Romantic collage in Photoshop

The theme of love inspired me to create this romantic collage.

In this lesson we will compose several stock images, we will use adjustment layers, as well as add light and shade, which will give a general atmosphere to the work.


Step 1

Let’s start the work! Open the “Storm” image. Rename your background layer to “Water and Sky” (Water and Sky). Add a layer mask to the background. Use the tool Gradient (Gradient Tool) and hide the bottom of the background layer.

Step 2

Download the “Shore” image and add it to your work on top of the “Water and Sky” layer.
As in the previous step, add a layer mask to the image with the shore. Using round black soft Brush (Brush Tool) either Gradient (Gradient Tool)), blend the two images, making the transition as smooth as possible. You can always adjust the layer mask and restore the image using a white brush.

When you are happy with the result, name the second layer “Beach”.

Step 3

Open the image “Sea” and transfer to our work. Cut out your favorite area and place it on the surface of the water, as shown in the figure.
Set the blending mode of this layer to Overlap (Overlay), and also slightly reduce the saturation of the image.

Activate the tool Eraser (Eraser Tool). Using a soft round brush, scroll around the edges of the Sea image to blend it with the rest of the background.

Translator’s Note: in order to reduce the saturation of the “Sea” image, standing on this layer, go to “Image – Correction – Hue \ Saturation”.

Add adjustment layer Color tone \ Saturation (Hue / Saturation) above all other layers and lower the saturation level.

Step 4

Download and add the image “Rock” to your work.
Scale this image, crop it and place as shown in the image below. And again lower the saturation for this layer.

Add a Inner shadow (Inner Shadow) and Gradient overlay (Gradient Overlay) for the “Rock” layer. When selecting settings, be guided by the general direction of the light.

Translator’s Note: To go to the layer styles, double-click on the “Rock” layer.

Add another adjustment layer, on top of all the others – Brightness \ Contrast (Brightness / Contrast).

Step 5

Open the “Girl” image in Photoshop. Separate the heroine from the background in any way you like. For example, you can use the tool Pen (Pen Tool) or Lasso (Lasso Tool). Move the character into your work and scale it.

Add two adjustment layers to the girl layer – Color tone \ Saturation (Hue / Saturation) and Brightness \ Contrast (Brightness / Contrast).

Create a new layer under the “Girl” layer. Activate the tool Brush(Brush Tool). Choose from the set a round soft brush in black. Draw a shadow as shown in the example.

Translator’s Note: when you draw a shadow, change the blending mode of the layer to “Multiply” and lower the fill to 80% – 65% – this will give it realism. Or you can experiment with the blend mode and fill this layer.

Step 6

As you noticed, around the girl’s hair there are remnants of the image from the previous background, now we will fix it.

It is usually very difficult to separate the hair from the background and the cut character doesn’t look very attractive. There are many methods that can be corrected, for example: use the image of the finished strands of hair or just to finish them.

I prefer the first method, which is much simpler, especially if you don’t draw very well. For hair, I will use the material “Strands”.

Use the tool Eraser (Eraser Tool) to remove hair on the original image with the character.

Open the Strand PSD file in the new document. Copy the curl you like and paste it into your collage.

Change the shape and size of the strands so that it looks harmoniously in the hair. Duplicate the curl layer several times. Then, using the tools of deformation and scaling (Eraser (Eraser Tool), Deformation (Warp Tool) and others.) Rotate, remove, transform hair – to create a good volume and beautiful shape. You should have a similar result:

Step 7

Now you need to do the hair color. Combine all the layers with curls and add such adjustment layers (as clipping mask for the combined hair layer):

Use tools Clarifier (Dodge Tool) and Dimmer (Burn Tool) to add shadows and highlights in some areas of the new hairstyle.

This manipulation is best carried out on a new layer using a soft round brush. Blend mode (blend mode) for the layer with lightening and dimming choose Overlap (Overlay). Experiment with the settings. Your image should look like this:

Step 8

Standing on the top layer, press the key combination Shift + Ctrl + Alt + E – This allows you to quickly create a combined copy of all previous layers.
Next, go to Filter – Other – Color Contrast (Filter – Other – High Pass). Set the value to 1pix. Set the blending mode of this layer to Overlap (Overlay). So we added sharpness to the image.

Step 9

Add the “Heart” image to your work. Scale it. Duplicate several times and place the gold jewelry on the girl’s dress. Finish the wire on which the hearts are fastened.

Activate the tool Dimmer (Burn Tool), and process the desired areas of hearts. Combine small hearts in one layer, and leave a large heart on a separate layer. Now add effect Shadow (Drop Shadow) to layers with decorations.

Step 10

Open the Pearls image. Using the tool Oval area (Ellipse Tool) separate one of the pearls and copy it into your collage. Using the tool Stamp (Clone Stamp Tool) finish the pearls throughout the dress.

Double click on the pearls layer and go to Layer style (layer style). Add these settings:

In the same way, I added some pearls in the girl’s hair, as in the picture. In addition, I made my own brush from a copied pearl and with the help of it I also decorated the dress.

Step 11

Press the key combination Shift + Ctrl + Alt + E – we got another copy of all the layers. Next, go to Filter – Rendering – Blick (Filter – Render – Lens Flare). Using the preview screen, place the highlights where you want.

Step 12

Create a new layer at the very top of the layers palette. Download and install the Rays brushes. Set the foreground color to white. Now draw the sun rays on a new layer. Remember to adjust the opacity and brush size. To change the angle of incidence of the rays (turn the brush), use the brush settings panel and simply change the angle in the Imprint Shape tab.

Place the sunbeams on two layers and set the blend mode of each layer to Overlap (Overlay).

Step 13

The work is almost over. It remains to add the final touches.
For this we will use three adjustment layers: Gradient (Gradient Fill), Photo filter (Photo Filter), Brightness \ Contrast (Brightness / Contrast).

The first two layers are used to add color tones to the image, you can use your own settings or take one like mine (see the pictures below).

Colors applied to the Gradient Fill adjustment layer: e16500 #, # 6b6b6b and # 2e6278:

For Photo filter (Photo Filter) I chose color #f28517:

Using an adjustment layer Brightness \ Contrast (Brightness / Contrast) you can adjust its effect using a layer mask:

Now we have the final result! I hope my lesson inspired you!

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