Step 8 – Darkening the Sky

Sky on the image should be bit more darker to create more balanced feel. To fix that add new adjustment layer Curves and set it as on the following image.


You want to adjust only the upper part of the image. To do that first you need to grab the Paint Bucket Tool (G), pick black color and fill the layer mask of this adjustment layer with it.


Grab the Gradient Tool (G), pick white color and select Linear Gradient.


Fill the upper part of layer mask with this gradient. You can get the idea where to use the gradient on the following image. I highlighted it with red color.


Step 9 – Adding Smog

Another color that comes in hand with pollution (according to me at least) is green. In this step you’ll add green smog on the horizon to add even more atmosphere. Add new empty layer on the top of all layers and name it SMOG. Grab the Gradient Tool (G) and this time select Reflected Gradient.


Pick some green color (I used #6c7345) and create gradient as on the picture below.


To blend it well with the rest of the image change its Blending Mode from Normal to Overlay and lower its Opacity on about 65%.


On the following photo you can see how your photo manipulation should look like so far.


Step 10 – Red Cars

I believe that the the bottom part of the image where streets of the city are is quite uninteresting right now. You’ll add interest by creating red lights around the roads. It would look like there is lots of traffic down there. Add new empty layer on the top of all layers and name it CARS. Grab the Brush Tool (B), pick some soft round brush and lower its Opacity on about 40%. Pick some reddish colors and start painting over the roads. Look at the following picture to get the idea where you should paint.


To blend it with the rest of the image change Blend Mode of this layer from Normal to Overlay.


Step 11 – Darker Sky

Sky should be even more darker. You’ll change it in this step. Add new adjustment layer Curves on the top of all layers and set it as on the following picture.


To adjust only sky and not the rest of the image grab the Paint Bucket Tool (B) and fill the the layer mask of this adjustment layer with solid black color. Grab the Gradient Tool (G), pick white color and make linear gradient from the upper part of the image to horizon similarly as you did in one of the previous steps. You can see where to put gradient on the following photo. That area is highlighted with red color.

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33 responses to “How to Create an Apocalyptic Sci-Fi Photo Manipulation in Photoshop”

  1. hamadah elgaml Avatar
    hamadah elgaml

    Love it

  2.  Avatar

    it sux no images

  3. ok cuh Avatar
    ok cuh

    hi bro

  4. satyajit N Avatar
    satyajit N

    thank you , I am teaclother you have explained the tutorial thanks a lot.

  5. satyajit N Avatar
    satyajit N

    thank you , I am teaclother you have explained the tutorial thanks a

  6. Rj raju Avatar
    Rj raju

    It is very helpful tutorial and great idea for this tutorial….thanks a lot

  7. Elie Brisaert Avatar
    Elie Brisaert

    Interesting tutos and very well explained ! Congratulations!
    But how can I get your stock (resources) pictures in Pelleron-Art?

  8. praveen parihar Avatar
    praveen parihar

    Very Nice

  9. Anne Wipf Avatar
    Anne Wipf

    I did your tutorial in the past, here:
    But it seem we cannot see the tutorials published on photoshop-tutorials anymore. :(
    I tried to contact photoshop-tutorial, but it doesn’t work. :(
    Could you tell me if there is something to pay now, or what we can do? Thank you.

  10. Ayaan Avatar

    Please re uploaded PSD file because when i click on download showing 404 error, this is best work for me i want check how did you do this

  11. clippingpatharea Avatar

    Absolutely beautiful works.. This is what called “Creativity”.

  12. Maidul Islam Avatar
    Maidul Islam

    Great, thanks for all the helpful info!

  13. Marcy Avatar

    It’s an okay tutorial… Except I couldn’t follow it after Step 2. (including Step 2).
    The instructions are so vague, and major steps are being skipped. I just can’t follow it.
    You should really try to improve on that. I’d rather have too many details and too proper grammar than too little.

    1. christmas background Avatar
      christmas background

      Maybe you should try to find some specific youtube-workshops about this themes

  14. USUCK Avatar

    WOW this tutorial suck , couldn’t understand a thing

  15. adibkarim Avatar

    Fantastic website. Lots of helpful information here.
    I’m sending it to some buddies ans also sharing in delicious. And certainly, thank you for your sweat!

  16. Tutorial-Trial Avatar

    This tutorial is okay, but it’s obviously lacking a LOT of information that’s required to even get close to the desired look that the author is showing.

    The tutorial is best at showing some ideas of what you can do and how to do it, but it’s not showing an obvious step-by-step method to get the exact look (if you’re trying for that) of the picture the author created.

  17. Kevin Avatar

    Thoughtful tutorial. Hats off

  18. malissimo43 Avatar


  19. john Avatar

    thanks for the tutorial!!

  20. Wonho Avatar

    Thank you very much, it’s really helpful!

  21. relax Avatar

    holy shit ! you are so great !

  22. LANdroid7 Avatar

    Extremely Awesome Tutorial \m/ I love it

  23. Nicolas Gautier Avatar
    Nicolas Gautier

    Humm… We can see a reflection on the city..

  24. adityajain Avatar

    its totally amazin!!!!!
    i have learnt a lot of effects through this and its awesome…… u have got a lot of ability and please teach me some…..

  25.  Avatar

    Thank you for the great tutorial,keep it up

  26. panos_m Avatar

    hay.. in the begginig you say to create a new document.. can you please tell me the exact dimentions of the document coz i face difficulties with the begginig.. thnx a lot!

    1. Photoshop Tutorials Editor Avatar
      Photoshop Tutorials Editor

      I believe the author used an image dimension of 600×900 pixels.

  27. Stevo Avatar

    very nice!!!!

  28. Greg Avatar

    Great tutorial!

  29. David Arocha Avatar
    David Arocha

    Thanks !!!!

  30. Elphie Avatar

    Thank you very much for the tutorial, very well explained :) I have not had any problems in understanding it, Thanks

  31. Anonymous Avatar

    Good but I would change the meteors up so they aren’t the same copy.

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