Create a landscape with birds in Photoshop

In this lesson, you will learn how to create a painted picture that depicts a beautiful pair of birds. You will also learn how to select objects and how to make them look like they are drawn.

Final result

Source materials:

STEP 1 – Prepare the Original Image

First, open the stock image Umbrella.

Next, select the tool Pen (pen tool). You need to highlight the image of an umbrella. All you need is to click on the edge of the umbrella image to set the starting anchor point. Using tool Pen (pen tool), create an outline around the image of an umbrella. After you close the contour, right-click on the created contour to display the context menu. In the menu that appears, select the option To form a selected area (make path selection) in order to convert the contour to active selection. Next, press Shift + Ctrl + I to invert the active selection, then press Del to remove the background.

STEP 2 – Create Flowers

Now we have an umbrella with which we will create the flowers we need. In this step, we will create flowers. Duplicate the image of an umbrella. Press Ctrl + T to activate the tool free transformation, small squares as anchor points along the contour of the selected image will indicate that the tool is active.

Next, right-click on the duplicate image of the umbrella to display the context menu, in the window that appears, select the option Deformation (Warp). Let’s distort the umbrella and give it a flower shape. Duplicate the umbrella image and do the same with the warp to create a different flower shape. Duplicate the umbrella image again and do the same deformation action to create a different flower shape. See the screenshot below for reference to how to deform an umbrella to get the desired flower shape.

After you have given the flower the desired shape, we need to apply light and shadow to the image of the flower. For this we use the tool Clarifier (dodge tool), tool settings are shown in the screenshot below. Apply the tool Clarifier (dodge tool), as indicated in the screenshot below.

Next, select the tool Dimmer (burn tool) for shading and creating shadows. See screenshot below for reference:

Do the same with another flower. Also create chiaroscuro using tools Clarifier (dodge tool) and Dimmer (burn tool).

STEP 3 – Create Stems

In this step, we will create the stems for our flowers. To create the stems, first, you need to cut out a part of the umbrella handle. Duplicate the cut part of the pen twice, and then merge them into one layer. Next, duplicate the merged layer as many times as necessary.

Select one of the merged layers, and then go Filter- Plastic (filter> liquefy). Choose a tool Deformation (forward warp tool) and further, deform the stem, as shown in the screenshot below.

Next, do the same with the other stems. Try not to repeat the shape of the stems so that they do not look the same. Once you have created the appropriate stems, arrange them so that they resemble the branches of an ornate tree. Then, using the adjustment layer Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation), change the color of the stems.

STEP 4 – Create Birds

In this step, we will play with the deformation to create birds using an umbrella fragment. What we have to do is duplicate the image of the umbrella again. Warp duplicate umbrella image. Then, add a motion blur to the distorted image. Name this layer simply ‘Blurred shape’.

Duplicate the layer with the blurred shape. Once on the duplicate layer, press Ctrl + T again to activate the free transform tool. Using the option Deformation (warp), give our figure the shape of a bird wing.

Duplicate the blurred layer as many times as necessary. Continue to deform each individual shape to create different shapes. In the screenshot below, my deformation result.

Cut out the handle part of the umbrella. Further, after some manipulations, the shape of the selected part of the umbrella should look like in the screenshot below. This will be our bird’s supposed torso.

Next, we will create a birdie. What we will do now is connect all the parts of the bird.

STEP five – Create Butterflies

In the same way that we created a bird, we can create other living things using the same umbrella fragment. This is a butterfly wing that I created:

We need to create the body of our future butterfly. Create a new layer (Shift + Ctrl + N). Being on a new layer, draw a torso of dark green color. To create light and shadows on the body of the butterfly, use the tool Dimmer and clarifier (dodge and burn tool). The tool settings will be the same as we used when creating flowers.

Now we will add wings to the body of the butterfly:

This is another butterfly that I drew.

STEP 6 – Create the Hills

In this step, we will create hills that will be located in the background of our picture. Once again, we return to the selected image of the umbrella. Cut the handle shaft of the umbrella. Next, duplicate the selected bar image several times. Merge all layers with duplicates into one layer to form a single shape.

Once on the new merged layer, once again go Filter- Plastic (filter> liquefy) in order to change our created shape into something that would resemble a hill.

Let’s give our hill image a more magical look with a tool Finger (smudge tool). In the tool settings, set a soft round brush with an intensity of 70-80%. Spread the lines of our hill. Try to vary the size of the brush between 8-10 px.

Duplicate the hill layer as many times as necessary. Vary the scale of each duplicate of the hill, and then arrange them so that you get a single hill.

STEP 7 – Dead Tree

The last object we create for our scene is a tree. We again use the selected image of the umbrella to create a tree. After duplicating the selected image of the rod, merge the layers with duplicates, and then apply a plastic tool to the merged layer. I created the following figures, which will become the crown of the tree and the branches.

Now, make up from the created figures, our tree. First, duplicate the layer with the crown of the tree, and then place the layer with the duplicate layer below the original layer, while slightly shifting it. Then add a branch to the crown of the tree. Next, duplicate the layer with the branch and slightly reduce the size of the duplicate layer with the branch. Place a duplicate layer with a branch on the right side of the tree crown. See the result in the screenshot below.

I decided to hide some parts of the tree using a layer mask to get the result as in the screenshot below:

STEP 8 – Create Rear background

We created objects for our composition, further, we will create a composition where we add the created objects. Let’s start by creating a new document (Ctrl + N), the dimensions are shown in the screenshot below:

Choose a tool Gradient (gradient tool), gradient type – Linear (linear). Fill our new document with # 474af9 and # 070b7d gradients by clicking + pulling the gradient from top to bottom.

Next, create a new layer (Shift + Ctrl + N) on top of the layer with the background. Make sure the foreground color is set to # d3d3d4 and the background color to # b0b1f9. Let’s go Filter – Rendering – Clouds (filter> render> cloud). We will apply the cloud filter to our document. I named this layer ‘Clouds’. Set the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (overlay), layer opacity is 100%.

Create another new layer. Fill this layer with a linear gradient of # faea94 and # fcb406. I named this layer ‘Gradient’. Set the blending mode for this layer to Multiplication (multiply), layer opacity is 100%.

Create another new layer. Choose a tool Brush (brush tool). In the settings of the brush set the mode Normal (normal), opacity is 100%. Set a soft round brush; brush color is white. Click on a new layer with a brush to create a white soft circle on it. I named this layer “White”. Blend mode for this layer Normal (normal), layer opacity is 100%.

In this step, we will continue to create a background color palette. First, create another new layer on which we apply the brush, the color of the brush # fab730. For this action, use a soft round brush. I called this layer Orange. Set the blending mode for this layer to Soft light (soft light), layer opacity is 100%.

Next, create another new layer, on this layer apply brush # fcb305. For this action, use a soft round brush, with an opacity of 40-50%. I called this layer soft orange. Set the blending mode for the layer soft orange to Multiplication (multiply), layer opacity is 100%. Create a duplicate layer and to duplicate a layer, change the blending mode to Lightening basics (color dodge), the opacity of the layer is 100%.

Finally, create another new layer on which we apply a light yellow brush (# fae603). I called this layer yellow. Set the blending mode for this layer to Chromaticity (color), layer opacity is 100%.

STEP 9 – Add The moon

We will add the moon to our scene, for this, we will create the moon. Once again create a new layer. Using a white tint, draw a circle almost in the middle of the scene. Blend mode for this layer Normal (normal), the opacity of the layer is 25%. I called this layer the moon.

Duplicate the layer with the moon. Next, go Layer – Layer Styles (layer> layer style). See the settings shown in the screenshot below. Then set the blending mode for this layer to Normal (normal). Reduce the layer opacity to 52%.

STEP ten

Finally, we apply the adjustment layer to our scene. Let’s go Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Color Balance (layer> new adjustment layer> color balance).

STEP eleven

After creating the background, we will add the objects that we created in the previous steps. At the beginning, we will add hills. Apply scaling to the image with the hills to your desired size. Place the hills on the right side of our composition. Finally, set the blending mode for the hill layer to Normal (normal), layer opacity 19%.

STEP 12

Duplicate the hill layer by placing a duplicate layer on the left side of our composition.

STEP 13

Next, add trees to our scene. Use the Brush Trees to paint them.

STEP 14

Next, add the following object to our composition: a tree. Add chiaroscuro to the tree. To create light and shadow, use the tool Clarifier (dodge tool). See tool settings Clarifier (dodge tool) in previous steps.

STEP 15

Finally, we change the color of the tree using the adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation). Use this adjustment layer as a clipping mask.

STEP sixteen

Next, open the Texture. Place the texture layer on top of the tree layer and the adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation). Also convert the layer with the texture to a clipping mask. Finally, set the blending mode for the texture layer to Overlap (overlay), layer opacity is 100%.

STEP 17

Create a new layer below the tree layer. Choose a tool Brush (brush tool) and set the standard Grass brush to paint the grass on a new layer. See screenshot below:

STEP 18

Add a birdie to our scene. Apply scaling to the image of the bird in accordance with the size of our composition.

STEP nineteen

Duplicate the birdie layer. Slightly deform the duplicate bird so that it does not look like the original image of the bird. Change the color of the bird using the adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation).
Translator’s Note: Do not forget to convert the adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation) in a clipping mask to the layer with a duplicate bird.

STEP 20

Next, we will add branches to our image. Apply scaling to the image of branches in accordance with the size of our composition. Add chiaroscuro to the branches. To create light and shadow, use the tool Clarifier (dodge tool).

STEP 21

Add more branches. And further, do the same as in the previous step.

STEP 22

Once you’ve added branches, draw leaves to them. Choose a tool Arbitrary shape (costume shape tool), set the standard Leaves shape. Using a dark green tint, draw the leaves on a new layer. Then, using tools Clarifier (dodge tool) and Walternator (burn tool), create chiaroscuro on the leaves.

STEP 23

Add more leaves.

STEP 24

Next, add flowers to our scene.

STEP 25

To complete the composition, add butterflies and small birds. Try to change the color of butterflies and little birds with a correction layer. Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation). Use any color shade to your taste. See the screenshot below, the result that I got.

STEP 26 (Color Correction)

I decided to add adjustment layers to our scene: 2 adjustment layers Hue / Saturation (hue / saturation). See screenshot below:

Add more adjustment layers. At the beginning, we will add an adjustment layer. Levels (level). On the layer mask of the adjustment layer Levels (level), brush in the center of the image. The blend mode for this adjustment layer Normal (normal), opacity is 100%.

Duplicate the adjustment layer Levels (level) blend mode for duplicate adjustment layer Normal (normal), opacity 50%. Finally, I applied a correction layer. Photo Filter (photo filter), blending mode for this adjustment layer Normal (normal), opacity is 100%.

Next, we will add more adjustment layers. See screenshot below:

STEP 27 Add Clouds

Press Shift + Ctrl + Alt + E to merge all visible layers into one layer. Next, go Filter – Other – Color Contrast (filter> other> high pass). Set the radius to 2%. I called this layer Color Contrast. Choose a tool Brush (brush tool), reduce the brush opacity to about 10-12%; the brush color is white. Draw small clouds and lines in the hills. Finally, set the mode for this layer to Overlap (overlay), opacity 100%.

In the screenshot below, the final composition that I created after adding clouds to our image, as well as in front of the image of the Moon:

STEP 28

Create a new layer. Draw with a soft black brush around the edges of our image. Using the eraser, hide the black transition on the branches, the grass and the little bird on the right. Set the blending mode for this layer to Normal (normal) and reduce the opacity to 40%.

STEP 29

Once again create a new layer. Draw color shade, as shown in the screenshot below. Change the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (overlay), layer opacity is 100%.

Create a new layer. Fill this layer with a blue tint (Shift + F5). On the layer mask of the layer, hide the blue tint on the main birds and on the tree trunk. Change the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (overlay), layer opacity 40%.

Next, create another new layer on which we will paint the transition color tint # f87e02. Set the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (overlay), reduce the layer opacity to 13%. Finally, to complete our work, go Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Levels (layer> new adjustment layer> levels). Just in the settings, click Auto (Auto).

Final result

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