How to Add Retro Matchbook Print Effects in Photoshop (+ FREE PS Action!)



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In today’s Adobe Photoshop tutorial I’m going to show you a series of filters and adjustments you can apply to your artwork to give it an old, aged print effect. The aesthetics of low-cost printing methods in the mid-20th Century is associated with retro comics, magazines and matchbook prints.

Ink bleed, misregistration and visible halftone dot patterns are all side-effects of cheap offset printing on cheap paper stock, but those visual traits that were once defects from the printing process are now desired effects to give modern artwork the appearance of a retro print.

Follow these steps in Adobe Photoshop to turn your crisp digital designs into nostalgic retro prints. We’ll add filters that replicate the appearance of high ink absorption with irregular edges and bleeding corners; Convert all colours into halftone screens; Separate and offset the black areas as if the printing plate is misaligned; Then we’ll finish off the effect with worn ink and paper textures to add the fine details of pulp grain and distressed areas where the print has worn away.

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