Graphic Design / Interactive Design / Fine & Applied Arts / Parkland College

Graphic Design Exercises
Photoshop: Web Mockup


To learn to Adobe Photoshop production techniques by example. To learn layout and web design techniques in Adobe Photoshop by recreating this landing page and this inside page template.


Photoshop is often used by web designers as a layout tool to create "mockups" of screen shots for client approval prior to production. When using Photoshop as a layout tool, consider taking advantage of Photoshop's "smart objects" feature to retain the integrity and scalability of imported art. Having a visual mockup helps web developers in the coding process. A web mockup can also serve as a "contract proof" as any changes requested by the client during production can be chargeable.


prepping the image

  1. download starter files, examine downloaded files
  2. open "home pix.jpg" in Photoshop, save as "home pix.psd"
  3. practice Adobe navigation keyboard shortcuts: space = hand; space + cmd = zoom in; space + cmd + opt = zoom out; cmd + zero = fit in window
  4. convert "background" layer to a normal layer (rename layer)
  5. new layer "white", fill with white (cmd+DELETE), re-stack
  6. magnetic lasso tool: silhouette figures (single-click a starting point; DELETE removes anchors; single-click adds an anchor; double-clicking will close the selection)
  7. layer > layer mask > reveal selection (or click mask icon)
  8. retouch selection: paint on mask
  9. load selection: cmd+click on mask thumbnail
  10. select > refine edge: radius=1, feather=1, smooth=?, contrast=?, shrink=?
  11. layer > layer mask > delete (or RMB on mask thumbnail)
  12. layer > layer mask > reveal selection (or click mask icon)
  13. retouch name tag: remove "liz" with spot healing brush tool
  14. magic wand tool: click white name tag
  15. select > modify > expand (3px)
  16. edit > fill: content aware (shift+DELETE)
  17. clone stamp tool: clean up flaws
  18. save "home pix.psd", close

laying out the landing page

  1. download blank browser chrome from
  2. open downloaded file in Photoshop, save as "kate-home.psd"
  3. delete unneeded layers
  4. file > place "home pix.psd" (smart object)
  5. file > place "kate" (smart object)
  6. open "kate.txt", copy links
  7. paste link text in Photoshop, renam elayer "links"
  8. spec font: Futura Bold, 12pt, match confetti color
  9. duplicate layer for inside page, hide
  10. adjust layout for home page
  11. save, save as "kate-inside.psd"

working with smart objects

  1. open "inside pix.jpg" in Photoshop
  2. convert "background" layer to a normal layer (rename layer)
  3. save as "inside pix.psd", close
  4. file > place "inside pix.psd" (smart object)
  5. edit smart object (double-click layer icon)
  6. marquee area to crop
  7. layer > layer mask > reveal selection (or click mask icon)
  8. unlink pixel and mask icons
  9. adjust mask: cmd+T (mask icon must be active)
  10. save, close window (smart objects will automatically update)

laying out the inside page

  1. hide "links" layer
  2. reveal "links copy" layer
  3. go to, generate some "greek" text
  4. copy & paste text into Photoshop as a text frame (click & drag)
  5. spec font: Verdana, 11/18, match dark blue
  6. call-out: Georgia italic, 26/40, match green
  7. links: match magenta & dark blue
  8. initial cap: Georgia, 36pt, white
  9. new layer "initial cap": draw magenta rectangle, rotate
  10. new layer "box": draw green box, opacity=35%
  11. restack layers, adjust layout


  1. add your name and the exercise number on each page
  2. make a JPEG of each page (file > save for web; do not resample web mockups)
  3. open the JPEG in Photoshop and print a b&w proof for grading
  4. file your graded proof in your Process Book for individual review

Last updated: 3/2/17 ■ Webmaster: Paul Young