Photoshop TutorialsSpecial EffectsUpdated

Quick Tip: How to Create a Triangle Pixelation Effect in Photoshop

Photoshop makes it easy to pixelate with the mosaic filter but it’s boring and overused. Thankfully, there’s an easy trick that lets you pixelate using triangles instead of squares! This tutorial is incredibly easy so give it a try.

Final Results

before
New York City Poster

Step 1

Start by opening any photo you want into Photoshop. You should resize the image to your final output size before you continue. This is the photo that we’ll be using.

image

Step 2

Duplicate your background layer twice.

image

Step 3

Activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd+T or Edit > Free Transform) then set the horizontal skew value to 45º.  The horizontal skew setting is located in the options bar when you have your Transform tool activated. Press Enter to apply the transformation.

image

Step 4

Go to Filter > Pixelate > Mosaic. Adjust the cell size setting to anything you like then click OK.

image

Step 5

Next, we’re going to transform it the opposite way. Activate the Free Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd+T or Edit > Free Transform) then set the horizontal skew setting to –45º. Press enter to apply the transformation.

image

Step 6

Set this layers opacity to 50% then select the middle layer. We’re going to be doing the same steps but with transformations done

image

Step 7

With the middle layer selected, activate the Free Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd+T or Edit > Free Transform) then set the horizontal skew to –45º.

image

Step 8

Apply the same mosaic filter again. You can do this quickly by pressing Ctrl/Cmd+F or by going into the filter menu and selecting the first filter in the menu. Photoshop automatically places your last used filter on the top of this menu.

image

Step 9

Use the Free Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd+T or Edit > Free Transform) to transform the layer back to its original shape by setting the horizontal skew value to 45º.

image

Step 10

We’re pretty much done but if you zoom, you can see that the edges don’t really line up. To fix this, press the left or right arrows on your keyboard to nudge the layer until the intersections align.

Before
After

Here’s how the image looks like so far.

image

Step 11

If you’ll be using this as a background, you might want to apply a faded/vintage film effect. We used the Vesper effect from the Instagram Video Photoshop actions and completed the look with some text using the Abolition font.

New York City Poster

Final Results

before
New York City Poster

Download the PSD

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