Blue bird

In this lesson we will create a beautiful silver bird sitting on a tree.
Final result:

Step 1. Bird can be made from any texture. The author decided to use shiny metal textures. Keep this image at hand, we need it more than once.

Step 2. Create a new 600 x 800 document and fill it with black.
Using PolygonalLassoTool (L) (Polygonal lasso), make a selection as shown.
Copy (C) Insert (V)
The name of the new layer, “Metal”.

Step 3. Now create the body, neck and bird head with the tool. Elliptical Marquee Tool (Elliptical selection area). You should have three layers.
The name of the new layers, “Belly”, “Neck”, “Head”.

Step 4. We will work on the layer with the belly of the bird.

Filter>Liquify (Filter> Plastic), or press the key combination (Shift + Ctrl + X).
Tool Warp tool (W) (Deformation),
Brush size: 125
Press: 50
Give shape, as shown in the screenshot:

Step 5. Trim the Neck and Head layers with the Move Tool.
(Translator’s Note: use if necessary Transform (Transform)).
The name of the new layer is “Neck”.

Filter>Liquify (Filter> Plastic), or press the key combination (Shift + Ctrl + X).
Tool Warp tool (W) (Deformation),
Brush Size: 125
(try smaller brushes 75, 50)
Press: 50

Step 6. The merger of the two layers, “Belly” “Neck”. The name of the new layer. “Body”.
Use Burn and dodge Tools (O) (Brightener, Dimmer) to give a shadow and emphasize light transitions.

Step 7. Using Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) (Polygonal lasso), create jagged selection margins on the upper body in the shape of a wing.

Copy (C) Paste (V) selected area. The name of the new layer is “Wing”.

Use Smudge tool (R) (Smearing or Finger).
Set the brush with the name Spatter Brush 24 (Brush splash 24), resize to 12. Lubricate down – to the right, to slightly stretch and shape the feathers.

Step 8. Re-open the image with a metallic surface.
Tool RectangularTool (Rectangular selection) select a rectangular strip as shown in the figure. Copy (C) Paste (V) selected area. The name of the new layer is “Feather”

Filter>Liquify (Filter> Plastic), or press the key combination (Shift + Ctrl + X).
Tool Warp tool (W) (Deformation),
Brush diameter: 60
Press: 50
Slightly bend the strip and then the tool Smudge tool (R) (Smearing or Finger), Brush Spray 24 with a diameter of 15 – smear the lower part with strokes, direction down and to the right.

Duplicate this layer 4 times. Ctrl+J. Give each layer a name: “Pen 1”, “Pen 2”, “Pen 3”, “Pen 4”.
Click Ctrl+T and transform each layer with a feather. Samples are shown in the picture. Merge all “Pen” layers into one. The name of the new layer is “Tail”.

Step 9. Add a wing to the body without merging the layers! Give fluffiness to the wing with a spreading tool Smudge tool , setting the brush opacity to 75 or 50. Feathers should look soft!

Add a “Wing” layer Layer Style> Drop Shadow (Layer style> Shadow):
Opacity (Opacity): 53
Angle (Angle): 30
Distance (Offset): 4
Spread (Swipe): 11
Size (Size): 9

Coloring wings and tail.
Image > Adjustments> ColorBalance (Image> Correction> Color Balance).
Blue: -100
Blue: 80

Step 10. Make a bird tuft on the head. Use Smudge tool (R) (Smearing, Finger), brush Spatter Brush 24 (Spray), diameter 15
Merge the layers “Body”, “Wing”, “Tail” into one. The name of the new layer, “Bird”.

Body color is blue.
Image > Adjustments> ColorBalance (Image> Correction> Color Balance).
Midtones (Mid Tones)
Blue: -85
Blue: + 90

Step 11. The eyes of the bird. Using Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) (Polygonal lasso) create a selection in the shape of a bird’s eye.
Copy (C) Paste (V) selected area. The name of the new layer is “Eye”. Apply Layer Style> Emboss (Layer style > Stamping) with settings:
Style inner bevel (Style Bevel)
Depth (Depth): 120
Direction (Direction): Down
Size (Size): 4
Angle (Angle): 60

The pupil of the eye. Using EllipticalMarquee Tool (Elliptical selection area) create a selection in the shape of a pupil.
Copy (C) Paste (V) selected area. The name of the new layer is “Pupil”.
Apply Layer Style> Emboss (Layer style > Stamping) with settings:
Style inner bevel (Style Bevel)
Direction (Direction): Up
Depth (Depth): 100
Size (Size): 5
Angle (Angle): 60
On the new layer, draw the eyeball with a small brush with black color. Create another layer with a smaller brush and paint highlights. Merge these two layers with the “Eye” and “Pupil” layers. Name this layer “Eye”.

Step 12. Beak. Reopen image with metal structure. Tool Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) (Polygonal Lasso) create a selection in the shape of a triangle, as shown in the picture. Copy (C) Paste (V) selected area. The name of the new layer is “Beak”.
Image> Adjustments> Color Balance (Image> Correction> Color Balance).

Color levels:
Only Midtones (Mid Tones)
Red: +80
Yellow: -90
Apply to this layer Layer Style> Drop Shadow (Layer style> Shadow). Duplicate this layer and invert it.
Translator’s Note: maybe then you should put the inverted layer under the first layer with the beak.
Arrange it as in the screenshot.

Paw bird. Repeat the sequence of actions that are described in step with the “Beak.” The name of the new layer “Paw”.
Translator’s Note: In this action, the author recommends that you do not duplicate the layer, as in the step with the “Beak”. But duplication of the layer is necessary, apply the Layer Style on one layer, on the second you don’t need to do this, otherwise part of the bird’s claw will be painted. Use the Eraser tool to erase a part of the claw on the layer with the “Paw” and merge the layers. Then the claw will not lose color.

Take a brush, set the smallest size and draw lines, as in the screenshot. Use Smudge tool (R) (Smearing, finger), tools Burn and dodge Tools (O) (Brightener, Dimmer), work on the details to give a shadow and highlight the bright transitions. Place the “Paw” layer so that it is under the “Bird” layer.
Merge layers “Bird”, “Beak”, “Paw”.

Step 13. Here is our bird!
Be careful when merging layers.

Use Burn tool (O) to create curved lines that form small feathers.
Take a very small brush, with a hardness of 3 or even 1, and draw lines.

Create shadows under the wing. Use a brush with a stiffness of 9 – 13. Opacity 75 – 80.

Step 14. This is a simple radial gradient (G).
Choose two beautiful blues, one darker and the other a few shades lighter.
# 0b3f6e (in the foreground).
# 4f83b5 (background).
Draw a gradient diagonally from the center to the upper right corner.

Step 15. Create a new layer. Layer name, “Foliage”. We will create foliage on the top branch of the tree.
For this effect, use the Spatter brush size 24, 27, 39, 46, 59. Increase the size of the brush, if necessary. Even a brush size of 100 will work well. Make a lot of different forms, show imagination!

Step 16. Return to the source image.
Tool Polygonal Lasso Tool (Polygonal lasso), make a selection for the branches.
Copy (C), Insert (V).The name of the new layers is “Branch 1”, “Branch 2”, etc.
Via Image> Adjustments> Hue/Saturation (Image> Correction> Hue / Saturation) give branches a brownish, greenish tint.
Use filter Filter>Liquify (Filter> Plastic), or press the key combination (Shift + Ctrl + X) to shape the branches with the tool Warp tool (W) (Deformation).

Step 17. Hope you enjoyed making this beautiful blue bird. The final image in larger size can be seen here.

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