Creating a Realistic 3D Flag in PhotoShop!!!




This instructible will teach you how to make a realistic looking flag, but not only can this effect be used for flags It can be used for almost anything

Step 1: First Things First!

get your self a picture of some fabric and a picture fo a flag, you can use mine if you like.

Step 2: Put Both Images Into Photoshop

Open your fabric and your flag image and then apply gaussian blur to your fabric picture
(Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur) and experiment with the radius to hide the detail of the fabric, keeping only the folds.

Step 3: SAVE!

Save your image as a PSD file (File > Save as). I saved mine as fabric.psd

make sure you save as a PSD or the next few steps wont work out.

Step 4: Next Up: the Flag Image

Start working on your flag image. Apply the displacement map filter to your flag with your fabric photo, mine is the fabric.psd file. (Filter > Distort > Displace)

use the same settings as i have done in the picture.

Step 5: Take a Look So Far

this is what i have got, maybe have a rest have a cuppa' and a biccy

Step 6: Adding the Wavyness

Go back to your fabric picture and select the whole thing with your marquee tool or simply by using ctrl+a, copy (ctrl+c), paste it (ctrl+v) onto your flag picture and change the layer mode to "Hard Light".

yeah.. Hard.

Step 7: Your Finished!

take a look at your artwork.. remember this effect can be used with allmost any picture try doing one of a friends face or make a wavy house!

vote for me to win, and i'll give you a cookie.

8 People Made This Project!


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44 Discussions


3 years ago


My software is adobe photoshop CS5 ,and i can't do the step 4 ,can anyone help?


9 years ago on Introduction

 I don't have the programs for this, but can someone do this to my avatar icon, please?

2 replies

8 years ago on Introduction

After I saw this instructable I thought I'd give it a go and experiment with a whole variety of textures that I downloaded off Google.
Here's a preview of what I did:

This is a very neat trick, even my mum who has more photoshop know-how than me marvelled a it.


south_african_storm_flag-swirled SMALL.jpgsouth_african_storm_flag-Sheeted SMALL.jpg

9 years ago on Step 7

'You're finished' is what it should say. Sorry, I couldn't resist!