Creating original stamps with Illustrator and Photoshop

Over the past year, I’ve been experimenting with the “brush preset” feature in Adobe Photoshop (working with CS6), while also creating vector graphics in Adobe Illustrator. Here is a link to my vector art: https://brynphdwriting.wordpress.com/2017/06/16/body-spaces-vector-art-series/ .

With my vector graphics, I started creating original stamps in photoshop. The result is an amazing collection of original digital stamps that I can use to create new work. A new method is insignificant if not replicated, so I’m writing this post to share it, and hopefully learn if others are trying it out too.

As you can see from this image, the central figure is a single vector graphic that has been digitally stamped, like a block print, many times in different colours, as a way to create a sense of movement.

Here are the steps involved in the process to create a vector stamp:

1. Convert an image to an object mosaic. You don’t have to do this with vector graphics because they are already rasterized. A photograph is a bitmap image that needs to be converted first.
2. Change the default settings, especially the number of tiles. You can get creative with this by selecting a number of tiles to represent the image accurately (a high number) or abstractly (low number).
3. I chose 200x200 tiles.
4. My image now has 200 x 200 tiles of colour that I can select or keep as-is.
5. This shows part of the image that is selected.
6. Save it as an EPS file. This will allow you to “Define (a) brush preset” in Photoshop next.
7. Quit Illustrator and open the EPS file in Photoshop. Change the default resolution of the image to something higher than 300 dpi. You might want to print it later, and a high resolution print is better than a web image at 72 dpi.
8. From the toolbar, go to: Edit> Define Brush Preset… If you cannot do this, it might be because the EPS resolution is too high or too low.
9. Close the EPS file, then create a new file, also at 300/+ DPI.
10. With the “brush” tool, scroll down to the bottom of the list of brushes and select the recent brush that you created from your EPS file.
11. Select different colours to stamp with, and with the new brush, click the left mouse button to stamp your EPS image!