Photo Attorney

Aug 12, 2006

Easy Tip for Adding a Copyright Notice to Your Photographs

Tim Grey is a writer, lecturer, and teacher on digital imaging. He offers a "Digital Darkroom Questions" email service and recently provided this great tip on an easy way to add a copyright text line to your photographs using Photoshop. Tim graciously agreed to let me share this tip with you here. For more information on Tim's work, go to www.timgrey.com.

This is a method for creating a custom brush that has the shape of some text you type, so that you can then apply that text anywhere simply by clicking with the brush using that brush preset.

To get started, you'll need to define the text. With an image open (or new empty image created by selecting File > New), select the Type tool from the Tools palette (or press the "T" shortcut key). Type the text, changing the font and formatting as you want it to appear for the final brush. You'll get the best results later if you keep the brush set to the size of the actual text, so try to have it sized to about the size you think you'll want it to appear later. Then select the Rectangular Marquee tool ("M" key) from the Tools menu, and draw a selection around the text that completely encompasses it. Turn off the visibility of all layers other than the text layer on the Layers palette (by clicking the eye icon to the left of the layer thumbnail), and then select Edit > Define Brush Preset from the menu. In the Brush Name dialog box enter a meaningful name for this new brush and click OK. Your brush is now created.

To put this brush to use, select the Brush tool ("B" key) from the Tools palette. From the Options bar, click the Brush dropdown and scroll down to the bottom to find your newly created brush. Adjust the color and brush size as you normally would, and when you're ready to apply your "rubber stamp" just put your mouse where you want the text to appear and click the button.

The advantage of this method is that you can put text anywhere you want with a variety of different effects based on the Brush options. However, unlike adding a text layer manually you can't modify the text itself later. I do recommend applying this text-via-brush on a separate layer from your image, which you can do by first clicking the "Create new layer" button at the bottom of the Layers palette.


It's always a good idea to do what you can to protect your work. This helpful tip makes it a bit easier to do so.

Take my advice; get professional help.
PhotoAttorney®

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