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Create a Speech Balloon
Photoshop Training

I have noticed a lot of interest in doing various cartoon projects within Photoshop. Whether it's creating a cartoon from scratch or simply adding some kind of an effect to a photo to make it look like a cartoon, it is very popular. Well, since every cartoon needs to have some kind of speech balloon, or dialogue bubble, I decided to create a tutorial on how to make one. It really is quite simple. These speech balloons are also great for just adding to a picture. Scapbookers should love this one.

Here is the image that I will begin with.

Sometimes the background of an image can make it a bit hard to see what you are doing, and this is one of those kinds of backgrounds. If you have a nice solid color background, you will not have to do this. I will create a temporary gray layer on top of this one, and reduce the opacity of that layer to 75%. Select Layer/New/Layer and Edit/Fill/Use 50% gray. Then slide the opacity bar down to 75%.

This is what I am now working with.

You should create a new layer for your balloon in case you decide you want to move it around a bit. Also we can add some drop shadow and stroke effects later this way.

Next we will need to select the Elliptical Marquee Tool. We will use this to create the size and shape of the speech balloon.

Just drag until you have it how you like.

Now we need to select the Polygonal Lasso Tool. You will also need to make sure that you have the "Add to Selection" box is selected.

Now using the lasso tool, create the point on the speech balloon that shows where the dialogue is coming from. Click somewhere inside the balloon, then click where you want the point to be. Click back inside the balloon to create the shape, and then back to the original point you started.

Once you do your final click, it should add the two together to create one shape.

Looking good! Now we need to fill it with white. Set your foreground color tile to white, and select the Paint Bucket Tool.

With the Paint Bucket Tool selected, click inside the speech balloon to fill with white. Then choose "Ctrl+D" to deselect it. That will get rid of the dancing ants.

As I said earlier, I like to add a stroke around the balloon, and give it a little drop shadow to give the balloon some depth. Select Layer/Layer Style/Blending Options. This will open the layer style options window. Check the "drop shadow" box. The default settings should be fine. Next check the "stroke" box, and use the settings shown.

Now we can either turn off or delete the gray layer.

Select the Horizontal Text Tool, and put your caption in. I have added another speech balloon using the same techniques. Happy cartooning!