In this Photoshop tutorial, Jenny Le will show you how to create a surreal portal photo manipulation with a leaking light effect. You will learn how to combine stock images and apply retouching, masking, and blending techniques to create this powerful scene.

Preview of Final Results


Step 1

Create a new document and fill it with any color you like. I use white color and the size of 1000×1000 px.


Open background stock. Use Move Tool (V) to drag it into our document. I only use a part of this background that is near the sky but you’re free to choose the one for your liking.


Here is result after dragging:


Name this layer as “land” or whatever you want.

Step 2

There is a part of sky on the left edge I want to edit as I don’t think it looks very realistic. On land layer, I use Lasso Tool ( press L to active this tool) to make a selection on the right edge of background then right click this selection, choose feather as 0.5:


Right click this selection, choose Layer via Copy and we have a copied part into a new layer. Move it to the left to hide the part which needs to be fixed then choose Edit-Transform-Flip Horizontal :


Click the button of Add layer mask at the bottom of Layer Pallete then use soft black brush to blend copied part with background:


Step 3

Press Cmd/Ctrl+Shift+N to make a new layer. To remove the birds on background, I use Clone Tool. Hit S to choose this tool with settings below and make sure that Sample All Layers is checked on property bar:


Hold the Alt key to click on the source then spot over the birds. If you’re not familiar with this tool you may practice it with many good tutorials over the web. Here is my result:


Step 4

Open sky stock. You can use your own image but better choose a dark one with good contrast so it will save your time. Use Move Tool to drag it into our canvas to replace the sky of background. You can transform and resize it to fit the size of your picture ( press Cmd/Ctrl+T to distort it). Here is the part I’ve chosen after scaling. You can see that I place the bright part of this sky in the middle top to make the light shining from behind for the portal ( we’ll see in next steps).

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26 responses to “How to Create an Epic Portal Scene in Photoshop”

  1. Dana Avatar

    What are the use agreements on the created image?

  2. clippingpathindia Avatar

    nice tutorial

  3. very gad Avatar
    very gad

    yah vary god

  4. Prestion Avatar

    please don’t make this mistake again

  5.  Avatar

    A metaphor for something erotic ?

  6. Dorian Goodyk Avatar
    Dorian Goodyk

    I received an email with a link to this tutorial. It’s pretty old, so some of the links to images we can use, are gone. Could someone help me find something like them that I can use?

  7. Vinoth Paul Avatar
    Vinoth Paul

    Really awesome…………….great:)

  8. vipin Avatar

    you are so Super

  9. FL!A Avatar

    This sucked

  10. YellowSickle Avatar

    Great, tks alot, easy to understand and professional :)

  11. Zach Avatar

    Horrible Tutorial

  12. Maidul Islam Avatar
    Maidul Islam

    Awesome! Excellent tutorial. Thanks for sharing.

  13. w00ky Avatar

    Could someone reupload used images couse not all are avaible now

  14. Yen Avatar

    The cliff image is no longer available :(

  15. JJdigital Avatar

    Excellent! Very well explained tutorial. Found a cool epic comet on pinterest that could fit to the nature of the pic.

  16. Reka Avatar

    I don’t know what shall I do, because I have trouble with Step 7. I could create the clipping mask with one of the portal’s side but I can’t do it with the other part… If I create the clipping mask the whole part disappear. With the other part it worked perfectly. Help pls! :(

  17. Banglanatyadol Avatar

    This is awesome…

  18. Julia Garner Avatar
    Julia Garner

    Great tutorial. Thanks for sharing. Excellent photo manipulation, by the way, with the light glow providing a nice touch.

  19. ErikAlcazar Avatar

    this tutorial was awesome!!!!!!! It was easy to understand and it really got me to explore PS more and do some problem solving, for my computer was being stubborn and not letting me do certain features. :)
    i give it a 10/10! :D

  20. Charles Avatar

    Thank you so much
    Great tutorial. The use of the tools is fantastic

  21. anil Avatar


  22. anil Avatar


  23. MichelleBuckley Avatar

    Amazing art and a superb tutorial <3 thank you!

  24. SVTech Avatar

    Thank you for the amazing step by step guide.. amazing!!

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