Photo ManipulationUpdated

Create a Sunset Landscape Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

In this tutorial I’ll show you how to create a beautiful sunset landscape . You’ll learn how to combine different stocks into a cohesive scene using adjustment layers, masking and brush . You’ll also work with lighting, practice retouching and matte painting techniques.

What you’ll be creating

We’ll start this tutorial by setting up a natural scene from the landscape, sky, mountain and rock images. Then we’ll add the balcony, model and trees. Later we’ll enhance the scene color and contrast with various adjustment layers. Finally we’ll use a few layers to create lighting effect.

sunset47-final

Tutorial Resources

Step 1

Create a new document in Photoshop with the given settings:

sunset1

Step 2

Open the landscape image. Use the Retangular Marquee Tool (M) to choose the upper part of the landscape as shown below:

sunset2

Drag the selected part into our document and transform it using the Cmd/Ctrl+T key:

sunset2a

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 remove the hard edges of the sky:

sunset2b

Step 3

On the landscape layer, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and set the radius to 4 px:

sunset3

Step 4

To darken the landscape I used an adjustment layer. Go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Curves:

sunset4

On this layer mask use a soft black brush to erase the top right of the scene:

sunset4a

Step 5

Place the sky above the landscape and rotate it using Cmd/Ctrl+T as shown below:

sunset5

Add a mask to this layer and remove the rough edges of the sky with a soft black brush:

sunset5a

Step 6

Apply Gaussian Blur with 2 px to this sky part:

sunset6

Step 7

I used a Curves adjustment layer with Clipping Mask to brighten the sky a bit:

sunset7

On this layer mask use a soft black brush with a very low opacity (10-15%) to reduce the lightness on the left side of the sky:

sunset7a

Step 8

Open the mountain stock. Extract the mountain and place it in the left of the picture:

sunset8

sunset8a

Step 9

I used a Curves adjustment layer (Clipping Mask) to brighten this mountain:

sunset9

On this layer mask use a soft black brush to erase the edges of the mountain where are hidden from the light:

sunset9a

Step 10

I used a Color Fill layer to darken the edges a little. Go to Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid Color:

sunset10

Lower the opacity of this layer to 20%. On this layer mask use a soft black brush to erase the effect on the right of the mountain where we don’t want to be affected by this layer:

sunset10a

Step 11

Make a new layer, change the mode to Overlay 100% and fill with 50% gray:

sunset11

Take the Dodge and Burn Tool (O) with Midtones Range, Exposure about 15-20 % to refine the contrast and details on the mountain. You can see how I did it with Normal mode and the result with Overlay mode:

sunset11a

sunset11b

Step 12

Extract the rock from the background and place it at the right edge of the scene:

sunset12

Step 13

I used Curves to darken the rock:

sunset13

On this Curves layer mask use a soft black brush to remove the dark on the left edge of the rock:

sunset13a

Step 14

I used Color Balance to match the color of the rock with the background:

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