I would like to know how i can create a border (or rectangle with no fill) but with an image as the border lines. Image example attached. Can competently use Indesign, Illustrator or Photoshop so open to all. Thanksenter image description here

3 Answers 3


Using Photoshop:

Step 1:

Place your hero shot at the very bottom of the layers.

Screenshot: Target background image to be masked

Step 2:

Create a rectangle shape, clear the fill and set the stroke weight to your desired thickness of the masking. Set the stroke color to White.

Screenshot: Rectangle shape attributes above Main image

Step 3:

Get the image which you want to act as the border line and place it directly above the rectangle layer. Say, an enlarged copy of the original image like in your referenced image. Right click on this image and chose Create Clipping Mask.

Screenshot: Resized background image, to be used as border mask

Adjust the stroke width and the size/shape of the rectangle to your needs.

Screenshot: Finalized effect

Note: You can as well use the masking trick in illustrator


In Photoshop:

Place (border/stroke) image on it's own layer [on top of background layer), and just use the selection tool and select the area you wish to cut, and hit del

Background Image:                                             Border image (on top in it's own layer)

enter image description here enter image description here

Using Rectangular Marquee Tool (M) to select and delete are on inside:

enter image description here

Result: (after deleting, frame is there nicely)

enter image description here


Here's the Indesign trick:

You can use the content collector in order to link the background image and the "bordered" one. Grab the background image with the content collector and import it as a link (Check "create link" box).
Go to Link Options in the links panel in order to prevent Aspect and Size to be updated if the background image changes.
The cool thing here is that is you replace your background image, just update links in the link panel to get this cool magnifying effect...

To create the image frame, use the transform panel to make the duplicated frame smaller. Again, duplicate it and finally use the pathfinder tool in order to remove the inside part.
Increase size ratio of the image (not the frame) to get the magnifying effect.

See in action:
enter image description here

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