I’ve used Photoshop for years and am still learning new tricks, which comes with being a do-it-yourself person. Today I wanted to sketch a proposal for a lower cabinet and counter with shelves above. I started with an image search on Google and immediately found a photo I could use to start. I cleared out everything around it and chopped off the top and the molding on one side to get started.

Photo of the existing cabinet

I then made an inverted copy  of that and pasted the two together in order to double the width and number of doors. The view in the original photo was  from an angle, so I used Edit / Transform / Skew to change the view to frontal.  Square and plumb is much easier to work with, even on paper.

Mockup with Photoshop, using the existing cabinet as a guide

The arrangement of doors in the original photo was not the same as my design, so I copied the larger bottom section and pasted it over the top doors, keeping the large crown mold. I changed the image and canvas sizes as needed , making sure to not keep the changes proportional. I made a copy of the upper unit to start the lower unit, and cropped and resized using the same methods. I boxed and filled to make the simple drawers and counter. A bit more skewing and adjusting brightness and contrast got the appearance looking acceptable. To complete the drawing I changed the image mode to gray scale.  The image in the upper left is the mock-up I created.

Floor to ceiling sketch
Floor to ceiling sketch

Update:  My client asked what it would look like if we did floor to ceiling shelves with doors instead of the combination of shallow base cabinet, counter and wall shelves.  To make that sketch, I cropped out the lower section, expanded the canvas size, copied and pasted in the upper shelves in that space, and then restored the baseboard. The lower section that was to be drawers is for CD storage, so several steps of copying and pasting the shelves created the desired 6″ shelf space.    


Update 2: Yesterday I spoke with another client who wanted basic wall shelves with no doors, and I was able to use the new shelves sketch as a base for a quick mockup.  By turning off the Constrain Proportions option in Image Size, I grossly expanded the shelves and then copied and pasted them to remove the doors. I pasted two halves together, keeping a little space between them for the face frame. When that was done, I used Canvas Size to reproportion these shelves to the client’s requested dimensions.  The three sketches are consecutive modifications based on the original photo.