Turn the portrait into a collage in Photoshop

In this lesson you will learn how to turn a portrait into a collage of vertical panels. When creating this tutorial, I used the Photoshop CS5 version, but you can use any of the versions.

Final image:

Lesson resources:

Step 1

Open the photo in Photoshop and click on the icon for adding adjustment layers at the bottom of the Layers palette:

Select adjustment layer Colour (Solid color):

In the color selection window that opens, select the white color. Click in the upper left corner of the color palette to select the pure white color (#ffffff):

Click OK to close the color picker. The document will be filled with white.

In the palette Layers added adjustment layer (Color Fill 1) located above the photo layer:

Click on the background layer to make it active:

Now copy the active background layer. (Layer – New – Copy to New Layer /Layer> New> Layer via Copy) (Ctrl + J).

A duplicate of the background layer will be located above the background layer:

You need to move a copy of the background layer and place it above the adjustment layer. To do this quickly, hold down the Ctrl key and click the closing bracket (]) button.

Choose a tool Rectangle (Rectangle Tool).

After the tool is selected Rectangle (Rectangle Tool), click on the shape layer icon in the top of the screen:

Draw a vertical bar. We will add panels from left to right, and draw the first panel on the left side of the face.

Add more visual effect by turning the panel (Ctrl + T). Do not turn the panel much – we need only a slight turn. After turning, press Enter to apply the transform.

In the palette Layer layer with shape (Shape 1) is above the copy of the background layer:

Change the order of the layers: place the layer with the panel shape under the duplicate background layer. Now the order of the layers is this: a copy of the background layer, a layer with a panel shape, an adjustment layer.

Click on the duplicate background layer to make it active:

Apply a clipping mask to the duplicate background layer. (Layer – create clipping mask / Layer> Create Clipping Mask).

After adding a clipping mask, a duplicate of the layer will be placed in the container of the vertical panel shape.

In the Layers palette, you can see that near the copy of the background layer, to which the clipping mask is added, there is a black arrow pointing down towards the underlying layer. This suggests that the overlying layer (layer with clipping mask) is placed in the container of the underlying layer.

Step 11

Click on the layer with the shape of the panel (Shape 1), to activate it.

Click on the Layer Styles icon at the bottom of the Layers palette:

From the style drop-down list, select Shadow (Drop Shadow):

In the opened layer style settings window set:
Opacity: 60%
Angle: 120 °
offset (Distance): 10
Size (Size): 10

After adding a shadow, the panel looks like this:

Click the tab Stroke (Stroke):

Click on the color palette (Color) to select a stroke color:

Choose white color:

Set a stroke size (Size) of 2 pixels (if you are working with a larger image, select a stroke size larger than two pixels). Position the stroke set Inside.

Click OK to close the style window. After applying the layer styles, the panel will look like this:

Make active the layer with the shape of the panel and hold down the Shift key, click on the copy of the background layer – now both of these layers are highlighted.

Place selected layers in a group (Layer – New – Group of layers / Layer> New> Group from Layers).

Name the group “Panel “.

Both layers that were selected are now placed in the group.

Click on the layer with the group, hold down the left mouse button and drag it to the icon in the form of a sheet of paper to duplicate (Ctrl + J).

Group copy (Panel copy) will be located above the original group.

Place the duplicate group under the original group (Ctrl + [).

Step 17

Open a duplicate group (click on the little black arrow). Inside the group are two layers.

Step 18

Inside the group click on the layer “Shape 1 “.

Rotate the group with the second panel (Ctrl + T).

Try placing the second panel above or below the previous one to get an interesting effect.

You need to make a few more copies of the group with a vertical panel. Close the group by clicking on the small triangular arrow:

Make a copy of the group by dragging it onto the icon in the form of a sheet of paper at the bottom of the Layers palette (Ctrl + J):

A duplicate will appear directly above the group that we copied. As group duplicates are created, they will be named Panel copy 3, Panel copy 4, and so on.

Place a duplicate group under all other groups (Ctrl + [).

Open the created duplicate group and click on the layer. Shape 1, to make it active.

Rotate the panel (Ctrl + T).

Close group:

Repeat these steps to add all the panels in the photo to reveal the whole face. If you think a white background is big, you can trim it with a tool. Frame ( Crop Tool).

Final image:

Lesson author: Steve Patterson

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