Girl with a burning candle in their hands

In this tutorial, I will show you how to create a realistic emotional scene in Photoshoph.
To create such works, in my opinion, is not very difficult. The main thing to think creatively. Probably the most difficult part in such works is the selection of suitable images.

Final result:

We will need materials:

Step 1. We will start with the “Window” image. Open it in Photoshop. Make 2 clicks on the layer and name it “Window”. Tool Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) (Polygonal Lasso) select all the panes and delete them by clicking on Delete.

Step 2. I did not quite like how this window is located in perspective. Let’s change this a little bit.
Go to menu Filter> Distort> LensCorrection (Filter – Distortion – Distortion Correction) and set the following settings:
Vertical Perspective (Vertical Perspective) = +14,
Horizontal Perspective (Horizontal Perspective) = -14
Scale (Size) = 110%

Step 3. Open the “Castle” image and drag it onto our canvas. Name the layer “Background” and place it below the “Window” layer. Click Ctrl + T in order to transform the image and zoom out to 35%. Position the lock as shown in the example below:

Step 4. Create a new adjustment layer above the “Background” layer. You can do this through the menu. Layer> New Adjustment Layer> Gradient Map (Layer – New Adjustment Layer – Gradient Map) or simply click on the black and white icon in the layers palette and select Gradient map (Gradient map)
Use the white-blue gradient shown in the image below. (To change the colors of the gradient, click on the gradient pattern itself and in the settings window, click on the markers below the gradient and change their color). Change BlendingMode (Blend Mode) layer on Multiply (Multiply), and Fill (Fill) decrease to 70%

Step 5. Now we will make a correction for the whole scene, so that it seems that the event is happening at night. Above the “Window” layer, create another adjustment layer. Gradient map (Gradient map). Use the gradient colors shown in the image below. Change the blending mode of the layer to Multiply (Multiplication), and Fill (fill) decrease to 70%. I called this layer “Night”

Step 6. Open the “Girl” image. Any of the selection tools highlight the girl. The right side can be allocated not very diligently, because it will be blacked out afterwards. Drag the girl onto our canvas. Reduce size to 45%. Name the layer “Candle girl” and position it above all other layers.

Step 7. In this step, we will add the shadow of the girl on the floor and begin to change color. Create a new layer under the “Candle girl” layer and name it “Girl shadow”. Take the tool Brush (Brush) (B) with parameters:
Diameter (Diameter) = 110 px
Hardness = 15%
Color = Black
Swipe the floor a few times to get the shadow, as shown below:

Now we need to light up the girl’s face. I will show you one trick that will speed up this work.
Duplicate the “Candle girl” layer with Ctrl + J. Layer the name “Light”. Convert this layer to a clipping mask: hold down the Alt key and click between the “Light” and “Candle girl.” Layers. Fill decrease to 0%. Then add effect InnerShadow (Inner shadow) with the parameters shown below in the picture.
After creating the effect, add a mask by clicking on the mask icon on the layers palette. And with a black tassel, hide the shadow on the right side of the image, on the bottom and on the fabric.

(Vivid Light – Bright Light).

Step 8. While the girl is not quite combined with the surrounding background. Now we will make every effort to make the image look realistic. At this stage, we will work only with clipping masks so that the color correction acts only on the layer with the girl (Creating a clipping mask is described in the previous step).
Create a new layer above the “Light” layer. Use the tool Gradient tool (G) (Gradient) to create a gradient.
Left marker color: # d2ba62
Left marker opacity: 100%
Right marker color: #ffffff
Right marker opacity: 100%
Gradient Type: Radial

Create a gradient as shown in the image below and change Blending mode (Blend Mode) layer on Soft light (Soft light).

Create another clipping mask as an adjustment layer. Gradient map (Gradient map). The color of the gradient is shown in the picture. Change BlendingMode (Blend Mode) layer on Multiply (Multiply), and Fill (Fill) decrease to 75%

Now let’s adjust the overall color tone of the girl. Create a clipping mask as an adjustment layer. ColorBalance (Color balance). Change the settings as shown in the image below:

I also added a mask to this layer and hid areas on my right arm, candle and legs.

Create another adjustment layer Levels (Levels) and make it a clipping mask. This layer will make the girl darker, as if she really is in a dark room:

Now the image looks good. But you need to add something else. I would like to hide the bright spot on the girl’s shoulder, as well as part of the left hand, to focus on the face.
I added another layer, made it a clipping mask and created a radial gradient on it. I stretched the gradient from the bottom right corner of the canvas to the face and changed the blending mode to SoftLight (Soft light).
I also created another layer, on which a soft brush darkened specific areas. Blend mode – Multiply (Multiplication).

Step 9. The candle seems somewhat lifeless. Let’s add a glow around it.
Create a new layer above all other layers and name it “Soft glow”.
Take the brush with the parameters:
Diameter (Diameter) = 300 px
Hardness = 0%
Color = # b8a76b
And click once to make the glow around the candle.
Change the blending mode of the layer to Linear dodge
(Linear Dodge)

We can make the shine even better by adding a filter. Create a black rectangle on the new layer. Name the layer “Glare”. Then apply Filter> Render> Lens Flare (Filter- Rendering – Blick). Choose the first option of a flare – 50-300 mm zoom. Change the blending mode of the layer to Screen (Lightening):

Step 10. To make the scene look even more realistic, you need to add light from the candle and to the window frame as well. Above the “Window” layer, create a new layer, and name it “Window Light”. Convert layer to clipping mask. On the layer, create a transparent radial gradient with color. # d8ac4f. Change the blending mode of the layer to ColorDodge
(Lightening basics)

Step 11. In this step, let’s add a reflection in the glass. In fact, it is done very simply. Duplicate the “Candle girl” layer. Flip it horizontally and change the Opacity of the layer to 25%. Name the layer “Girlreflections” and place it above the “Background” layer:

Step 12. We can add vignettes to draw attention to the center of the image. Create a new layer on top of all layers on the palette. Choose a tool Rectangular marquee tool (M) (Rectangular area). Change the Feather parameter in the top bar to 150 px. This tool select the entire canvas. You will see rounded corners due to the set feathering. Invert the selection by clicking Ctrl + Shift + I. Fill the selected area by selecting the menu Edit – Fill (Editing – Fill). In the Use list, select the color Black.
Change the blending mode of the layer to soft light

At the very end, I merged all the layers into one separate layer by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Alt + E. And applied the filter Filter> Render> LightingEffects (Filter-Rendering – Lighting Effect) with settings as shown below:

Final result:

Author: Andrei Oprinca

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