Now get the Brush Tool (Shortcut: B), right click anywhere inside the canvas and select a soft round brush (Hardness:0%). Make sure the opacity of your brush is at 100% (just below the Window menu button on the top bar).


Don’t worry about the size of the brush, but remember this shortcuts:

· To increase the size of a brush hit ]

· To decrease the size of a brush hit [

We’re going to be painting with black (to hide unwanted parts of our image non-destructively). To quickly get black as your foreground color just hit “D” on the keyboard.

When painting a layer mask, you can hold Alt/Opt and click it to see exactly what you’ve painted. What you should aim for in this step is to hide the corners of the image, the sky part of the clouds, and blend the clouds of this layer with the clouds of the layer below. To do this last step (the blending of clouds), you can lower the opacity of your brush to something around 10~25%. Here is what my layer mask looks like if I click it while holding Alt/Opt.


And here is the result of this layer mask:


Now we’re going to do the same thing with the other clouds layer (Cloud 1), but this time we are only going to erase the sky part of the layer. So repeat the same steps, create a new layer mask, and paint the sky part with black to hide it.


Here is the result:


Now let’s improve our sky a little bit. Select the Sky layer (from the Field stock), and add a Black & White filter. You can do that by clicking in the circle button in the layers panel:


Now select the Green Filter from the presets and clip this adjustment to the layer below (good photoshop practice). You can do that by clicking in the first button in the Properties window of this adjustment (the button with a square and an arrow next to it). Also, bring the opacity of this layer to 80%, and the Fill to 75%.


The second adjustment we will add to that layer is a Curves adjustment layer. Click in the same button you clicked before, but choose Curves this time.


With the RGB curve selected (default), add two points to it and change its shape to something like mine in the image below. Remember to clip this adjustment to the layer below as well (by clicking in the same button we did before).

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29 responses to “Create a Surreal Photo Manipulation of a Monk in the Caves”

  1.  Avatar

    Good job Awesome work

    1. Creator Avatar

      u’re wron

  2. MaximImages Photography Avatar
    MaximImages Photography

    Beautifully done.

  3. Dereck Avatar

    Love this TUT! it took me a couple of hours but well worth the end result. Great job!

  4. 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

  5.  Avatar

    Thanks a lot, I learn a lot form this tutorrials

  6. Maidul Islam Avatar
    Maidul Islam

    Wow. Thank you for sharing this experience with us………..and for the challenge.

  7. Mcearnie Avatar

    Thanks for this great tutorial. One of the best I found so far. But I do have a question, since one step doesn’t work out like it should. I have finished the cave and put the layers in a Group Folder as the tutorial says. The next step would be the cave lighting layer. But when I try to create it, Photoshop won’t let me add a clipping mask. For some reason it won’t do that above a group folder. To help myself I merged all cave layers into one, that way it works, but of course I can’t change any details now, which is a bit annoying. I would be glad if you or someone else could tell me what I’ve been doing wrong. I use Photoshop CS4.

  8. pepe0390 Avatar

    Hey man. Thank you so much for this awesome tutorial; thanks for being so specifici with everything. Here is what I did following your instructions, hope you like it:

    Regards from Mexico.

  9. Valeria Avatar

    Excellent tutorial! I can’t believe I did it! Thank you for such perfect instructions! I learned a lot!

  10. Yusuf Avatar

    Very nice examples. Thanks.

  11. jerry Avatar

    i love u jerry

  12. Wind Avatar

    Oh great! Thank you.

  13. Gohu Avatar

    Great tutorial =)
    Thanks a lot !

    Here’s my try : (in the bottom of the page)

  14. Brody Avatar

    Thanks Man, Good tutorial it really help with some techniques i already knew and did know :P Thanks!

  15. Steph Avatar

    Great tutorial. I loved it, and my end result turned out really well. I learned a tonne about layer masks so thank you :D

  16. Simpshop Avatar

    This worked ! Could do it as a beginner. Neat description. Great tutorials.Thank you!

  17. Hc Avatar

    A bit cheating with the cube but it works. Proper way is to create a cube with isometric transforms.

  18. Joakim Avatar

    <3 <3 <3
    I love your tuts!!

  19. Ganesh Avatar


  20. Theresa Avatar

    Thank you for your tutoring.I am very appreciate your time.

    Wish you and your family have wonderful weekend.

  21. Ramster Avatar

    Awesome tutorial…keep them coming..Thanks

  22. Jonas Avatar

    Terrific tutorials, as ALWAYS!

    And trust me, a lot of users see your tutorials, even if they don’t leave feedback.

    Thanks, as always!

  23. Steven Avatar

    I always learn something from the great Photoshop Tutorials here.

  24. Benjamin Avatar

    On the part where you pick random parts from the island, you should have placed the layer inside the main PSD & use layer masks. Duplicate layer, paint in layer mask, repeat.

    1. Lasse Selänne Avatar
      Lasse Selänne

      Better vextor mask to cut out than layer mask to fading edge

  25. Eriks Avatar

    One of the best tutorials- very detailed. Thanks a lot.

  26. Thomas Avatar

    Awesome work!!!!

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