Card Magic in Photoshop

In this lesson, I will show you how the work that took second place in the Pxleyes site competition was done. We will create an interesting collage in which the cards will start to change with a light blow of the master.

Let’s start! And yet, do not play poker with such guys;).

Step 1

Open the map image using the Lesson materials.

Then open Photoshop and go to File> Open (File> Open). Select from the list the folder where the image with the maps was saved.

Step 2

First we need to duplicate the background image. It is very simple to make dragging the image “Background” to the icon “Create New Layer“(” New layer “) at the bottom of the layers panel, next to the Delete Layer icon.

Step 3

Now you need to separate the characters from the paper part. Make sure that you are on a copy layer (the active layer is marked with a blue line in the panel). Then go to Select> Color Range (Select> Color Range). Click on the pipette one of the red symbols on the map and you will see a running line of the selection outline.

Step 4

Here is a more detailed image on which you can see what should be displayed on your monitor. Edit the settings so that you get the clearest picture of the characters.

Step 5

Click “OK” and you will receive a selection of red characters. To copy them to a separate layer, go to Layer> New> Copy to new layer (Layer> Layer via copy).

Step 6

We now turn to the extraction of black characters. It takes a little longer. First activate the tool Rectangular area (Marque) and create a selection over the entire area of ​​playing cards without going beyond the boundaries of the white field.

Step 7

Repeat step with duplication of selected item to new layer (Layer> New> Copy to new layer (Layer> Layer via copy)).

Step 8

Switch to Select> Color Range (Select> Color Range) and pipette click on any of the black fragments of the map.

Step 9

You should have a similar result:

Step 10

Repeat the duplicate operation in order to transfer the black text to the new layer (Layer> New> Copy to new layer (Layer> Layer via copy)).

Step 11

Create a new layer above the map layer copy. Set the foreground color to white. Activate the tool Fill (Paint Bucket Tool) by clicking on the corresponding icon on the right side of the working area. Then, standing on a new empty layer, click the mouse on any part of the field to fill the layer with white color.

As a result, you get a white box with red and black card symbols. If you still have unnecessary dark lines or lines, go to the layer with black (red) characters, activate the tool Eraser (Eraser Tool) and erase too much.

Step 12

As a result, you should get a neat white image with clear card symbols.

Step 13

Artifacts and noises from card paper remained on red symbols. They can be easily removed. To do this, go to the layer with the red characters. Hold key CTRL and click on the icon of the layer with red symbols, so you will get a selection along the outline of the letters and symbols. Select the foreground color scarlet (red) and using the tool Fill (Paint Bucket Tool) paint over card symbols. So we got a beautiful uniform color.

Step 14

Turn off the visibility of the layer with red symbols, go to the layer with black. Perhaps you have gray (black) halos around the red signs. You can easily remove them using Eraser (Eraser Tool).

Step 15

Now we have removed all the extra “garbage” and prepared the image for further work.

Step 16

Turn off the visibility of all layers except the map copy layer. Stand on this layer and activate the tool. Stamp (Clone Stamp Tool), you will find it on the panel located on the left side of the working field.

Step 17

Our task is to hide the characters on the copy layer. To do this, move the mouse cursor to the white part of the card, then hold down the key Alt left click to select a cloning sample area. After selecting the area from which cloning will occur, carefully paint over all the letters and signs on the maps. You may not be able to mask all the colored areas at once. Continue using the key. ALT + Click on the white area until you get a blank card.

Step 18

In the reflection of the maps, the original symbols are still visible, we will solve this problem very simply by removing all the reflections. Activate the tool Rectangular area (Rectangular Marquee Tool) and create a selection along the reflection contour.

Step 19

Fill the rectangular selection with black.

Step 20

Now create a new reflection. To do this, go to Select> Color Range (Select> Color Range). Make a pipette click on the white cards in the sample selection field.

Step 21

Increase value Scatter up to 200. Click “OK” to get a selection of white cards.

Step 22

Copy the resulting map selection to a new layer, go to Layer> New> Copy to new layer (Layer> Layer via copy), or just press the key combination CTRL + J.

Step 23

Flip the copied portion of the image vertically – Editing> Transform> Flip Vertically (Edit> Transform> Flip vertically).

Step 24

Hold down SHIFT and using the tool Move (Move Tool (V)), lower the inverted maps down to get a mirror image like in the image below.

Step 25

Add a layer mask to the reflection by clicking on the icon at the bottom of the layers panel.

Step 26

Stand on the layer mask and activate the tool. Gradient (Gradient Tool). The icon for activating this tool is in the left part of the working area on the toolbar. Set the foreground color to black and background color to white. Holding the key SHIFT drag the gradient line from the beginning of the maps to approximately the middle of the reflection (standing on a layer mask). You should get the result as in the image below.

Step 27

We are finished with a reflection of the cards and go to the most tedious part of the work. We have to create a separate copy of each of the red and black characters. I will show you how to do this on the example of a single card, then using the same technique, separate the remaining characters.

Navigate to the black character layer. For convenience, use the shortcuts for zooming – “CTRL + ” and “CTRL -“, which will increase (reduce) the image with the characters. Zoom in on the character you are going to copy.

Activate the tool Rectangular area (Rectangular Marquee Tool) and create a selection around the desired element. Press the key combination CTRL + J and your character will be copied to the new layer. Give a name to this layer (so as not to get confused in the future).

Step 28

When you create an individual copy of all the characters, create a new group of layers with characters. To do this, click the corresponding iconCreate a new folder“(Create a new group) at the bottom of the layers panel, and then drag the layers with black and red marks into this folder. Give a name to the folder, for example Symbols. You can also create separate groups for red and black copies if you feel so comfortable.

Step 29

So, you have separated all your characters, and they are conveniently located in named groups.
Go to the layer with the main black symbol (which you have separated from the ace-peak card), and then to Editing> Transforming> Warping (Edit> Transform> Warp).

Step 30

When activating Warp, you will have a grid around the element. Move the nodes and grid guides until you get a result that you like, and then press the enter key ENTER (or click the checkmark icon at the top of the panel).

Step 31

Add a shadow from the symbol. To do this, create a duplicate of the layer with a deformed mark (CTRL + J) and place it a little lower and to the right of the original (the copy layer must be located under the original layer).

Lower the opacity of the copy layer. Remember: the closer the sign to the map, the darker the shadow! And just do not forget that in our case, the shadow can not be completely black. Now we soften the edge of the shadow a little using Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur (Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur). There is one small rule: the further the shadow is from the subject, the softer it is (blur). In my example, I use blur values ​​from 1 to 3.6 pixels. Experiment with filter settings to get the best result.

Step 32

In the image below you can see how I worked the ace of spades card. View the shadows, their position and blur.
Repeat the steps to warp and add shadows for all card symbols.

Step 33

Add reflection from the modified characters.
Group black symbols and their shadows into one folder. Create a duplicate group by dragging the folder to the Make new layer icon (Make new layer). Then right-click on the copy group and select in the submenu “Merge group“(Merge group). When you do this, go to Editing> Transform> Flip Vertically (Edit> Transform> Flip vertically). Activate the tool Move (Move Tool) and holding the key SHIFT drag the resulting reflection on the mirror surface of the corresponding map.

Step 34

In order to make the reflection of the characters look better, you need to use a layer mask. Add a layer mask to each of the reflections of the card symbols. Use black and white Gradient (Gradient Tool) and fill them with your masks (while holding down the SHIFT key). Focus on the image below and remember that the reflection will be more intense at the base of the cards.

Step 35

I shared the main stages and secrets for creating my own competitive work. How to supplement the work to complete it will be prompted to you by your ingenuity and logic :-).
I really enjoyed this assignment, I hope you enjoyed my lesson.

Have a nice mood!

Ator: Rob

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