Create in Photoshop a portrait of a warrior from the film “Black Panther”

I do not know about you, but for a long time I could not wait for the release of the new Marvel film “Black Panther”, which appeared at the box office this year!

To celebrate the release of the film, let’s learn how to create a dramatic portrait inspired by it. Learn how to recreate a portrait of a famous African warrior from a movie.

Note: The author used paid materials. In the archive you will find an alternative version of the images to perform the lesson.

Search for inspiration and stock images

For this manipulation, I was inspired by a series of movie posters that I found on Google, namely the style of the character M’Baku and his dramatic fur accessory. Knowing that I want to add fur, I collected some images representing this warrior of the future.

We will collect the whole image from scratch, so it’s a good idea to write down a couple of basic ideas when searching for a character’s style. Here are mine:

  • Choose a bright portrait with a heartfelt look.
  • Create a costume by mixing several native accessories and real armor.
  • Ensure that clothing images are at the same angle as the portrait.
  • Add cool, blue hues for dramatic effect.

Periodically return to your notes, so as not to deviate from the intended idea. You will see how important this is later!

And now let’s get started!

1. How to prepare a portrait of the Black Panther

Step 1

Let’s start by creating a new document sized 1396 by 2016 pixels. This is not the official size of the posters, but if you want, you can use them.

With the tool Magnetic lasso (Magnetic lasso) (L) separate the model from the background. Copy and paste it into a new document and adjust the size as shown below using the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T).

Step 2

Now add the sky to the background.

Copy and paste a photo of the sky on a new layer behind the model. Re-adjust the size with the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T) and position the photo at the top of the canvas.

Step 3

Blur the background to show the depth.

To do this, select the layer with the sky and click Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur (Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur).

Change the parameter Radius (Radius) by 10 pixels and click OK.

Here is what we have at the moment:

2. How to change the portrait style

Go to the most interesting part! Outfit To create a warrior’s robe, we will use a mixture of native accessories and real metal armor.

However, remember that this is a fictional character, and the result depends only on you!

Step 1

Let’s work from the general to the particular, starting with a neck accessory.

Copy and paste the Aztec ornament completely into the working document on top of the portrait layer. Add a layer mask and paint on it in black to remove the upper part of the neck. Do the same with your hands.

Continue to draw on the mask so that the accessory fits our character better. It should be great, given the fact that the person on the source image is also dressed in gray! Hooray!

Step 2

And now let’s add some fur!

  1. Select the fur area from the Armor and Fur photo using the Polygonal Lasso (Polygonal Lasso) tool (L).
  2. Copy and paste the fur into the working document, resizing it with the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T).
  3. Here is the result!

We can fluff the edges to make it look more like real fur using Liquify (Plastic).

Select the fur layer and click Filter> Liquify (Filter> Plastic). Then use the tool Forward warp (Deformation) (W) to stretch the hard edges of the fragment outward, so that it looks more like fur. Continue to work with the fur, striving for quality results.

If the edges are still too hard, use the tool. Eraser (Eraser) (E) to fluff them even more.

Here is the result at this stage:

Step 3

Let’s add more accessories! Using the same methods as before, separate the wooden necklace and the metal accessory from the background.

Copy and paste them onto new layers above the model layer, adjusting their size using the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T). You can also add layer masks to hide extra fragments.

Step 4

Go to the hand. To make a metal hand, select the part of chain mail from the image of Armor and Fur. Copy and paste the piece into the working paper, and then adjust the size by hand.

If necessary, duplicate the layer – the chain mail should be enough to completely close the hand. Combine layers with copies.

Step 5

We are almost done with the outfit!

The last details that we add to this are the shining metal spikes connected to the necklace. With the tool Polygonal lasso (Polygonal Lasso) (L) select the metal spike and separate it from the background.

Copy and paste the spike into the working paper on top of all other layers. Place it in the center of the wooden circle, and then adjust the size with the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T).

Smooth edges with a regular layer mask.

Continue adding spikes, duplicating (Control-J) the original layer. Place each new spike under the appropriate wooden circle. Point them out for a cool effect!

These last details complete this stage of work. Time to adjust the color and light!

It looks like the result at the moment.

3. How to adjust the light

We continue!

Now we have a bunch of fragments for which we need to pick up the lighting. Let’s do this and do it while working with flowers.

Step 1

Start with the background. Create a new adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) and trim it over the background layer with clouds.

Zoom the curve in the RGB channels and Blue (Blue) to make the sky look darker.

Step 2

Let us turn to the model. We will try to select the lighting that is appropriate for the clouds in the background, so we will need several adjustment layers.

Create a clipping mask for the model layer for the new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation).

Change the values ​​to the following:

  • Hue (Color tone): 0
  • Saturation (Saturation): -18
  • Lightness (Brightness): -22

Now create a new adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) and also cut it around the model layer.

Position the RGB channel curve in much the same way as in the image below to slightly lower the brightness of the model image.

Step 3

And now let’s deal with the lighting of the dress.

Let’s start with the neck accessory.

  1. Create a new layer and cut it over the accessory layer with a clipping mask. Using a soft round brush, paint in dark blue color # 0d1d22 under the necklace, depicting a shadow.
  2. Next, add a new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation). Change the values ​​to 0, -100 and -70, and the blending mode to Hard light (Hard light).

Step 4

We turn to the lighting of fur!

Create a new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and trim it over the fur layer using a clipping mask.

Change the parameter values ​​as follows:

  • Hue (Color tone): -18
  • Saturation (Saturation): -55
  • Lightness (Brightness): -36

Step 5

Continue the process – go to the metal and the details on the shoulder.

Create a new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and trim it over the layer with the accessory on the shoulder using a clipping mask. Lower Lightness (Brightness) to -38, so that the item fits the outfit.

Step 6

Since the coat seems to be suitable for lighting, we will not touch it. Only a wooden necklace remains.

  1. Create a new layer and cut it around the necklace layer using a clipping mask. Using a soft round brush, draw a black shadow over the necklace – this will be the shadow of the chin.
  2. Then create a new adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and also trim it over the necklace layer with a clipping mask. Change the parameter values ​​to -40, -68, and -67.

4. How to customize colors

Now that we’ve dealt with the light, let’s fix the colors!

To make the work style look like the one I saw on the original poster, for an optimal result I want to get a nice blue tone.

Step 1

To begin with, create a new layer and cut it over the layer with the metal part on the shoulder using a clipping mask. Using a soft round brush, paint in dark turquoise on metal # 122b2d. Then change the blending mode to Hue (Color tone) to repaint it. Smooth edges with a tool Eraser (Eraser) (E).

Step 2

Let’s create a single color scheme.

Select all the layers related to the model and its combination. Put them in a new group.

Create a new adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) and trim it around the group using a clipping mask. Change the position of the curves in the RGB channels, Blue (Blue) and Red (Red) as shown below to add a blue tint.

Step 3

Now create a new layer on top of all the others.

  1. Fill the layer with a light blue color # a5c7ff using the tool Paint bucket (Fill) (G) and erase it in places you don’t want to touch, such as your face and chest.
  2. Lower the opacity to 25% and then change the blending mode to Subtract (Subtraction).

Step 4

We continue to add adjustment layers.

Create a new adjustment layer. Color lookup (Search color) on top of everyone else. Change the 3D LUT file to filmstock_50.3dl, and then change the blending mode of the layer to Luminosity (Brightness).

Step 5

Since we use many adjustment layers, the lighting should be corrected again.

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

Use a soft round brush to draw a brown shadow # 2e2523 over the entire scene. Try at this step to paint over all the places that are too knocked out.

Step 6

Let’s make the character’s face brighter!

Create a new layer and using a soft round brush, paint #ffebdd with a light cream color over the face and body of the model.

Change the blending mode to Overlay (Overlap) and lower the opacity to 50%.

On another new layer, paint on it with a light brown # 9e7e57 on the face and arm using a stiff round brush. Then change the blending mode to Soft light (Soft light) and lower the opacity to 50%.

5. How to complete the manipulation

You almost did it!

To complete this manipulation, we will only need to add a couple more details and corrections.

Let’s start with the scars on the face.

Step 1

Scarification is common in West African cultures. Often these scars symbolize some important event in the life of a man or a woman.

To create a realistic scarification effect, draw one brown circle # 704d4b on the canvas. Then draw a light brown # c7836c highlight in its center. Duplicate (Control-J) this circle several times, creating two rows of scars that you can put directly on your face.

Step 2

Combine layers with scars and place them on the cheeks of the model. Warp scars with the command Free transform (Free Transform) (Control-T) to make it look natural.

Duplicate this layer and flip it by clicking Edit> Transform> Flip Horizontal (Edit> Transform> Flip Horizontally). Soften the effect with the tool Eraser (Eraser) (E)

Step 3

Let’s play some more with flowers.

Create a new adjustment layer. Color balance (Color balance).

Change parameter values ​​- for Shadows (Shadows): 0, 0, -12; for Midtones (Midtones): -18, +7, +13; for Highlights (Sveta): -3, -5, -38. Change the layer’s overlay mode to Lighter color (Lighter) and lower its opacity to 54%.

Next, add an adjustment layer. Levels (Levels).

Change the parameter values ​​for the RGB channel: 8, 1.00, 214; for the Blue channel: 0, 0.97, 195; for Red (Red) channel: 20, 1.24, 255. Change the layer blending mode to Overlay (Overlap) and lower its opacity to 20%.

This is the result. We have achieved a blue-green hue, similar to the shade on the original posters.

Step 4

Let’s increase the intensity! Add a new adjustment layer Color lookup (Search color).

Change the 3DLUT file to Beach Bypass.look, and then the blending mode of the layer to Luminosity (Brightness). Lower opacity to 30%.

Step 5

Now take the time to fix all the inaccurate places with a brush. Just draw over such places to make the lines clearer and neater. Most in this step need lines in the necklace.

Create a new layer with overlay mode. Overlay (Overlap) and draw bright yellow # d2d4d0 highlights in the sky and character. Add another layer with clear white highlights to show that the character is highlighted in the back.

Step 6

Let’s finish this manipulation!

Remove the clouds from the Clouds and Smoke image and place them in the lower right corner. Smooth edges with a layer mask or tool. Eraser (Eraser) (E).

Add another last adjustment layer. Curves (Curves) and keep adding white highlights where they are needed on the face and armor.

I also decided to draw some white dots in the air for atmospheric conditions.

Take a look at the final result below!

Done, great job!

If you reserve patience, then by all means learn to create amazing manipulations from scratch. Keep creating wonderful effects, inspired by your favorite movies!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! Share your work below.

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