Creating a spherical 3D puzzle in Photoshop

Final result:

Today I will show you how to create an original spherical 3D puzzle using Photoshop CS5 Extended 3D tools. Let’s start!

Resources for creating this lesson.

Clouds and water

Hand 32

The texture of the puzzle (by default in Photoshop, if not, find the same one)

Step 1 – Creating a New Document
File> New (File – New) and create a new document, in the dialog box, set the width and height to 600 pixels, and the resolution to 72. Change the background color to white, and click OK.

Step 2 – Fill Color Layer
At the bottom of the Layers panel, click on Create new fill (Create a new fill), or an icon for the adjustment layer, and select Solid color (Colour). On the selection panel, set the color: # C7C7C7 (gray), and click OK.

Step 3 – Creating a 3D Sphere from a Layer
Now let’s start with the main element of this lesson – the sphere. Select the top layer and click 3D> New Shape From Layer> Sphere (3D – New shape from layer – Sphere). As a result, we get a great gray sphere. You can edit this 3D object, rotate it, scale it, and more. Change the name of the layer to “Sphere” in the Layers panel.

Step 4 – Scale a 3D object
Now we will move the sphere a bit to make it look closer to us using the tool Slide tool (Slip) from the 3D toolbar. Notice the 3D toolbar on the left. By default the tool is active. Rotate tool (Rotation). Right click to see other tools. You can also see them on the top panel. Choose a tool Slide tool (Slide), click and zoom in on the top of the top, moving the front and back, try to get the result, as in the last figure.

Step 5. We will add a reflective texture to our sphere, but first we need to create a texture so that it is ready. Open the “Clouds and Water” image. We will edit this image in order to prepare it for use as a texture. This is an optional step, you can skip it and go to step 8 and apply the texture that you have.

Using the tool Rectangular marquee tool (Rectangular selection), highlight the perfect square in the picture (you can hold down Shift when dragging to get a square), and copy (Ctrl + C) selection.

Step 6. Create a new document, set the width and height to 1200px and resolution up to 72 pixels per inch. Paste the copied image and using Move Tool (move), (check the box Show Transform Controls (Show controls) on the top panel) scale the inserted image so that it exactly matches the document borders.

Then go to Filter> Other> Offset (Filter – Other – Shift), in the dialog box, set the value Horizontal value (The minimum horizontal value) is about 500 – 600. You should get something like the figure below.

Step 7. Next we need to hide the line separating the image. On the toolbar, select Clone tool (Stamp) holding the key Alt, Click on the spot that will be the source for the stamp, and paint, as if you are using a brush, the entire line. Try to get it, as in the picture below. Save the document titled “sky texture.psd”.

Step 8 – Reflection
Select the Sphere layer in the Layers panel, open the 3D panel (Window> 3D) (Window> 3D). Select from the list below. Sphere_Material (Sphere material), click on the third icon on the left (as in the figure below) and set the following values: Reflection (Reflection): 50, Gloss (Gloss): 80% and Shine (Shine): 50%. Now the sphere has become more brilliant.

Step 9 – Relief Texture
While staying on the materials tab, click on the small folder icon next to the option Bump (Relief) select Load texture (Load texture) and go to the texture folder. In case you do not have a puzzle texture, you can find it on the Internet and make it black and white. You can use the tool 3D Object RotateTool (Rotation) and see what your embossed texture looks like.

Step 10 – Polishing the puzzle texture
Click the folder shortcut next to the option. Bump (Relief) select Open texture (Open texture) A new texture window will open. Adjust the levels (Ctrl + L) by setting the values ​​as shown in the figure below, save the document and return to the main document, now you will see the changes.

Step 11 – Scale the embossed texture
The pieces of the puzzle are too big, we scale the texture a little. Click the small folder icon again. Bump (Relief) texture, select Edit properties (Change properties). In the dialog box that opens, set the following parameters: the scale of the U and V values ​​is 1.2. This will reduce the size of the pieces slightly. Let’s add more details to our field.

Step 12 – Light
On the 3D Panel, click the fourth from the left icon (light bulb). At the bottom, click New light (New World) and select New Image Based Light (image based illumination). In the list that appears, select Image based light 1 and click on the small folder next to Image (Image) select option Load texture (Load texture) and select the “Sky texture.psd” we created earlier. Install Intensity (Intensity) 0.5.

If you want, go back to the materials, and reduce Reflection (reflection intensity) up to 30.

Step 13 – Set the final size and position
Rotate and resize the sphere using 3D tools. Click on the 3D panel on the first icon. In the appeared Scene options (Scene save options), select Scene (Scene) and change the value Quality (Quality) on Ray traced final (Final ray tracing). This command will render your sphere in the best quality. Make sure the texture and highlights look good:

Step 14 – Adding a Hand
Open the picture with the hands (you can find yourself on free sites with photos), copy and paste on the layer above the 3D sphere (Tip: you can drag the image onto the document and it will be inserted as a smart object automatically). Resize (Ctrl + T) to match the concavity of the arms with the radius of the sphere.

Make sure that the layer with the hands above the layer with the sphere, set the layer opacity to 50%, so that you can better see the position of the hands.

Step 15 – Round Selection
Return the opacity of the layer with the hands to 100%, leave this layer selected, press Ctrl + click on the “Sphere” layer. As a result, we get a round selection on the layer with the hands.

Step 16 – Reshaping the round selection
Without canceling the round selection, reduce the opacity of the “Hands” layer to 50%. Then on the toolbar, select Lasso Tool (Lasso), on the top bar, click on Subtract From Selection (Remove from selection). Then draw a selection around the thumb of the right hand, part of the palm and index finger. This area will be removed from the round selection. Return opacity to 100%.

Step 17 – Masking the Hands
Without removing the selection, go to Layer> Layer Mask> Hide Selection (Layers – Layer Mask – Hide selected area). If you do it right, the sphere will be in your hands. Then press Ctrl + D to deselect.

Step 18 – Adjust the Hand Saturation
Now double click on the layer with the hands, if you added as a smart object, and we can not edit it. If you just copied and pasted it, then double-click is not needed. Now press Ctrl + U to open Hue saturation (Hue / Saturation), enter the values ​​as in the image below and click OK. Press Ctrl + L to open Levels (Levels), set the settings as shown below and click OK. Save the document and close it (in case you are working on a smart object).

Step 19 – Masking with a white background
Once again, select the Hands layer, then using Magic wand tool (Magic Wand), set the value Tolerance value (Sensitivity) to 16, click on the white area of ​​the image. A selection appears around the arm. Next Alt + click on the layer thumbnail, Layer mask (Layer Mask) on the Layers panel. Using the Fill tool, fill the selection with black (# 000000) and deselect (Ctrl + D). Then click on the thumbnail of the “Hands” layer to see how it looks. The best way to check whether everything is in order is to change the background color to dark, and then switch back, as shown in the figure below.

Step 20 – Setting the Light
Go back to the layer with the sphere, on the 3D panel, select Scene options (Scene save options) and select Infinite Light 1 (Light source), two sources are added by default. Select the first source and set Intensity (Intensity) to 0.9. If necessary, you can move the source position using the 3D tool. Rotate tool (Rotation).

For Light Source 2, set the intensity to 0.4 and place it under your arms.

Step 21 – Screening Spheres
Click on Scene (Scene) and in the settings Render settings (Render) select Ray traced final (Final ray tracing). Then duplicate the 3D layer by dragging it in the Layers panel to the small icon of the new layer at the bottom. Then select the newly created layer (name it “Sphere Copy”), right-click on the layer and select Rasterize (Rastrirovat), and hide the original 3D layer.

Step 22 – Remove Some Parts
Now we will work with a rasterized copy of the 3D sphere. Select Lasso Tool (Lasso) on the toolbar and make a selection around one part of the puzzle (this can be any part). Then cut (Ctrl + X) and paste (Ctrl + V) a piece on a new layer, repeat this step as many times as you need.

Step 23 – Filling the Sphere from the Inside
Ctrl + Click on the hidden layer “Sphere” to create a circular selection. Then create a new layer above Sphere Copy and name it Sphere BG. Using Paint bucket tool (Fill) fill the selection with color: # 292929 and press Ctrl + D to deselect.

Step 24 – Polishing the Slices
Select Eraser tool (Eraser), set the brush size to about 2 pixels, select the “Sphere Copy” layer and delete all possible flaws on the sections of the missing fragments.

Step 25 – Creating a shadow for the puzzle pieces
Select one of the pieces, drag the layer to the icon for creating a new layer at the bottom of the Layers panel to duplicate it. Then using the tool Move Tool (Move), move the copy several pixels down and to the left (or right). On the “Slice Copy” layer, select Layer> Layer Style> Color Overlay (Layer – Layer Style – Color Overlay) and set the color: # 262B2F. Now repeat these steps with all the other parts.

Step 26 – Lightening and Darkening
To work with pieces, use the tool. Dodge tool (Brightener) and select a brush with soft edges, then select some parts on the extracted piece, repeat this process where you see fit.

Step 27 – Adding Effects Inside the Sphere
Select the “BG Sphere” layer and go to Layer> Layer Style> Gradient Overlay (Layer> Layer Style> Gradient Overlay), set the radial gradient using the following colors: # 2C2D31 and # 606165.

Step 28 – Inner Shadow on the Holes
Sometimes using a simple filter is not enough to create the desired effect, in this case we add an internal shadow to highlight holes from missing pieces. Using Magic wand tool (Magic Wand) make a selection on the hole on the Sphere Copy layer. Then select the BG Sphere layer and copy the selection, then paste it above the BG Sphere layer. Then Ctrl + click on the thumbnail of the created layer in the layers panel, select Marquee tool (Rectangular selection) on the toolbar and move the selection a few pixels down and to the left (or right) and delete the selection. Repeat this process with all holes.

Step 29 – Hand Shadow
Let’s add a hand shadow. Create a new layer and name “Shadow of Hand” above the layer “Sphere Copy”. Using Brush tool (Brush) size 40px (hardness 0%), color: # 292929 and Opacity (Opacity) Flow (Density) 50%, draw a shadow, as shown in the figure below.

Step 30 – Lightening and Darkening the Hand
Select the “Hands” layer and use the tools Dodge (Clarifier) ​​and Burn (Dimmer) to highlight dark and light areas.

Step 31 – Background
Select Layer> New Fill Layer> Gradient (Layer> New Fill Layer> Gradient), place above the rest of the layers. Set color gradient #ffffff and # D8DCDF and Radial style.

Step 32 – Curves
Add a new adjustment layer Curves (Curves). Place above all layers. Set the values ​​as below. Pay attention to the common colors of RGB and the red and blue channels.

Step 33 – Levels
Now, let’s add an adjustment layer. Levels (Levels) to increase the intensity of dark colors. Use the values ​​shown in the following figure.

Step 34 – Hue Saturation
Then add an adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation), select red and set the values ​​as shown in the image below.

Step 35 – Gradient Map
And at the end, to add a more interesting effect, add a correction layer. Gradient map (Gradient Map), set the black and white gradient. In the Layers panel, select the settings Gradient map, change the blending mode to Overlay (Overlap) and opacity by 50%.

In the end, it should look something like the figure below. Good luck!

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