Create a surreal portrait in Photoshop

In this lesson we will work on creating a surrealistic portrait, using the capabilities of the program Photoshop.

After completing all the steps described below, each of you will receive a unique individual result.

Let’s start!

Step 1

Before you start, download the source material for the lesson.

Translator’s Note: unfortunately, the reference to the resources for the lesson turned out to be inactive. You can choose the material for the lesson yourself, or use the images that I have compiled for you: source code

Open Photoshop and create a new file with the following parameters:
– size: 2200×1200 pixels;
– resolution: 72 dpi;
– color mode: RGB;
– bit depth: 8 bits;
– background color: transparent.

Move to the work document image with the girl.

Step 2

Now you need to discolor the photo with the model. To do this, go to Picture > Correction > Discolor (Image> Adjustments> Desaturate).

Step 3

Activate the tool Pen (Pen Tool (P)) and create an outline on the girl’s face as shown in the image below.

When the contour is closed, right-click on the marked area. In the sub-menu that appears, select “To form a selected area“(Make a selection).

Now press the button Delete on keyboard. This will allow you to quickly remove the selected area.

Step 4

Double-click on the black and white photo with the model to go to the settings. Layer style (Layer Style). Add style to model image Stamping (Bevel and Emboss), settings are shown below.

Step 5

Drag and drop images with smoke into the main document. Scale them and place on the girl’s face.

Set blending options for smoke layers to Screen (Screen).

Step 6

Above the background transparent layer, create a new layer by clicking on the corresponding icon at the bottom of the layers panel. On this layer you can place any object, text or numbers. I activate the tool Text (Horizontal Type Tool) and write the number “9” in white.

To make the figure not look so flat, go to the menu Stylelayer (Layer Style) and add these settings:

Step 7

Create a new layer on top of the layer with the number (Ctrl + Shift + N). Call it “Shadow on the Number.” Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool). In the brush settings, set: the brush type is round; hardness (hardness) – 0%; opacity – 40%. On the “Shadow on the figure” layer, draw the shadows falling from the girl’s face.

Step 8

Add another image with abstract smoke to the main working paper. Place a new layer with smoke under the layer with the number.

Set blending options for smoke layers to Screen (Screen).

Step 9

Open the “Island” image. Move this photo into the main working document and place it immediately below the layer with the number “9”.

Now, bleach the photo with the island (Picture > Correction > Discolor (Image> Adjustments> Desaturate)).

Step 10

Open the dove image in the new file. Separate the white bird from the black background, in any way convenient for you. Move the pigeon to the main working file. Scale the bird and place it as shown in the example below.

Step 11

Import the splash image into the main work document. Spray as you like.

Translator’s Note: it is best to place a layer with splashes above the model layer.

Did the same with the image of “splashing water”.

Change the blending mode of the water spray layer to Multiplication (Multiply).

Step 12

Create a new layer on top of all the previous ones. Download the “Clouds” brush to the library. Activate the tool Brush (Brush Tool) and draw white clouds.

Step 13

We work on the general view of the portrait. Add, on top of all the previous, adjustment layer Gradient map (Gradient Map) by clicking on the corresponding icon at the bottom of the layers panel.
Set the blending mode for the adjustment layer to Soft light (Soft Light).

Step 14

Add an image with a grunge texture to your work.

Then discolor this texture (Picture > Correction > Discolor (Image> Adjustments> Desaturate)).

The blend mode for the texture layer is Linear dimmer (Linear Burn). The opacity of the texture layer is reduced to 26%.

That’s all! We have completed this lesson. All good results!

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