In this tutorial, we will create an underwater scene with various elements and an overall mysterious atmosphere. We’ll use most of the Photoshop power tools: layers masks, adjustment layers, smart objects, and more. It helps if you’re an intermediate user but beginners will also be able to follow this tut and learn about various precious techniques. Let’s begin!

Preview of Final Results

This is a classic underwater-above water Photoshop manipulation with a monster lurking in the mysterious depths while unaware characters swim above. One personal touch is the scene’s deep green hue – it further increases the poisonous-strange underwater monster looks. You will need Photoshop CS3 or newer to follow this tutorial.

Tutorial Resources

Step 1

Create a new document (Ctrl +N) 1500×1823 pixels. Save this file somewhere on your computer (Ctrl + S).

Step 2

Open the file “Underwater” in Photoshop. Select all (Ctrl + A) and copy (Ctrl + C). Go back to our newly created document and paste (Ctrl +V). Convert the pasted layer into a smart object (smart objects allow us to resize and modify layers without any permanent loss of information) by right-clicking the layer and choosing “Convert To Smart Object” from the drop-down menu. Convert all the layers you paste in this document from other sources into smart objects – it is good practice.

Step 3

Press Ctrl + T to enter Free Transform and position the underwater layer as shown below. You can hold Shift while dragging the handles of Free Transform to resize the layer proportionally.

Step 4

Create a new Curves Adjustment Layer (Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Curves) and use the settings shown below to make our scene dark and mysterious.

Step 5

Create a new layer and change the blending mode to Overlay. Select the standard round soft brush and lower the size to 3px. Set the Opacity to 10% and paint some squiggly lines where the surface of the water meets the underwater. If the effect is not enough, create another layer and set the blending mode to Color Dodge – paint the same squiggly lines.

Step 6

Open the file “Moon”. Use the Elliptical Marquee Tool to select the moon. Press Q to enter Quick Mask mode and paint with black over the lower part of the moon to deselect it. Press Q again and copy the selection (Ctrl +C). Paste the moon in our scene and place it as shown below. Change the blending mode to Linear Dodge and lower the Fill to 33%.

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13 responses to “Create a Troublesome Underwater Scene with a Big Green Monster in Photoshop”

  1. luckystar Avatar

    Please check, no image. Thanks

  2. Esypasol Avatar

    Uhhm Im tryin’ to figured it out the steps that has no images. Kindly check it? :3 Thaaanks.

  3. Vörös Patrik Avatar
    Vörös Patrik I have tried it xd I liked that tut, thanks..

  4. MattLis Avatar

    It is very good. Easy to follow the steps. Thank you for sharing. Just a shame that the download link does’nt work

  5. Tesfaye Abera Avatar
    Tesfaye Abera


  6. Rain Avatar

    i can’t see some of the images. Can you plz check them again?

    Thanks :)

  7. Steve Avatar

    Some of the images are not loading. You may want to check the paths

  8. Ihab El Shazly Avatar
    Ihab El Shazly

    Moataz Malinky

  9. Marghoob Ahmad Avatar
    Marghoob Ahmad

    ITzz Arslan

  10. Seth Kivuyo Avatar
    Seth Kivuyo


  11. Marghoob Ahmad Avatar
    Marghoob Ahmad

    I’m Photoshop beginner :) but I’m gonna try :)

    1. Abdou Brh Avatar
      Abdou Brh

      u’ll do it :like:

    2. Marghoob Ahmad Avatar
      Marghoob Ahmad

      i have done :)

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