notepad/Notepad II and paste the following code into a new document:

#target photoshop

main();

function main(){

if(!documents.length) return;

var Name = app.activeDocument.name.replace(/.[^.]+$/, '');

Name = Name.replace(/d+$/,'');

try{

var savePath = activeDocument.path;

}catch(e){

alert("You must save this document first!");

}

var fileList= savePath.getFiles(Name +"*.jpg").sort().reverse();

var Suffix = 0;

if(fileList.length){

Suffix = Number(fileList[0].name.replace(/.[^.]+$/, '').match(/d+$/));

}

Suffix= zeroPad(Suffix + 1, 4);

var saveFile = (savePath + "/" + Name + "_" + Suffix + ".jpg").replace("__","_");

SaveJPEG(File(saveFile), 8);

}

function SaveJPEG(saveFile, jpegQuality){

var doc = activeDocument;

if (doc.bitsPerChannel != BitsPerChannelType.EIGHT) doc.bitsPerChannel = BitsPerChannelType.EIGHT;

jpgSaveOptions = new JPEGSaveOptions();

jpgSaveOptions.embedColorProfile = true;

jpgSaveOptions.formatOptions = FormatOptions.STANDARDBASELINE;

jpgSaveOptions.matte = MatteType.NONE;

jpgSaveOptions.quality = jpegQuality;

activeDocument.saveAs(saveFile, jpgSaveOptions, true,Extension.LOWERCASE);

};

function zeroPad(n, s) {

n = n.toString();

while (n.length < s) n = '0' + n;

return n;

};

STEP TWO: Save it to your Scripts folder and call it something you’ll remember. Set the filetype to ‘All Files’ and give it a .jsx extention

Screenshot

Name your Script file and give it the correct extension

If you go into the folder later and realize that your file ends in .jsx.txt – It’s okay. Just edit it and take the .txt off. It won’t work if .txt is on there so just be sure to remove it.

You’re ready to record!

RECORD YOUR ACTION

Open up your Actions Panel. You can find it under Window > Actions or press Alt+F9

Actions Panel

Press record and here we go!

Step 1: Save

This is important because we will be using the revert command to undo everything at the end and we don’t want to accidentally revert to a phase where we lose work.

Flatten Image
Flatten Image

Step 2: Flatten Image

This makes the image easier for the computer to process during the action because the file size is smaller.

This is located in the Layer dropdown at the bottom.

Place Embedded

Step 3: Place Image, Press Enter to place.

This adds your watermark. I use ‘Place Embeded’ because it doesn’t matter and we’ll revert all our changes anyway.

Navigate to your watermark file. If you made it nice and big, it should appear as large as it can fit on the canvas in the current orientation, right in the center.

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_featimg-1

Press enter to accept the mark’s position. Do not move it or resize it yet.

RasterizeLayer

Step 4: Rasterize Layer

Pretty self explanatory. Right click the watermark layer to open the menu and select Rasterize Layer.

Now the mark has a new 100% size and we can resize it in proportion to the piece.

FreeTransformPercents

Step 5: Transform Layer

From the top menu, go to Edit > Free Transform or press Ctrl+T.

DO NOT resize using the corners of the selection box. You’ll want to use the percentages box up here so that the action can record it properly.

I set mine to 70%. I want my mark to be big in order to compensate for my shortcomings, like my height.

Step 6: Select All

Get the dancing ants! You should still be on the watermarks layer. From the top menu, click Select > Select All or press Ctrl+A to select the entire canvas.

Step 7: Align the Layer

Layer > Align Layers to Selection > Your Choice – I want it on the bottom.

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_Screenshot__alignbottom

Lather, rinse, repeat to move it to on side. My marks usually go on the right.

Step 8: Layer > Align Layers to Selection > Your Choice

Boop.

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_Screenshot__alignright

Step 9: Nudge it

Using the arrow keys, put it in the exact spot you want it in. DO NOT CLICK AND DRAG. This will not record correctly. This command won’t appear in the list until you move to the next step so don’t worry when it doesn’t show up immediately.

→→→→→→→↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_Screenshot__nudged

OPTIONAL: BE FANCY

If you like your mark as it is, then skip this part. I like to add an effect because I’m a tryhard.

OPTIONAL STEP: STOP RECORDING FIRST. Play with the layer effects to find one you like. When you make your choice, set the layer back to Normal before you click record again. I like Difference in this case because it applies my Black splash only when the background is light.

2017SEPT28_AutoWIP_Difference

Step 10: Revert

This resets the canvas back to whence you came.

STOP RECORDING.

That’s it! You now have an action that instantly saved a marked WIP for you!

If you’re having trouble, go through these instructions again with a fine toothed comb. Actions can be VERY picky and one wrong click can botch the whole thing so I’ve tried my best to make this as simple as possible.

Hope you were able to get it working! Now all of your WIP’s can be safely marked before you share them! Enjoy!

~Your friendly neighborhood cat-bird, Z