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Photo Manipulate a Surreal, Gravity-Defying Desert Scene

Photo Manipulate a Surreal, Gravity-Defying Desert Scene

In this tutorial, we will learn how to create an conceptual surreal photo-manipulation. We are going to learn the process of creating depth of field using a few advance tools. We are going to learn how to blend images so seamlessly that it would look like a single image using the Brush tool, the Eraser tool and several adjustment layers.We will learn how to create light and darkness to make the background look seamless. We are going to learn how to use textures and give life to our image, and we are going to learn how to create a moody, dreamy tone using a few adjustment layers and lighting effects.

Final Image

Step 1

Create a new file with a width of 4500 px and a height of 4500 px at 300 dpi (Dots per Inch). Background Contents should be White.

Step 2

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

Click the desert stock and press P to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the desert 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 “desert”

The result should be similar to this:

Step 3

Activate transform tool (Ctrl+t) as see below:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 4

First off, let’s open the sky in Photoshop. We will be using Stormy Sky 3 from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas:

Click the stromy sky 3 and press M to Rectungular 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 :

The result should be similar to this:

Step 5

Again Activate transform tool (Ctrl/Cmd+T) and rotate the encircled square in the direction of the red arrow .

The result should be similar to this:

Activate transform tool (Ctrl+t) as see below:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 6

Now Crate new Curves adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette :

fill these setting:

Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Sea layer and Color balance) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 7

Now activate the blur tool (B):

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 8

Now Create a new layer and name it “Vignette”.Fill it with White color “#ffffff”.

Now goto Filters > Distrot > Lens Correction:

When the Lens Correction box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now change the layer mode to “Multiply” and the opacity to 100%:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 9

Activate a new layer and name it “Source light”.

Right click on the canvas while the Brush tool (B) is active and then pick this brush:

paint over the highlighted area

Reduce opacity to 65%

The result should be similar to this:

Step 10

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

When the solid color box opens, input the following:

Reduce the opacity of the color fill layer to 40% and change the layer mode to “exclusion” :

The result should be similar to this:

Now Create new photo filter layer from the bottom of layers palette.

fill these setting:

The result should be similar to this:

Now activate brush tool (B) and paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

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

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

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

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now Crate new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette:

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now Crate new gradient map layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the gradient map box opens, input the following:

now do the opacity of the gradient map layer to 100% and change the layer mode to “luminosity” :

The result should be similar to this:

Step 11

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

Click the Origami ball and press P to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the ball 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 ” Origami ball “:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 12

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

The result should be similar to this:

Step 13

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

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

Now Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (origami ball layer and hue/saturation) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

Now Create a new Curves adjustment from the bottom of layers palette

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Now go back to “origami ball” layer and then creat a Color Balance adjustment layer which can be found by pressing on the Create New Fill/Adjustment layer button shown on the layer window:

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following.

The result should be similar to this:

Now Create outer glow adjustment layer from the bottom of the layer palette:

When the outer glow box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Step 14

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

Click the iron ball and press p to activate the pen Tool and make a selection around the ball.Now activate Move tool (v) Left-click the image and drag the image to the main canvas and change layer name to “iron ball”.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 15

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

The result should be similar to this:

Step 16

Now activate Erase tool (E) with these settings Now let’s erase :

Brush size: 100px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 17

Now creat a Curves adjustment layer which can be found by pressing on the Create New Fill/Adjustment layer button shown on the layer window:

When the Curves box opens, input the following:

Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Iron ball layer and Curves) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

Now Crate new Hue/Saturation adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Hue/Saturation box opens, input the following.Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (iron ball layer and Hue/Saturation) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 18

Now let’s create a shadow of our iron ball.Create a new layer and name it “Iron ball shadow”.

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 100px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Color: #000000

Now paint over the highlighted area.

Now paint over the highlighted area.

Step 19

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

Click the Iron Door Handle 2 and press P to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the Door Handle 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 “iron ball ancor”.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 20

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

The result should be similar to this:

Step 21

Now activate Erase tool (E) with these settings Now let’s erase :

Brush size: 100px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 40%

Flow: 100%

Now paint over the highlighted area.

The result should be similar to this:

Step 22

Now Crate new Color Balance adjustment layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Color Balance box opens, input the following.Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Iron ball ancor layer and Color Balance) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

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

When the Curves box opens, input the following.Press Alt+left click in between 2 layer’s (Iron ball ancor layer and Curves) to make a mask.

The result should be similar to this:

Just duplicate the Iron ball (Ctrl+j) ancor layer and change it’s name to “origami ball ancor” .Do the same setting as we do on iron ball ancor layer.

Step 23

Now,let’s open the Rusty Iron Chain – PNG in Photoshop. We will be using the chain from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Rusty Iron Chain – PNG 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 “Chain”.

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

The result should be similar to this:

Now Duplicate Chain layer (Ctrl+j) and make a long chain.See as below.

Step 24

Now let’s work with our Origami ball.Create a new layer and name it “Light”.

Now activate pen tool(p) and draw a line.See as below:

Now activate Brush tool (B) with these settings :

Brush size: 5px

Hardness: 0%

Opacity: 100%

Flow: 100%

Color: #ffffff

Then now again activate pen tool (P) and make a right click and choose Stock path.

When the Stock path box opens, input the following:

Now again right click and choose Delete path.

The result should be similar to this:

Now Crate Outer glow layer from the bottom of layers palette .

When the Outer glow box opens, input the following:

The result should be similar to this:

Draw some more lines.

Step 25

First off, let’s open the Walking on ice 1 in Photoshop. We will be using the man from this stock image so we will need to transfer it to our main canvas.

Click the Walking on ice 1 and press P to activate pen tool and then make a selection around the man 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 “man”.

The result should be similar to this:

Now go to Filter > Blur > Motion blur:

When the Motion Blur box opens, input the following:

Reduce the opacity to 65% :

Make some more man shadows.

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.

Download Source File for this Tutorial

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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

9 Comments:

  1. wid says:

    wow…breathtaking it is…great surreal!

  2. Vijay adhikari says:

    Great work as always …..
    one of the best on psdfan..
    nice concept and it cover a lot’s
    of techniques for matte panting aswell

    Waiting for your more tutorials ….

  3. John says:

    Very nice tutorial, I especially like the background!

  4. Eymèle says:

    Thank you for this wonderful tutorial

  5. Jordan S. says:

    Only issue I have is the inconsistent lighting. The floating. Or. Is lit from the left, the ball and dunes from the right, and the clouds are such that it looks like everything should be backlit, which tips off the viewer to the manipulation. Also, the angle of the floating orb is from above, not below like you would expect for this image. A simple 180 degree rotation of that object would solve some of the lighting and all of the perspective issues.

  6. Issa says:

    Hey man !
    i wanna ask can i make video like a speed edit with this photo manipulation ?>
    ill put links to you’re site and and this tutorial!
    reply soon !
    Thanks !

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