Fireball in Photoshop

In this tutorial, I will show you the process of creating an unusual photo-manipulation with a portrait surrounded by electrified balls. I will show some interesting techniques for creating our electrified balls using lightning textures and various Photoshop tools.

Also, we will use such techniques for creating manipulations as a clipping mask, layer mask, blending modes and adjustment layers.

This is a lesson of medium difficulty, so some steps may seem a bit confusing, but why not try it!

Download the archive with materials for the lesson

Final image:

So let’s get started!

Step 1

Create a new document sized 860 by 1130 pixels with a black background. Create a new layer, and using a soft, light gray brush, paint the highlight in the center of the background like this:

Load the model image into Photoshop, select the part with the head, drag it into our document, change its size and center it as shown below:

Step 2

Use soft Eraser (Eraser) to erase the edges of the face like this:

Add the following adjustment layers as a clipping mask to this model layer:

Black and white (Black and White):

Levels (Levels):

Layer mask on the adjustment layer Levels (above):

Curves (Curves):

And this is how the effect looks like at this stage:

Step 3

And now we will add some stiffness to the face using the texture of the stone wall. Use the tool Lasso ( Lasso) (L) to select part of the texture, as shown below:

Copy and paste the selected area into our document. Place the layer on top of the other layers and create a clipping mask for the model layer:

Change the texture mode of the stone wall to Vivid light (Bright light) with 70% opacity:

Apply layer mask To the texture layer like this:

And this is how the effect looks like at this stage:

Step 4

You can add some clouds around the model using the appropriate filter or brushes:

We can also deform the clouds in order to add motion to the image:

You can view the video below (starting at 5:15) to learn how to deform the clouds.

And now we can add a space background to our image. Load the image in Photoshop and with the tool Lasso with Feather (Feather) 40 pixels highlight the area as shown in the image:

Copy and paste the selected area into our document, place this layer under the model layer:

Duplicate the space layer once and apply the following correction settings.Levels (Levels) (Ctrl / Cmd + L):

Change the blending mode of the duplicated layer to Screen (Screen):

Reduce the size of this duplicated layer using the tool. Free transform (Free Transformation), and you get the following effect:

We need to repeat the process described above to add more space texture. The result we want to get something like this:

Step 5

And now we will start creating balls. Take a white hard brush and draw a point as shown below:

Then, use a soft eraser that is slightly larger in size to erase part of the circle like this:

Next, use white soft brush , to draw a point like in the image below, and you get this:

This is how we will make the balls! Repeat the process several times
To add more balls, approximately as in the image below:

Step 6

Add the effect of electrification around the balls. Load the lightning image into Photoshop, using a 30-pixel lasso, highlight a part of the image like this:

Copy and paste the selected area, and apply the following adjustment layers to it:

Change the layer’s overlay mode to Vivid light (Bright light):

Duplicate lightnings twice, move them to the balls, and you will get this effect:

Step 7

We are almost done! To add some color to our image, apply the following adjustment layers:
Selective color (Selective color correction)

Curves (Curves)

At your discretion, with the help of brushes, you can add various glitters and sparks:

In addition to this, I added a small shine effect, and this is what I got:

I hope the lesson was useful and came to your liking. Until next time and have a nice day!

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