Halloween Photoshop & Illustrator tutorials: 21 step-by-step guides to creating spook-tacular artworks

Whether you want to create a truly horrifying artwork or silly, slimy type, here are 21 spooky Halloween Illustrator or Photoshop tutorials from leading illustrators and designers.


Halloween is upon us, like a horror film's relentless killer after a teenager who's just dabbled in sex or drugs for the first time – so you're no doubt looking to tap your talents to produce artwork and designed in the unholy spirit of the season.

Here 20 of our favourite professional death-signers, ill-ooooh-strators and phantomographers (you can stop now, Ed) have created Halloween-themed tutorials for Photoshop and Illustrator that detail effects that'll help turn your most disturbing ideas into truly nightmarish visions, or just get into the devilish spirit of the season.

We'll kick off with the Photoshop tutorials, with Illustrator guides afterwards. Click on the titles to get to the tutorials.

Photoshop tutorial: Create punk poster art

Dan Mumford reveals how he created this lycanthropic poster for punk band Gallows.

Photoshop tutorial: Horror film poster effects

Learn how to hide your maniac behind shattered glass in this step-by-step guide by Mark Mayers.


Photoshop tutorial: Design repeating patterns for T-shirts

Get stuck on repeat with these great Photoshop T-shirt design techniques from Ollie Munden.

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Photoshop tutorial: Design a highbrow horror-movie poster

Karim Fakhoury explains how to create a creepy, unsettling piece of poster art.


Photoshop tutorial: Create a sci-fi scene in Photoshop with real 3D elements

Seamlessly integrate 3D elements in an artwork or design project using Photoshop.


Photoshop tutorial: Slimy text effects

Need some horrible gungy text in a jiffy. Find out how in Tabor Romak's tutorial.

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Photoshop tutorial: Paint a fire sprite

Create a fiery figure from a photographic model shot.


Photoshop tutorial: Skeleton on a fixie – hell yes!

Ollie Munden details how to create a mix of horror and hipster that could be called Funny Bones: the Shoreditch Years.


Photoshop tutorial: Create a stylish modern cyborg

Fabio Sasso shows you some techniques for creating a cyborg from photographic sources in Photoshop, tapping into the movie heritage of the cyborg, but mixing it with the glossy ‘Bleach-Bypass’ look of modern sci-fi TV shows such as V and Battlestar Galactica.

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Photoshop tutorial: Give a gothic feel to Halloween photos

Discover how Tigz Rice lit, shot and retouched this vampire-based shoot for a darkly sumptuous feel with undead skin tones.


Photoshop tutorial: Match colours in your nightmare scenes

Want to composite elements into your horrific visions without them sticking out like a hacked-off thumb. Terrible Tigz Rice shows you how.


Photoshop tutorial: Conjure a nightmare vision of a wolf in a boy's clothing

Mix natural and unnatural elements to produce a disturbing but melancholic piece.

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Photoshop tutorial: Make a skull out of type

Unlock the power of Photoshop's Distort tool to create this enigmatic image.


Photoshop tutorial: Creepy chimeras

Chimeras – a mix-and-match approach to animal part favoured by Greeks for many mythical monsters – are great for Halloween. Here Fabio Sasso puts a new spin on Alice's Cheshire Cat.


Photoshop tutorial: Build a fairytale asylum

How Stephen Chan and Andriana Katsiki (AKA Wundercloud) created this unusual artwork.

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Photoshop tutorial: X-ray effects

See your insides revealed with the quick guide to producing X-ray effects.


Adobe Illustrator tutorial: Celebrate the Day of the Dead

Bring Mexico's Día de los Muertos to wherever you are.


Adobe Illustrator tutorial: Skulls and owls

Joshua Smith, aka maverick illustrator Hydro74, has a style that’s instantly recognisable – combining the thick, clean lines of graffiti with the iconography of tattoos and the symmetry and patterns of vector art.

Here he takes you through how he created a work based around his regular motifs of skulls and swirls mixed with that illustration icon, the owl.

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Adobe Illustrator tutorial: Create awesome vector skull art

Hydro74 shows you how to create a killer skull-based artwork using a photo as a starting point in Adobe Illustrator.