Home > Text Effects, Tutorials > Create a Ministry of Sound inspired CD cover

Create a Ministry of Sound inspired CD cover


In this tutorial we will be learning some original Photoshop techniques through the creation of a CD cover just like the one in Ministry of Sound Albums. Some useful methods of enhancing design-flow and efficiency are shown via using smart objects. The image we are creating will be in the style of the Electro House Sessions version of the CD. We will explore a creative use of the displace filter in order to distort some of the image and also we shall venture into the flexibility of smart objects.

The actual image created by Jeremy Somers for Ministry of Sound can be found here.
Start by creating a new document with dimensions; 1000×1000px, feel free to use a different size but you may need to use different settings later on in the tutorial if you do. Fill the background with black colour.

Now for the text shown below we are going to create each word in a different layer as this will give use more flexibility. Using the text tool, type these three words in white.

Highlight the text then go Window>Character to bring up the character editor. Here you can experiment with your text to get it looking similar to the image below.

For the font I used ARIAL (bold), make sure you decrease the character spacing to suit to the below given image. Do the same with the other two words and arrange them as given below.


Select all the text layers in the layers panel then right click and select convert to smart object, if you’ve never used smart objects before, don’t worry, it is quite simple . By converting this to a smart object we can work on it as if it a single layer but have the layers within it still fully editable by double clicking on the smart object’s thumbnail.

With the smart object selected, click on the Add layer mask button in the layers panel. We are going to hide parts of this text using splatter brushes, if you don’t have any splatter brushes then you can download loads for free from Deviant Art.

Select the layer mask and with black as the foreground color and a splatter brush selected click on the image. Use splatters of different sizes and opacity until you have something that looks like the image below.


Create a new layer then convert this also to a smart object. Now go Filter>Render>Clouds then Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur and use a radius of 20px. Now you will notice that since we converted this to a smart object we can now go back and edit the values of the filters we used by double clicking on them.

It is a good habit to get into to convert anything to a smart object that you are going to add a filter to. Add a clipping mask between this smart object and the text smart object by holding Alt and clicking between them.

Now add a levels adjustment layer and also a hue/saturation adjustment layer and make sure both of these are clipped like the clouds layer.

Level Adjustment Layer:

4aHue/Saturation Adjustment Layer:


At this point, my layer palette looks something like this:


Create a new layer and set the foreground color to white. Select the line tool then using weights between 1px and 4px draw lines at 45° by holding shift. Make sure that you have something that resembles the image below. Hide all the other layers except this one and the background now go File>Save As and save the file as something like map.psd. You can now unhide all the other layers then DELETE the layer with the lines in it.

Select the ‘smart’ text object then go Filter>Distort>Displace, use the default settings then hit OK and choose the file you saved in the last step (map.psd).

Select the brush tool then hit F5 to open the brush editor, and apply the settings as shown below.

Brush Tip Shape:

7aShape Dynamics:




Create a new layer then use the eyedropper tool on part of the text to get a color. Use this color and the brush you made in the last step to draw bubbles coming from the text like so. Do this a few times around the letters then change the opacity of this layer to 50%.

This is how, what i created looked like at this point (the above image), feel free to use any brushes you already have to add details like extra floral designs or even smoke designs which you can download from DevaintArt.

Create a new layer then using the line tool draw some thick lines at 45° in different shades of gray like in the image below. You’ll notice that I hid all the other layers just to make it easier to see.

Grab the smudge tool and use a large soft brush to smudge some of these lines, use the image below as a reference.

First convert this to a smart object then in the same way as we did with the text in step 2, add a mask to this layer then use some splatter brushes to hide parts of the line.


Add a displace filter to this layer using the settings shown below and the same map (map.spd) as before.

Create a new layer above this layer then using the brush tool with a soft brush, brush some bright colors onto the layer like in the image below.


Create a clipping mask between the color layer and the smart object with the lines in it. Put these two layers within a group then move the group to directly above the background layer if it isn’t already there, lastly unhide all the other layers.


Using the same brush as we did in step 8, draw some more bubbles in a new layer (place this layer just above the ‘smart’ text layer), make these ones slightly larger than before as shown in the image above (Notice the bubbles near letters S, N and R)

Double click on this layer to bring up the layer style panel then add an inner bevel with the settings shown below.


We are going to use the same technique as in step 14 and 15 to color these bubbles so first create a new layer (above the newly created bubbles layer) then brush on some bright colors.


Next just create a clipping mask between the color layer and the bubbles layer.

I thought it would be a good idea to show how smart objects can be used effectively to increase the efficiency of your design-flow and also leave layers fully editable. First find the smart object which contains the text then double click on the thumbnail. A new document should open with a transparent background and the white text on it. Since the text is quite hard to see create a new layer, move it to the bottom of the layer stack then fill it black.


Create a new layer at the top of the layer stack then using the ellipse tool, draw a white ellipse over the letter D like shown below. Here you can also add some more text in like I did. Feel free to add some more elements in at this point. Now, make sure you DELETE the Black background layer.

Now hit Ctrl+S to save the document, you have to do this or the changes will be disregarded, then hit Ctrl+W to close the document. When you back to the other document you will notice that the changes you made have updated this image.


You may also add a logo just like I did and put in some glowing swirls which gives it a Club Motif. Click on the image for a larger view. As I always quote, It is left to your imagination to give the finishing touches. Good Luck…


Thanks to PSD Learning for the inspiration and the tutorial.

  1. A very gr8ful person
    August 28, 2010 at 12:30 PM

    Thank you so much i am sop grateful for showing me how to do this task, iseriously badly needed this for my graphics work, thank yooouuu!! Great way and maybe if there could be more designs and instructions on how to do them wopuld be great, im new to photoshop…

  2. A very gr8ful person
    September 4, 2010 at 10:12 AM

    Seriously this very cool but too tricky for an actuaal begginer and alot of the tool are not in my photoshop so would be helpful if you could explain what tools are used wioth other verions of photoshop

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: