22 Easy Steps to Create This Haunted House Scene

22 Easy Steps to Create This Haunted House Scene

22 Easy Steps to Create This Haunted House Scene

In this tutorial, I'll show you how to create a haunted house scene using photo manipulation techniques. You'll work with blending, masking, coloring to create a dark and eerie atmosphere.

What you'll be creating

We'll start this tutorial by setting up a field scene from three images. Then we'll add the house, crow, and birds and blend them using adjustment layers, masking, and brush. Later we'll adjust color, contrast, and the dark atmosphere. We'll finish it up with adding a red light effect to the window. You should use Photoshop CS3 or newer to follow this tutorial.

Tutorial Resources

Step 1

Create a new document in Photoshop with the given settings:

haunted1

Step 2

Open the sky 1 image. Use the Move Tool (V) to drag it into our white canvas:

haunted2

Step 3

Place the sky 2 onto the sky 1 as shown below:

haunted3

Change this layer mode to Soft Light 100%:

haunted3a

Step 4

Click the second button at the bottom of the Layers Panel to add a mask to this layer. Use a basic, soft brush with black color to erase the hard edges of the sky 2 and blend it with the sky 1:

haunted4

Step 5

I used an adjustment layer with Clipping Mask to brighten the sky 2. Go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Curves:

haunted5

On this layer mask, use a soft black brush with the opacity varied from 10 to 60% to paint on some areas of the sky. The aim is to reduce the lightness and create a better contrast for the sky:

haunted5a
haunted5b

Step 6

Open the landscape image. To delete the cars in this photo, make a new layer and activate the Clone Tool (S). Use this tool to remove the indicated details:

haunted6

Step 7

Press Cmd/Ctrl+Option/Alt+Shift+E to merge the background and clone layer into a new one. Move this merged layer into our main canvas, use Cmd/Ctrl+T to transform it as shown below:

haunted7

Use the Magic Wand Tool to mask off the sky and rock part in this image:

haunted7a

Step 8

I used Curves (Clipping Mask) to darken the landscape:

haunted8

On this layer mask use a soft black brush with very low opacity (10 -15%) to reduce the dark effect on the parts below:

haunted8a
haunted8b

Step 9

I used Hue/Saturation to decrease the saturation of the landscape:

haunted9
haunted9a

Step 10

Place the house image over the main document as the screenshot below shows:

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6 comments on “22 Easy Steps to Create This Haunted House Scene”

  1. The red light isn't realistic...projections (wall) and reflections (windows) aren't repected...
    But the athmosphere is great !

  2. This is one of the coolest tutorials that I have ever seen for photoshop. Even as a new user, I feel like I could follow your instructions beginning to end.

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