Making a collage with a scarecrow in Photoshop

In this lesson you will learn how to make a collage with the main character, the Man – Scarecrow. The idea came to the author after he saw this work.

The lesson is created to show you what the author uses methods and secrets to create collages, in particular, how to choose images, as well as how to use the methods of lighting and shading.

To complete this lesson you should know: how to use the tool Pen (Pen Tool) to extract objects from the background, how to use adjustment layers and how to work with blending modes. This lesson is of medium difficulty, so you can relax and enjoy the process.

Materials for the lesson:

The result of the lesson.

Step 1. Create a new document sized 1500? 1350 pixels. Now open the image with the corn field. You must remove the sky and leave only the plants and the ground. This can be a bit tricky for some users, because using the tool in this case Pen (Pen Tool) is not a good idea. The author used the technique of selection using channels. After you have separated the sky, move this layer a little lower to hide part of the earth. The author has deleted the sky because he is going to add a barn to the collage. If you cannot get rid of the sky, just skip to step 2.

Step 2. Open the image with the sky, move it to your main document and position this layer below the layer with the field. If you did not separate the sky from the corn field in the first step, then to add a new sky image to your work, you will have to use a soft brush to erase the extra areas on the layer mask.

Step 3. Now we put a dark blue tint on our work. To do this, create a new adjustment layer. Color balance (Color balance) and increase the values ​​of blue and blue. See the settings in the screenshot below.

(click on image to enlarge)

Step 4. Add a photo of the barn between the field layer and the sky layer. Use a layer mask to hide unwanted fragments. The author has reduced the size of the barn to 60%.

Step 5. Add a photo with a man to the main document. Separate it from the background with the tool. Pen (Pen Tool). Scale the person according to the size of your document and horizontally in the menu Editing – Transform – Flip Horizontally (Edit-Transform-Flip Horizontal). This is very important, because it will be beneficial for us to use the ready-made lighting on the man.

Step 6. The author added a piece of wood under the person’s feet, so that there was a feeling that he was hanging and not standing still. Use the wooden pole referenced at the beginning of the lesson.
The author used two adjustment layers in this step: Gradient map (Gradient Map) and Levels (Levels), in order to make the column more contrast and darker. To combine it with the ground, use the layer mask, and mask the extra part with a soft brush. Notice that the bright side of the column is just on the left side, it suits us, because there we will place our main light source.

Step 7. We need to create a falling shadow from a person. To do this, use the layer styles. Double-click on the layer with the person, which will bring up the layer style window and apply Shadow (Drop Shadow). In order to make style Shadow (Drop Shadow) separate layer, right-click in the layers palette being on this style. Then select the option Form a layer (Create Layer).

After creating the shadow, use the tool Transformation (Transform) by pressing the key combination Ctrl + T, and right click to select the option Distortion (Distort) and put a shadow on the ground, as shown in the image below.

Step 8. Open the image with the lamp and place it in your document. Using tool Pen (Pen Tool) create an outline and separate the flashlight from the background. Scale it, if necessary, and on the layer mask with a soft brush, mix the lamp with the corn field.

Step 9. Now we need to create the light coming from the lantern. Create a new layer above the lantern layer, activate the tool. Brush (Brush), select color # 575c5e and make a print. Then change the blending mode of the layer to Linear Dodge (add) (Linear Dodge Add).

On the new layer, create a black square and go to the menu Filter Rendering-Blick (Filter-Render-LensFlare). In the settings, select the type of lens 50-300 mm and use the brightness of 100%. After that change the blending mode for this layer to Screen (Screen). If the flash is too yellow or with some color shade, discolor it.

Step 10. Now we will make some general color settings. Create a new adjustment layer in the menu. Layers – New Adjustment Layer – Gradient Map (Layer- New Adjustment Layer- Gradient Map) and use a black and white gradient in the settings.
Install Opacity (Opacity) up to 25% and overlay mode let it remain Normal (Normal).

Create a second adjustment layer. Gradient map (Gradient Map), but this time adjust the black and blue gradient with these colors: from 0f161d before 699eed. Install Opacity (Opacity) up to 20% and overlay mode change to Overlap (Overlay).

Step 11. The author does not like the color shades on the man, so he decided to correct this particular layer. Below are screenshots with settings for adjustment layers. Remember, in order for these adjustment layers to affect only the layer with the man, you need to create a clipping mask for them. You can do this by right-clicking on the layer and select the option Create clipping mask (Create Clipping Mask).
Settings for adjustment layers Levels (Levels) and Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation).

(click on image to enlarge)

Settings for the adjustment layer Color balance (Color Balance).

(click on image to enlarge)

Now, after color correction, the Scarecrow Man looks much better in the overall color scheme.

Our lesson has come to an end, but you can still experiment and add something of your own. The author added a vignette effect and used the technique. Clarifier and Dimmer (Dodge / Burn) to highlight some details, obscuring or clarifying them.
The final image.

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