photoshop creative
Jun
8

Use adjustments for creative edits

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
June 8, 2016

Create this animal race composition today

final

1. Create a blank file

Step1

Create a new document. Go to File>New (Cmd/Ctrl+N) and name your project Animal Race. Now set the Width to 460mm, Height to 190mm and Resolution to 300ppi. Confirm this by clicking OK.

2. Make the background

Step2

Go to File>Place and add a running track to the image. Resize to approximately 120% and hit Return/Enter. Now it is time to create a mask. Grab the Pen tool (P) and draw a path around the track. On the Option bar click Make: Selection, then click OK. Now go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal Selection.

3. Adjust the tones

Step3

To adjust the tones go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Levels. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Adjust the Input Levels to 20, 1.05 and 230. Now go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Hue/Saturation. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set the Saturation to +10.

4. Add textures

Step4

Go to File>Place and add a worn texture. Drag the top handles to place the texture over the track, then hit Return/Enter. Now change the blending mode for the layer to Multiply.

5. Create a mask

Step5

Visit Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal All. Grab a large, soft-tip brush (B) and hide the hard edges. Now create an adjustment layer. Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Levels. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Adjust the Input Levels to 0, 1.20 and 220.

6. Add a new image

Step6

Let’s add a new image to create a nice background. Add an image of some trees to the image and hit Return/Enter. Drag the layer and place it behind the Track layer.

7. Make adjustments

Step7

Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Hue/Saturation. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set the Saturation: -30 and Lightness: +10. Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Levels. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set the Inputs to 35, 1.70 and 240.

8. Complete the background

Step8

Finish off the background by adding a stand. Adjust the Levels. Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer> Levels. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set Input Levels to 10, 1.40 and 255. Add a layer mask and hide the hard edges to blend the images.

9. Place the elephant

Step9

Add the elephant on top of the layer stack and hit Return/Enter. Zoom in and grab the Pen tool (P). Draw a path around the elephant. On the Option bar click Make: Selection. Set Feather Radius to 1 pixels and click OK. Now go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal Selection.

10. Apply the layer mask

Step10

 

First go to Layer>Rasterize>Layer. Now duplicate the (Cmd/Ctrl+J), then go to Layer>Layer Mask>Apply. Hide the Elephant layer by clicking on the ‘eye’ icon in the Layers palette. In the next step we’ll create some distortions to add a sense of motion to the elephant.

11. Use the Puppet Warp tool

Step11

 

Now go to Edit>Puppet Warp. Add a few pins, the first one going next to the eye, the second going in the centre of the trunk, and the third going on the tip. Now drag down the pin located on the tip to straighten the trunk.

12. Make more distortions

Step12

Add more pins. Add three pins on the back leg, three on the front-right leg, one under the ear, and another on the front-left leg. Drag the pins, raising the legs to give the impression that the elephant is running. Now hit Return/Enter.

13. Add shadows

Step13

Go to Layer>Layer Style>Drop Shadow. Set Opacity: 40%, Angle: 90, Distance: 10, Spread: 1% and Size: 15, then hit OK. Now go to Layer>Layer Style>Create Layer. Click on the Elephant Copy’s drop shadow layer and hit Cmd/Ctrl+T. Hold Cmd/ Ctrl and drag the centre handle to create a nice perspective.

14. Adjust brightness and contrast

Step14

Let’s adjust the brightness and contrast. Click on the ‘Elephant copy layer’, then go to Layer>New Adjustment layer>Brightness/Contrast. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set the Brightness to 30 and the Contrast to -10.

15. Place the tag number

Step15

Go to File>Place ‘Tag number.png’. Resize it and hit Return/Enter. Hit Cmd/Ctrl+Opt/Alt+G to clip the layer. Now go to Edit>Transform>Warp. Drag the handles to re-shape the image. Go to Layer>Layer Style>Bevel and Emboss. Adjust the settings to create a subtle 3D effect.

16. Add some dust

Step16

Find a dust brush online. Create a new layer (Shift+Cmd/Ctrl+N) and name it Brushes. Grab the Brush tool (B). Hit F5 and select the brushes to add the dust. Pick a light or dark colour, similar to the track colour.

17. Place the zebra

Step17

Find a zebra image and add it to the project. Grab the Pen tool (P) and create a path around the zebra. Click Make: Selection. Set Feather Radius to 0.5 pixels and click OK. Now add the layer mask. Go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal Selection.

18. Correct the colour

Step18

Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Color Balance. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set Tone: Midtones, Cyan/Red: -10, Magenta/ Green: -10 and Yellow/Blue: +20. Now add the Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer. Clip the layers and set Brightness: 20 and Contrast: -50.

19. Add shadows

Step19

Repeat step 13 to create the shadow, but now set the layer’s Opacity to 30%. Add a layer mask (Layer>Layer Mask> Reveal All). Hide the zebra’s shadows over the elephant paws. Now add the tag number as you did in step 15 and the dust brushes as in step 16.

20. Place the other animals

Step20

Place the other animals using the steps you’ve just learned. Add shadows and masks, and make the adjustments. Each image is unique, so experiment with different settings until you’re happy with the results.

21. Sharpen the image

Step21

Click on the top layer of the layer stack, then hit Shift+Cmd/Ctrl+Opt/Alt+E to create a snapshot. Now duplicate the image and change the blend mode for the layer to Overlay. Go to Filter>Other>High Pass. Set the Radius to 5 pixels and click OK.

22. Merge the layers

Step22

Hold Shift and click over the Snapshot layer and the Snapshot copy. Now click Cmd/Ctrl+E to merge the layers. Name it Final. Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer> Vibrance. Check ‘Use previous layer to create clipping mask’ and hit OK. Set Vibrance: -30 and Saturation: +70.

23. Make final adjustments

Step23

Go to Layer>Smart Object>Convert to Smart Object. Head to Filter>Camera Raw filter. On the Basic panel, set Contrast: -20, Highlights: +35, Shadows: +25, Whites: +40 and Clarity: +5. Click on HSL/ Grayscale panel and adjust the Luminance. Set Orange: +70, Yellows: +35, Greens: +30 and Blues: -20, then click OK.

  • Wonder Tab

    very nice