How to Create a Surreal Head Stack in Photoshop

How to Create a Surreal Head Stack in Photoshop

How to Create a Surreal Head Stack in Photoshop

Step 44

Like in the previous steps, change the selection into a layer mask for the full head layer. Use white Brush tool with 100% opacity to continue masking, until the upper head part is fully shown again.


Step 45

Create a new clipping mask layer above the full head layer. Draw shadow on the marked area using low opacity Brush tool (color is set to black).


Step 46

Add new layer below full head layer, and then continue drawing shadow beneath the head. We’re done with the main illustration, next we’ll applying color correction and adding a nice white frame.


Step 47

We’ll using adjustment layer to do color correction. With this method, we can modify the setting easily without losing any image information.

Inside the layers panel, click on the Create new fill or adjustment layer button, apply for the Gradient Map adjustment layer. Select the black and white color gradient.Change the layer blend mode to Soft Light and reduce Opacity to 25%.


Step 48

Next, apply for the Curves adjustment layer. Manually change the curve in each channel (Red, Green and Blue). Use settings just like on the screenshots below.


Step 49

Here is the image result if you follow the Curve settings in Step 48.


Step 50

This step is optional: To enhance the surreal feel, I think the overall image need to be more green. So I apply the green Photo Filter withincreased Density value. Change blend mode to Color, set Opacity: 30%.


Step 51

Add a new ‘frame’ layer on the topmost of layer stack, fill it with white.


Step 52

Using Rectangular Marquee tool, create a selection like in the screenshot below. Press Delete to clear the selected areas, there you go! the frame is done. Don’t forget to deselect and Save your work.


Final Results


Tutorial by Jayan Saputra

image057I’m a fan of many daily inspiration blog, it show me a lot of cool artwork from great artists all around the world. I hope with this artwork and tutorial, I could do the same. Which is inspire many people to create some cool (if not great) artwork. You can visit and watch my deviantArt page here. Thanks for reading!

- Jayan Saputra

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34 comments on “How to Create a Surreal Head Stack in Photoshop”

  1. Surreal head stack is great practice to improve photoshop skill. I do this when learning photoshop.

  2. Thank you brother, at last I finally found what actually I am looking for. I have tried lot of apps and ad-ons with photosop. But this is manual and perfect solution. Thanks again buddy. From today I will be your daily reader :)

  3. This tutorial is so cool. That heads effect just makes me giggle and I'm sure a lot of people appreciate it. I want to complete as many tutorials as possible. I would hate myself if I didn't save my work.

  4. Wonderful. I created a simpler version of this effect from my son's image and I want to surprise him with it. Thank you Jayan Saputra.

  5. Very nice surreal tutorial. I wanna learn this kind surreal technique from long time ago,thank you very much Jayan Saputra :)

  6. I'm having trouble finding subtract from shape in cs6,is it Subtract 'Front' shape? I think this may be why I cant load both paths to a selection at one time. Please help.

  7. la verdad se me ha complicado el tutorial no ce si es por que no trabajo con la misma imagen o le falta algo al tutorial agradecería que me explicaran gracias

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