It remains only to add effects to the lilies and the background is ready. But it’s a little later. First you need to complete the overall composition. Create a new group by using “Create a new group” icon at the bottom of Layer panel and name it “foreground”. First, add the “Water plant” image (File > Place…/Place Embedded) in the “foreground” group. The images in the format PNG (without a background) so you just have to change the size and position them where you like. To make a large bush, duplicate the layer (Cmd/Ctrl + J or Layer > Duplicate Layer…), reduce its size, flip horizontal (Cmd/Ctrl + T) and place it under the layer with the main plant.
Repeat the same with the images “Foliage 1”, “Foliage 2”, “Foliage 3”. First, I added the picture “Foliage 2”, flip it horizontally (Edit > Transform > Flip Horizontal) and is located in the upper right corner. Then the next image “Foliage 3” and “Foliage 1”. To remove the cut edge of the image, add a layer mask to the right layers and black brush clean edges (only try to make it invisible).
Next create a new group (“Create a new group” icon) inside this group and name it “Dragonfly”. Open image “Bugs PNG” (Cmd/Ctrl + O or File > Open). Repeat step what you did with water lilies (Step 12) and position of dragonflies in the right places. Do not be afraid to experiment with their position or placement. You need Rotate, Scale, Flip each dragonflies (use Free Transform Tool (Cmd/Ctrl + T) or Edit > Free Transform/ Transform). The most important thing is not to exceed size of dragonflies more than the size of flower lily. And remember, the farther away dragonfly, so the size is getting smaller.
Composition is completely ready and can add effects and work on realism. At first add effects to water lilies. Go to layer from Step 15 and create a new layer above it (use “Create a new layer” icon or Cmd/Ctrl + Shift + N) and set Blending Mode to “Color Dodge”. Take a Brush Tool (B), right-click to get the Context Brush Panel. Select the Soft Round brush preset, and set the brush Size to 100 – 200px, Opacity to 100%, Color: #cc6b7f and click on each flower to create a light effect. Reduce layer Opacity to 49%, Fill to 43%.
Create one more layer (Mode: Normal, Fill/Opacity: 100%) and with color: #e5d8cd and brush Opacity: 50% create a dense glow over every flower. You just need to click on a flower to be applied once the brush. Create a new layer with Blending Mode “Screen”, Opacity: 79%, Fill: 63%. Change brush Opacity to 100% (color remains the same) and draw a dot glow a little higher each flower.
Now the fun part. I wanted to make a small glowing speck (something like fireflies or magic). You need a brush of soft bokeh. Now we will create it. Go to Brush panel – F5. Set Size: 8px, Spacing: 150%. Go to Shape Dynamics and there set Size Jitter: 100%, Angle Jitter: 35%, Roundness Jitter: 45%. In next tab “Scattering” set Scatter: 1000%, Cont 1 and save you’re brush by clicking on “Create new brush” icon (I use this brush several times in this artwork).
Create a new layer. Take a you’re created brush with Size: until 8px and Opacity: 100%. Draw fireflies over flowers and a little around them. To enhance the effect, you can add layer style “Outer Glow”/”Inner Glow” (“Fx” icon at the bottom of layer panel or go to Layer > Layer Style > Outer Glow/Inner Glow). Settings for both styles are the same.