Despite the fact that in our world only birds have feathered wings, nothing prevents us from knowing what wingless animals with wings can look like. And the magic power of photo manipulation will help us see it with our own eyes.
In this lesson, I will show you how to attach a pair of feathered wings to the back of a pig. It will be fun and interesting, believe me!
Note: The source of the lesson is missing some images. In the archive you will find an alternative version of the images to perform the lesson.
1. Preparing photos for work
First we need to prepare the wings. Open the image with a bird and with the help Magic Wand Tool (W) (Magic Wand) select the background around the bird.
Next, go Select – Refine Edge (Allocation – Refine Edge). Play with the settings to get the most accurate and accurate selection of the bird. Change the parameter View (View) to better see the result.
Now we have to cut off each wing separately. Take Magnetic Lasso Tool (L) (Magnetic lasso) (hold down the Shift key and press the L key three times to switch to the desired tool) and select the wing in the foreground. Copy (Ctrl + C) and paste (Ctrl + V) it onto a new layer.
We also select the second wing (for this you can use the usual Lasso Tool (L) (Lasso)) with a part of the bird’s torso as if you were singling out the entire wing. Copy (Ctrl + C) and paste (Ctrl + V) it onto a new layer.
The rear wing is blocked by the front, so we need to modify it.
Via Lasso Tool (L) (Lasso) cut off the side to give the outline of the wing.
Next, select the area where the front wing is left, and go Edit – Fill (Editing – Fill).
In the drop-down menu, select Content-Aware (Given the content) and click OK.
Select the feathers on the upper part of the wing, copy them and drop them below.
Move on Edit – Transform – warp (Editing – Transformation – Deformation) and move the nodal points to change the shape of the section with the feathers. Then select the layer with the rear wing and with the area of feathers and press Ctrl + E to merge them.
Using tool Patch Tool (J) (Patch) hide all seams so that the wing looks natural.
2. Combine photos
Open the photo with a pig. Activate Crop Tool (C) (Crop) and pull over the side points to expand the working canvas and add space for the wings.
Copy both wings and paste them onto the document with the pig. Select both layers with wings and turn Edit – Transform – Flip Horizontal (Editing – Transformation – Flip Horizontally). Then press Ctrl + T to activate the free transformation mode, and adjust the size of the wings. You can make big realistic wings proportional to the size of the pig or small and funny.
Now edit the shape of each wing. Activate the free transformation (Ctrl + T) and deform the front wing so that it corresponds to the perspective of the body of the pig.
To move each corner of the frame separately, hold down the Ctrl key.
Hide the wing in the foreground so that it does not close the back. Go to the layer with the pig and select the area around the animal using Magic Wand Tool (W) (Magic Wand).
Now switch to the layer with the rear wing and at the bottom of the layers panel click the button Add layer mask (Add layer mask). As a result, the part of the wing that overlaps the pig will be hidden. Click on the layer mask with the wing and soft brush (B) to refine the border between the body of the pig and the wing. To hide, use a black brush to return the hidden area – white. You can read about this tool in lesson on the link.
Press the \ key to see / hide the mask.
Now that you have learned how to work with a mask, we are finalizing the wing in the foreground and using a soft brush to create a smooth transition between the body of the pig and the wing.
3. Finalize the collage
Since we cut the wings from another image, they have a different white balance, which is not combined with a pig image. Let’s fix it. Move on Window – Adjustments (Window – Correction) and select Hue/ Saturation (Hue / Saturation). Transform the adjustment layer into a clipping mask (Ctrl + Alt + G) and move the sliders to adjust the white balance of the wings under the pig.
When finished, hold down the Alt key and drag the adjustment layer onto the second wing to automatically apply color correction to it.
The outline of the pig is soft and slightly blurred, and the wings are too hard. Use a soft brush to modify the wing mask to fix this.
Let’s add a pink hue to the wings to match the color of the pig. Apply a correction layer to the front wing Color Balance (Color balance), and transform it into a clipping mask (Ctrl + Alt + G). Add more red.
We need the color correction to act only on the dark areas, without affecting the light. And with the help of Photoshop, we can easily do it! Click the right mouse button on the adjustment layer and select Blending Options (Overlay options). Go down to the parameter Blend If (Overlap if) and move the lower white slider to the left.
To soften the effect, hold down the Alt key and drag the white slider to divide it into two halves.
You can also use a mask to correct the effect of the adjustment layer.
If you want to know more about this tool, we recommend to look this lesson.
The wing is still too dark, so we will use a correction layer. Brightness/ Contrast (Brightness / Contrast). And this time you can use the tool. Blend If (Overlay, if) to correct the effect effect.
The junction of the wing and body still does not look very convincing. Therefore, select the area on the body of the pig, copy it and paste it on the new layer above all previous layers. Move the copied fragment to the junction with the wing.
We deform the copied part of the wing shape with the help of free transformation (Ctrl + T).
Add a mask to the fragment and edit it so that the wing naturally goes into the body.
The result looks a bit unrealistic. Let’s add wool at the junction. Click the right mouse button on the layer with the pig and select Duplicate Layer (Duplicate layer). Move the copy to the top and add a mask to it. Tool Paint Bucket Tool (G) (Fill) fill the mask with black color (so that it is completely transparent). Use a white brush with a mask to add wool at the junction of the wing with the body.
Go to Blending Options (Overlay parameters) and this time we are working with the upper slider Blend If (Overlay if). If you drag the black slider, the dark areas will become more transparent and only the blond hair will remain.
Now we can modify the wing without loss of detail.
Let’s apply another interesting effect to further stylize the wings of a pig. Take a soft brush (B) and go to the quick mask mode (Q). Paint over the top of the rear wing.
Exit the quick mask mode (Q); the result will be a selection. Move on Select – Inverse (Selection – Invert) and press Ctrl + H to temporarily hide the selection. Then apply Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur) to blur the part of the wing that is distant from the viewer and create a defocus effect.
We do the same with the second wing, but this time we blur only the contour.
If necessary, we make minor edits and save the work:
Do not save the result in high resolution (Alt + Ctrl + I) so that the difference between the stock images that we used is not too noticeable.
To make the work look more consistent, apply noise Filter – Noise (Filter – Noise).
Also, to give the collage integrity apply Filter – Sharpen (Filter – Sharpness) (be careful with this filter, since the result can be completely opposite).
Great job! Now, with the help of our wings, the little piglet can fly.