photoshop creative

Create a sci-fi car in 6 steps

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
February 20, 2015

How to create a hovering, jet-propelled car in Photoshop

1. Collect resources

Stock images were downloaded from a number of different sites for this picture. It’s a good idea to find some good-quality fire and smoke textures for this picture. Use the Pen tool (P) to cut out the car from the picture.

2. Build up layers

Doors and a bumper were placed over the car for this composition. The Free Transform command, in the Edit menu, helped to resize and rotate elements into place. After resizing the second door, elements like reflections and stock images such as tires, an engine and smoke were all added here too.

3. Colour and light

Set the fire to Overlay blend mode. Add two layers beneath and use a soft brush to make the fire glow with yellow and red. A soft brush and the Motion Blur were used to create the orange glow on the ground. The Levels adjustment made the tires darker.

4. Blue flames

Blue fire was placed over the tires, with its blend mode set to Colour Dodge. The Pen tool was used to create a circular path using a round brush set to  blue, which was positioned over the blue fire.

5. Shading and blurring

On a new layer, use the Pen to make the shadow of the car. After filling the selection with black, a 20px Gaussian Blur filter was added to soften the shadow. The Motion Blur filter set to 150px was also applied. On the Background layer, the Tilt Shift filter helped blur the background.

6. Adjust and sharpen

The Photo Filter added a sepia tone to this picture. The Brightness/Contrast sliders were decreased and a red tint was applied using Curves. All these layers were merged and, on a copy of the image, we used the High Pass filter with a Radius of 5px, changing the blend mode to Overlay to sharpen.