If you haven’t done so already, you really should start organizing at this point as it might get confusing. Simply create folders for every element in the composition (Top_Knights, Landscape, Sky etc.). For even better organizing you can give every single folder a different color by right-clicking on the layer visibility icon, then choose your color of choice.
Select the Medieval European Knight layer and add a Curves Adjustment layer
so that it’s on top of all the main knights. Try to simulate the settings below for each channel.
By putting this Adjustments layer on top of the main knights, it will only affect the sky background and the knights.
Create a Hue/Saturation Adjustment layer
and put it on top of the European knight, right-click and select Create Clipping Mask
. Enter the following settings, go inside every Channel
and set the Saturation
level of the Green
. The saturation in theBlue Channel
should be set to -45
, the Red and Yellow Channels
should be left untouched. This will give the knight a grey-ish look which will be different when we add our final Curves Adjustment layer
It’s very important to create a mood to base your color correction on, so create a new Curves Adjustments layer
and put this on top of all the layers. We have our European knight as a reference, so simply try to create your own color scheme which you think looks best. These are my settings:
Back to the European knight. To make the top knights really pop, we’re going to create an almost majestic type of glow around them. Create a copy of the European knight, name it Majestic_glow and make it all white by using Hue/Saturation and set the Lightness to +100
. Go toFilter>Blur>Motion Blur
, set the Angle
to -90 Degrees
and set the Distance
to 775 pixels
. Make a copy of this layer and you will notice it becomes much brighter.
Go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur and set the Radius to 45 pixels, this will soften the harsh streaks of the motion blur a bit.
Create a new Levels Adjustment layer
and enter the following settings in the appropriate channels. This Adjustment layer should be made into a Clipping Mask
on top of the Hue/Saturation Adjustment layer
we have made earlier for the European knight.
We’re going to give our knight a bit of shine as we want the majestic glow to sort of engulf him in light. Add a new Brightness/Contrast Adjustment layer and but this on top of the Adjustment layers we’ve already made. By default, a new Adjustment layer will have a white window but for this effect to work properly, simply fill the canvas with white while the mask is selected. Grab a Round brush and set the Brush Opacity to 20% and set your foreground color to white. Vary between brush sizes and brush over the area as many times you think is necessary. You should brush over the area shown in red below.
The images all have a bit of hard line around them because we’ve used the Pen tool (P) but you can get rid of this but using the Blur tool (R) on the Layer mask.
Repeat steps 31, 33, 34, 35 and 36 for the knights on the right and left but hopefully at this point of the tutorial, you will implement some of your own color variations and techniques. Get rid of what you like or add something else of what you think benefits the composition. At this point I have added a few more Color Balance Adjustment layers to all three knights and did more tweaking and this is my result at this point of the tutorial:
At this point I’ve added a Color Balance Adjustment layer with the following settings:
I’ve also added a Color Fill Adjustment layer (#004762) at the top of all the layers to get a good idea of where I’m headed with this poster. Order of layers: