The keeper of autumn

In this lesson you will learn how to combine different images, as well as use Photoshop filters. Learn how to work with colors, applying adjustment layers, coloring, texturing, learn how to work with light effects and much more.

Final image

Source materials:

  1. model
  2. face
  3. rocks
  4. forest
  5. Castle
  6. fox
  7. sky
  8. red fox (the author used the paid source)
  9. elf ear
  10. foliage
  11. golden texture
  12. Explosian gradient

Archive with materials you can download HERE.

Create a new document (Ctrl + N) with dimensions of 1536×2048 pixels Resolution (Resolution) 72dpi and RGB 8bits, background content Transparent (Transparent). This is the size of the stock image, which we take as the basis for the composition.

Copy and paste the image of the rocky sea coast to your canvas. For work, you need rocks in front and on the right, so remove the left side, the ocean and the sky.

Using Polygonal lasso (Rectangular Lasso) with Feather (Feather) 1px highlight the rocky shore. The contour is better when you move in small steps, and all the details are enlarged. When working with Polygonal lasso (Rectangular Lasso) zoom in to 200%.

Now place the model on the stage, since everything else in the landscape will be based on it. When working with a model, use masks, it will be easier to correct mistakes, work with hair and much more.

Next we need to fix the model’s face. To do this, use another stock image, as well as add an elf ear. Cut out the model’s face from another stock image and paste it into a working canvas. Via FreeTransformation (Free transformation) (Ctrl + T) adjust the size and align faces as accurately as possible. Then add a mask and using soft black Brush (Brush) remove all unnecessary.

Open the .psd file with the finished image of an elf ear. Using FreeTransformation (Free Transform) (Ctrl + T) reduce the ear in size and place it above the girl’s ear. For a soft transition, use a black mask and brush or tool. Eraser (Eraser) (E).

Please note that the image of the girl has a small flaw; it is a light streak that goes across the sleeve of the back and the hair of the girl. Fix it, create a new layer above the image with a girl (Ctrl + Shift + N) take the tool Stump (Stamp) (S) and close the light areas with a darker texture from other areas of the girl’s dress and hair.

The next layer we need to add is an image of a mountain forest slope. Place it behind the layers with rock and model. Resize and position the image accordingly. The image itself is very beautiful, but we will need to add the sky, so remove the top of the image with the tool Pen (Feather) (P) or Eraser (Eraser) (E).

Open the image with the sky and place it at the top of the canvas behind all layers, resizing accordingly.

Now open the lock image and remove it from the background. Place in a document on a separate layer as shown below, position the lock in front of the forest layer. To fit the castle in the landscape, reduce its size through the menu Edit> Free Transform (Edit> Free Transform).

Now the castle looks unnatural. Hide the lower part of the castle in the forest more often. First, add a layer mask to the castle. On the selected mask, take a soft and roundBrush (Brush) (B) black color 200px and slowly walk it around the base of the castle, allowing the forest to tread. If you make any mistakes, just change the brush to white to reveal the lock again. Avoid straight lines on the right side of the castle. It is better to remove the background with Polygonal lasso (Rectangular Lasso).

Open the foliage image and paste it into your working paper. the image with the leaves seems a bit square, take an eraser and erase the leaves in the upper right corner, giving the leaves a natural and stunning look.

Import the images of two foxes, remove the background from the images using Polygonal lasso (Rectangular Lasso) (although you can use any tool convenient for you). Do not worry about the loss of fur in the allocation, it will soon be fixed. Position one fox behind the model, and the second in front.

The figures do not have enough depth. To fix this, add shadows below them. The easiest way to do this is to create a new layer under the model layer and using soft black Brush ( Brush), walk along the bottom of the model’s skirt, where the fox sits. Notice that a shadow falls on the girl’s dress from the fox on the left.

When done, reduce Opacity (Opacity) layer to make it look like a shadow. If you want to make the area darker, just create another layer and, using the same brush, go over the area you want to make darker. Apply it to foxes, especially the one that sits on the model’s skirt. The closer to the model, the darker the shadow, the farther from it, the shade becomes lighter.

Now let’s start adding effects and colorizing the composition, but first go to the top-most layer in the layers palette and merge all visible layers into one new one through the menu Layer> Flatten Image (Flatten) or Ctrl + Shift + E.

This layer will have to be duplicated each time. So duplicate the image and go to the menu Filter> Noise> Reduce Noise (Filter> Noise> Reduce Noise). Install Strength (Intensity) 10 and SharpenDetails (Details sharpness) 100%. Set everything else to 0. The effect will be a little strong, so reduce Opacity (Opacity) layer up to 80%. Put everything in one layer.

Duplicate the layer and go to the menu. Filter> Stylize> Diffuse (Filter> Stylize> Diffusion) and set the mode Anisotropic (Anisotropic. Next, apply a blur through the menu Filter> Blur> Blur More (Filter> Blur> Blur +). Decrease Opacity (Opacity) layer up to 45%. Add a mask to the layer and Brush (Brush) (B) black color hide the effect of filters on the girl’s face and the eyes of foxes, since these areas should not be blurred. Put everything in one layer.

Duplicate the merged image. On duplicate go to menu Filter> Sharpen> Unsharp Mask (Filter> Sharpening> Contour Sharpness). Specify Amount (Effect) 100%, Radius (Radius) 1.8 px. You can change the settings to make your image more or less sharp depending on what you want to get. Put everything in one layer.

If you increase the model’s face a little, you will notice a slight noise. Using tool Blur Tool (Blur) with a soft round brush Opacity (Opacity) 20%, you can smooth the skin on the face. Try to follow the natural lines of the face and avoid the eyes and lips. If you find that the ear lines are too sharp, you can also smooth them with Blur Tool (Blur). Before we play with staining, reduce the image size to 900x1172px.

The first thing we do is add Selective color (Selective color correction). Go to menu Layer> New Adjustment Layer> Selective Color (Layers> New Adjustment Layer> Selective Color Correction). I love it, when the colors are more saturated, experiment with colors.

Red: Reduce Blue, increase Black color
Yellow: Reduce Blue, increase Yellow and Black
Green: Increase Cyan and Black, Reduce Magenta
Blue: increase the Blue color
Blue: increase the color Blue
White: reduce black color

Next we use texture to provide some colors. Since this is an autumn scene, we have a relatively smooth texture with golden hues, it adds not only colors, but also gives interesting light and shadows to the picture. Set the blending mode for the texture. Soft light (Soft light) with Opacity (Opacity) 30% depending on the effect you want to get.

Correction GradientMap (Gradient Map) is also a great way to add color to a picture. To do this, create a new adjustment layer through the menu Layer> New Adjustment Layer> Selective Color (Layers> New Adjustment Layer> Gradient Map). Purpose of the first layer GradientMap (Gradient Map) – darken the image and add orange shades to make the atmosphere look like a sunset. As such a gradient, use the transition from black to color # d0751c.

The black color makes the image a little dull, therefore, to make it more interesting and to make the sunset more vivid, the acquired gradient “Explosion” is used. Change the blending mode for the adjustment layer to Soft light (Soft light) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 20%.

Finally add some shine to the picture with the adjustment layer. GradientMap (Gradient map) with the transition from color # e9b989 to color # 522222. Change the blending mode for the adjustment layer to Soft light (Soft light) and reduce Opacity (Opacity) up to 25%.

Now the colorization is finished, we can start working with small details. First, fix the model’s hair and fox fur. You could do this before adding effects.

If you have not already done so, flatten the image in one layer. The easiest way to fluff hair and fur is to use Smudge (Finger) and the shape of the brush Hair (Hair). Tool Smudge (Finger) you will find in the same set as the tool Blur Tool (Blur). If you are worried about errors, duplicate the layer and work with the duplicate. Specify mode Normal (Normal), Strength (Intensity) 70%. Use soft movements to draw wool to the foxes. Follow the natural shape of the fur to make it look more natural. You can do the same with the hair ends of the model.

Shadows and lighting are quite difficult to adjust. But below are good tips and recommendations. First way: Add a corrective layer Curves (Curves) through the menu Layer> New Adjustment Layer> curves (Layer> New Adjustment Layer> Curves). Darken the image by slightly moving the curve slightly down and to the right of the center.

Second method: Create a new layer and, using a soft round brush of black color, go through the places you want to darken. You can reduce Opacity (Opacity) layer up to 40%.

The third way: Using the tool Burn tool (Dimmer) soft round brush Range (Range): Midtones (Medium tone), specify Exposure (Exposure) 20%. You can use this to increase the shading on the model, dress, fox face, and to darken the back of the castle. You can use the tool to lighten areas. Dodge Tool (Clarifier).

To finish, use the adjustment layer again. Curves (Curves), this time brightening the image. When creating a correction layer, a layer mask is automatically created. Select the layer mask of this layer and use the tool Pain Bucket Tool (Fill) Fill the layer mask with black. Now, using a white soft round brush, paint over the areas that you want to lighten, such as the yellow sunset, the surrounding trees and the model’s face.


Author: magic-ban

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