Create a mystical landscape in the style of Matt Paint in Photoshop

?In this tutorial, I will show you how to create a mysterious and fascinating scene in Photoshop using a variety of photo manipulation techniques. You will learn how to combine different source images into one single composition, how to create a mysterious atmosphere, how to carry out color correction, work with light and much more.

Stages of the lesson

We will start the lesson by creating a mountain scene using stock images from the landscape and mountains. We also use varying degrees of opacity of the mountain image to create a depth of field. Next, we will add the statue and the knight, we will hold their combination using correction layers, masks and a brush. Then we will create a mysterious atmosphere using a layer filled with color. In conclusion, we will make a color correction, enhance the contrast and work on lighting effects. You will need Photoshop CS2 or higher to complete this tutorial.

The final result:

Step 1

Create a new document, go File – New (File> New). Set the dimensions of the working document, which are shown in the screenshot below.

Step 2

Open the original landscape image in Photoshop. Using tool Move (Move Tool (V)), move this image to our working paper. Position the image with the landscape as shown in the screenshot below:

Click the second icon at the bottom of the layers panel to add a layer mask to the layer with the landscape. Using a standard soft black brush, hide the sky and mountains, leaving only the image of the earth:

Step 3

Next, we will reduce the saturation of the image of the earth using the adjustment layer Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation). Let’s go Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Hue / Saturation (Layer> New Adjustment Layer> Hue / Saturation):

Step 4

Next, apply an adjustment layer. Color Balance (Color Balance) to add some red tones to the ground:

Step 5

Now add an adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) to darken the ground:

Step 6

Open the original image with Mount 1 in Photoshop. Using tool Move (Move Tool (V)), move this image to our working paper. Position the image with the mountain, as shown in the screenshot below:

Remove the background on the image using a layer mask:

Duplicate the mountain layer, and then flip the duplicate layer horizontally, for this we go Editing – Transformation – Flip Horizontal (Edit> Transform> Flip Horizontal). Move the duplicate of the layer with the mountain to the left:

Step 7

Select both layers with the left and right mountains, and then press the keys (Ctrl + G) to merge them into one group. Change the blending mode for the layer with the group from the mode Skip (Pass Through) to mode Normal (Normal), Opacity (Opacity) layer with a group of 100%. Create a new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) over layers with mountains to discolor them:

Step 8

Now add an adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) to darken the mountains:

Step 9

Open the original image with Mount 2 in Photoshop. Using tool Move (Move Tool (V)), move this image to our working paper. Place the image of mountains 2 in the background, and also reduce Opacity (opacity) layer up to 50%. The layer with mountains 2 should be located below the layer with the group “Mountains 1”.

Using a layer mask, hide the hard edges, as well as the mountain on the right:

Step 10

Duplicate the mountain layer 2 and move it slightly to the right. Using a layer mask, hide the mountain that is on the left and also reduce Opacity (opacity) duplicate layer up to 40%.

Step 11

Once again, open the original image with mountain 2, move this image to our working paper, and then flip horizontally. Position the mountain in the upper right corner of our scene, and also reduce Opacity (opacity) layer up to 20%.

Different degrees of opacity with mountains will give our scene a depth of field.

Step 12

To make the mountain on the left (layer with mountain 1) slightly different from the mountain on the right, I used the top of the image of mountain 2. Select the top of mountain 2, and then move the selected part to our working document, positioning it on the left of the mountain:

Step 13

Open the original image with mount 3 in Photoshop. Move this image to our working paper. Place the mountains in the middle of the scene between the existing mountains, and then reduce Opacity (opacity) layer up to 20%. Place this layer below the layer with the “Mountain 2” group.

To the layer with the mountain 3, add a layer mask and with the help of a soft black brush hide the sea, as well as the mountains located at the edges. Keep the visibility of the mountain in the middle:

Step 14

Once again, open the original image with mountain 3, move this image to our working document, and then reduce Opacity (opacity) of this layer to 30%. Apply the transformation (Ctrl + T), as shown in the screenshot below:

Using a layer mask, hide hard edges, as well as unnecessary parts of the image. The result should be as in the screenshot below:

Step 15

Merge the layers that make up the third group of mountains 3, in the same way we created the group for mountains 1. Add an adjustment layer Curves (Curves) to darken the mountains and hide the details:

Step 16

Open the original image of the statue in Photoshop, move this image to our working document. Place the statue right on the right mount. Remove the background in this image, and also combine it with the mountain using a layer mask:

Step 17

Duplicate the image of the statue, and then horizontally mirror the duplicate layer. Move the duplicate layer to the left and with the help of a soft black brush, draw a combination of the statue with the mountain, creating a smooth transition at the edges of the image:

Step 18

Group layers with statues. Using the adjustment layer Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation), discolor the statues:

Step 19

Next, apply an adjustment layer. Color Balance (Color Balance) to add red / yellow tones to the statues:

Step 20

Now, add an adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) to darken the statues and combine with the image of the mountains:

Step 21

Open the original image of the knight in Photoshop, move this image to our working document. Place the knight at the foot of the mountains. Using a layer mask, remove the background in this knight image:

Step 22

To the knight layer, add an adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) to darken the knight. Next, go to the mask of this adjustment layer and using a soft brush of black color and about 20% opacity, hide the correction on the image of the spear:

Step 23

Next, we will add a fog effect to our scene, for this we go Layer – New Fill Layer – Color (Layer> New Fill Layer> Solid Color). Set the fill color to # a2a3a5:

Switch to the mask of this layer with the fill and use a soft black brush to reduce the saturation of the fog on the ground, as well as at the foot between the mountains. You can see the result of brushing on the layer mask, as well as the final result in the screenshots below:

Step 24

Add adjustment layer Curves (Curves) on top of all other layers to darken the scene:

Now go to the mask of this adjustment layer and with the help of a soft black brush hide the correction of the curves between the mountains (we will add light here).

Step 25

Add another fill layer, fill color # 141921. Decrease Opacity (Opacity) of this layer with fill up to 40%:

Switch to the mask of this layer with the fill and use the soft black brush to hide the fill effect between the mountains:

Step 26

Add adjustment layer Gradient map (Gradient Map) on top of all other layers:

Change the blending mode for this adjustment layer to Soft light (Soft Light), Opacity (Opacity) layer 100%:

Step 27

Next, add an adjustment layer. Color Balance (Color Balance):

Step 28

Now add an adjustment layer. Brightness / Contrast (Brightness / Contrast) to enhance the contrast and improve the lighting of the entire scene:

Switch to the mask of this adjustment layer and use the soft black brush to hide the correction on the ground.

Step 29

Next, we will add more light in the area between the mountains to enhance the mysterious atmosphere of the whole scene. Create a new layer and using a soft brush, brush color # b6d6cc, paint over the bottom area between the mountains, and then change the blending mode for this layer to Overlap (Overlay), Opacity (Opacity) layer 100%:

We have completed the lesson! Congratulations! We created a mystical landscape in the style of Matt Paint in Photoshop !!!

I hope that you liked this lesson, and you learned something new for yourself. Thank you for attending the lesson, and I wish you a good time at this lesson.

The final result:

PSD lesson

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