After the list of tutorials on making grids, I have listed some Web 2.0 alternatives to Photoshop that students might want to try out for generating images for their game designs -- especially if you are working from home with no access to Photoshop.
IMPORTANT: One word of advice: start by imagining how big you want the board and then calculating how big you want each square. It will speed things up considerably and prevent you from having to do it over. As carpenters always say: measure twice, cut once.
- Creating a Grid with a Custom Pattern in Photoshop
I liked this tutorial best, not only because it is in video form (which is easier than reading) but because I think the method it shows is probably the quickest and most effective and teaches you some interesting Photoshop skills -- especially in the use of strokes. It also shows you one way of decorating the squares.
- Grid Tutorial
This tutorial is focused on using a grid as a background for a header graphic (which might be useful to know for your box design), but the method it offers for making the grid is very simple.
- How to Create a Grid Quickly and Effectively in Photoshop
This one also offers a rather painless method in very few words. It also shows you how you can use a picture as the background of your board.
- Making Grid Masks in Photoshop
This might be a good method if you want to use a picture as the background.
- Photoshop Tutorials - Custom Grid
This is the method I discovered on my own for making a grid and it works.
- Wavey Grid
I threw this one in just in case someone likes the idea. A few years back someone used this tutorial to make a pizza-box grid game where the wavey grid matched well with the cheesy pizza design.
Alternatives to Photoshop
Students often ask how they can edit images at home if they don't have Photoshop. I usually have recommended GIMP, which I have used with success and find quite intuitive (and similar to Photoshop in many ways). I have also seen books on using GIMP and I like some of its features. But I saw a great post recently that links to "Free Online Tools for Images and Graphic Design," which seems like the inevitable next step. Here are some useful Web 2.0 graphic editing tools freely available on the web: