NATURAL REFLECTION ON A SCREEN

rossana_teideRecently I went on an excursion with a friend of mine at Mount Teide (Tenerife, Canary Islands) and we took some pictures.
Now I was watching them and I decided to do a quick photo retouching, combining two of the pictures we took.
To do that I used Adobe Photoshop.

As you can see, I added a picture on my friend’s screen. This is not really difficult: I added the picture using the vanishing point solution to keep the perspective (Filter – Vanishing Point), but I think using the transform menu (Edit – Transform – Perspective) would do the job as well.roddana_teide_edited

Then adding a mask I brushed away the parts of the picture that were covered by the hand. With a bit of color correction to give some consistency you could consider the job done, but the really tricky part in this work is giving some authentic reflections on the screen.

As you can see in the first picture, there is too much light to see what the screen shows, so we see just a black screen with the reflection of her hand and the landscape. Although showing clearly her picture in the screen is bound for this effect, it should be a mistake not to add some reflections. How to do it? Very easy.

I copied the original image on a new layer and I put it on the top, then I lowered its opacity to a 30%. The majority of the picture has not been affected by it, the only change has been on the screen that I had previously modified, so it kept the original reflection!

THE POWER BLAST

SONY DSCLately I took some pictures to Romina Rossi and I have been playing around with them.

Yoga is something that fascinates me although it’s not for me. I like the idea of controlling every single muscle of the body and keep smiling while in deep pain: I SONY DSCthink it’s a good metaphor for job hunt 🙂

It is a discipline that works on the body as much as it works on the mind, in fact the most of the people I met who are interested in it share the same values (for example, they are usually vegetarian).

Yoga is a static activity where the focus is to remain still as much as you can, yet it’s a strong way to produce an incredibly powerful energy inside your body.

This is the concept I wanted to develop when I worked on this picture: while the body stays still, it produces a so powerful energy blast that the world bends.

To achieve this result in Adobe Photoshop I used the wrapping tool and masks.

WATERCOLOR WITH PHOTOSHOP

I have recently found a drawing of Ariel I did for fun a while ago and I thought it was a good idea to publish it.

06 Glen Keane Ariel06 Glen Keane Ariel_coloured

The original sketch is by artist Glen Keane, the colored version is mine.
This has been made in Photoshop. To accomplish this result I set the opacity of my brushes at a low level. This way when the flow of the same color crossed (water versus deeper water/shadow) it gave a feeling of watercolors. When two different colors crossed (like hair and water) they gave the impression of dirt color, which I think is more realistic than a perfectly colored drawing.

PLAY WITH THE TRANSPARENCY IN PHOTOSHOP

shultz_sottacquashultz_sirena

Lately I had fun with Photoshop turning my sister into a siren. As this picture turned unexpectedly to be quiet popular among her friends and I am currently avoiding with all my heart to start preparing my luggage (tomorrow I fly back to London) I think this is the right time for a post.

i took the guy out of the picture using a mask and the Clone Tool. Then I added a fish tail that I colored and put in perspective using the Wrap mode (Edit – Transform).

What people didn’t understand is how I kept the bubbles over the tail, and it’s actually pretty simple when you know how to do it.

After modifying the original picture make a copy and put its layer on the top, then decrease its opacity.
To blend together everything, once you are done decrease the opacity of the tail too, and the effect is done!

MAKE A MORE VIBRANT EXPLOSION IN PHOTOSHOP

Today I had to make a presentation using an image of an explosion with colors that I didn’t like, so I decided to play with the colors to make it more appealing.

On the left you find the original picture and on the right side the final result.

Original ExplosionPhotoshopped explosion

To do that I created a new layer, filled it with black, changed the blending mode to OVERLAY and lowered the opacity until I found the tone I wanted (you don’t need much, try first with 10%).
Then I created a new ADJUSTMENT LAYER and increased the VIBRANCE and SATURATION.

It is a really simple effect, but I find the result very powerful, and if I hadn’t do it myself I would wonder how the heck did the Author do it 🙂

PHOTOSHOP HEAVY RETOUCHMENT

gabriel_curringtonLately I have seen a really bad photo retouchment of Prince William on the cover of Hello magazine. Apparently, the fact that he is becoming bald is a great deal in UK.

After my initial shock, I started to think how I would do in case of a heavy photo retouchment that doesn’t have to look realistic, nor that awful.

So I picked a picture of my friend, British Film Composer Gabriel Currington, to make a test, and I treated the original picture like a drawing, instead of using the usual tools.

Honestly, he didn’t like the result. I still have to make up my mind. It’s obviously a photoshopped picture, but it’s different from the usual Photoshop jobs that try to cheat on being real, so I don’t mind it.

gabriel_currington_modified2To achieve this result I redrew his face using different sizes of paint brushes, playing with their hardness and opacity. After painting his face in a new layer using a flat color for the base, in each additional layer I focused my attention on the lights and shadows, using the techniques I use to ink my illustrations.

I redrew his eyes giving more lights and reflections.
Notice also how I redrew his jaw. In my version the shape of his jaw looks more unnatural, but I find it accentuates his manhood.

Lastly, I retouched his hair painting over it the wall and the monitor. That gave it a more pleasant shape.

MAKE A TRAIL IN PHOTOSHOP

Yesterday I was working on a composition in Photoshop cutting an aircraft and putting it on a landscape, than I thought How could I make this picture more dynamic?
Adding a trail!

So here I did this experiment with some of the things that I like most: Futurama and London, using paths in Photoshop.planet_express_london

If you would like to try yourself, here I will tell you how to do that with your own pictures.

1 – After cutting the spaceship from the background and putting it on a different layer, draw the path of the trail using the Pen Tool.

2 – Make a new layer.

3 -Select the brush you want to use for your trail, the color and the opacity. For my trail I used 3 sizes of an irregular brush to simulate the smoke, White as the foreground color and Opacity 90%.

4 – Go to the PATHS palette and select the Path label. Right click it and choose the brush from the menu. Now your path has a stroke with the brush you selected previously.

5 – Make a new layer, make the last one invisible and repeat twice all the passages changing the size of the brush.

6 – Make a mask on smoke layer and cancel the smoke behind the tower. Also, progressively cancel the big size smoke when it is far away, to simulate distance, and do the opposite with the small sized smoke when it is close by, in order to keep your picture clean.

7 – Select another brush to simulate the fire. DO exactly what you did before. Use a brush with some blur (or add some blur later). I used a brush 50 for the yellow and a 25 for the red (each one in a new layer).

8 – Make a mask for each layer and cancel the useless parts.

9 – Finally, make a new layer and make a new stroke using the same brush and color you used the first time, with Opacity 80%. This helps making things a bit messier and look more realistic.

10 – For the reactors, make a new layer between the spaceship and the trail, selecting a small brush with a large blur. Starting with white to simulate the smoke, draw a circle.

11 – Select yellow and make the brush smaller to color this time the fire coming out of each reactor. Do the same thing, with a smaller brush, with red.

And this is it! I liked this effect: simple and fun.