Christmas Card Magic

In this lesson we will create a truly unusual card for winter themes. Immediately make a reservation that the lesson for “advanced” users of Photoshop. The author has not chewed the material.

For the work we need the following images:

So let’s get started.
Create a new document of 900 by 675 pixels.
Fill the Background with ToolsGradient from dark gray to light gray.

You can use this photo to make yourself a postcard silhouette. With help Tool Pen we create separately on each layer the upper and lower parts, as well as the layer with the whole postcard.

Adjust the edges using Editing – Transformation – Deformation (Warp Transformation), focusing on curved lines. Create a shadow under the bottom of the postcard, applying the overlay style. The left and right corners are slightly shifted down.

Apply to layer with shadow Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Gaussian Blur Filter).

Apply Radial Gradient (Radial gradient) to the top of the postcard and Linear light gray to the bottom.

Duplicate the lower part, fill it with a dark Linear Gradient. Cut off the left and right corners, apply Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Gaussian Blur Filter).

Repeat the previous steps, but leave the selected area darker than the previous layer.

As a result, you should have something like this:

Load the selection of the upper part of the card (Ctrl + click on the layer). Create a new layer. Go to the menu Editing – Perform Stroke – Inside – 1 pixel (Edit> Stroke> Inside). We play a little with the transparency of the layer.

Create a new layer, then create a selection for both edges. Fill the selection with dark blue / light gray Linear Gradient . Apply to this layer Overlay Mode – Multiplication (Multiply blending mode). Transparency (Opacity) about 60%.

We take the picture with the image of the ice surface. Select it (Ctrl + click on the layer). Editing – Copy (Edit> Copy). Create a new empty layer.

Go to the menu Filter – Outlook Correction (Vanishing Point Filter). Select “Create a plane” (second from the top) and create a mesh, as shown in the screenshot below. Push Ctrl + V, to insert an image.

We place the picture on the grid. Click OK.

Apply to this layer Overlay Mode – Overlap (Overlay Blending Mode). Apply the Layer Mask and fill it with a black and white Linear Gradient.

Open a picture with a wooden surface and place it on a new layer, which we move under the card.

Apply Filter – Outlook Fix (Vanishing Filter), we act as in the example with an ice surface.

Apply Layer Mask (Layer mask) to a layer with a wooden surface. Fill it with black and white Linear Gradient , as in the screenshot below:

Merge the Background layer with a layer with a wooden surface. Apply to the created layer Layer Style – Radial Gradient Overlay (Radial Gradient Overlay) from dark to transparent.

Draw a light soft area between the Background and the layer with the postcard. Create a layer with a soft glow effect set to Blend Mode – Soft Light (Soft Light Blending mode).

You should get something like the screenshot below:

Create a selection with Tool Pen, as in the picture below.
Fill it with black and transparent Linear Gradient, play with opacity. Apply Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Gaussian Blur Filter) with a value of about 3%.

Add a picture with clouds. Separate them from the background in a convenient way for you (how to do this, you can see here):

Extra areas are deleted with the help of Tool Eraser (Eraser Tool) with soft edges.

Now we insert a picture with a winter landscape. We work with Levels and Auto Contrast.

Apply to picture Transformation – Distortion (Distort transformation), as in the screenshot below. Eraser tool (Eraser Tool) erase the area in the sky. To create a slightly “distant” landscape, use translucent Eraser tool (Eraser Tool) with opacity 20% and ToolBlur (Blur Tool) with an intensity of 15%.

We load the selection of the upper and lower borders of the postcard, invert it and delete the extra selected area. We look at the screenshot:

On the right side we erase the landscape, as in the screenshot below.

We darken the snow a little bit, using a soft round brush .

Select the central landscape area Pen Tool (Pen Tool) and copy. Paste copied to a new layer. Go to the menu Image – Correction – Levels (Image> Levels)

We put Blend Overlay Mode (Screen Blending Mode) for this layer.

Duplicate the landscape layer. Go to the menu Filter – Blur – Motion Blur (Filter> Blur> Motion Blur) value 250, angle 90.

All blurred image is erased, except for reflections on ice.

Create a new layer, fill it with black and transparent Radial Gradient (Radial Gradient). We put Blend Mode to Multiply (Multiply Blending Mode) and Transparency (Opacity) 20%. Erase the front area using a soft brush.

Create a new layer again. Load the selection for the entire postcard. Fill the selected area with any color, Fill (Fill) 0% and apply the Gradient as in the picture below:

Insert the image of the moon. Cut off the round part to make a crescent. Apply for this layer Blend Mode – Multiply and Layer Styles – external and internal glow:

Insert the image of the pencil. Separate it from the background, copy it to a new layer and apply Overlay Mode – Multiplication (Multiply blanding mode).

Load the pencil selection and process its upper part with white translucent soft brush on a new layer.

Duplicate the white spot layer and apply Blending Mode – Dissolve (Dissolve Blending Mode) and opacity 5%.

Add a little shine using special brushes.

Create a large white spot on the new layer, apply to it Blending Mode – Dissolve (Dissolve Blending Mode) and Transparency (Opacity) – 6%. Merge it with a new clean layer.

Apply Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Gaussian Blur Filter) – with a value of 1.

Create a big white spot again. Apply Blending Mode – Dissolving (Dissolve Blending Mode), Transparency (Opacity) – 6%.
Add Layer Mask (Layer Mask) and fill Radial Gradient (Radial Gradient) from black to white, as in the picture below:

At the end merge all layers. Click on the icon Quick Masks (Mask Mode icon). Choose Gradient tool (Gradient Tool). Fill in the work with a Mirror Gradient from black to white.

Click on the Mask again to remove it. Go to the Menu Filter – Blur – Blur at shallow depth of field (Filter> Blur> Lens Blur).

Well that’s all!!! Here is the final result:

Here you can see the image in full size.

Author: Alexandra Fomicheva

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