Make cool onomatopoeia with 3 CSP features!



Hello, my honeys! In this tutorial we are going to learn how to create very expressive onomatopoeias with the help of the [Quick Mask], [Transform] and [Filter] functions of CSP. We are also going to give our work a great finish with the use of brushes, gradients and even textures!

Well, it turns out that I'm a disgusting freehand writing. I do things like:

Over time, I learned to use the aforementioned CSP functions and now with their help I can make much better quality onomatopoeia, like this:

I will show you how I do it. Let's get started!

Onomatopoeia 1: wave filter + color fill

If you want, you can download this image to follow the steps in this tutorial:

Step (1) We are going to write with the [Text] tool with the default Windows font "Arial" (yes ... Arial). In this case I will write "WHOOOSH" as an onomatopoeia of the sound of the wind in a blizzard. We will give it a size proportional to its impact.

Step (2) The text layer has little editing freedom, therefore we are going to convert the text layer to a raster layer. For it:

Top menu → [Layer] → [Convert Layer ...] → [Type: Raster Layer].

Now we can edit this layer in many more ways! We will start with a transformation:

Superior menu. → [Edit] → [Transform] → [Free Transform].
Transform the cape so that you enhance its impact.

For the tutorial action I am going to rename the layer as "Arial".

As you can see, our sound effect already looks more expressive, but not enough. We are going to give it more impact with the use of a filter! For it:

Top menu → [Filter] → [Distort] → [Wave].
Play with the values until you achieve something striking. I put these values:


That is much better, but still not enough. I'll give it a more wavy effect using the transform tool again. This time I will use another of the available options:

Superior menu. → [Edit] → [Transform] → [Distortion].


What we just did is actually a template. The Arial layer will be the template on which we will write the sound effect manually in a quick mask layer.

Step (3) First I am going to create a new raster layer that I am going to rename as "SFX" and then I am going to create a quick mask over it. (Top Menu. → [Selection] → [Quick Mask])

In the quick mask, using the [Brush] tool, I am going to precisely follow the template I create.

By accident, I chose a Clippy paid brush specially configured for making sound effects that I buy from ASSETS. Anyway I will leave the link of the same set, it is very cheap. The brush is called "ベ ー シ ッ ク 勢 い".

As a free alternative you can download this set:

After finishing, we are going to deactivate the quick mask (Top menu. → [Selection] → [Quick mask]) and a selection will appear which we are going to fill with black in order to clearly see the result:


The Arial template layer no longer works for us, we can delete it.

The next thing is to duplicate the SFX layer. By default the duplicate will be called "SFX Copy" or in Spanish "SFX Copy". Remember this distribution of layers well because we are going to repeat it with all the examples.

We hide the SFX Copy layer. We are going to change the color to the SFX layer to white and we are going to give it a white border.

(Change to white:
Select the white color. → Top menu. → [Edit] → [Change to drawing color])

(Add border:
Top menu → [Window] → [Layer Properties] → [Effect] → [Border] → [Thickness: 4.0])

It should look like this.

We activate the SFX Copy layer and we are going to change the color to taste. (We select the color we want. → Top menu. → [Edit] → [Change to drawing color]). I put a similar color to the background.

Great! Now it is an onomatopoeia of impact, only one thing is missing ...

Step (4) Add details.

With any low opacity spray tool and in draft mode make a curve on the SFX Copy layer. (I prefer to use draft mode so as not to create more layers)

Draft mode:

You can also use an eraser spray tool.

I'll add a few extra details to the environment, and voila!

Onomatopoeia 2: Fisheye Filter + Gradient Fill

In Japanese, the onomatopoeia for "blush" is "KAAAA" ... And well, in the Spanish language there is nothing like it haha. Therefore, we will use the name of the action as "onomatopoeia".

Again, if I wanted to do it freehand, I would make a very bland onomatopoeia. So I'll apply the quick mask technique.

Image to download:

The procedure will be almost the same. I will summarize the first steps.

Step (1) We write with the text tool. I used the default Windows font "Rage Italic". We convert the text layer to a raster layer.

Step (2) Edit the layer with the [Transform] and / or [Filter] tool.
Here I used [Filter] → [Distort] → [Fisheye].

If necessary, we apply a distortion again.

Good. We will call this template layer "Rage".

Step (3) We create a new raster layer and rename it "SFX" then create a quick mask over it. (Top Menu. → [Selection] → [Quick Mask])

In the quick mask we use the [Brush] tool and follow the template.

In this case I used the "KAKI-moji_10_02" brush from the free set. It does not have to be exact to the Rage template, just try to make a stable line.

If the line is very thin or very thick we can fix it. I think my stroke is very fine, so I'll give it more thickness by expanding the selection: Stop it:

Top menu. → [Selection] → [Expand selected area] → [Value: 2, Type: rounded corner]

We accept and fill in black.

Better. We delete the Rage template, and we only have the SFX layer.

Ok, now we are going to apply a different filling procedure than "Onomatopoeia 1". We are going to fill with the [Gradient] tool. For it:

WITHOUT DESELECTING, we create a new layer, select the [Gradient] tool, choose colors that we like, and draw the direction of the gradient.

(Bonus: At this point, with the selection active, it's possible to create another new layer and add another effect with some other drawing tool.)

Well, if we are satisfied we can deselect. We will call this layer "SFX Copy" to follow the sequence of the previous example.

We are going to change the color to the SFX layer to white and we are going to give it a white border.

Step (4) We add details with draft tools, I leave you a set of patterns:

It's not that the brush is white, it's that the brush is in draft mode and the bottom layer is white. I prefer to do it like this so as not to create more layers, but, if you prefer, you can create a new layer over the color or gradient.


Onomatopoeia 3: zigzag filter + texture fill

For onomatopoeia 3 we are going to do something a little more advanced with the use of more materials.

We will use as text "Ujujujujujujuju" which is the equivalent of an evil giggle that will pass as onomatopoeia even if it is not one in the strict sense.

We are going to use an expressive font called "Jolly Lodger" which you can download from Google Fonts.

This time, I'll provide the background and the character image separately:

So that it does not get tedious, I will make an even shorter summary of the first steps. (I'm going to hide the background and lower the opacity to the character to better see what I'm doing.)

(1) Write text. → Text layer to raster layer.

Step (2) Edit.
Here I used [Filter] → [Distort] → [ZigZag].

Step (3) Quick mask → Follow template.
I used the "KAKI-moji_10" brush from the free set.

Okay, right here we deactivate the quick mask, delete the template, fill with black and then, WITHOUT DESELECT, we drag a texture from the CSP material catalog.

I used a texture called "Forest". The preview of this texture comes by default in the CSP, but you must download it by clicking on the cloud icon.

Adjust the texture if necessary. You can move the texture with the [Object] tool.
It should look like this:

Above the texture image we are going to create a new raster layer, select both layers and merge them (Top menu → [Layer] → [Merge selected layers]). Rename the new layer as "Texture".

That's! You can see that we have two editable layers: SFX and Texture. I'm going to take advantage and I'm going to activate the background layer that had it hidden and lower the opacity to see what I'm doing.

We are going to give the SFX layer a colored border and that's it.

Actually, at this point, we can do a lot of editing, but I think the texture effect is sufficient.

Ok, once they are satisfied, we select the SFX and Texture layers and merge them together. Now our "onomatopoeia" is in a single layer.

If you want, you can edit the onomatopoeia a bit more with the distortion tool, but don't do anything too exaggerated because it will become pixelated.

To finish, we are going to copy and paste our onomatopoeia several times and we are going to place it between the background and the character. I will bring the opacity of the background and the character to 100%.


This method does not work for all textures. Some texture is out of the selection. The best thing to do is to use a texture that only has the "Image Material" tag.

Onomatopoeia 4: motion blur filter

This is the simplest and simplest onomatopoeia design of all, which is why I left it last.

With this we will give a kind of movement effect to the onomatopoeia. In this way:

Image to download and practice:

We are going to follow steps 1 to 3 until we duplicate the SFX layer. Now, we are going to locate ourselves in the SFX layer and we are going to apply a blur filter, for this:

Top menu → [Filter] → [Blur] → [Motion blur].

And that's it! The SFX Copy layer, which has no filter and is above the SFX layer, will sharpen the onomatopoeia. If you want you can change the colors of the layers or add a border. I like it like that.

A real movement onomatopoeia would have been better for this explanation, such as "suanfonson" (excuse me XD), but I didn't have any such design on hand. Anyway, I hope the idea was understood.

Other apps

So is! In black and white! All these onomatopoeia were created following the same steps. What varied was the font for the stencil, the writing brushes, and the detail brushes. (Remember to put the detail brushes in draft mode!)


☆ Although making onomatopoeia with the quick mask is very easy, it is not a technique that I apply with every onomatopoeia of my comic. I apply it with the onomatopoeias that are larger and those that I want to stand out from others. As in this example image:

☆ If you are confident in your handwriting, just skip steps 1 and 2.

☆ If the template undergoes a lot of transformation, the letters will inevitably vary in thickness between them. It is advisable to vary the thickness of the brush when following the template.

☆ Surely some are wondering: why do the manual onomatopoeia with a brush and not use the template layer directly?

Well for this:

1) Template layer.
2) Brush layer.

After applying the transformations and filters the layer is destroyed a lot. The best thing is to do the manual stroke, it looks much better, especially if you work with large resolutions that is normal in comics.

Conclusion and credits

I really like using this quick mask and template method because I have a lot of editing freedom and it achieves a very sharp result. I hope you try it!

Created by: Naosuke Takasaki.

Version: 1.9.11


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