Creating a night and mysterious forest in Photoshop

In this lesson you will learn how to transform an ordinary forest into a gloomy foggy and sinister scene. You will learn how to work with shadows, lighting, adjustment layers, layer masks and more.

Final image

  1. forest
  2. sky
  3. tombstone (there is no photo on the source website, an alternative is in the archive)
  4. bush 1
  5. bush 2
  6. crow
  7. model (on the source site is missing, you can find an alternative here)

Step 1

Create a new document through the menu. File> New (File> New) and use the settings shown in the image below.

Step 2

Now put on the working canvas image Forest through the menu File> Place (File> Post)

Step 3

Add a mask to this layer by clicking on the second icon at the bottom of the layers panel. Take the tool Gradient (Gradient) by pressing G. Specify a black and white gradient, go to the layer mask and drag it vertically from top to bottom. This is what the layer mask should look like.

Step 4

Now apply to the layer Forest adjustment layer Curves (Curves) with the settings listed below.

Take a soft round black Brush (Brush) by pressing the B key, then scroll through the mask of the adjustment layer Curves (Curves) to hide the selected effect.

Step 5

Now place the image Sky below layer Forest, as shown in the image below.

Step 6

Add a layer-fill color through the menu Layer> Fill Layer> Solid (Layer> Fill Layer> Color) # 030520.

Step 7

Lower Opacity (Opacity) of the fill layer up to 25%, and also traverse the black brush over the fill layer mask to hide the effect (see the lower right corner in the image below to see how I painted the mask).

Step 8

Apply adjustment layers Photo Filter (Photo Filter) and Gradient Map (Gradient map) to layer Sky, Also, go over the mask of both layers of the correction to hide the effect in certain places.

Here is what happened:

Step 9

Change the blending mode of the correction layer. Gradient Map (Gradient map) on Multiply (Multiplication) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 70%.

Step 10

Add adjustment layer Color Balance (Color balance) on top of all layers. Run a soft round brush over the mask of this layer to slightly reduce the effect. Use the settings shown below.

Step 11

Add adjustment layer Gradient Map (Gradient Map) and go over the mask of this layer to hide the gradient effect in some places. Use the settings shown below.

Step 12

Change the blending mode of the correction layer. Gradient Map (Gradient map) on Soft Light (Soft light) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 53%.

Step 13

Create a new layer by pressing Ctrl + Shift + N. Then take the tool Brush (Brush) with settings: color # 25344d, Opacity (Opacity) 30%, Flow (Push) 30%. Then paint over the layer as shown in the image below.

Step 14

Change the layer blending mode to Multiply (Multiplication) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 50%

Step 15

Create a new layer and name it. Light source. Take a soft round Brush (Brush) size 2000px, Opacity (Opacity) 100%, color # 286fbe. Double click on it in the center, thus drawing two huge spots. Reduce the brush size to 700px, change the color to # 65aeff, then draw a spot in the middle of the image again. The result is shown below.

Step 16

Add a mask to the layer Light source and go over it with a black brush to hide the excess. The result is shown below.

Step 17

Now change the blending mode to Linear dodge (Linear clarifier) ​​and Opacity (Opacity) up to 63%. The result should look like the image below.

Step 18

Separate the image of the grave from the background with any convenient selection tool for you, and then place it on the working canvas and position it as shown below.

Step 19

Apply the following Blending options (Overlay settings) to layer The grave. To apply them, click on the layer The grave right-click and select in the context menu Blending options (Overlay options).

Here is the result of applying the effect. Gradient overlay (Gradient overlay).

Step 20

Next, apply to the layer The grave following adjustment layers Curves (Curves) and Gradient Map (Gradient map) to fit the gravestone into the scene.

Then change the blending mode of the correction layer. Gradient Map (Gradient map) on Color (Chromaticity) with Opacity (Opacity) 71%.

Step 21

In this step, we will apply the tool Dodge Tool (Brightener) on the tombstone, creating a reflection of light. Before using it, create a new layer and go to Edit> Fill menu (Edit> Fill) and fill it with 50% gray, then change the blending mode to Overlay (Overlap)

Now take the tool Dodge Tool (Clarifier), by pressing the O key, set Exposure (Exposure) 12% range Midtones (Medium tone). Now lighten the part of the gravestone shown in the image below. The result can be seen below with the mode Overlay (Overlap) and Normal (Usual).

Step 22

Now place the image Bush 1 in the lower right corner, as shown in the figure below.

Step 23

Now go to menu Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur (Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur), set the blur radius to 3.9px.

Step 24

To make the hive fit the scene, apply an adjustment layer to it. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation)

Step 25

Now put an image on the stage. Shrub 2, as shown in the image below.

Add a mask to the layer with a bush and using a soft round black brush, hide the selected area as shown below.

Step 26

Apply to layer Shrub 2 filter Gaussian blur (Gaussian Blur) and adjustment layer Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) with the same settings as in 23-24 steps.

Step 27

Let’s create a light fog. To do this, create a new layer and fill it with black. Then change the foreground color to # 5b5a5a and the background color to # 000000. Now go to menu Filter> Render> Clouds (Filter> Rendering> Clouds). When done, your result should look like the image below. Name this layer Fog.

Change the blending mode for the fog layer to Screen (Screen) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 15%. Add a mask to the layer Fog, and paint it with a black brush as shown below to hide the fog effect.

Step 28

Select the model and place it on the working canvas. The white arrow in the image below indicates that I left some leaves on the original layer. Model, but don’t worry, we’ll fix it in the next couple of steps.

Step 29

Apply Blending Option (Parameters overlay) to the model.

Create a new layer below the layer. Model, and using a soft round brush with Opacity (Opacity) 30% and Flow (Press) 30% draw a shadow, as shown below.

Create a new layer again below the layer. Model, and draw some more shadows as shown in the image below.

Step 30

Reduce the brightness of the model by applying a correction layer. Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation). You probably noticed that the leaves that we left on the model are no longer visible and merge with the dress.

The result should look like the image below.

Step 31

We continue to integrate the model into the scene. Apply adjustment layers Exposure (Exposure) and Gradient map (Gradient Map)

Change the blending mode of the correction layer. Gradient map (Gradient Map) on Color (Chroma) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 50%.

Step 32

Apply the effect of lightening and darkening to the model. Create a new layer and fill it with 50% gray. Change the blending mode to Overlay (Overlap). Now take Dodge (Brightener) and Burn (Dimmer), set Exposure (Exposure) 12%, Range (Range): Midtones (Medium tone). Then begin to darken and brighten, as shown in the image below.

Step 33

In this step we will draw additional light on the model. To do this, create a new layer, take a brush with Opacity (Opacity) and Flow (Push) 30%, color # 173737 and draw light on the model as shown below.

Set the blending mode Color Dodge (Lightening basics)

Step 34

Draw a few more light rays with the same settings as in the previous steps, but with the color # 0a1826.

Then set the blending mode Color Dodge (Lightening basics) with Opacity (Opacity) 60%

Step 35

Separate the crow from the background and place it on the tombstone.

Step 36

Apply to the crow the following Blending Options (Overlay Settings)

Here is the result.

Step 37

Draw a shadow for the crow just as you did for the model:

Step 38

Then apply an adjustment layer. Gradient map (Gradient map) so that the crow matches the color of the scene.

Step 39

We finished our main image alignment, now it’s time for the final correction.

We will apply a series of adjustment layers to the entire scene. To start, add adjustment layers Photo filter (Photo Filter) and Gradient map (Gradient map), the values ​​can look at the image below. Change the blending mode of the correction layer. Gradient map (Gradient map) on Color Dodge (Brighten the base), then move the black soft round brush over the mask of this adjustment layer.

Your result should look like the image below.

Step 40

Then add an adjustment layer. Color Balance (Color balance), values ​​can be viewed below.

Result:

Step 41

Add two more adjustment layers. Color lookup (Color search) and Curves (Curves). Change the blending mode of the correction layer. Color lookup (Color search) on Soft Light (Soft light) c Opacity (Opacity) 30%

Result:

Step 42

In the final step, we will apply the scene lighting filter. First of all, create a new layer, then press Ctrl + Shift + Alt + E to merge everything into one layer. Now go to menu Filter> Render> Lighting Effect (Filter> Rendering> Lighting Effects), then set the center of the lighting as shown in the image below.

The values ​​of the light filter are shown below:

Congratulations! You are done!

Final image

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