How to Create a Surreal Scene Full of Life in Photoshop

How to Create a Surreal Scene Full of Life in Photoshop

Step 20: Add the buildings behind the elephant

Open the skyline stock and select the buildings with the Quick Selection Tool (W). Don't worry too much about the lower part because it won't be seen in our scene.
Copy and paste the skyline in our scene, resize it with the Free Transform Tool (Ctrl/Command+T) and place it on the top of the elephant.
Create a new group for this layer, name it Skyline and place it behind the elephant group.
Your scene should look like this now:

Step 21: Add the mountain above the elephant

Open the mountain stock and select the mountain using the Quick Selection Tool (W). Don't worry too much about the lower edges, we will erase them later.
Copy and paste the mountain into our project and resize it using the Free Transform Tool. After that, place the mountain on the top of the elephant like this:
Now let's work the edges of the mountain. Create a new layer mask to this layer and start painting using the image below as reference:
Your mountain should look something like this now:
And your scene should look like this:
The mountains are too blue, so we're going to change that by adding (non-destructively) a Color Balance Adjustment Layer. Check the image below for the input values and remember to clip it to the mountain layer.
Now create a new group for the mountain and the adjustment layer. Name the new group Mountain.

Step 22: Add the helicopter patrolling the elephant

Open the helicopter stock. We're going to use a different technique to select it, so, first of all, make a random selection of the sky using the Quick Selection Tool, like this:
Now go to Select > Similar and Photoshop will select everything he thinks its similar to the selection you've made.
We want to select the helicopter, not the sky, so we will invert the selection by pressing Ctrl/Command+Shift+I. Now use the Quick Selection Tool(W) to add the areas the missing areas of the helicopter to our selection.
After you're done, copy and paste it into our project. Now mirror the helicopter by going to Edit > Transform > Flip Horizontal.
Then resize the helicopter using the Free Transform Tool and place it near the buildings we just added.
Download the Light Beams Brushes and unpack them anywhere you want in your computer. After that, select the Brush Tool and click with the right button somewhere in your scene. Then click in the arrow (see image below) and search in your computer for the SS-light-beams.abr file that you've just downloaded.
With the light beams brushes opened, select the one highlighted in the image below. Reduce the size of the brush to 417px.
We don't want to paint directly in our helicopter layer because we won't be able to change the light beam later if we want, so create a new layer called 'Light Beam' and place it before the helicopter layer.
Before painting, select the color white in your color palette (Shortcut: D and then X), set the opacity of our brush to around 75% and then you can paint following the instructions in the image below:
Your image should look like this now:
To finish this step create a new group with the helicopter and the light beam layer. Name the new group Helicopter.

Step 23: Add the root legs to our elephant

Open the root image and use the Quick Selection Tool (W) to make a rough selection of the tree roots.

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29 comments on “How to Create a Surreal Scene Full of Life in Photoshop”

  1. You've made a very nice and comprehensive collection of WordPress Themes. I appreciate it. Really great art work with typography. Thanks for sharing this nice post.

  2. Outstanding tutorial!Clear instructions and awesome picture instructions. Very nice, thank you a bunch.

  3. I can not thank you enough, the amount of things I've learnt in two hours is incredible, would usually take me a week of watching and reading tutorials, but nope, you've used many techniques that made my life easier! Thank you is not enough!

    1. just do what i did , 
      download the attached PSD from up there and take the mountain photo from there :D

    2. @SalahKabbani OK! Got it!I decided to replace the mountain photo with a desert one ^_^Thanks anyway :)

  4. Thank you so much for this tutorial really great photo and great explanation love it. 
    but i have a problem with the mountain photo , the link of this photo doesn't work , can you please upload it again or give me another photo that could be good for the tutorial ?

  5. Hi Guilherme, From the start of your tutorial you say to go to lens correction and distort the image to + 25,00, it distorts the image considerably !, is that right, ?, by the way it is a great tutorial,
    regards and respect johnny

    1. Its ok, all i did was after the lens correction was used the free transform tool and adjusted the image to cover my canvas again lol, My bad..

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