Create a winter photo manipulation in Photoshop

In this tutorial you will learn how to create a lonely New Year tree in the winter wasteland using stock images and textures.

Materials for the lesson:

Step 1

Start by creating a new document. File – New (File – New) with the following parameters:

Preset: Custom
Width: 3000 pixels
Height: 3000 pixels
Resoluyion (Resolution): 300 pixels / inch
Color Mode (Color Mode): RGB, 8 bit
Background Contents (Background): Transparent (Transparent)

Step 2

Now we will create the sky. Open image Dry winter field. Activate Rectangular marquee tool (Rectangular selection) (M).

Create a sky selection.

Step 3

After that, activate Move Tool (Move) (V), grab the sky with the left mouse button and move it to the working document. We place as shown below:

Step 4

Rename the layer to “sky 1”. To do this, double-click with the left button on the layer name: “layer 1” (on the layers panel).

Step 5

Now activate the transformation (Cmd / Ctrl + T) and stretch the sky, as shown below:

Step 6

Next, add a second sky. Open the Storming sky, activate Rectangular marquee tool (Rectangular selection) (M) and create a selection:

Step 7

Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag the sky onto the working document right above the “sky 1” layer. To do this, on the layers palette, drag the new layer with the sky above the previous one. Call it “sky 2”. We place as shown below:

Activate the transformation (Cmd / Ctrl + T) and stretch the image:

Result:

Step 8

Now combine both images. To do this, change the blending mode of the layer “sky 2”.

From the drop-down menu, select the blending mode Overlay (Overlap), Opacity (Opacity) must be at 100%.

Result:

Step 9

Now the sky needs to be slightly darkened. Left-click on the “sky 2” layer, then press Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N to create a new layer just above the active one; In the dialog box that appears, enter the name “darken 1”.

Step 10

Now we will add a snow covered land. Open the image of the Winter Field. Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag it to the working document. Make sure that it is placed immediately above the “darken 1” layer. We place on the canvas, as shown below:

Call this layer “ground”. Activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and reduce the image as shown below:

Result:

Step 11

Blur the horizon to give depth. Activate Eraser tool (Eraser) (E) and enter the following parameters:

Brush Size: 100 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 100%
Flow (Pressure): 100%

We start working with an eraser in the direction of the red arrow in the screenshot:

Result:

Step 12

Lighten the horizon. Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) above the “ground” layer. Call it “brighten”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B). Make sure that the standard Photoshop brushes are active. They are shown in the screenshot below, if you have the same, then we continue:

Right-click on the working canvas to bring up the brush selection menu and click on the button with a small triangle:

Then in the context menu, select Reset brushes (Restore brushes).

After that we set up the brush:

Brush Size (Size): 700 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: ffffff

To change the brush color, click on the black square, as in the screenshot below, to open the color selection window.

In the window that appears, enter the color number: ffffff:

Now that we’ve set everything up, we draw a brush in the direction of the red arrow:

And we get the following result:

Step 13

Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) above “brighten”; call it “dusk”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and enter the following parameters:

Brush Size (Size): 900 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: fffed5

Having finished to customize, draw a brush in the direction of the arrow:

We get the result:

Step 14

Create another layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) above “dusk” and call it “darken 2”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and enter the following parameters:

Brush Size (Size): 1500 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: 000000

Brush the edges of the image:

Result:

Step 15

Again create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) and call it “darken 3”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and enter the following parameters:

Brush Size (Size): 1500 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: 000000

Brush in the direction of the red arrow:

Result:

Step 16

Finally, we lighten the central area. Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) above “darken 3”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and enter the following parameters:

Brush Size (Size): 2000 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: ffffff

Start drawing:

You should get this result:

Step 17

Now group all the layers created. Select them and press Cmd / Ctrl + G. Call the group “Background”.

Step 18

In this step we will create a Christmas tree. Open the stock image Frosted Christmas Tree PSD. Note that this is a PNG file with a transparent background. Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag our beauty onto the working paper. Make sure the tree layer is above the Background group. Place the Christmas tree in the center of the canvas.

Name the layer with the Christmas tree “Xmas tree”. Activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and reduce the tree, as shown below:

Result:

Step 19

Next, reduce the opacity of the “Xmas tree” layer to 90%.

Step 20

Activate Eraser tool (Eraser) (E) to erase some areas of the Christmas tree. Customize the eraser:

Brush Size (Size): 400 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 15%
Flow (Pressure): 100%

Result:

Step 21

Now add a garland. Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) and call it “yellow lights”. Place it above the “Xmas tree” layer. After that we activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and adjust its parameters:

Brush Size (Size): 30 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 100%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: fffdd1

Draw lights:

Step 22

Next, apply the layer style to the lights. To do this, click on the layer with the right mouse button and select Blending options (Overlay options).

Activate Outer glow (External glow):

Outer glow (External glow)

Blend mode (Blending Mode): Screen (Brightening)
Opacity: 75%
Noise: 0%
Color: ffffbe

Elements (Items)

Technique (Method): Softer (Soft)
Spread: 0%
Size: 90px

Step 23

After that, reduce the opacity of the “yellow lights” layer to 70%. We get the following result:

Step 24

Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N), which will be part of the Christmas decorations. Call the layer “red lights”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and customize it:

Brush Size: 30 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 100%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color classification: ff8787

And draw:

Next, click the right mouse button on the layer “red lights” and select Blending options (Overlay options). Activate Outer Glow (External glow):

Outer glow (External glow)

Blend mode (Blending Mode): Screen (Brightening)
Opacity: 75%
Noise: 0%
Color classification: ff8787

Elements (Items)

Technique (Method): Softer (Soft)
Spread: 0%
Size: 125px

Then change the blending mode and opacity of the “red lights” layer:

Blending options (Blend Mode): Overlay (Overlap)
Opacity: 70%

You should get this result:

Step 26

What a Christmas tree without a star? Create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) and call it “star”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and customize it:

Brush Size: 125 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 100%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: fffedf

Result:

Step 26

Now add a glow to the tree. To begin, create a new layer (Ctrl / Cmd + Shift + N) and call it “glow”. Activate Brush tool (Brush) (B) and customize it:

Brush Size: 400 pixels
Hardness: 0%
Opacity: 100%
Flow (Pressure): 100%
Color: fffeeb

Your result should be something like this:

When finished, group all the layers that belong to the tree (Ctrl / Cmd + G). Call the group “Xmas tree”.

Step 27

Now we add a single person who is moving to the tree. Open Winter walking. Activate Polygonal Lasso Tool (Rectangular lasso) (L).

Create a selection around the third guy on the right. Tool Polygonal Lasso Tool (Rectangular lasso) (L), as the name implies, creates a selection in the form of straight lines.

Step 28

Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag the person onto the working document. Place the layer above the “Xmas tree” group. Call it “man” and place it as shown below:

Step 29

Activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and reduce the person, as shown below:

Step 30

Now adjust the brightness and contrast of the person. To do this, activate the “man” layer and go to Image – Adjustments – Brightness / Contrast (Image – Correction – Brightness / Contrast):

Result:

Step 31

Reduce the opacity of the “man” layer to 40%:

Result:

Step 32

Now create the shadow of a person. Duplicate the “man” layer (Ctrl / Cmd + J). After that, activate the duplicate and go to the transformation mode (Ctrl / Cmd + T). Click the right mouse button on the working canvas and in the context menu that appears, select Flip vertical (Flip Vertically).

Omit the inverted copy below the original, using Move Tool (Move) (V):

Step 33

Activate the “man” layer and go to Image – Adjustments – Brightness / Contrast (Image – Correction – Brightness / Contrast):

Brightness: -100
Contrast: -100
Activate Use Legacy

Result:

Step 34

Now blur the shadow. To do this, apply a filter to the shadow layer. Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur (Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur). Set the Radius to 2 pixels and click OK.

Result:

Step 35

Correct the shape of the shadow in accordance with the light source. Activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and right-click on the workspace. In the context menu, select Distort (Distortion).

Move the lower corner nodules to the left.

Result:

Step 36

Change the opacity of the shadow by 15%.

Result:

Step 37

Select all the layers that belong to the person, and group them (Ctrl / Cmd + G). Call the group “Man”. In this step, we will learn how to create a vignette that will help focus attention on the central elements of the composition. First, create a new document. File – New (File – New) with the same settings as for the main document (Step 1). Note that the background layer must be WHITE. Then go Filter – Distort – Lens Correction (Filter – Distortion – Correction of distortion). Find the tab Vignette (Vignette) and use the following settings:

Amount: – 100
Midpoint: +50

Step 38

When finished, activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and move the vignette to the main document. It should be above all layers. Change the vignette blend mode to Multiply (Multiplication) and decrease Opacity (Opacity) up to 40%.
To change the blending mode, simply click on the drop-down menu with the word Normal (Normal) at the top of the layers panel. Opacity is next.

A normal blend vignette looks like this:

After applying the blend mode Multiply (Multiplication):

To enhance the Christmas atmosphere, add a snow texture. Open the stock image Snowing texture. Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag it to the working document. We place on the canvas, as shown below:

Next, activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and adjust the size of the texture.

Result:

Step 40

Change the layer blending mode with snow to Soft light (Soft light) and reduce the Opacity to 70%.

Result:

Step 41

Add another texture. Select the texture of glitter bokeh1_8 from the set of Glitter Bokeh Texture Pack. Activate Move Tool (Move) (V) and drag the texture onto the working document. We place as shown below:

Activate the transformation (Ctrl / Cmd + T) and adjust the size:

Result:

Step 42

Change texture blending mode to Soft light (Soft light) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 40%.

Result:

Select all the texture layers and group them (Ctrl / Cmd + G). Call the group “Snow textures”.

Step 43

Now let’s enhance the colors of the image. Starting with adjustment layerSolid color (Colour). To create it, click on the button. Create new fill / adjustment layer (Create a new fill / adjustment layer) at the bottom of the layers panel.

In the context menu, select Solid color (Colour):

Set color # 000627 for adjustment layer.

Step 44

Make sure the adjustment layer is Solid color (Color) is above the “Snow texture” group. Change its blend mode to Exclusion (Exception) and decrease Opacity (Opacity) up to 60%.

Step 45

Next, create a correction layer. Color balance (Color balance). You will find it in the same menu. Create new fill / adjustment layer (Create a new fill / adjustment layer).

In the window that opens, enter the following parameters:

Color Levels (Color Level): -20, +5, 10
Tone Balance: Tone Balance: Midtones
Activate Preserve Luminosity (Save Glow)

Step 46

Create another adjustment layer Solid color (Colour).

Step 47

Change its blend mode to Linear dodge (Add) (Linear clarifier (Add)) and decrease Opacity (Opacity) up to 20%.

Step 48

Now create a correction layer. Gradient map (Gradient map).

In the gradient settings window, select the gradient shown below:

Step 49

The image became black and white, so we change the blending mode of the adjustment layer. Gradient map (Gradient map) on Luminosity (Glow) and decrease Opacity (Opacity) up to 60%.

Result:

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