Filter Fun and Actions for Photoshop Mockups

Filters aren’t just for Instagram

Did you know you can essentially create your very own custom filters right inside Adobe Photoshop?

This is a great tool even if you aren’t using mockups. If your product lends itself to natural photos, a quick way to make them beautiful and keep a cohesive look and feel across your brand is with filters or image overlays and effects. You can save these in your layers palette to be shared with other Photoshop files (like I did in this video) or apply them with Photoshop Actions.

Easily set the “mood” with Photoshop Overlays

I created a custom mockup for a student recently, and used some overlay techniques to create dreamy and bright effects on the picture.

That created the moody scene, then I just had to add my pre-made glitter-dipped mug mockup on top (with some custom shadow magic added ;-) and voila! She now has a beautiful, editable, mockup template that she can use again and again in her shop images.

Since these “filter” effects are saved in their own layers with their own “blending modes”, it will be easy to apply them to subsequent images. All she has to do is put new photos on a layer below or drag the special filter layers into another Photoshop file.

In this shot you can see how I used an image of a light flare (found on Pexels for free!) as an overlay on top of the mockup photo.

light flare overlay on drinkware mockup

And here I created a lighting effect with white circles then added a hard mix blending mode, and an additional radial gradient layer as an overlay to brighten it overall. I love how it turned out! 

Light spots bokeh style blending mode hard mix plus overlay on drinkware mockup

You might be wondering if there are faster ways to get effects like these, or easier ways to apply them, and there totally are! I wouldn’t leave you hanging :p

You can use “actions” to do this.

Photoshop Filter Actions are kind of like Instagram filters, turned up to 11.

You can create Photoshop Actions yourself, essentially by “recording” your edits on a picture, and then “playing” your edits for each subsequent picture, saving time and headaches.

Or, you can download the Actions others have created. Graphic designers and bloggers do sometimes sell these actions, but if you’re anything like me. you like FREE goodies, right? :D

Use caution and only download actions from trustworthy sources. I haven't tested these, but this is a good reference point to start from!

Additional resources for Free Actions:

And resources for Paid Actions:

Don't have Photoshop yet?

Not to worry, you can get it on a free trial, and then when you discover you love it (you will!) it's only $9.99 a month on this plan. That's my affiliate link, but I wouldn't recommend Photoshop if I didn't believe in it and how powerful it can be even for beginners. You only need to do basic things to fully enjoy this program and use it for your business. I've been using and recommending Photoshop for 20+ years and only became an affiliate in early 2018!

What do you think? 

Think you're going to try some Photoshop Actions? Maybe by recording your own or purchasing some? Be sure to join my Mockups for Drinkware Makers Facebook Group so you can tell me all about it!

This post may contain affiliate link(s) which, at no extra cost to you, may make me a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. You can learn more about how I use affiliates here. Thank you for supporting my business!

How to Make a Realistic Shadow in Photoshop

Have you ever tried to make a mug mockup in Adobe Photoshop and spent time getting your vinyl decal or dye sub design onto the mug, put it in an amazing background where it looks like it's sitting on a table, and then the shadow ruined the whole thing? It looked super fake and maybe the mug even seemed to be floating in the image? I hate that! LOL :-)

Making a realistic shadow in a product mockup requires more than just using the drop shadow effect in the Photoshop layers palette. It actually requires a little observation about how shadows look in real life, and a few layers with some deftly applied blurring to really look convincing.

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6 Pretty Font Pairings for Your Next Silhouette Project

Earlier this year, in March, I had the honor of writing a guest post for Melissa Viscount on her website (one of my all-time-favorites!) The Silhouette School Blog. You can't throw a stone in any group of Silhouette Cameo owners and not hit someone saying "I learned to do that in Silhouette School!". Not that I throw stones at Silhouette owners ;-)

Anyhoo...I wrote a really fun post for her about font pairings...

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I'm thrilled to share this guest post by my friend Brie Beeks who is an expert in social media marketing. I hope you find her info as awesome as I do! Here she is...

Hello, everyone at! My name is Brie and I’m the gal behind I specialize in business strategy and social media marketing. Thank you so much for having me! I can’t wait to unload all of my secrets on how to automate your social media marketing so that you can focus on your business.