Create a collage with a fluffy hedgehog in Photoshop


In this surrealistic lesson, I will show you how to create a cute hedgehog, which has a fluffy dandelion instead of needles. We will make a dandelion. As source, we need only 2 images. I will show you how to apply brushes correctly for better blending and how to arrive at the final result using several adjustment layers.

The final result:

Let’s start!

Step 1

Create a new document (Ctrl + N) with dimensions 2508×1672 px with a transparent background. Resolution (Resolution) 300 pixels / inch. Now we will create a new background for our document. Take advantage of adjustment layerGradient (Gradient) and adjust the color from # 13659f to # 0ba3e2, and also apply the same settings as in the screenshot:

We need to add noise to the background, so let’s translate this layer to Smart object (Smart object) (Right click on the layer – Convert to Smart-Object).

Note: Translation into a Smart Object is necessary in order to be able to edit the changes at any time, even after accepting the settings. Then, using the Camera Raw filter, apply the same settings as in the screenshot:

Step 2

With the background we finished and now you can add a hedgehog. Transfer it to our document with the mouse, or with the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + O open the image in Photoshop and drag it into our document. With the tool Free transform (Free transform) (Ctrl + T) let’s reduce the image with the hedgehog, and also shift it just below the center to make it as in the screenshot:

Next, let’s duplicate the hedgehog layer (Ctrl + J). Name the original layer Multiply, and a copy of it Normal and place a copy above all layers. Then turn off layer visibility Normal and change the blending mode for the layer Multiply on Multiply (Multiplication).

Step 3
Now let’s make these layers (Normal and Multyply) interconnected. To do this, use the key Ctrl, select both layers, then right-click on the selected layers and select Link layers (Link layers). Now turn on layer visibility Normal and immediately create for it a black layer mask (Alt + click on the icon for creating a layer mask). With the tool Brush (Brush) (B) medium hard, white, 100% Opacity (Opacity), carefully erase the blue color on the body of the hedgehog, without affecting its needles.

Step 4

Then, let’s copy this mask and drag it onto the layer. Multiply (left click on the layer mask, hold down the Alt key and drag with the mouse on the Multiply layer). The result should be the same as in the screenshot:

Step 5

Use a soft white brush with 100% Opacity (Opacity) and draw a shadow under the hedgehog on the layer mask Multiply. Result:

Step 6

Now we just have to transfer the image of the dandelion to our document. Open it in Photoshop (Ctrl + O) or transfer it immediately. Place the dandelion on top of all layers and apply the blending mode. Screen (Screen) to make the background invisible. Next, position the dandelion so that it is right on the “model”, apply to it Layer mask (Mask layer) white. Screenshot:

Next, hold down Ctrl + left click on the mask layer Normal. So, only the hedgehog figure should stand out. Go to the mask layer with dandelion and press Backspace. Deselect a shortcut Ctrl + D. And then, with a black brush, remove the unwanted areas on the white mask of the dandelion layer. Call it dandelion. The result on the screenshot:

Step 7

Now, go to the Normal layer. Use the standard Dune Grass brush (in a set of brushes it is listed with a size of 112 px). Go to Brush presets (Brush Settings) (Window) – Brush presets (Brush settings)) and uncheck Color Dynamics (Color dynamics) and Transfer (Broadcast). Set the size and direction of the brush, as in the screenshot:

…and, with a black brush, on the white mask of the layer, paint something like needles under a dandelion, constantly changing the size and direction of the brush to make the needles look more realistic. Probably, the result will not be quite noticeable, but it is still necessary to do it.

Step 8

Let’s create a new layer (Ctrl + N) between the dandelion and normal layers. On this layer, a soft white brush with Opacity (Opacity) and Flow (Pressing) 30% each along the border between dandelion and hedgehog several times to make it relatively invisible. So much better:

Step 9

Go to layer mask Normal and white brush Star 70 pixels (with 70 numbers) s Opacity (Opacity) and Flow (By pressing) on ​​100% we will draw the hedgehog wool with a characteristic direction.

Translator’s Note: Do not forget to change it in accordance with the direction of the whiskers, and also combine the settings in Brush presets (Brush settings).

You can also add small hairs on the ears and all places where the selection has removed them.

Author’s Note: if suddenly you wanted to add more dandelions on any of the sections on the hedgehog, you can copy (Ctrl + C) the existing ones, having selected the necessary one, using the tool Lasso (Lasso) (L) and pasting (Ctrl + V) on the desired area.

Create a combined copy of all layers. Alt + Shift + Ctrl + E and do some work with color and sharpness. Go to filter Camera raw and apply the same settings as in the screenshot:

Because the image is a bit greenish, let’s add a bit of purple. Go to Image (Image) – Adjustments (Correction) – Color balance (Color Balance) and apply the same settings as in the screenshots:

Finally, create a correction layer. Color lookup (Color search) and the same settings apply:

Opacity (Opacity) of this layer is changed by 10%.

And here is the final result along with the layout of the layers:

I hope that you liked the lesson, and you gained a lot of knowledge during its implementation.

Author: Andrei Oprinca

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