Streamline your workflow with integrated access to Fotolia’s huge stock image database.

Finding the perfect image for your project just became easier – and faster – with Fotolia’s new plugin for Adobe Creative Suite. Now, you can search and download amazingly affordable images directly within Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign.

All designers know that searching for the right image takes time. Fotolia’s plugin makes this process seamless, by integrating image search directly into Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign.

Step 1: Download and install the plugin at



















Once downloaded, the Fotolia Plugin is installed with the Adobe extension manager.











The Adobe Extension manager CS6 will install the plugin in all compatible programs.


Let’s start with Photoshop, by selecting from menu Windows > Extensions > Fotolia.

The plugin will open a dialog box with options – the first is for your Fotolia account.






















Set the folders where downloaded purchased files and comps should be stored.
























The Fotolia panel is perfectly integrated into the Photoshop interface, and when used along with Mini Bridge, it becomes a truly incredible resource for the management of your images.


Step 2: Setup and use the Fotolia panel

The Fotolia panel displays 3 main tabs: Account, Search and Gallery.
In the Account tab, you can enter Fotolia account information to make purchases automatically within Photoshop, Illustrator or InDesign.

From Search tab, you may browse for images and apply various settings to filter your search results.

The Gallery tab gathers the results of our workflow: from this tab we can add an image to a lightbox, download comps, purchase files, and much more.











































































It’s amazing to be able to choose and purchase the images without ever leaving Photoshop! And it’s not all: the cool thing is that the purchased image is available immediately for editing.

























The Fotolia Plugin enables you to exit the panel and continue with the purchase on the Fotolia website. I prefer the integrated solution, because I never have to leave Photoshop.











Step 3: Using the Fotolia plugin for projects

Suppose we want to build a small poster quickly for a last minute rush project. Let’s say the client is promoting vacation packages for Thailand. We need fresh, high resolution images, and some vector elements to help create a customized look.

Fotolia’s subscription plans are perfect for these situations – you can download photos and vectors, all at super-affordable pricing.

Open Photoshop, and create a new file in the File menu.













We start by opening the Fotolia Extensions menu in Photoshop, and search by entering keywords into the search bar. Once you’ve found the right image, add them to the shopping cart and download the file.

























The Fotolia Plugin download status … when finished, the photos are stored in the specified folder (Purchased Folder).


























Place the image in Photoshop CS6 by dragging and dropping the image from the plugin window to the new document window.











Now, let’s search for other images to complete the project.














To customize the image, I’ll adjust the colors, merge layer masks of the two images together, and use selective hue and saturation.












Step 4: Integrating Vector Elements

Let’s insert a vector illustration to add interest to the image.

Open Adobe Illustrator CS6, and go to the Window > Extensions > Fotolia menu and browse for vector elements. Set your search for “vector files only”, through the advanced search filters options.











In just a few clicks, we have a completely customizable vector element ready to use.

Select the vector element with the selection tool, copy it – ctrl + c (cmd + c), and place it onto our photo in Photoshop CS6.







When pasting in Photoshop CS6, we can have 4 options. I recommend choosing Smart Object, because it enables you to keep the vector file and to edit it in Illustrator by simply double-clicking on it.

Once we have pasted the picture in Photoshop, we can go back to Illustrator and search for more elements, and change colors and shapes. You can also search for vectors in Photoshop. I chose to do it in Illustrator because I want faster access to editing tools.











Using copy and paste, place the “Special Offer” sticker in Photoshop. To complete the design, use the text tool and layer effects including drop shadow and glow.





















The Fotolia plugin makes image search fast and easy. Get those last minute rush projects completed faster – you’ll never have to toggle back and forth between your browser and CS6 in search of images again.

Obviously, the same concepts apply when creating complex illustrations. It’s important that artists spend their time being creative, not hunting down images on the Internet or toggling between applications. That’s why I rely on Fotolia!


About Martine Benes:

Martin Benes started designing after discovering Photoshop at age 16. Since then, he has put all his energy into digital art & multimedia. He studied industrial design in college, and began to work in creative field soon after, by founding his own creative agency. A few years later, he set up a digital media learning center in Rome and taught Photoshop. He has a strong passion for street Photography.

He is one of the best retouchers and Photoshop experts in Italy. Martin has been a speaker at events throughout Italy, and is behind CreativeProShow, one of the most important digital imaging events in Italy.

In 2010 Martin became Behance Ambassador for Italy, and as result, you can see his many tutorials published in print and online. He is an active blogger and an expert in post-production for digital photography. He has also been a member of the X-Rite Coloratti team as color expert since 2011.

More about Martin: and



Couple on a beach © haveseen #40406413:

Sea life card © nem4a #32626477:

Statue of Liberty © Perseomedusa #41521923:

Summer offer stickers. © Olena Pantiukh #32105352: