Creating a magical photo manipulation in Photoshop – Part II

In this lesson we will continue to work on creating a magical photo manipulation!

Final image

Starting materials

To complete the lesson, you will need the following source materials. Please download them or select the appropriate replacement before proceeding. There is also a link to free stock images.


4. Creating fairies

Step 1

To create a fairy, open the image with the girl and place it on the working canvas, placing it horizontally.

Disguise the future fairy by the same methods as the girl on the bed, removing the hand in the background

To create a hand, open another image with a dancer and cut out only the raised hand.

Reduce the arm in size, position it as shown below.

Now it’s time to work with the light. We must bear in mind that he falls on his hand. Darken a little both hands and the fairy itself with Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation), lowering Lightness (Brightness) to -15

Use also Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) to change the color of the clothing of the future fairy. Tick ​​on Colorize (Toning) and then set the value Saturation (Saturation) 30 and mask only the dress.

Using layer correction Curves (Curves) add contrast to the girl’s leg.

Now use Gradient map (Gradient map) for the girl’s hand to even the skin color with the rest of the body and apply the same correction. Curves (Curves), and that on the girl’s leg.

Step 2

To create wings, use the fairy image.

Try to create organic and smooth shapes.

Duplicate image with wings, set blending mode Color burn (Darken the base), then distort the image to make the movement smoother, and then use the mask to remove the extra parts.

Duplicate the layers you just created, set Opacity (Opacity) 65% and rotate the image to create the tips of the wings, then again, mask the extra parts.

Make a copy of these two layers, change the blending mode to Lighten (Lightening) and erase some parts to show only the light.

Then open the image with light effects and deform it to create a light trace.

To make the light trace harmonize with the image, apply an adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) to change its color from blue to pink. Change the blending mode to Screen (Screen). Then disguise the trace so that it gradually disappears.

Duplicate this layer and apply it to another part of the image to create a light trace below what we previously created. Change the blending mode to Overlay (Overlap) with Opacity (Opacity) 65%.

Add shine to the final touches. Open the image with the flashes and cut them into separate layers.

Then duplicate and make them of different sizes to create a small constellation. Set the blending mode Screen (Screen). Your stars should look like the image below.

After that, place them in different places around the fairies.

Now add two big stars between the girl and the fairy.

Finally apply the adjustment layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) to add pink hues to big stars. Tick ​​on Colorize (Toning) and then set the value Saturation (Saturation) 100, Lightness (Brightness) -5. Remember to place the adjustment layer in the clipping mask.

5. Setting and mood

At the end of the lesson we will create a mood for the whole environment, including changing colors, brightness, contrast and everything related to the final image and mood.

Step 1

Start with image bleaching using settings Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation), set Saturation (Saturation) -40.

To add more contrast to the image, create an adjustment layer. Black White (Black and white) and set the blending mode to Soft light (Soft light) with Opacity (Opacity) 60%. Then create an adjustment layer. Brightness / Contrast (Brightness / Contrast), in the settings set Brightness (Brightness) 5, Contrast (Contrast) 10.

At this point, the image should look like this.

Step 2

Now add some colors to the image. Create an adjustment layer Gradient map (Gradient Map), set the colors according to the following image.

Use the color codes below and set the blending mode to Soft light (Soft light) with Opacity (Opacity) 60%.

This correction will give the image a warm tint.

Now add cool tones to the shadow. Create an adjustment layer Color balance (Color balance) with the settings shown below

Now mask this layer, leaving only the shadows. You can go to Channel (Channels) while holding the key Ctrl blue channel icon to make a selection. Install Blur (Blur) around 10, the masked image should look like the image below.

Then use the same mask and create an adjustment layer. Photo filter (Photo Filter)

After this, add more to complete the lesson. Vibrance (Vibration) 10 and Saturation (Saturation) 5.

Comparing the images below, you can see the difference between them and at the same time understand what made the adjustments above.


In this tutorial, I showed you how to create an illustration using a combination of custom and stock images. You have already learned how to create realistic shadows for objects using corrective layers and masks, as well as how to get light effects and motion blur effects. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and you can use these methods to create your something magical.

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