Adobe Photoshop 3D

Adobe Photoshop 3D

By Ronald Baker


Photoshop can build a variety of basic 3D objects using 2D layers as a starting point. After creating a 3D object, you can move it in 3D space, change render settings, add lighting, or merge it with other 3D layers.

  • Convert 2D layers into 3D postcards (planes with 3D properties). If your starting layer is a text layer, any transparency is retained.

  • Wrap a 2D layer around a 3D object, such as a cone, cube, or cylinder.

  • Create a 3D mesh from the grayscale information in a 2D image.

  • Simulate a metalworking technique called repoussé by extruding a 2D object in 3D space.

  • Build a 3D volume from a multi-frame file such as a DICOM medical imaging file. Photoshop combines the individual slices of the file into a 3D object that you can manipulate in 3D space and view from any angle. You can apply various 3D volume render effects to optimize the display of various materials in the scan, such as bone or soft tissue.


  1. Download here.

  2. As a student from Brown, you are given the opportunity to download Adobe Photoshop for free: Adobe Creative Cloud Desktop Application

Recommended System Requirements

Adobe Photoshop works with Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, and Mac OS X 11-13.


Accessibility: The estimated time for someone to create a simple 3D Bowl from image

  • Beginner: No graphics experience | 20 minutes

  • Advanced: Graphics experience | 5 minutes

Power: The engine's power - i.e. how much one can do with this

  • Moderate: Not user friendly but unexpectedly powerful.

Usage: Evaluation of software's use for the following purposes

  • Art, Architecture, Design -- main fields of use.


Tutorials: Make 3D wooden bowl from Image

Use Google search to find an image of the top of a wooden bowl. An example of a wooden bowl can be found here. After downloading image, open Photoshop and open the file from under the File tab located at the top of the user interface.

Use the quick select option from the left tab of the interface and select the entire bowl. Once selected, add a new layer mask by selecting the third button from the left from the tab located at the bottom right of the page.

Select the layer then click the 3D tab from the top navigation bar. Next select 'New 3D extrusion from Selected Layer'. This will create a 3D cylinder with the wooded bowl texture on the top and bottom of the object.

Hover over the object until you see a cursor which implies the ability to spin the object. Spin the object so you are able to see the side of the cylinder.

Hover over the x,y,z origin point and find the point which allows you to adjust the scale of the z axis. The z axis is represented by the blue bar. adjust the z axis until you are able to achieve a more bowl like shape. This can also be achieve from altering the extrusion depth size, which can be found under the

Select the entire layer for the object and then search for the 'Properties' section on the right side of the interface. Once in the 'Properties' frame, find the 'Taper' options and reduce the value to give the object more of a bowl shape.

Search for the 3D frame on the bottom right side of the screen and select the 'Layer x Extrusion Layer'. You will then see the Properties frame now contains a 'Materials' frame. Find the diffuse option and select the box to the right of the first box. Find the 'Replace Texture' option and select the new texture to be the same as the texture used starting this tutorial.

Once the texture has already been updated, find the 'Edit Texture' option from the same section of the 'Replace Texture' option.

To fix the issue of the entire plane not being covered by the texture of the image, we must use the polar coordinates filter. From the top navigation tab, select 'Filter' and then navigate to 'Distort' then to 'Polar Coordinates'. Once the next window open, change the option from 'Rectangular to Polar' to 'Polar to Rectangular'. You will be presented with the image on the left side.

Double click on the layer to change the layer to a standard layer from a background layer. If you are using a mac, press 'command + T'. This will give you the option to rescale the image so it will take of the remaining white space on the screen. Save this layer for the in order for the changes to take effect on the cylinder. Once you close and save this layer, you will notice the bowl currently has a wooden mesh around the entire object.

To give the inside of the bowl depth, select the 'Cap' tab and adjust the 'Angle' and 'Width' options under the 'bevel' frame. When adjusting the 'Angle' option, try to make this value negative. For the purpose of this tutorial, I used an angle around -35. Then use the 'Width' option to bring the depth in for the bowl. Adjust this value freely until you are able to obtain a desirable shape. Next, use the contour option to give the inside shape of the object a smoother bowl like shape.

Once complete, you should be able to export the model by navigating to the '3D' tab and then selecting the 'Export 3D Layer.' For the purpose of this tutorial, I've decided to export a .obj file. The files can be found here: