Have every post delivered to your inbox and get access to hundreds of useful design freebies.
In this tutorial I’ll how you how to create a dark and surreal photo manipulation called “Volcano Spirit”.
We’ll combine several stock photos to create a surreal head carrying a volcano with hot lava flowing from the eye.
Here’s a look at some of the advanced techniques covered in this tutorial:
As always, this is the final image that we’ll be creating:
Here’s a close up look out the outcome:
Create a new document with 1300×800 px and fill with any colors you like. As you may see, I like to start with white. Now make a new layer (Cmd/Ctrl+Shift+N) and hit G to active Gradient Tool. I choose Radial Gradient with settings below:
Drag a line from top to bottom and we get the result:
Open sky stock. Use the Rectangular Marquee Tool (M) to make a selection on sky part as the image below shows:
Use Move Tool (V) to drag this selection into our canvas, place it at the top center:
I convert this layer to Smart Object (right click this layer, choose this action) then go to Edit-Transform-Warp and bend it:
Click the second button at the bottom of Layer Pallete to add layer mask to this layer. Use a soft black brush to remove the hard edges of the sky:
Change the mode to Soft Light 100%:
Create some new adjustment layers to change the color of our picture. Go to Layer-New Adjustment Layer-Photo Filter:
This is the result:
Open ‘sea stock’ from the resources for this tutorial. Copy a part of this image and paste into the bottom of our main document, convert to smart Object and use Cmd/Ctrl+T to resize and stretch it :
Change the mode to Overlay 100% and blend the sea part with layer mask:
I make a new layer and use Smudge Tool with Strength about 50% and paint over the sea part from left to right to soften the details on it:
Extract ‘mountain 1′ and place it at the right corner of the sea part:
Change the mode to Overlay 70% and use a layer mask to blend the bottom with the sea:
I want to reduce the saturation of this mountain so I make an adjustment layer with a Clipping Mask. Go to Layer, New Adjustment Layer-Hue/Saturation:
Isolate mountain 2 and position it at the left edge of the sea and change the mode to Soft Light 50%:
I want to make the sea look redder so I create a new layer and change my brush color to #c80204. Use this brush to paint over the sea and change the mode to Color 70%:
I make a new layer and continue with this brush on the right edge of the sea. I put the mode to Color 100%:
Make a new layer on the top. Choose Radial Gradient with default colors (black and white):
Change the mode to Soft Light 100% and use layer mask to reduce dark contrast (lower opacity of brush to 30-40%) at the bottom edge of the picture. You can see result with layer mask:
Result on picture:
Open woman stock (you can use your own picture). Take only the head and place it at the middle section of our main picture, transform if needed to get the a straight look:
I'm a self-taught designer from Vietnam who enjoys writing and doing most kinds of graphic design, especially photo manipulation. I've always tried to improve my skill and felt happy to share it through my website where you can find lots of my writings as well as photoshop tutorials.
Do you know the basic tools in Photoshop but feel that your work is still looking average? Join our creative community at FanExtra and get the direction you need to take your work to the next level.