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Create a Futuristic Matte Painting Landscape

Create a Futuristic Matte Painting Landscape

Today’s design lesson will teach you how to create a futuristic matte painting landscape. You’ll be working with a range of photo manipulation techniques including image extraction, image blending, adjustment layer usage, creating light effects, digital painting, advanced masking, color correction and many more.

Let’s get started!

Final Image

As always, this is the final outcome we’ll be creating:

Step 1

Create a new file with a width of 2000px and a height of 1500 px at 72 dpi (Dots per Inch). Background Contents should be White.

Step 2

First off, let’s activate the Rectangular marquee tool and make two Strips and fill them with #000000 color. Set this as the permanent top layer.

Now, let’s open the mountain sunset in Photoshop. We will be using the mountains from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the mountain sunset and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Background”.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 3

Now create new color balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (background layer and color balance) to make a clipping mask.

When the color balance box opens, input the following:

Now create new color balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (background layer and color balance) to make a clipping mask.

When the color balance box opens, input the following:

Now create new Hue/saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (background layer and Hue/saturation) to make a clipping mask.

When the Hue/saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Exposure adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (background layer and Exposure) to make a mask.

When the Exposure box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 4

Open the ‘Sunset…’ stock in Photoshop. We will be using the Sky from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Sunset… and press M to activate Marquee tool and then make a selection around the sky and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “sky”.

The result should be similar to this:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette.

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings:

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 5

Now Create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Sky layer and Curves) to make a mask:

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now Create new Brightness/contrast adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Sky layer and Brightness/contrast) to make a mask:

When the Brightness/contrast box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 6

Now lets add some stars .

Create a new layer and name it “stars”

Fill it with black color (#000000).

Go to filter>Noise.

When the Add Noise box opens, input the following:

Now open Threshold .

Change the layer mode to “Screen”.

Step 7

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Now Create new Levels adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Stars layer and Levels) to make a mask.

When the Levels box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 8

Now, let’s open the Mars Valles Marineris in Photoshop. We will be using the sky from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Mars Valles Marineris and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Planet”.

The result should be similar to this:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 9

Now create a layer style which can be found by pressing on the Create layer style button shown on the layer window:

When the layer style box opens, input the following:

Cgange it’s layer mode to “overlay”

The result should be similar to this:

Step 10

Now, let’s open the Moon1 in Photoshop. We will be using the sky from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Moon1 and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Moon”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Moon1” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Layer mode:-Overlay

Opacity :- 70%

Now create a layer style which can be found by pressing on the Create layer style button shown on the layer window:

When the layer style box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 11

Now, let’s add light to our image.Make a new layer and name it “Lens flare” and fill it with black color (#000000).

Now go to Add Noise .

When the Add Noise box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this: .

Step 12

Now lets so some color corrections.

IMPORTANT: We’re going to apply a series of adjustment layers above all other layers. Even though we still have more aspects of our piece to work on, these adjustment layers should remain as the top layers for the rest of the tutorial.

Now create new Color balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Color balance box opens, input the following:.

Now Create new Hue/saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Hue/saturation box opens, input the following:

Now Create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now Create new Gradient map adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Gradient map box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 13

First off, let’s open Spring on the Plateaus 10 stock in Photoshop. We will be using the mountain from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Spring on the Plateaus 10 and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the mountain and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “mountain1″.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Mountain1” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain1 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain1 layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

Now create new Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain1 layer and Brightness/Contrast) to make a mask.

When the Brightness/Contrast box opens, input the following:

Now create new Hue/saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain1 layer and Hue/saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Exposure adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain1 layer and Exposure) to make a mask.

When the Exposure box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 14

First off, let’s open Glaciers in Vallée Blanche 5 stock in Photoshop. We will be using the Mountain from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Glaciers in Vallée Blanche 5 and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the Mountain and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Mountain2″.

The result should be similar to this:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain2 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain2 layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

Now create new Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain2 layer and Brightness/Contrast) to make a mask.

When the Brightness/Contrast box opens, input the following:

Now create new Hue/saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain2 layer and Hue/saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Exposure adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (mountain2 layer and Exposure) to make a mask.

When the Exposure box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 15

First off, let’s open Mont Saint Michel 2 stock in Photoshop. We will be using the castle from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the open Mont Saint Michel 2 and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the castel and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “castle”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “castel” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

Now open Gaussian Blur .

When the Gaussian Blur box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 16

Now create new Hue/saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (castle layer and Hue/saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (castle layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (castle layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.


When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

Step 17

Now, let’s open the space center in Photoshop. We will be using the space center from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the space center and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “space center”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “space center” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now create new Hue/Saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (space center layer and Hue/Saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/Saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (space center layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (space center layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (space center layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 18

Now activate a new layer and name it “Blue light”.

Now activate Gradient tool.

When the Gradient editor box opens, input the following:

Choose the radiel gradient .

The result should be similar to this:

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Blue light” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Make some duplicate of “blue light” and arange them accroding pattren shown in the down image :

Activate a new layer and name it “laser”

Again activate Gradient tool.

When the Gradient editor box opens, input the following:

This time choose Linear gradient :

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Make a duplicate of leser layer and activate transform tool (ctrl+t).

Then make a right click and choose wrap.

Play with the shape see as below :

The result should be similar to this:

Step 19

Now,activate a new layer and name it “rock1″and make a group called rock1 (ctrl+g).

Now activate brush tool choose any color and draw a randon rock like shape see as below:.

First off, let’s open Machu Picchu – Peru 1 stock in Photoshop. We will be using the rock from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Machu Picchu – Peru 1 and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the rock and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Machu Picchu – Peru 1″.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Machu Picchu – Peru 1” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now create a mask see as below :

The result should be similar to this:

Now create a layer style which can be found by pressing on the Create layer style button shown on the layer window:

When the layer style box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now create new Hue/Saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Machu Picchu – Peru 1 layer and Hue/Saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/Saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new Hue/Saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Machu Picchu – Peru 1 layer and Hue/Saturation) to make a mask.

When the Hue/Saturation box opens, input the following:

Now create new color balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Machu Picchu – Peru 1 layer and color balance) to make a mask.

When the color balance box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

First off, let’s open Congost de Mon Rebei Cliff stock in Photoshop. We will be using the rock from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Congost de Mon Rebei Cliff and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the rock and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Congost de Mon Rebei Cliff”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Congost de Mon Rebei Cliff” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette.

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings:

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Do same mask thing with this layer also as we have done above with “Machu Picchu – Peru 1″ layer.

Step 20

Now,activate a new layer and name it “rock2″ and make a group called rock2 (ctrl+g).

Now activate brush tool choose any color and draw a randon rock like shape see as below:.

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint .

First off, let’s open in Halong Bay stock in Photoshop. We will be using the rock from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the in Halong Bay and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the rock and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “in Halong Bay”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “in Halong Bay” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Do same mask thing with this layer also as we have done above with “Machu Picchu – Peru 1″ layer .

Now make a copy of rock2 group and name it rock3 .

Now select rock1 group and make a right click and choose merge group and name this layer to “rock1″ do the same thing with rock2 and rock3 group .

Step 21

Now activate rock1 layer.

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Rock1 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now,let’s open the Lava in Photoshop. We will be using the Lava from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Lava and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “Lava”.

The result should be similar to this:

Now add vector mask from the bottom of layers palette.

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings:

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

Now create new level adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (rock1 layer and level) to make a mask.

When the level box opens, input the following:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (rock1 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Add more Lava layer see as below :

Step 22

First off, let’s open engine-moteur stock in Photoshop. We will be using the engine from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the engine-moteur and press p to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the engine and then click V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “engine”.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “engine” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (engine layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now activate new layer and name it “Source light” .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 400px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #e0f4ff

Now paint over the highlighted area.

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Source light layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now activate rock2 layer .

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (rock2 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Now activate rock3 layer .

Now create new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (rock3 layer and Curves) to make a mask.

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 23

Now,let’s open the Daedalus 3D render in Photoshop. We will be using the space ship from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Daedalus 3D render and press V to activate the Move Tool. Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “spaceship1″.

Next, activate the Transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd +T), then while the “Spaceship1” layer is selected and then resize it as shown below:

Now create new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Spaceship1 layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

Now create new Brightness/contrast adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette. Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Spaceship1 layer and Brightness/contrast) to make a mask.

When the Brightness/contrast box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

make a new layer and name it “Light” then activate pen tool and draw shapes and fill them with #5b93a7.

Now open Gaussian blur.

When the Gaussian blur box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now activate a new layer and name it “right flash”

Now activate Gradient tool .

When the Gradient editor box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now activate smudge tool.

Now play with the tool and get your desirable shape.

The result should be similar to this:

Now make a new layer and name it “back light1″ .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 70px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 100%

Flow: 100%

Color: #5b93a7

Now make a new layer and name it “back light2″ .

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 200px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #5b93a7

The result should be similar to this:

And We’re Done!

You can view the final outcome below. I hope that you enjoyed this tutorial and would love to hear your feedback on the techniques and outcome.

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About the Author:

Vikas Singh Adhikari (Vik aadi) is a 20 years old self-taught digital mixed media artist and a photographer from New Delhi India. The themes that are mostly seen on his work revolve around surrealism, pseudo-realism, nostalgic sentiments, and human emotion.You can contact him on his deviant art account: http://vikaadi.deviantart.com/ and his facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/vikas.theanimater

Leave a comment

2 Comments:

  1. Patrick Depoix says:

    Hi Mr Vikas Singh Adhikari,

    Great Thanks to share with us your very good knowledge about photoshop and matte painting landscape.
    I had loved it a lot!!!
    Bye bye from France.
    Patrick D.

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