Turning summer into winter in Photoshop

In today’s lesson we will learn how to manage the seasons with a few Photoshop tricks, turning a bright sunny summer photo into a winter snow-covered landscape. We will apply corrections to remove the colors and give the photo a cool atmosphere, then use the smart selection technique, adding a snow cover. We even change the weather, creating a snowstorm, which completely changes the mood!

Download the archive with materials for the lesson

This trick works best with landscape photos in which there are many such detailed elements as grass and trees. There are three main steps: muting the colors to get rid of warm summer tones; adding snow / frost; realistic snow storm.

Step 1

Open the snapshot in Adobe Photoshop. I use a photo from Unsplash.com. Add adjustment layer Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) from the menu at the bottom of the panel Layers (Layers).

Instead of paragraph Everything (Master) in the drop-down menu, select each channel color alternately and reduce the saturation slider, watching the result to find the perfect value. Our goal is to remove warm colors, giving the image a faded winter look. Shades of red do not always require significant corrections, it all depends on the original image; Yellow and Green need to be reduced a little to remove the saturation of grass and leaves; muting blue and blue tones helps make the sky cloudy.

Step 2

Select a background layer, then go to the menu Select> Color Range (Select> Color Range). In field Choose (Select) set By samples (Sample Colors), then several times click on different parts of the picture, choosing different tones. Try to find a selection that provides a good contrast. This will help you a small preview window. To adjust the brightness of the selection, you can use the slider. Scatter (Fuzziness).

Without removing the selection, create a new layer, then fill it with a keyboard shortcut. Ctrl + Backspace. Cut down Opacity (opacity) up to 70-80%, adding a bit of detail to this frosty layer and letting the original image slightly shine through.

Sometimes this bright layer is applied where it is not needed. Add a layer mask and use a soft brush to erase it from areas in which it overexplots the exposure, for example, in the sky.

Drag the background layer to the new layer icon (or click Ctrl + J) to create a copy, then place it over all the others. Change the blending mode to Soft light (Soft Light), then reduce the opacity to 20-30%, returning the photo contrast.

Add adjustment layer Colour (Solid Color) and select cyan – # 7bbdf6. Change the layer’s overlay mode to Soft light (Soft Light), reduce the opacity to 10-20%. You will get a light cold shade.

Step 3

Create a new layer and fill it with white. Go to menu Filter> Noise> Add Noise (Filter> Noise> Add Noise). Enter these settings: 100% According to Gauss (Gaussian), Monochrome (Monochromatic).

Now open the menu Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur (Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur) and remove the sharpness of the noise by adding a blur with a radius of 1 px.

Change the layer’s overlay mode to Screen (Screen), making the black background transparent and allowing the white particles to appear.

Go to menu Image> Correction> Levels (Image> Adjustments> Levels) or click Ctrl + L, then drag the shadow slider to the right to reduce the white noise and give it the appearance of falling snow.

Create another layer and follow the previous steps – fill it with white color, add 1 pixel blur with noise, then add filter as well Motion blur (Motion Blur) 10 pixels with a small diagonal angle.

Take advantage of the levels, reducing the thickness of the snow, then click Ctrl + T, to Transform (Transform) second layer with snow. Hold Alt and Shift while editing the layer, stretching it exactly. When raster images are stretched, a blurry effect is usually obtained, but in this lesson we need it.

For the third layer of snow, do the same steps, just change the direction Motion blur (Motion Blur) and stretch it even more. These three snow layers will add depth due to large blurred snowflakes in the foreground and shallow ones in the background.

Now the photo has been completely transformed from a bright summer landscape into a cold, winter and snowy landscape using only a few corrections. Tricks with Hue / Saturation (Hue / Saturation) helped to replace warm colors with colder ones, while highlighting the color tone made it possible to add frost cover to grass and leaves. Then we emphasized the effect even more by adding realistic snow made entirely in Photoshop.

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