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Art Licensing by artist Joan Beiriger: I'm happy to share art licensing info but please
give me credit and link to my blog when using it on your site. Thanks.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Photoshop Tip - Using the Warp Command for Product Mock-ups

The Warp command in Photoshop is really useful for placing art on curved surfaces. The following steps shows you how I use that command for bending my art around a mug for a product mock-up.

1. In Photoshop, put an illustration of a mug and the art to be placed on the mug in separate layers. The art layer should be above the mug layer.

2. In the layers window, make the art layer 50% opacity. Move the art on top of the mug and resize it (Mac = command + T; Windows = Ctrl + T) so that it fits on the mug.

3. In the art layer, select the wrap command (Mac = command + Shift + R; Windows = Ctrl + Shift + R). A rectangle appears on top of the art with horizontal and vertical bars inside it. The horizontal and vertical bars are used to move the art inside the rectangle. Hard to see handles in the corners of the rectangle can be pulled to manipulate the outside shape of the art. Note: When the warp command is first applied to art it is in the custom style mode and that is the style that I usually use. Other styles such as arc, budge, wave, etc. can be used instead by selecting them in the warp style pop-up menu on the options bar (across the top of the window on the Mac).

4. Pull the handles located at each of the corners to
curve the outside of the art to the mug's top and bottom dimensions. The art that is not on the mug will be deleted later. Move the warp horizontal bars downward to curve the art. This is especially important when you have horizontal borders in your art. You want the borders to follow the contours of the top and bottom of the mug. Note: It took me several iterations on using the handles and the horizontal bars to curve the art around the mug.

5. Go to the mug layer and use the magic wand tool (Mac and Windows = W) to select the outside of the mug shape. Go to the art layer and hit the delete key to remove most of the art that is outside the mug. To remove the extra art on the handle, use the rectangle tool (Mac and Windows = M) to select the area and hit the delete key.

6. Change the opacity of the art layer to 100% and ergo a mug mock-up!

Copyright © 2009 Joan Beiriger


  1. Hi Joan!
    I'm thrilled that I've discovered your blog. I'm relatively new to licensing and would like to try to mock up my art on products. Your tutorial is wonderful! I am trying it out and learning so much. My question is--where do you get the objects (like the mug) to place the art on? I would appreciate any help.
    Thanks very much,

  2. Hi Sydney,
    For my mock-ups, I use generic shaped objects. In the case of the mug that I used in my tutorial, I photographed a mug that I had already. There was art on it so I used Photoshop to remove it.

    Other sources of objects to place art on could be purchasing them from discount and thrift stores. Or to make your mock-ups more unique, paint the objects yourself and scan them into the computer. The purpose of mock-ups is to give the manufacturer an idea on how your art looks on products not to make them look absolutely realistic.