How to Draw a Photorealistic iPhone 4 in Photoshop

Learn how to draw a realistic iPhone 4 from scratch in Photoshop. This drawing tutorial will teach you through step by step instructions the essentials of drawing electronics and introduce techniques on how to work with metal.

Preview of Final Results

final big

Photorealistic iPhone 4 Photoshop Tutorial

Step 1 – Create a new image file

Open Photoshop and create a new image (Ctrl+N or File > New) with the settings shown below.

  • Width : 430 pixels
  • Height : 600 pixels
  • Resolution : 72 pixels/inch
  • Background Contents : White


Step 2 – Create the iPhone 4 shape

Create a new layer (Ctrl+Shift+N or Layer > New > Layer) above the Background layer. Rename this layer to Base. You can rename the layer by double-clicking on the layer name in the Layers palette (Window > Layers). In the tools palette, select the Pen tool (P) and ensure that the mode is set to Paths shown by the button in the image below.

Create a path like shown in the image below. You can load the image below into Photoshop and trace over it. Getting the shape right is the key to realistic renderings. For other drawings, you can download the photo of the object you are creating and trace over it. It is very difficult to create an accurate shape without tracing.


With the Pen tool still selected, right click inside the path then choose Fill. Fill the area with a dark gray color (#141517) to be specific.


Step 3 – Create the metal band

Create another new layer (Ctrl+Shift+N or Layer > New > Layer). Name this layer to “Silver Part”. You can rename a layer by double-clicking on the layer name in the Layers palette (Window > Layers). Create a selection like shown in the image below. You can use any tool to create the selection. If you’d like to use the Pen tool to create this select, start by drawing the path with the Pen tool then right click inside the path and choose Make Selection. Fill the selected area (Shift+F5 or Edit > Fill) with a light gray such as #CFCECC.


Now add a Gradient Overlay style to the layer. Go to Layer > Layer Style > Gradient Overlay. Create a black and white gradient so that you get a gradient that shows the curvature of the metal band like the image below.


Step 4 – Dodge and burn the metal band

Select the Burn tool (O) then in the option bar, set the settings to the following:

  • Master Diameter : 164 pixels
  • Range : Highlights
  • Exposure : 63% (4A)


Use the Burn tool on the areas indicated in the image below.


Step 5 – Create a bevel for the metal band

Create a new layer rename this layer to “Silver Part Stroke”. Select the Pen tool then create a path like shown in the image below.


This layer will be used to create the edge of the metal band on the iPhone.


Add a Gradient Overlay layer style to this layer by choosing Layer > Layer Style > Gradient Overlay. Apply a gradient like shown in the image below.


This is what your image should look like.


Step 6 – Finish the bevel

Select the Eraser tool (E) then erase the bottom corner of the metal band so that it blends in.

Below is a before and after image of this step. It is a small change but it makes the metal band look like it is wrapping around the whole phone.

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