I adore old visual comic stunts and am not afraid to admit it. In humor Charlie Chaplin and Little Rogues There is a certain charm. Therefore, when my children and I thought about how to recreate a classic sense of humor, we stopped at a vertical pyramid. This is an old comic trick that was used at the time, but it’s very funny and you could laugh at it.
The idea of the project is to convey the scene where children need to recreate the pose of an adult person. The children decided to stand on each other’s shoulders in order to recreate the full growth of an adult, and then put on a raincoat (and, of course, a wide-brimmed men’s hat!) To hide the deception.
So, the game has begun! Join us for our version of the classic trick – we call it the Funny Pyramid!
The final result:
1. Take some photos
The most exciting part of this project is the process of creating photos. Children can take an active part in this process, although the whole project may be fun.
We decided to come up with a situation where a comic trick would be appropriate, but at the same time, we didn’t want the children to try to do something illegal. Therefore, we did not want children to buy things that were forbidden to be sold to minors, or sneak into places intended for adults only. The idea we came up with is to use a candy store, where the store will not break through a purchase if there is no adult nearby.
It so happened that next to my house there is a candy store with a bright and colorful interior.
Whenever you are working on a project, such as this one, it is always best to be honest with the staff and you must first ask for permission. In this case, the store clerk was quite friendly and allowed us to take several pictures without difficulty. We were also sure that we would buy something there, so we did not just come to take a few pictures, but also to contribute to their business.
After eating candy and returning home, it’s time to take the rest of the photos. The seller from the candy store refused to participate in the photo shoot, so we had to dress up her seller. It was very easy, we quickly found a colorful apron, which usually puts on workers.
Safety precautions – especially when working with children. In reality, most children do not have enough strength, balance and coordination, which are necessary to recreate a living pyramid. Fortunately, we can use some practical solutions to make everything safe, and then use Photoshop to make it work.
We came up with a great way for our project, for this we have chosen a simple chair on which the child will be kneeling, and the second child will simply stand next to each other.
Props for shooting makes the scene fun and funny for kids. A raincoat is a must-have attribute, and oversized boots and a wide-brimmed men’s hat are excellent accessories to help recreate the overall effect. Do not forget that the child, which is located below, must look out, because This is a very important point in the details of humor.
Have fun while taking photos, encourage the children to offer their poses and ideas. Take a few pictures, enjoy the creative process. We long laughed at the idea of this whole project!
If you do not have the opportunity to take photos yourself, then you can use our photos by downloading the archive from the link at the beginning of this lesson.
After all the photos were taken, and the lighting is securely packaged, it is time to invite the truly creative power of this project: children! Be sure to be there so that you can help them answer their questions and solve problems they may encounter while working with Photoshop.
2. Hello children!
I hope you got as much pleasure from this activity as we did. My girls really wanted to see the final result. I think you too! So let’s continue.
First select the photo you like. The photo should be the one where the children’s eyes are aimed at the seller of the store, and the photo should also be funny!
How many children helped you build the pyramid? We had three children in the pyramid, because we decided that it would be even funnier!
If you had more than two children who participated in the project, then you might want to add another child looking out from under the raincoat.
Open another photo and use the tool Lasso (Lasso Tool (L)), select the image of the child’s head, including fragments of the cloak. Next, go Editing – Copy (Edit> Copy (Ctrl + C)).
Now click on the tab of the first image, and then go Editing – Paste (Edit> Paste (Ctrl + V)) to paste the selected image onto a new layer. Using tool Move (Move Tool (V)), move the image down, creating a feeling as if the head of the child is below the top head of the child.
The contour around the head of the girl says that the image was simply glued and placed in place, so we need to fix it!
We can fix this with the help of layer masks, for this we go Layer – Layer Mask – Show All (Layer> Layer Mask> Reveal All). You will see a small white square that will appear next to the layer thumbnail; this is called a mask. Next, select the tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)), and then open the window Brush sets (Brush Presets) through Window – Brush Sets (Window> Brush Presets). Choose a soft round brush.
Make sure the brush color is set to black. If the foreground color is set to a different color, then press the “D” key to set the default colors. Next, using a brush, paint over the edges of the image on the layer mask and you will see how the edges will disappear and create a smooth transition! On a layer mask, staining resembles ink that hides objects in an image.
We decided that the second image is more suitable for adding a hand. Perhaps you think so too? Click on the tab to go to the second image. Again, using the tool Lasso (Lasso Tool (L)), create an outline around the hand image. Next, go Editing – Copy (Edit> Copy (Ctrl + C)) to copy the selected image.
Once again, click on the tab of the first image, and then go Editing – Paste (Edit> Paste (Ctrl + V)). Using tool Move (Move Tool (V)), place your hand in place.
Now we need to combine the hand with the whole image, just as we did it earlier with the head. Let’s go Layer – Layer Mask – Show All (Layer> Layer Mask> Reveal All) to add a layer mask, and then using the same brush, paint over the edges of the image to combine the hand with the entire image!
So, our pyramid is ready. It will be much easier to add our pyramid to the scene with the candy store, if the whole image is on one layer, therefore, we use a small trick to combine all the layers. Hold down the “Alt”, go Layer – Merge Visible (Layer> Merge Visible), so we will create a merged layer on top of all other layers.
Now we need to get rid of the background. Choose a tool Fast selection (Quick Selection Tool (W)), and then paint over the inside of the strange person’s figure. This tool will create an active selection by searching the edges of the image.
Be careful when highlighting, do not select the legs of the chair. If you select extra areas of the image, then hold down the “Alt” key, use the Subtract from selected area (Subtract from Selection) to deselect areas that you do not need.
Press the button Refine edge (Refine Edge) to improve the edges of the selected area. In the settings window, set values that may seem confusing, however, we need the edges of the selected area to be clearer, and also that there are no background fragments. We used the following settings, which are listed below, but your settings may differ slightly.
- Smart radius (Smart Radius): check the box
- Smooth out (Smooth): 3 px
- Feathering (Feather): 1 px
- Shift edge (Shift Edge): -20%
Next, install Conclusion (Output) on Layer mask (Layer Mask) and click “OK ”.
Now hold down the “Alt” key, click on the eye next to the thumbnail of the merged layer, so you turn off the visibility of all other layers. Now you can clearly see how the mask works when you remove the background. Using tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)), you can make a correction on the layer mask. We noticed a fragment of a chair leg under the image of a shoe! With a brush, this can be fixed very quickly!
When working with a brush on the layer mask, remember that the white color of the brush restores the images, and the black color of the brush hides the image! Always imagine the work of a flashlight: the stronger the light, the more you can see.
The pyramid is ready!
Great job, kids! You have built a totem pyramid. Next, we will combine all the elements of the scene together.
3. Combine all the elements together.
If, in your opinion, your children have done an excellent job with the creation of the pyramid, then ask them if they want to continue the selection to separate the image of the candy seller from the background. Perhaps your children, like my children, will not be interested in this part of the project, simply because it is not as fun as photography, when they were all passionate about the pyramid!
Do not close the image with the created pyramid, open the original image with the seller of sweets. We need to separate the image of the seller from the background.
Separate the vendor image from the background using the same technique. Fast selection (Quick Selection Tool), Edge Refinements (Refine Edge), and also carry out a hand correction on the layer mask. Do not worry about the selection of white socks seller on a white background, because we will hide them in any case!
Now open the photo of the candy store. Move both created shapes to this image. If you are using document tabs, then drag the layer that you want to copy onto the tab with the store scene, and when Photoshop switches to this document, release the layer to the canvas.
The store salesman must be behind the counter to show that he is a store employee. The best way is to resort to using a layer mask, but the seller layer already has a layer mask. One of the right decisions is to create a group for this layer, and then add a layer mask to the created group. Being on the layer with the seller, we go Layer – Group Layers (Layer> Group Layers (Ctrl + G)).
Turn off the seller layer visibility so that the image of the counter is clearly visible. Using tool Polygonal Lasso (Polygonal Lasso Tool (L)), carefully draw a contour around the image of the counter.
Turn on layer visibility with seller. Now make sure that you are on the layer with the created group, and then go Layer – Mask Layer – Show Selected Area (Layer> Layer Mask> Reveal Selection).
A great advantage of a layer mask with a group is that the seller’s image layer can be freely moved behind the image of the counter without worrying about the additional correction on the layer mask.
4. Compositional work
The main elements of the composition are in place, therefore, it is time to conjure a little over the composition in order to create the feeling of a single scene.
The image of the seller does not quite fit the store scene, so add an adjustment layer. Photo filter (Photo Filter) on top of the seller layer. Use the Warming Filter (85). Next, convert this adjustment layer. Photo filter (Photo Filter) in the clipping mask to the layer with the seller, to do this, go Layer – Create Clipping Mask (Layer> Create Clipping Mask (Alt + Ctrl + G)).
Add the same adjustment layer. Photo filter (Photo Filter) to the live pyramid layer to combine the pyramid with the whole scene. Also convert this adjustment layer to a clipping mask for the pyramid layer.
Also to the live pyramid layer, add an adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) as a clipping mask. Add a control point in the center of the curve, and then slightly pull this point upwards to lighten the mid-tones of the dark cloak.
Create a new layer below the live pyramid layer, change the blending mode for this layer to Multiplication (Multiply). Choose a tool Brush (Brush Tool (B)), set the soft round brush, the color of the brush is dark gray, Opacity (Opacity) brush 30%. Draw shadows under the person’s feet in a raincoat, as well as on the side wall of the counter.
Hold down the “Shift” key, select the layer with the pyramid, as well as the two adjustment layers. Next, press the keys (Ctrl + E) or go Layer – Merge Layers (Layer> Merge Layers). Thus, we have created a combined layer with the image of a living pyramid, which will help us create a reflection on the floor. Shift the merged layer down, placing it below the original pyramid layer, but above the shadow layer.
Flip the merged image vertically, for this we go Editing – Transformation – Flip Vertically (Edit> Transform> Flip Vertically). Next, go Editing – Transformation – Scaling (Edit> Transform> Scale) to zoom in vertically, so the reflection will not look stretched. Change the blending mode to Soft light (Soft Light).
Decrease Opacity (Opacity) layer with reflection up to 40% and then go Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur). Install Radius (Radius) blur 3 px. This blur radius does not allow the reflection to look too distinct on a tiled floor.
In order for the joke to work, you need an obvious reason for the children to do such a trick. Most sweets stores are allowed to sell candy to children, but we will add a prohibitory inscription, like the one below, so that our joke is appropriate.
Using tool Horizontal text (Horizontal Type Tool (T)), add text. We have chosen the phrase “ALL CANDY PURCHASES MUST BE MADE BY ADULTS”, using bold text.
Select all layers with text, and then go Layer – Smart Object – Convert to Smart Object (Layer> Smart Objects> Convert to Smart Objects). Change the blending mode with the text to Multiplication (Multiply) and then go Editing – Transformation – Distortion (Edit> Transform> Distort). Pull the corner points to distort the text in accordance with the front panel of the counter.
How should look the image at the moment lesson.
5. Final effects
The picture can be completed in the state in which it is at the moment. But we decided to add effects to make the scene more dramatic and interesting. The following steps are selective, which will help give the picture a final look.
Create a new layer to add dimming and brightening effects. Navigate Editing – Run Fill (Edit> Fill) and in the pop-up window in the drop-down menu Use (contents) select 50% gray (50% Gray). Next, change the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (Overlay) to completely hide the gray fill.
Choose a tool Dimmer (Burn Tool (O)), in the settings of this tool, set Range (Range) on Mid tones (Midtones) value Exposure (Exposure) at 9%, the brush is soft round. Add shadows to the whole scene. The effect is created gradually, therefore, be patient. Switch to the tool Clarifier ( Dodge Tool (O)) to lighten the bright areas of the image.
Holding down the “Alt” key, go Layer – Merge Visible (Layer> Merge Visible) to create a merged layer. Transform the resulting merged layer into a smart object, for this we go Layer – Smart Object – Convert to Smart Object (Layer> Smart Objects> Convert to Smart Object).
Next, go Filter – Other – Color Contrast (Filter> Other> High Pass). Install Radius (Radius) 4 px.
Next, go Filter – Filter Gallery (Filter> Filter Gallery) and select the filter Oil painting (Paint Daubs) from the filters folder Imitation (Artistic). In the settings window of this filter, set Brush size (Brush Size) 1, and the value Sharpness (Sharpness) 4.
Change the blending mode to Overlap (Overlay). The filters will merge under the Overlap mode, creating a certain sharpness effect.
Add a layer mask, let’s go Layer – Layer Mask – Hide All (Layer> Layer Mask> Hide All) to hide the effects. Choose a tool Gradient (Gradient Tool (G)), gradient type Radial (Radial), the color of the gradient from transparent to foreground color, set the foreground color to white. Draw two large gradients over the two figures of our scene to focus the effect of sharpness on them.
Create another merged layer. Hold down the “Alt”, go Layer – Merge Visible (Layer> Merge Visible) to create a merged layer. Transform the resulting merged layer into a smart object, for this we go Layer – Smart Object – Convert to Smart Object (Layer> Smart Objects> Convert to Smart Object).
Next, go Filter – Rendering – Lighting Effects (Filter> Render> Lighting Effects). Use one control point of the light, placing it at the top of the scene with the following settings:
- Intensity (Intensity): 45
- Exposition (Exposure): -eleven
- Gloss (Gloss): -41
- Metal (Metallic): -88
- Wednesday (Ambience): -41
Next, go Image – Correction – Light / Shadows (Image> Adjustment> Shadows / Highlights). Tick in the box Extra options (Show More Options), so that an additional window with settings appears. The basic idea is light-shadow correction, but basically it concerns the adjustment of the correction slider, which will enhance the contrast Medium tones (Midtone) and give the image a more artistic look. We used the following settings:
- Shadows – Effect (Shadow> Amount): 43%
- Shadows – Tone Range Width (Shadow> Tone): sixteen%
- Shadows – Radius (Shadow> Radius): 97 px
- Light – Effect (Highlight> Amount: four%
- Light – Tone Range Width (Highlight> Tone): 50%
- Sveta – Radius (Highlight> Radius): 30 px
- Correction – Midpoint Contrast (Adjustments> Midtone): -32
Next, go Filter – Camera Raw (Filter> Camera Raw Filter) and in the Basic tab, set the following settings:
- Contrast (Contrast): -15
- Sveta (Highlights): -6
- Shadows (Shadows): 34
- White dot (Whites): nineteen
- Black dot (Blacks): 32
- Definition (Clarity): 26
- Vibration (Vibrance): 18
Click the tab Effects (Effects) in the window of the same Camera Raw Filter. Set the following settings:
- Dehaze: thirty
- Vignetting – Effect (Post Crop Vignetting> Amount): -sixteen
Although at the moment the image is not distorted, but using distortion correction, we will give the image a sense of magic. Click the tab Correction of distortion (Lens Distortion) in the window of the same Camera Raw Filter. Set the following settings:
- Transformation – Distortion (Transform> Distortion): -ten
- Transformation – Vertical (Transform> Vertical): -five
- Transformation – Scale (Transform> Scale): 102
- Lens Vignetting – Effect (Lens Vignetting> Amount): -100
As a final effect, let’s add a slight blur to the outer edges of the image, increasing focus in the center of the scene. Let’s go Filter – Blur Gallery – Aperture Blur (Filter> Blur Gallery> Iris Blur). Set a large blur radius so that the circle covers almost the entire image, and also set the degree Blur (Blur) 10 px.
And we have completed the lesson!
I hope that you and your children got a lot of pleasure in the implementation of this project, just like us.
The final result:
Author: Kirk Nelson