Designing a Minimalist Gallery Brochure

In this tutorial, you will learn how to design a minimalist brochure with a gallery layout. It combines simplicity and elegance with the basic functionality of brochures. Here is the step-by-step procedure on how to design an elegant gallery minimalist brochure in Adobe Photoshop.

Step 1

Our first step is to make sure the brochure is print-ready. With Adobe Photoshop open, create a new document by going to File -> New… In the new document window you will have to set the correct width and height values for a standard brochure. You will also want to set the proper color mode and resolution for the document. Here are the standard values that you can start with for a typical trifold brochure.

a. Width: 14 inches
b. Height: 8.5 inches
c. Resolution: 300ppi
d. Color Mode: CMYK

Step 2

The next stage of the process is setting up the guidelines. The basic procedure is to go to View -> New Guide… In the window that opens, you will then be asked if you want to create a vertical or horizontal guide, as well as its distance either from the left or top edge. Here we first create our left margin guideline which is 0.25 inches away from the left edge.

Step 3

Great! Now here are the values for the basic margins of our brochure design. In the end, it should look like the image below.

a. Top Margin: Horizontal - 0.25 inches
b. Bottom Margin: Horizontal – 8.25 inches
c. Left Margin: Vertical – 0.25 inches
d. Right Margin: Vertical – 13.75 inches

Step 4

We then add a few more extra margins that represent the fold and the margins for the folds of our trifold brochure. It should be these values.

a. Left Fold: Vertical - 4.65 inches
b. Left Fold L: Vertical – 4.4 inches
c. Left Fold R: Vertical – 4.9 inches
d. Right Fold: Vertical – 9.35 inches
e. Right Fold L: Vertical – 9.1 inches
f. Right Fold R: Vertical – 9.6 inches

Step 5

Finally, we will add the bleed. The bleed is the space allowance for the inconsistencies in cutting and printing brochures. To do this first simply add the following guidelines in your brochure design.

a. Left Bleed: Vertical – 0 inch
b. Right Bleed: Vertical – 14 inches
c. Top Bleed: Horizontal – 0 inch
d. Bottom Bleed: Horizontal – 8.5 inches

Step 6

To finalize the bleed, we actually add more canvass space. You can do this by going to Image -> Canvass Size… The canvass size window should appear. Here you can adjust the width and height values of our document once again. Add 0.25 inches to both width and height values. Also make sure that the center anchor is selected to make sure that the increase in size is uniform on all dimensions.

Step 7

Once you press ok, you should have a finely made template for a trifold brochure with bleed. Make sure you save this as your base template document for our design.

Step 8

Then, we now create the background. The first step is to add some color of course. Use the Gradient Color tool to splash a nice gradient color across our design. Make sure of course to change the color gradient combination by clicking on the gradient color box on top in the options bar. Remember that you can also change the style of the gradient by selecting the options to the right of the color gradient box.

Step 9

Afterwards, we will add some texture to our background. More precisely some noise to simulate some texture. We do this by using some filters. Go to Filter -> Noise -> Add Noise. In the window that opens, set the amount to around 5%. The distribution style should be Gaussian. Also make sure to tick the checkbox for “monochromatic”.

Step 10

Now it is time to create the real design. First take note that there are two sides to our design. We will first create the front layout. This means that the left most panel is the flap, the center panel is the back of the brochure and the right most panel is the front cover.

Step 11

Now that you know, the right locations of the panels. We will first add our simple shape accents. We download some great custom brushes here ( We then install them. To do this, just select the brush tool, right click on the document and then click on the right arrow tool in the brush gallery that appears. Select the option to “Load brushes” and then just choose the brushes that you just downloaded.

Step 12

Now, create a new layer by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+N. Name this “accents”. Use the brushes we downloaded to add some nice and simple accents to the design. Position them carefully so that they are appropriate for the front, back and flap of our design. If you want, it is best actually to create a new layer for each brush accent that you add.

Step 13

Next, we add our text. Just use the text tool to add your brochure text. Make sure that you use the same lighter color for the text. Also of course, vary the size of the headlines, sub-headlines and body text.

Step 14

We also add a few arrow text in a different color as an accent for the headline.

Step 15

Of course, we will need some images. Just copy and paste the images to your design. Scale down the images in proportion by pressing CTRL+T. Hold down the SHIFT key and then drag the anchor points appropriately to increase or decrease the image.

Step 16

We then just add the rest of the images as needed and reduce their opacity a bit to make them blend better.

Step 17

Great! We just add 2 straight lines with the line tool in the folds. This finishes our front design. Save this document as your front design of course.

Step 18

Now, we work on our back design. Just load up your former template, or just resave the front design as your back design and then just erase all the other accents except We first add our initial image for the back design.

Step 19

Then, double click on the image layer to access its layer style. Select the stroke option. Then, set the size to around 5 pixels. This should add a black border to our image.

Step 20

Now, we repeat the procedure with the other images. The difference though is that we align them in a strip on the bottom area of the brochure. We also of course add the stroke just like the first image.

Step 21

Then, finally we add the text and image accents just like on the front.

Step 22

This finishes our back design. Congratulations! Now you know how to create a nice minimalistic, but memorable brochure in gallery style.

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