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Photoshop tutorials Create Jigsaw Puzzle Effect for Photos Photoshop Tutorial

Author: Adri

I'm a freelance graphic designer.


Last week I bought a box with 1500 puzzle pieces. Not a smart idea for my first attempt to do a puzzle with more then 200 pieces. So today, while I was torturing myself to put some pieces together, I thought it would be easier to just make it in Photoshop. And after that I’ve opened Photoshop and made the puzzle in two minutes.

So in this tutorial I’ll show you how to turn your images into a puzzle.

Take the image and let’s make a puzzle out of it:

Step 1

Open the image in Photoshop and duplicate it (Ctrl + J).

I thought this image could use a little darkness in it and I did that using Levels Adjustments (Ctrl + L).

Step 2

There a two ways in which you can turn your photos into a puzzle.

First way is in case you just want a few pieces of puzzle for a creative idea. You can do that using Photoshop’s Custom Shape Tool and from there choosing the puzzle shapes.

Create a new layer below the one with the beach (hold down Ctrl key when you click the New Layer icon) and fill it with white. Then create a new layer on top of all other layers and draw the puzzle shape here.

Select it by holding down Ctrl key and click on the layer thumbnail. Make the layer with the beach active. Use Ctrl + X to cut the selection and then just hit Ctrl + V to paste it – Photoshop will put the selection into a new layer. Hide the layer with the initial piece of puzzle.

Step 3

Select the layer with the new piece, go to Layer Style Palette and apply 1 pixel stroke – with color of your choice. Also, apply Drop Shadow. Position the puzzle piece as you want and this is it.

If you want to do the entire photo this way is up to you but I think you’ll find the second way much easier.

Step 4

After you’ve duplicated the image go to Filter > Texture > Texturizer. First time you do this you’ll not find the puzzle texture here. You don’t have to search for it on the Web because it’s already in your computer. Just click on the little arrow you see in the image below in order to load the texture.

Go to My Computer > Program Files > Adobe > Adobe Photoshop CS3 (or your version of Photoshop) > Presets > Texture and choose Puzzle. After you’ve loaded the texture adjust it as you like and hit OK.

And here is your puzzle!

You can stop here or you can play a little more for a nice effect.

Step 5

Take the Pen Tool, zoom into the image, make sure you have Path option selected and start selecting one piece of puzzle. Make a white layer below the textured image and fill it with white. Cut and paste the selection into a new layer, above all the others. Apply some layer style and you are done!


And that’s how you turn your photos into a puzzle!
Hope you had fun!



Making jigsaw puzzles made easy, thanks Adri :)

I'm glad you like it Lima :)

Adri, I always like your tutorials and this one is great. It reminded me of when I was a kid and played with puzzles.

I love it! I take care of someone with Alzheimer's and we are always looking for new puzzles for her to try. Now I can make them myself! Thank you!
I have simple step by step tutorials on my website for Dreamweaver CS4 and Fireworks CS4... only a few so far, but good for beginners. Thanks again Adri!

Hi Adri!

Thanks for submitting this fun tutorial. We have posted it on with a link back to your site.

Thank you all for your comments ! I'm glad you like my tutorials :)

And Miche, thank you for posting my tutorials on BestPhotoshoTutorials ! I'll post a link back to your site on my blog !

Oh my god the effect is fantastic!! I have been playing with this all afternoon!

This has me thinking now....

Thanks for the tutorial


I was wandering how to create this effect! Thanks for the answer


Hello Andri.. I like your tutorials. I'm always searching on how to create a jigsaw puzzle effect and I got this site.Your great..Keep it up


my cs3 does not have the puzzle shape, plz help


I would like to create a puzzle effect in cs4 but cant found the puzzle texture to load on my harddrive, how can I download it

the puzzle texture is on the Contents disk of the CS4 installer set.

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