Design an ID card in Adobe Photoshop

Our simple, easy-to-follow guide will help you create smart, eye-catching ID cards for your business using Adobe Photoshop. When you’re done, feel free to send your designs to us so we can check them over & print them for you.

You can download Photoshop direct from Adobe's website.

Background Contents

You can set your background to any colour. We recommend keeping it white if you’re not using a background image that covers the entire card.

 

Before you click to create your document, you can name it at the top. Choose any name you like, something memorable might be useful!

​​​​​​1. Create a Document/Page

Your page or canvas needs to be sized so it aligns properly with the PVC cards you’ll be getting your ID’s printed on to. The cards we use are the exact same size as standard UK bank cards.

Document size & Orientation

Open Photoshop & click File > New to create a new document. In the pop-up window that appears, change the size settings to ‘inches’ and set the width to 3.375 & height to 2.125. Here you can choose your card orientation, too. Select either landscape or portrait.

 

Document Resolution

Set your resolution to 300dpi for the best print results. ID card printers produce images at photographic resolutions, so it’s important to use high quality images & logos when creating your design.

 

Colour Mode

Colours on screen are produced in an RGB colour profile & colours produced by our ID card printers are produced using CMYK, so for the best results, you should set the colour mode to CMYK.

 

Our printers will convert RGB colour values to CMYK for you though so don’t worry too much about this if you're sending your artwork to us for printing. Want to learn more about colour profiles? Head over to our CMYK vs RGB Guide.

TIP: If you get part-way through your design & decide you want to change the orientation of your ID card, click ‘Image’ along the top of the Photoshop window & on 'Image Rotation' then 90°.

Design a Card in Photoshop 2

2. Start Creating!

You're now ready to get started on creating your ID card design.

 

We think a good starting point is to insert your logo. This offers a good perspective to begin from as once your logo is in place, all the other elements naturally fall in to place & the rest of the card comes together nicely.

 

For a smart looking ID card, we recommend a white background. If you have graphics or an image you’d like to use for the background of your card, you can insert this now by dragging & dropping it in to Photoshop. Your company logo or other graphics/images would be perfect.

Design a Card in Photoshop 3

TIP: Hold the SHIFT key on your keyboard whilst resizing objects to keep your image proportions.

Once dropped in, you can resize the image to fit to your card, then click the ‘tick’ towards the top of the screen to confirm any changes. You need to click this tick each time you change an element in Photoshop. If you don’t want to keep the changes you've made, just click on the reject button to the left of the tick instead.

Next you might need to change the background image opacity using the slider just above the layers section, which is towards the bottom right of your screen (see layers screenshot). You can also lock your layers here, too.

 

The background image should be faded enough so any text you place on top of it will stand out, but not so much that it is too faded to print well.

 

Inserting Your Logo

To insert your logo, simply drag & drop the image into Photoshop, clicking the tick once you’ve resized the logo as above.

Note: As you start to add more elements or 'layers' to your ID card design, you may find it easier to locate & select them by clicking the individual element in the layer list. You can double click the text of each layer to rename it, as we have in our screenshot.

IMPORTANT: Please ensure you use high resolution images in your ID card design. Our ID card printers produce images using photographic resolutions of up to 300dpi. If you use images with a low resolution, they won't print at the maximum resolution.

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3. Add a Cardholder Photo / Staff Photo

To add graphics or photos to your design, simply drag & drop. Once you’ve added your photos & other graphics, you can resize & drag them into position.

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4. Adding Cardholder Data & Company Info

Now to add text to your ID card, like the cardholder’s name & job title, plus additional information like your website, business address & contact number, etc.

 

Simply select the Text Tool and type away. You can change the size, font & style of your text using the settings towards the top of your screen, as highlighted.

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We recommend using bold font colours with font sizes of at least 7 for the best print results. If you need some tips on what type of data to add to your card, head over to What to Include on Your ID Cards.

 

 

 

5. Save Your Card Design(s)

When you’re happy with your design, you can save it by clicking: File > Save As. Select to save your file as a .jpeg & set the quality to 100%.

 

You’re now set to get equipped with smart ID cards for your business. Want us to print them for you? Get in touch if you have a question or place your order online today.

We aim to print & dispatch all orders on the same-day we receive them with a next day delivery aim.