Create a Jumbotron Effect in Photoshop

In this tutorial we are going to use Photoshop create a jumbotron screen effect like you would see at big sporting events, with the LED lights representing each pixel. We are going to use some patterns as well as some filters to create our effect.

What you will need

Adobe Photoshop

Step 1

Lets go get a baseball photo and open it up in Photoshop.
I am going to add in “HOME RUN!” using Migra for my font (but any bold font will work). We are going to go ahead and crop the image around the batter and the “HOME RUN!”

Step 2

We are going to change the size of the image, by going into Image>Image Size. Change the width to 1200px in the top box, the Resolution to 72 pixels/inch and make sure all the boxes are checked.

Step 3

Now, we are going to merge the text and image layers together. Click on the arrow icon on the top right of the layers palette and click on Flatten Image.

Step 4

Go into Filter>Pixelate>Mosaic and change your Cell Size to 10. This should give the image a pixilated look.
What the 10 means is that the filter is making 10px squares to make up the image. This information will be important in the following steps.

Step 5

To get a “jumbotron screen” look we are going to change all of the square pixels into circles.
Since we made the squares 10×10px we are going to make a new document the same size so we can make a 10px circle. Using the Ellipse Tool (U) create a circle starting at the top left edge and going to the bottom right edge.
Fill the circle with white (if it isn’t already) by changing the foreground to white and fill with Alt+Delete.

Step 6

Click on the eye to the left of the layer to make the layer disappear and then go to Edit>Define Pattern and call it “10px Circle”.

Step 7

Go back to our baseball document and create a new layer (Ctrl+Shift+N).
Select the Pattern Stamp Tool (S) then select the pattern we made from the options at the top of the screen. Make sure Aligned is checked in the options at the top of the screen, then start painting in the entire document.

Step 8

Create a new layer (Ctrl+Shift+N) and make sure it is the top layer.
Ctrl and click on the pattern layer to select it. Now do Ctrl+Shift+I to get the inverse selection and fill the new layer with black. Click on the eye icon on the pattern layer to make it disappear.
Now you should end up with each circle having a single solid color, which makes up our photo.

Step 9

Click on the background layer that has the image, and then go to Image>Adjustments>Posterize. Change the levels to 10.
This will drop down the amount of colors being used to give it a lower quality “jumbo-tron” feel.

(Alternate Version)

Step 10

We can also create an old jumbo tron (a simplified version of the left screen in the photo) look by following roughly the same steps as 1-9.
We are going to need a higher contrast photo for this to work, so we will use a close up face photo.
Steps 1-6 will be the same. After step 6, before we add in our pattern we want to go to Image>Adjustments>Threshold. This will change our image from color to just black and white.
If we did the Threshold before pixelating the image, we would have had gray pixels along with the black and white, which we don’t want.

Step 11

Repeat steps 7 and 8 to get the jumbotron look. Finally we are going to add some color, to give it a yellow look. Create a new layer at the top of the layers and fill it with a yellow color, something like #FFD964.
Change the Blend Mode to Multiply.


With a few finishing touches, here is what I came up with, and here is the full version.

Alternative Version

Here is the full size version.
Here is a text version



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Meet The Author