How to Make a Catalog in Photoshop

By Carol Adams

Catalogs generally are created by paid professionals using desktop publishing programs like QuarkXPress or InDesign. But you can also use Adobe Photoshop to create a catalog yourself if you would rather not incur the expense of hiring someone else or purchasing a new program. This is especially true if you are experienced in Photoshop but have no knowledge of desktop publishing programs. And if you also want to avoid the cost of printing a traditional catalog, you can use Photoshop to create a PDF version of your catalog.

Step 1

Draw your ideas for your catalog in a notebook. Decide on the size of the pages and the products that you want to include. In addition, you will need photos of the products. Depending on the product, you might need more than one photo of each. Load these images to a folder on your computer.

Step 2

Open a word processor and create all the copy for your catalog. Create product descriptions and prices. If the items come in various colors or sizes or have other options, list these as well. Assign a product code to each product to make ordering easier.

Step 3

Open Photoshop. Select “File” from the menu and choose “New.” The document properties dialog will open. Change the size type from “Pixels” to “Inches.” Then make the size what you want for your page. Name the file “Catalog Page 1.” Click “OK.”

Step 4

Use the “Rectangular” shape tool to draw a rectangle on the page where want some of your text. This creates a path. Right-click on the path and choose “Stroke Path” from the menu. This will create a border around the area where the text goes. Repeat this to make more text boxes.

Step 5

Open one of the images that you want to use for the page you are working on. Then right-click on the layer and choose “Duplicate.” In the dialog, change the “Destination” to “Catalog Page 1” and click “OK.” Repeat this to bring in all of your images for the page.

Step 6

Select one of the images you brought in. Select "Edit" and click "Transform." Choose "Scale" from the options. Grab the corner of the image and resize it to what you want. Use the "Move" tool to position it correctly.

Step 7

Select the "Text" tool and draw a text box where you would like to place some of your text. In your word-processing program, copy the text you want to use for this section. In Photoshop, select "Edit" and click "Paste." Repeat this to insert all of your text for the page.

Step 8

Repeat this process to create all the pages of your catalog, saving them all to the same folder. But save each page with a different number (Catalog Page 2...). Add a page number at the bottom of the page.

Step 9

Select "File" from the menu and choose "Automate." Then click "PDF Presentation." In the dialog that opens, set the output to "Multi-page Document." Choose the PDF options you want, such as blocking the ability to copy and paste. Then browse to the page files you created. Since you named them sequentially, they should be listed in order. Select them all, click "Save" and name your PDF file.