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Learn how to create a fantasy photo manipulation of a desperate angel in sorrow and bleak rainy scene with Photoshop. In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to create your winged angel with ordinary stock images, do some retouch and enchantment on the angel with shadows and lighting, then complete it with rain and subtle rays of light . Throughout the tutorial, you’ll learn techniques that will help you create better photo manipulations.

What you’ll be creating

On this tutorial we will create an emotional scene of a sad angel in gloomy and cold atmospheric dreamscape with rain. We will use some essential techniques in doing photo manipulation. We will use masking, brush tool, some filter, color adjustments and textures all through the steps in this tutorial. Use Adobe Photoshop CC to fully follow this tutorial. Some filter used in this tutorial will not be available in photoshop CS. Don’t forget a glass of coffee and optionally a pack of cigarette for your companion. Ready..?

final result

Tutorial Resources

Step 1

In first several step of this tutorial, we are going to create a figure of angel. Start by opening the girl image in photoshop. We will cut out the girl. Take pen tool (P). With the tool, trace the girl to create path as indicated in orange outline.

step1a

Cut out the girl from its background.

step1b

Step 2

Create a new document (Ctrl+N). Name this new document, say, broken angel. In this document we will create the figure of angel.

step2a

Next, add the girls to the document. Take free transform tool (Ctrl+T). Scale its size to fit the size of the document properly.

step2b

Step 3

Then open the bird image, we will use the bird’s wings for the angel. Take pen tool (P) and cut out the wings of the bird.

step3a

Add the first wing to the broken angel document. Place it above the angel layer. With free transform tool (Ctrl+T), scale its size to the one needed and move (V) to the position where needed.

step3b

Finally add the second wing. Place it below the angel layer.

step3c

Step 4

Now we will do some refinement on the edges of the wings. To do this, take smudge tool on the tool panel. Choose a very soft round brush (0% hardness) set to about 4pxl size with strength set to about 70%.

step4a

Be active on the wing 1. Now stroke the brush on the edges of the wing to create subtle feathers.

step4b

Do the same way to the other wing.

step4c

Step 5

Next, we will add some shading on the wing 2 on area behind the angel as outlined in orange color.

step5a

Create a new layer (Shift +Ctrl+N) with a clipping mask above the wing 2 layer. Take a very soft round brush (0% hardness) set to about 12-15% opacity. With black color, stroke the brush to paint some shading.

step5b

Step 6

In this step, we will add cloth addition to the angel’s robe to cover the starting point of the wing 1. To do this, create a new layer (Shift+Ctrl+N) above the wing 1 layer. Take pen tool (P). On this layer, create shape as the one shown in screenshot and fill (Shift+F5) the shape with any color we want. Dark blue color is the one given as example.

step6astep6b

Cut out the robe of the angel into a single layer. We will use this cut out as the texture for the shape created before. Place the cut out above the shape layer and clip it with a clipping mask. This cut out will cover the shape. Move (V) the cut out to the position needed to get desired result.

step6c

Step 7

Now we will add some highlight and shadow to the robe with the addition cloth to define some rumpled lines. To do this, create a new layer above the texture layer. Fill (Shift+F5) this layer with 50% grey (#808080). Take dodge tool (o). Choose a very soft round small brush set to about 10% exposure with highlight range. On this new layer, stroke the brush on area around the robe to paint highlight.

step7a

Then, take burn tool set to midtones range at about 10% exposure. With a very soft round brush, stroke the tool on areas where needed to paint shadow.

step7b

Keep using the combination of dodge and burn tool to paint more highlight and shadow to define more rumpled lines.

step7c

Step 8

Proceed to create additional cloth on the lower angel’s cloth. Create a new layer (Shift+Ctrl+N) below the angel layer. Create a shape filled with any color we want. Dark blue is the given example.

step8a

Cut out the lower cloth of the angel into a single layer. Place this layer above the shape with a clipping mask to give it cloth texture.

step8b

Finally, be active on the angel layer. Then, go to layer > layer mask > reveal all. This will give the angel layer a layer mask. Take a very soft round brush (B). Mask the edge of the lower cloth to make it well blended with the additional cloth.

step8c

step8d

Select all the angel layers and hit Ctrl+E to merge them into a single layer.

step8e

Step 9

Now we come to the second phase of this tutorial. In the next steps we will create the main scene on a new document. Create a new document (Ctrl+N).

step9a

Open the cloud image on the document. With free transform tool, flip the image horizontally to alter its direction. Scale its size to fit and cover the document properly.

step9b

Add the angel as well. Position it in the middle of the cloud. Go to layer > smart object > convert to smart object to convert this layer into a smart object layer.

step10a

Step 10

Be active on the cloud layer. Give this layer camera raw filter. Hit Shift+Ctrl+A to open the filter. Set the Basic and Detail of this filter.

step10a

step10b

Step 11

Now we will alter the color of the cloud texture by giving it color adjustments. Go to layer > new adjustment layers > brightness/contrast. Make sure to position this layer between the cloud and angel layer.

step11a

With a very soft round brush set to low opacity of about 15%, mask some areas around the cloud as highlighted in red.

step11b

step11c

Step 12

Give another adjustment layer. Go again to layer > new adjustment layer > selective color.

step12a

step12b

Step 13

Create a new layer (Shift+Ctrl+N) above the two adjustment layers. Fill (Shift+F5) this layer with solid color of #0c0301.

step13a

Set this solid color layer to soft light at about 60% opacity.

step13b

Give this layer a layer mask (layer > layer mask > reveal all). Mask on areas around the cloud as indicated in red highlight.

step13c

step13d

Step 14

In this step we give filter to the angel. Go select the angel layer to be active on it. Hit Shift+Ctrl+A to give this smart object layer camera raw filter. Set it Basic, Tone Curve and Detail.

step14a

step14b

The result should be like below:

step14c

step14dstep14e


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