Create an Instagram Style Sloppy Border in Photoshop CS6

With vintage being in style for awhile now and apps like Instagram pushing up the popularity even more I have created a few different articles on how to make your digital images have that analog feel to them. If you missed these here are a few of the most popular vintage articles:

How to create a light leak effect in Lightroom

Free Vintage Lightroom Presets

Creating a sloppy border like the Lo-Fi filter in Instagram is pretty easy in Photoshop. Just follow these steps to create your own sloppy border.

1) First start with a brand new document, for this example I am going to create a 4″x6″ image at 300 DPI and set the background to Transparent.

2) Next you will select the brush tool (shortcut just hit B) and in the brush presets pane on the top left click on the settings icon and select the Dry Media Brushes.

3) Pick the Heavy Smear Wax Crayon brush. The brush size will be set to the thickness you would like for the border. For this example I set the brush size to be 20px with black as the color.

4) Click on the brush panel icon to the right of the brush presets.

5) Here change the settings to the following:
– Under the brush tip shape section set the Spacing to 20%
– In the color dynamics section set the hue jitter to 0%
– Under the scattering section set the scatter to 0%

6) Now all you have to do is with the brush tool still selected hold down the Shift key and click in one of the corners of the image. Then while still holding down the shift key click on the next corner and make your way around the image to click on all 4 corners. This basically is drawing a straight line with the brush from corner to corner and with this brush gives a nice “sloppy” border look.

7) Since the background is transparent we will want to add a white layer to fill the background of the image only on the edges to the left of where we drew the border in. To do this add a new layer underneath the border layer and fill it with white. After you fill it with white take the rectangular marquee tool and make a selection in this layer in the middle and click delete to make the center transparent again.

ps6 sloppy border tutorial5

8 ) Final step is to save it as a PNG file which will preserve the transparency and you can use this in future images as a cool looking sloppy border. Also dis you know you can have borders in Lightroom? Check out our tutorial tomorrow to see how to take this border and use it in Lightroom!

If you love Instagram on your iPhone and are a Lightroom user check out our Lightroom Instagram Presets to transform any of your DSLR images into a Instagram inspired image and help to support this site.

If you like our articles remember to share them on Facebook, Twitter or +1 them on Google. I appreciate you spreading the word to your photo friends and it helps me to continue writing content for everyone!

Here is a final example so you can see an image with the border.

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Author: Mark Stagi

Mark is a fine art wedding and portrait photographer from Northern California. He has been passionate about photography since childhood and started his studio 12 years ago to bring a fresh style of photography to the wedding and portrait world.

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