Create a Realistic Stone Texture in Photoshop

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Stone Texture

This is the my third installment of “creating awesome textures using filters in Photoshop.” If you missed the first two, you can check them out here: creating a water texture and creating a wood texture.

This tutorial will cover how to create a stone texture using mostly filters and finishing the effect with a photo.

Let’s Get Started…

  1. The first three steps are the same as the water and wood effect. First, create a new document in Photoshop, size it to 500px by 500px, click OK.
  2. Set the Foreground color to white and the background color to black.
  3. Colors

  4. Go to the toolbar at the top and click filter->render->clouds. This will give us a nice base to work from.
  5. Clouds

  6. Open up the Channels window, which is usually in a tab within your layers palette, it may be different, depending on how your workspace is setup. If you can’t locate is click window->channels to open that palette.
  7. Click on the “Create New Channel” button located at the bottom of that palette, rename that channel something like stone texture channel. In this channel we will be creating a texture to use in our lighting effects (you will see how this works a few steps from now.)
  8. New Channel

  9. Now we need to turn that texture channel into something that we can utilize. Click filter->render->difference clouds. Repeat adding the difference clouds filter about 2 more times, or until you have a variance you like, it should look something like the image below…
  10. Difference Clouds

  11. Within the Channels palette click on the eye icon next to RGB to show the Red, Green and Blue Channels again. Click off the new channel you just created, by clicking off the eye.
  12. RGB Channels

  13. Click back on the layers tab, and hit ctrl-j on the keyboard to duplicate the background layer. Call your new layer something like stone texture. Drag the background layer to the trash and just have the stone texture layer.
  14. Lets add a lighting effect to the stone texture layer to get some depth and lighting to our image. Click filter->render->lighting effects. This will bring up the lighting effects options (and their are many). First, change the texture channel to the stone texture channel we created earlier. Put the Light Type to Spotlight. In the preview on the left side, you can grab any of the four handles to manipulate the direction and length of the spotlight by clicking and dragging. I kept the light about the same as the defaults, except I widened it a little. Play around and get a feel for the options; it would benefit you greatly in many of your projects to know this powerful filter. Play around with the other option sliders until you get the look you are after. The image below shows the settings that I used…
  15. Lighting Effects

  16. Let’s add some color into the project. Click image->adjustments->hue/saturation. These are the settings I used…
  17. Hue Saturation

    Taking This Project Even Further…

  18. You already have a nice texture that you created, but to make the texture look more realistic, I would suggest adding some cracks to the stone. You could accomplish this by finding some cool grunge brushes with sidewalk type cracks. Or overlay a nice sidewalk cracks image on top. Here is the image that I found and used…
  19. Sidewalk Cracks

  20. Save that image and open it up in Photoshop. Grab the move tool (shortcut v on the keyboard) and drag that sidewalk image on top of your stone texture. When you let go, that will place the sidewalk on its own layer above the stone layer.
  21. Now we need to transform that layer so that it covers all the area we need. Click ctrl-t on the keyboard to bring up the Free Transform tool. Now click on the Warp Tool within the properties panel at the top, as shown below
  22. Warp Mode

  23. Grab the handles and click and drag the sidewalk until it covers the stone texture in the manor you’d like. Hit enter on the keyboard when you are ready to set the warp. My warp looks like the image below…
  24. Warped Sidewalk

  25. Next it’s a good idea to really make the contrast of the sidewalk extreme. We do this with the levels options. Click image->adjustments->levels, and drag the white slider and black slider towards the middle.
  26. Levels for Sidewalk

  27. Within the layers palette, change the blend mode to darken, and drop the opacity until it overlays nicely, I used 75%.
  28. Layers

  29. Click back to the stone texture layer, and click filter->noise->add noise. Add some noise back into the picture, I used 6 for my settings.
  30. Here is the final result I got…
    Stone Effect Final

    I hope you can find some nice uses for this tutorial. As always if you come up with something good, or have different suggestions on how to achieve this effect, post a comment, or send an email to: [email protected].

About the Author

Andrew is a primary contributer for MyInkBlog. He is a full time web developer for Niagara University. When he's not working there, he's a blogger, twitter'er, wordpress'er, silverstripe advocate, blessed father and husband.

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    Nice tut, I really enjoy it!

  • ArcLight

    The texture is great and I’m sure I’ll be using this method some day. Only thing I’d suggest is take it another step to add some depth to the cracks.

  • Johnny Boy

    Thanks for this tute! I did the grass one too, and I gotta say – these are some of the best Ive seen. Most leave me tearing my hair out as they seem to skip steps here and there and it wrecks the whole process. Absolute top-class mate!
    cheers, JB

  • Jeevan

    I’ll be using this in the future. Great tutorial

  • seeayam

    nice tutorial thanks

  • Sarvan

    all ur tutes r vry nice……….i am looking for more tute…….thank you………

  • blijhoofd88

    I realy like this tut , the grass looks great but I can’t get the brush for the lines. Can you give any info how to get it in CS3?


  • Stacey Rau

    this was very fun-tastic!!!!!!!

  • Alex

    everytime i create a new channel and try to add effects it doesnt work

    it turns the entire screen black


  • Andrew Houle

    That step is suppose to turn the canvas black. You’ve created a new channel. Add the difference clouds in step 6, then follow the next few steps through… let me know if you have anymore trouble.

  • Stunt

    best tutorial

  • Al

    The lighting effects is never highlighted for me to click when I get to that step. Please help!

  • Andrew Houle

    @AI Are you sure you are on the correct layer and followed the instructions in the previous step?

  • Sue Schesser

    thanks for sharing..has helped so much..

  • Derrell Garms

    Great Tutorial!

    I still have a lot to learn about PS3 and I have a couple of questions.

    1) How did you create the carved text in the title image for this tutorial.

    2) I have an idea for a series of posters based upon real life stone carvings and I’m not sure how to make a drawing that looks like it’s carved out of stone.

    I’d appreciate any tips you’re willing to share.

  • Andrew Houle

    @Derrell That is just a messy font that I used that I dropped a slight stroke, an inner shadow and low opacity on. I wish I could remember the exact font, but it’s been a while and I forgot. Check out for a bunch of awesome free fonts.

    Here is an interesting tutorial by Naldz Graphics about how to turn a man to stone in photoshop: This may help with your project.

  • Derrell Garms

    Hey thanks for the tips and for the heads up on the other tut!

    Derrell Garms´s last post was… Chic’s Dig Me

  • uday jadhav

    super nice idea

  • Syed Sheeraz Ahmed

    What i can say….Simple is that ..Superb!