photoshop creative

Create an out of bounds effect in 8 steps

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
October 16, 2014

Before trying our incredible out of bounds tutorial in Issue 119, why not master the technique in Elements first?

1. Polygonal Lasso tool

Start off by finding a shot similar to this one, of a tablet, phone or laptop on a table. Grab the Polygonal Lasso tool (L) and tick Anti-aliasing in the options panel and set Feather to 0px. Zoom into the image and click in each corner of the digital frame using the Polygonal Lasso to create your selection.

2. New layer mask

Click on the Create a New Layer button in the Layers panel, then on the Add Layer Mask button. This applies the selection as a black and white mask on the new layer. The selection area will disappear once you’ve done this, but will be stored as the layer mask.

3. Place image

Place an image into the picture that you’d like to be out of bounds. This has to be a picture with depth, and water can be great in this effect too; when you’ve found one, place it so it’s in line with the top of the digital frame image. Holding Shift, drag the bottom-right corner to enlarge it so it fits completely over the image. Press Enter to apply transformations.

4. Quickly select

Use the Quick Selection tool (A), set to Size: 40px and Auto-Enhance in the Options panel, to select in this case, the part of the groyne on the beach. Turn its layer on and off to make sure the selection covers the digital frame.

5. Combine masks

Click on the Add Layer Mask button to apply this small selection as a new mask to the seascape. Add the other mask (the layer below) to this by Cmd/Ctrl+clicking on its thumbnail to reactivate it, then pressing Cmd/Ctrl+Backspace. Your Foreground colour needs to be black for this to work.

6. Water spillage!

Go to Select>Deselect. Locate the Eraser tool (E) and set Size to 600px, Opacity to 100%, choose a soft tip, and then make your Foreground colour black. Paint over the mask of the seascape layer to reveal the sea spilling out onto the table.

7. Control Opacity

Lower the Opacity of the Eraser tool to 20% and gradually reveal the water over the table the further out it goes. Drag Layer 1 (between the Seascape and Digital Frame layers) onto the trash icon to remove it.

8. Desaturate

Click on the Background layer and add the Hue/Saturation adjustment (Layer>New Adjustment Layer). Reduce the Saturation to -100 to remove the colour from the Digital Frame image. You should be left with just the coloured groyne exiting the image.

Enjoyed this tutorial? Why not pick up the latest copy of Photoshop Creative, Issue 119, and explore how to create an Out of Bounds effect in Photoshop CC!