I am working on a project in which I have to make an equalizer that matches an audio loop that will be playing in a background. I have everything I need together, except I have hit one major snag. I have all the bars of my equalizer in place, but now I need to find a way to make a perfect curved line connecting the peak points of the EQ as illustrated linked below by the dotted red line in the image. Any help or suggestions with this would be greatly appreciated. I am using Photoshop CS5.5 Extended if that makes a difference. Thank you in advance!

the bar graph


You could use the Polygonal Lasso tool (L) to click out the rough contour of the EQ line (click on each red dot) and then smooth your selection with a 10-20 pixel radius (Select > Modify > Smooth). Use the Outline Selection button at the bottom of the Layers palette to stroke the selection with the current brush.


The answer is to use the (dreaded?) pen tool. It's less difficult than it seems. If you're not at all familiar with it, Deke McLelland has a good tutorial here. The bit you're most vitally interested in starts at about 3 minutes in.

When you're ready:

  • Create a new empty layer above your EQ bar chart.

  • Draw a path with the pen tool that is the smooth curve you want. Don't complete the path by clicking back at the start. You want an "open" path.

  • Select the brush tool, and set up a hard-edge 10 pixel brush. Choose the color you want for the line.

  • Switch to the Paths panel (docked with the Layers and Channels panels).

  • Click the flyout menu and choose "Stroke Path." Be sure to uncheck "Simulate pressure" so your stroke stays the same size throughout.

  • If the line is not the thickness you want, undo, change the brush size, and draw the stroke again.

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