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How to Make a Heavy Metal Album Cover Art in Photoshop

How to Make a Heavy Metal Album Cover Art in Photoshop

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

In today’s tutorial, we will be looking at heavy metal albums using 3D assets. This tutorial can also work as a guide to heavy metal T-shirts! We will be using multiple 3D assets, fonts, and textures to create a highly versatile heavy metal album cover art.

What You’ll Learn in This Adobe Photoshop Tutorial

  • How to create versatile heavy metal album art
  • How to use 3D assets to create heavy metal album cover art
  • How to add texture similar to 80s heavy metal album covers
  • How to create a heavy metal album cover art background  
  • How to create heavy metal typography 

What You’ll Need

In order to complete this project, you will need the following resources:

Find more resources on Envato Elements!

1. How to Set Up an Album Cover Document

Step 1 

First things first: When creating heavy metal album covers, or any album cover for that matter, you’ll want to make sure you have the correct document settings. 

First, the size should be at least 3000 x 3000 pixels.

While this is technically larger than you need, it’s always better to go big now and size down later!

Step 2

Next, set the Resolution to 300 Pixels/Inch. This will ensure a nice crisp print.

album document size

2. How to Combine 3D Assets in Photoshop 

Step 1

Download your 3D asset, a skull in this case. 

Click View 3D Render and choose an angle. 

Make sure PSD is Checked and then hit Download this Angle.

skull 3d asset

Step 2

Open the 3D assets PSD file and delete the shadow and background layer. 

Step 3

Repeat this with at least three angles: one looking up, one looking to the side, and one looking straight forward.   

Step 4

Bring all three skulls into the document we created in step 1. 

Add a +50 Contrast to all three skulls using Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast

add contrast to skulls

Step 5

Arrange the skull as you see below. Duplicate the left facing skull to create a fourth and final skull. 

heavy metal album art skulls

Step 6

Group all of the skulls together.

Create and clip a Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer into the skull group. Set the layer to Brightness: 70 and Contrast: 52.

heavy metal album art skulls plus contrast

Step 7

Using the same method as the skulls, download this gold figure asset. We will only need one front-facing figure. 

gold figure

Step 8

Drag, drop, and place the gold figure behind the four skulls. 

Add a +50 Contrast and -90 Brighntess to the gold figure using Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast.  

place gold

Step 9 

Duplicate the gold figure three times, giving you a total of four gold figures. Place each figure behind a skull, using the Transform Tool to rotate the figures. 

duplicate gold

Step 10

Duplicate the gold figures four more times, for a total of eight gold figures. 

Shrink the duplicate figures, and place them in between each larger figure, creating an ornate circle design!

create gold wreath

Step 11

Group all the gold figures. Drag, drop, and clip a distressed texture into the gold group, setting it to Multiply. 

Hit Control-I to Invert the texture, changing it from mostly black to mostly white. This gives your gold a grungy finish. 

add texture to gold

3. How to Create a Heavy Metal Album Cover Art Background  

Step 1

Create a black background using a Color Fill layer or the Paint Bucket Tool.

create black background

Step 2

Find and place an X-ray of a skull onto your document, under your skulls and gold but over the black background. 

add x-ray texture

Step 3

Mask out everything but the right-side X-ray information.

mask out x-ray

Step 4

Add a +100 Contrast and -29 Brightness to X-ray the texture using Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast.  

Chance the texture to greyscale using Image > Adjustments > Black & White. 

adjust color and contrast

Step 5

Duplicate the X-ray information, flip it horizontally, and place it on the opposite side of the skulls. 

duplicate  texture

Step 6

Finish the background by adding some illustrative flourishes. 

Below, I used the ornaments that come with the Glaive font face. I used “J” set to a dark golden brown #8c6032 color. 

Group these, the X-rays, and the black background into a group named “Background”.

add illustrations

4. How to Create Heavy Metal Album Cover Art Typography 

Step 1

Using the Heartless Death Metal font, type your band’s name. Make it large, and place it towards the top of the skull’s foreheads. 

type out band name

Step 2

Click Create Warped Text towards the top of the Type Toolbar. 

Select Style: Arch, Bend: +44, and Vertical Distortion: -33.

heavy metal album art curved title

Step 3

Set the text layer to Overlay.

Duplicate the text for a total of two text layers. 

set to overlay

Step 4

Duplicate the text one more time, setting the new layer to Normal.

Add a layer mask and press Control-I to invert the mask from white to black.

Use a soft white brush to mask the top section of the text back in. 

mask out bottom text

Step 5

Drag, drop, and clip a distressed texture into the masked text, setting it to Multiply. 

Hit Control-I to Invert the texture just like before, changing it from mostly black to mostly white. 

distress text

5. How to Finish the Heavy Metal Typography  

Step 1

Using the Sadis font, type out the title of the album, placing it directly below the skulls and X-ray information, and in the center of the canvas. 

Use a soft gray #cbcbcb color. 

heavy metal album art title name

Step 2

Between the words of the tile, add an illustrative flourish to match the ones we have in the background. 

Again, I used the ornaments that come with the Glaive font face. I used “R” set to the same dark golden brown #8c6032 color as before.

add cross

Step 3

Continue to add flourishes around the text. 

Below, I used the Glaive ornaments below and to the side of the title.  The bottom brown border is “Z”, while the two side borders are both “a”, with one flipped horizontally.  

Once you’re happy, group all of your title text together. 

add illustrations

Step 4

Copy and paste the same distressed texture from before onto the title group. Add more Contrast to the texture to give it an even more grungy feel. 

add distress to title

6. How to Create a Dark and Distressed Color Grade 

Step 1

Place another distressed texture over the whole canvas, above all other current layers. Set the layer mode to Lighter Color and to 54% Opacity. 

Add a Brightness: -35 and a Contrast: 100 to the texture using Brightness/Contrast. 

80s heavy metal album covers distress texture

Step 2

Create a Color Lookup adjustment layer set to 3dLUT File: Filmstock at 30% Opacity. 

80s heavy metal album cover color grade

Step 3

Create a second Color Lookup adjustment layer set to 3dLUT File: Bleach Bypass at 50% Opacity. 

add contrast with color lookup

Step 4

Create a third Color Lookup adjustment layer set to 3dLUT File: Kodak 5218 Kodak 2383 at 36% Opacity. 


Step 5

Create a fourth Color Lookup adjustment layer set to 3dLUT File: DropBlues at 40% Opacity. 

drop blues

Step 6

Finally, create a Selective Color adjustment layer with the settings below:


  • Cyan: +9


  • Magenta: +2
  • Yellow: +3

Group all of your adjustment layers into a group named “Color Grade”, and you are done!

heavy metal album art final color grade


And that’s it! This design will give you a highly versatile base and can be the starter for tons of different heavy metal album covers. You can even try using Placeit’s T-shirt template to turn this into the perfect heavy metal T-shirt design! Despite its minimal appearance, this album art holds the basic foundations of some of the best heavy metal albums!

heavy metal album cover art
heavy metal t shirts

Don’t Have Photoshop? Try Placeit! 

Placeit has hundreds of album covers spanning dozens of different genres! Once you’ve found the right album cover for you, you can completely customize it to fit your exact needs: text, logos, as well as backgrounds and textures. Have your own custom images or logos? No problem! Upload them right onto the site.

If you’re in a hurry or simply don’t have Adobe Photoshop, you can still create the heavy metal album cover art that will have your listeners dying for more using Placeit, all inside of your very own browser.  

80s heavy metal album covers maker

Taiwanese Shop Owner Installed A Glass Ceiling For His Cats And Now They Won’t Stop Staring At Him

If you have a cat, consider yourself under constant surveillance. Cats are not only extremely cautious, but also super curious. Hence, it is natural for them to always be in places where they can observe everything all the time in peace. Like behind a glass ceiling, for example. Yep, we may not have the original ceiling cat any more, but it as a concept lives on in other iterations of ceilings and…


15 Years: Farewell and Thank You

15 Years: Farewell and Thank You

Our 2019 Design*Sponge team: Sofia Tuovinen, Garret Fleming, Kristina Gill, Caitlin Kelch, Grace Bonney, Kelli Kehler, Lauren Day and Erin Austen Abbott. 

It’s been said that if you love something, you have to let it go. And, dear friends, it is time for us to let Design*Sponge go. It’s time for us to close this wild and wonderful chapter and head out into the great unknown. While we are sad to say goodbye to the friends, colleagues, and community that we’ve found here, we know that we are stepping into this next chapter filled with the love, support, and care you’ve so graciously shared with us over the past 15 years.

Design*Sponge began as one girl behind a screen, and has grown into a beautiful, diverse, and ever-expanding network of friends, collaborators, confidants, and support systems. You’ve taught us all how to be better listeners, better sharers, better members of our community and, most importantly, you’ve taught us that what makes a community special are the people in it.

I know I speak for all of us at Design*Sponge when I say we are leaving here today with nothing but gratitude for what we have all experienced here. You’ve allowed us to share thousands of stories, homes, personal moments, and lessons that have not just expanded our minds, but our hearts and our understanding of the world as well. Your support has given us the courage to dream big, take risks, and push ourselves harder and further than we knew we could.

From day one, all of you have been so much more than readers of a blog. You’ve become our friends, our co-workers, our support systems, and our family. We’ve traveled across the world these past 15 years and have had the honor and joy of getting to know so many of you in person. Thank you for not only reading Design*Sponge online, but for letting us get to know you in real life, too. You’ve shared memories and stories of your highest highs and lowest lows and we’ve been able to support each other in those moments in real and meaningful ways.

Like any community, I know we haven’t always met the expectations we’ve set out to, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for giving us the grace and understanding to do better when we needed to and to pick ourselves back up when we’ve fallen. Your dedication, support, and honesty have allowed this site to become something different and something more than a collection of beautiful pictures — you’ve turned it into a real home. A home that has pretty, glossy parts, but also worn-in, loved-on parts that are familiar and make us feel welcome.

I am so grateful to have had the privilege to steer this small but mighty ship. It has been the greatest honor of my life so far to work among a team of people who are so unendingly dedicated to learning, growing, and sharing stories that remind us that design is about much more than the things we put in our houses — it’s about the people, the challenges, and the defining moments that turn those houses into homes.

To my team, thank you. You have shown me great patience, trust, and support. I hope I have done my best to show you how much I appreciate and value that generous gift. While our work together here is done, I know we will continue to connect and overlap in each other’s next chapters. And I hope you all know that I will always be here for each and every one of you, always. You have all been such dedicated and caring writers, but more importantly, you’ve been exceptional human beings. And it’s an honor to know each of you and call you my friend. Thank you for making Design*Sponge what it is and will always be: a place for friends to meet, connect, and learn from each other.

To our community, thank you. Your creativity, exuberance, diversity, energy, and talent have been our driving force since day one. What you all do is beyond words. You are artists, designers, makers, innovators, dreamers, and doers. And I am forever grateful that you all exist in our world. You have inspired me to do better, work harder, and grow at every step of the journey and Design*Sponge would not exist without the beauty and honesty you bring into the world every day. Thank you. Not just for inspiring Design*Sponge from day one, but for continuing to remind us that design is so much more than things, it’s about people and connections and building something meaningful.

Earlier this month we gathered outside of Philadelphia to celebrate 15 years of Design*Sponge with our friends at Terrain. They have so kindly supported us since the early days and they generously offered to throw us a farewell party to mark this bittersweet occasion. It was an evening full of love, hugs, tears, and reminiscing that I am forever grateful for. I am also grateful to Ian Fursa who filmed our farewell party and created a short 5-minute film reflecting on the history of Design*Sponge and what it has meant to all of us to work on this project together. The final result is a love letter to this site, our community, our team, and the memories we’ve shared together. I hope you’ll watch and join us in one last moment of reflection, love, and gratitude.

Thank you for letting us live out so many of our dreams here these past fifteen years. There will never be enough words to express the depth and sincerity of my gratitude for all that you have given us and all the love you have shown us. I promise that as we all move forward, we will honor that love you’ve shown us by continuing to pay it forward in all that we do.

Forever grateful and always here—


Some important housekeeping notes:  Design*Sponge will remain online as an archive through September of 2020, thanks to generous support from Adam J. Kurtz and Tuesday Bassen. We are so grateful for their love and commitment to keeping the site online through next fall, when something very special will happen…

We’re thrilled to announce that our full archives will be available online (and fully searchable) through the Library of Congress, starting in September of 2020. We will provide an updated link to those archives once they are open to the public. We are so honored that they believed that a record of our work together here, and the community represented in these posts, should be preserved online permanently.

Also, I will continue to remain active on our Instagram account and out in the world. So stop by and say hi! Don’t forget you can follow our entire team and get more ideas for inspiring people to connect with online here.


Photographs by Erin Austen Abbott and Sofia Tuovinen

Scenes from our final team retreat in Brooklyn

The beautiful farewell party that Terrain threw for our community. 

42 Best Sports Fonts (For Logos, Jerseys, and More)

42 Best Sports Fonts (For Logos, Jerseys, and More)

Your sports fonts collection should include a great sports jersey font, a sports number font, and other versatile sports team fonts. If you’re looking for a great set of premium sports fonts for your next design project, look no further.

sports fonts
Find awesome sports fonts, like this one, on Envato Elements and GraphicRiver

In this article, we’ll take a look at a collection of professionally designed sports fonts. This includes everything from sports lettering font designs to sports logo fonts. Whether you’re looking for a vintage baseball font or the perfect school sports font, there’s plenty to see.

Unlimited Font Downloads at Envato Elements

Envato Elements

When it comes to fonts, Envato Elements is an awesome library to check out. There’s a wealth of content to check out, including a huge collection of sports fonts. The best part is, you can download all the fonts you want for one low fee. That means you can freely download and try out all the professional fonts you want. It’s all covered.

But the deal actually gets even better. Envato Elements also includes graphics, photographs, templates, and more. You get unlimited downloads with Envato Elements. It can prove to be a vital tool for a whole host of design projects, whether you’re an experienced professional or a complete beginner. 

sports logo fonts
Enjoy unlimited sports fonts downloads on Envato Elements—unlimited downloads for one low price.

For example, let’s say you’re looking for a flyer design to help advertise your team’s next event. You can find that on Envato Elements. Maybe you’re working on promo items for an athletic organization. From business cards to posters, video templates to audio, Envato Elements has it—and all your downloads are included, for one low price.

sports fonts
This football game sports flyer is just one of the thousands of template downloads available on Envato Elements.

When you have a library of professional assets and templates available at your fingertips, this means saving time and money. Grab all the sports fonts you need, and pick up some templates, graphics, and photos while you’re at it. Why not? It’s all included with unlimited downloads.

sports logo fonts
Download this sports flyer today—it’s included with unlimited downloads on Envato Elements.

30 Best Sports Fonts From Envato Elements

1. Knucklehead Slab | Sport Font

sports fonts

Check out this versatile sports block font. This chunky typeface could work well for your sports embroidery font needs, but it’s a plenty great fit for digital projects, too. This font download comes with two styles and alternative characters.

2. Roshunt Sports Lettering Font

sports jersey font

If you’re looking for a sports block font that deviates from the norm, this one can be a great fit. It’s not your standard sports jersey font either—but that could make for jerseys that really stand out. 

3. Monogram World School Sports Font

sports number font

This font is versatile, in that it works great for your sports logo fonts needs, but it also works well as an all-around sports lettering font. Create a stylish monogram or use it for your lettering.

4. Overhead Type College Sports Font

sports team fonts

If you’re looking for a chunky font, give this one a look. It has an interesting side serif. This font could also work well as a baseball jersey font.

5. Sackbones Sports Font Modern Sans Typeface

sports lettering font

Looking for a sports embroidery font? How about something for your baseball jersey font style aesthetic? This sports font is quite versatile and could serve a number of design projects very well.

6. Mudhead Sports Jersey Font Family

sports script font

This bold sports block font is an excellent choice for headlines, logo design, and more. It features alternative characters, and it could prove to be an excellent choice for a number of different sports and athletic projects. 

7. Mourbout Sports Team Font Typeface

sports logo fonts

If your target aesthetic is classy and high end, check out this beautifully designed font. It’s an excellent choice for monograms, logos, and more. 

8. Flipper Sports Lettering Font

best sports fonts

This sports block font has a slanted style. It works well as a sports lettering font, but also has an unexpected edge that keeps it from looking boring.

9. Sportfont Sports Logo Fonts

sports block font

This is an awesome download, because you get a font bundle. Use these fonts together to create awesome text-based logo designs for your athletic or sports design project. 

10. Touchdown Sports Block Font

college sports font

Love a classic, vintage sports font? This one is just that. Not only do you get the large, blocky serifs, you get a touch of texture, too. This font could work very well for your college sports font needs or other athletic programming.

11. Sportage Sports Jersey Font Family

school sports font

If you’re looking for a stylish, memorable font, look no further. The best sports fonts are the versatile ones, and this one not only has a ton of potential—it also includes an entire font family. Download and experiment with all of the fonts included today.

12. Houston Sports Team Fonts

sports embroidery font

This sports lettering font is simple, clean, stylish, and memorable too. The angled edges key right into a familiar sports aesthetic. 

13. Marttabuck Sports Script Font

baseball font

But maybe a baseball script font is more your aesthetic. Check out this fun and stylish sports script font. It’s bold, memorable, and has a hand-drawn feel.

14. Dezire Sports Block Font Slab Serif

baseball jersey font

This font is a great choice for a college sports font or a school sports font. It keys into that familiar aesthetic with the bold serifs, but it’s versatile enough to work well for other design projects, too. 

15. Crestone Baseball Script Font

baseball script font

How about a different take on a baseball script font? Check this one out. It’s got that vintage baseball font feel, but it pushes things in a different direction. If you’re looking for a baseball font with tail elements, but you want something different, give this one a try.

16. Fortune Sports Logo Fonts

sports fonts

This font takes a curved approach to a sports block font design. This isn’t just a sports lettering font; it could work really well as a sports number font and has plenty of potential for logo design too.

17. Flanders Vintage Baseball Font

sports fonts with tails

Love a vintage look? You can’t beat the classic, baseball script font look and feel that this font has going on. This one is also a great choice if you’re looking for sports fonts with tails. 

18. College Sports Team Fonts

sports block font

What a classic! This font plays into a lot of college sports font expectations and aesthetics. If you’re looking to keep things timeless, it could be a great choice (this one could be a great sports embroidery font too!). 

19. Coleen Sports Logo Fonts

sports logo fonts

If logo design is the focus of your sports design project, this font might be just what you need. It’s a bold sports block font, but notice how well it works both as key and supplemental text.

20. Dodgers Baseball Font with Tail

sports fonts with tails

Isn’t this a lovely font? Check out all that texture! It could be such a fun baseball jersey font, or consider using it on your next poster design. It really captures that baseball jersey font style.

21. Rooters Baseball Jersey Font Style

baseball jersey font

Not looking for a baseball script font, but you’ve still got baseball on the brain? Check out this stylish approach. It definitely keys into some baseball associations, if you’re looking for a different kind of baseball font.

22. Dezire Pro Bold Sports Team Fonts

baseball jersey font style

Here’s another sports block font with a lot of potential. Give your type an outline or work with the outline itself. This font includes two variants for you to experiment with. 

23. Boxing Sports Block Font Slab Serif

sports block font

Love a vintage look? Then this font is definitely worth a look. It’s got that sports block font vibe, but adds an interesting point to the letterforms. 

24. Cowboys 2.0 Sports Team Fonts

sports team fonts

If you’re a fan of American football, this might be a familiar aesthetic. This sports lettering font is a fun one with plenty of different uses available. 

25. Super Line Sports Lettering Font

college sports font

Looking for a high energy font? Imagine this one on a flyer or even in your next motion graphics project. It could be the perfect sports lettering font for articles, features, and so much more. 

26. Empirez Vintage Baseball Font

vintage baseball font

Here’s another take on a vintage baseball font. A baseball jersey font style can be such a classic, timeless approach. This one could also work very well as a sports number font.

27. Decurion Sports Block Font

school sports font

Love the sports block font look, but looking for something a little different? Check out how this font breaks things up with interior linework. It could make a really interesting addition to your design. 

28. Legionaire Sports Logo Fonts

sports logo fonts

When it comes to sports logo fonts, this one has plenty of potential. Use it for your athletic team or maybe a different team—like eSports. 

29. Gauntlet Sports Block Font

sports block font

Check out the points between this sports lettering font. It adds a lot of visual interest. However, notice that it works well at smaller sizes too. It’s a versatile one. 

30. Rostter Boot Vintage Baseball Font

baseball jersey font

A vintage approach can be such a fun and memorable one. This sports font could work so well for poster design. This one also includes fun alternates to experiment with.

More Premium Sports Fonts From GraphicRiver


So, you’re looking for high-quality, premium fonts, but maybe Envato Elements isn’t quite your style. If you’re not looking for unlimited downloads or multiple assets, you might want to check out GraphicRiver

GraphicRiver has the same high-quality content you’re looking for, but the downloads are all a la carte. Download only what you need—keep things simple and cost-effective by downloading a single font for one low fee. This is a perfect choice if you know exactly what you need and you’re not interested in additional downloads. 

Check out some of these awesome sports fonts from GraphicRiver. Pick them up today for one low fee—one download, simple and easy.

12 Best Sports Fonts 

1. Houston Sports Font Family

sports fonts

This sports font really commands attention. It has some baseball font vibes, but could easily work for a number of different sports and projects. Swap the colors and remix the content for the perfect sports lettering font combo.

2. Newzone Sport Fonts

sports block font

Isn’t this font stylish? It’s perfect on packaging, and it could work very well for poster design too. It’s a versatile sports block font—with plenty of potential applications in your other design work.

3. Milestone Sports Script Font

sports fonts with tails

Sports fonts with tails are such a classic look. This baseball script font has such a vintage, fun feel. Use it as a sports jersey font, or remix things and use it as your next school sports font.

4. Fenway Sports Font Family

baseball jersey font style

Here’s another take on a baseball script font. This time, we get more of a curly look and feel. This download comes with fun extras too, like clip art and a companion sans serif font.

5. Prodush Sports Logo Fonts

sports logo fonts

Sports team fonts need to be eye-catching and memorable—they need to stand out! Well, check out this bold sports font. It works great as a sports number font too, as the numbers also have these interesting, pointed serifs. 

6. Backcheck Sports Block Font

sports team fonts

Speaking of interesting serifs, take a look at this sports font. Experiment with the baseline, like in the example above, to try out different looks. This one is bold and really commands attention.

7. Mattoa Sports Logo Fonts

school sports font

Here’s a fun, modern take on the classic sports script font aesthetic. Consider trying out a slick aesthetic, like this example, when working with your next sports lettering font. It can make for an entirely different visual direction.

8. Esporta Sports Team Fonts

sports logo fonts

Pointed and energetic, this sports block font has so much energy. Sports team fonts, like this one, need that high-energy vibe. Try this one out for your sports design project today.

9. Cadass Sports Lettering Font

sports embroidery font

There’s a reason why a baseball script font aesthetic is so popular—it looks great and it has so much potential. In particular, sports fonts with tails can add such an organic element to your project.

10. Homerun School Sports Font

baseball font with tail

If you’re looking for the perfect baseball font with tail elements, this one takes the cake. Take a look at the different styles and download this one today.

11. Debrosee Sports Number Font

sports number font

Here’s a very different aesthetic for your sports fonts collection. The best sports fonts aren’t necessarily predictable—mix things up with this blocky, digital aesthetic. 

12. Redoura Baseball Script Font

vintage baseball font

This sports script font has such beautiful line widths. However, keep in mind that this one is a font duo—it also comes with a serif face that works as the perfect complement.

Which Were Your Favorite Sports Fonts? 

Envato Elements is an awesome choice if you’re looking for great sports fonts. There’s a huge library to choose from, and you can download as much as you want. With unlimited downloads, you have unlimited choice. Download to your heart’s content, and do it all for one low price. It’s a deal—especially if a library of content means saving time on your next design project.

However, sometimes, we just need one asset. GraphicRiver is the perfect choice in this scenario. Download just one font, today, and dig into your next design project—keep things simple and get what you need, right now.

Love fonts? Check out these other articles for even more font inspiration, free downloads, and more.