Melancholic lady

The author of the video lesson: Elena Vinogradova

In this tutorial, I will show you how to create a beautiful melancholic girl from a simple studio photo.

Materials for the lesson:

Step 1. Create a new A4 document in Photoshop. We will work with large images, thanks to this, you can zoom and focus on fine details without loss of quality.

Step 2. Fill the background with a radial gradient. To do this, double click on the background layer to bring up the window Layer style (Layer style). Go to the menu Gradient overlay (Gradient overlap), use a gradient from light blue (# ddf3f3) to darker (# 8ab4b4).
When you fill the background with a gradient using Blending options (Overlay settings), you can change its center simply by clicking and dragging the canvas.

Step 3. Next, create a suitable grunge background for our work. This is most easily done using ready-made textures. Do not be afraid to experiment, your work will not suffer from this, but on the contrary, it will become more individual and brighter.
The first texture we will use is Concrete textures set.

Paste the texture on the working canvas, click CTRL + T, to adjust its position and size. After that we change blending mode (overlay mode) layer on Soft light (Soft light), and opacity (opacity) lower to 10%. You may notice that there were barely noticeable spots.

Step 4. The atmosphere is too dark. Move on Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Curves (Layer – New adjustment layer – Curves) and move the curves to brighten the scene.

Step 5. Add more grunge effects to the background. This time we will use Grunge textures pack). Paste the texture on the working canvas. We press SHIFT + CTRL + U, to discolor it and change it blending mode (overlay mode) on Overlay (Overlap) with opacity (opacity) 40%.

Step 6. Recent background manipulations. Create a new layer and fill it with black. Make sure that the white and black colors are foreground and background colors respectively, then go Filter – Render – Clouds (Filter – Rendering – Clouds). We press ALT + CTRL + F, to apply the filter again.

Step 7. Apply Filter – Blur – Motion Blur (Filter – Blur – Blur in motion):

Step 8. Install blending mode (overlay mode) layer on Colorburn (Blackout basics) with opacity (opacity) 30%. At this stage, you can group all the layers together by selecting them, and then pressing CTRL + G. I called my band “von”.

Step 9. It’s time to add a model girl. You can find the right photo yourself or use mine. Separating this lady from the background with Pen tool (Pen) (P) and placed on the working paper.

Step 10. Duplicate the layer with the model (activate the layer and press CTRL + J) and set blending mode (overlay mode) copies on Overlay (Overlap) with opacity (opacity) 50% to increase color contrast.

Step 11. Again, duplicate the original layer with the model and place a copy above the duplicate from Step 10. What else can you do with this blonde? Wonderful background so emphasizes all its subtle beauty. I remembered a scene from a James Bond movie when his girlfriend was killed, completely covering her with gold. It was an idea: to create a golden lady.
Activate the last layer created and go Filter – Artistic – Neon (Filter – Artistic – Neon). Enter the necessary parameters and click OK.

Step 12. Move on Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Gradient Map (Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Gradient Map) and add a gradient from yellow (# ffe400) to brown (# 503823). This color correction should be applied only to the model. To do this, create a clipping mask for the gradient layer by clicking CTRL + ALT + G. Now the gradient will affect only the girl.

Step 13. Change blending mode (overlay mode) layer using neon on Overlay (Overlap).

Step 14. Select all the layers with the model and click ALT + CTRL + E, to merge them into one new layer located above all the previous ones.
Now the girl has a rich yellow color and only vaguely resembles gold. To fix this, go Filter – Sharpen – Smart Sharpen (Filter – Sharpness – Smart Sharpness):

Step 15. I would like to make the girl even more surreal and fantastic. Zoom the image with Patch tool (Patch) allocate a hole on the lobe and move the selection to the area where you want to replace the puncture site.

Also in this way I removed the girl’s eyebrows. Although it is not necessary, but, as you noticed, our experimental model has become even more intimidating to look.

Step 16. Looking at the model, I decided to add details that would make her look like a doll. Create a new layer and using Pen tool (Pen) (p) in mode Path (Path) create a selection around the left eye.

Create a new layer and click CTRL + ENTER, to transform the path into selection. Make sure black is the foreground color and click ALT + DELETE, to fill the selection with black.

We perform the same manipulations with the right eye and mouth. Thanks to this simple step, we created the effect of an “empty body”.

Step 17. At this stage we will add more light effects. Create a new group Layer – New – Group (Layer – New – Group) “light” and set blending mode (overlay mode) group Color dodge (Lightening the basics). Create a new layer inside the group and activate a large brush with hardness (hardness) 0%. Dot brush in those places that need to be clarified. To achieve a more spectacular result, create more layers with light spots and experiment with opacity of the layers and the brush.

Step 18. It’s time to make some important color corrections. I’ll show you how adjustment layers can drastically change an image. Let’s start with decreasing saturation. Move on Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Hue / Saturation (Layer – New adjustment layer – Hue / Saturation) and reduce Saturation (Saturation) to -50.

Step 19. Create an adjustment layer Gradient map (Gradient Map) with a gradient from black to yellow (# d7c000). Blending mode (overlay mode) of this layer is set to Overlay (Overlap) with opacity (opacity) 40%.

Step 20. I’m not quite happy with the result, so we’ll use it again Gradient map (Gradient map) with colors ranging from pale yellow (#fffeec) to gold (# 534408). Change again blending mode (overlay mode) on Overlay (Overlap) with opacity (opacity) 40%.

Step 21 Last adjustment layer: Brightness / Contrast (Brightness / Contrast). Increase the brightness to 10 and the contrast to 20.

Step 22 Personally, I do not really like to destroy the edges of the image during the application of any brushes. Let’s use for this another way. We press SHIFT + ALT + CTRL + E, to merge all visible layers into one new one and hide all the others, except for the background and last adjustment layer.
Create a layer mask by clicking on the button. Add layer mask (Add a layer mask) at the bottom of the layers panel and, activating the mask, click CTRL + I. Taaaaaaaaa! The girl has become invisible!

Step 23 We will use a white brush on the mask to make some parts of the model visible (a black brush, on the contrary, hides). If you take a white round brush and click it in any area of ​​the model, it will become visible. But why use a simple standard brush if you can, for example, take a brush with scratches or scuffs? Therefore, we take a brush from the set Watercolor brushes and start drawing in the center of the document. The result is amazing! Some areas are more visible than others.
To see how versatile this technique is, I suggest you look at three different results using three sets of brushes.

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