How to Create an Abstract Photo Manipulation

How to Create an Abstract Photo Manipulation
Watercolor brush added

Step 6

Do this again twice using different brushes and use yellow and blue as the colors. You should end up with something similar to the image below.
Different watercolor brush added

Step 7

I then used some splatter brushes in random colors to add some more detail which you can see below. Feel free to use different brushes but I liked the effect gained from using the splatter brushes.
Splatter brushes added

Step 8

You now need to find an image of a rainforest or a jungle, ideally something with lots of green plants. I tend to get my stock images from SXC so copy an image then paste it into your document and move it behind the watercolor strokes then resize it and position it like so.
Jungle image added

Step 9

Select the layer with your jungle image then hold Alt and click on the layer mask button to, this time, create a black layer mask so this will hide your jungle image. Change the foreground color to white then select the layer mask then the brush tool and using a 0% hardness brush of about 100px diameter brush at parts round the parrot to unhide bits of the plants. In this step I only did the bits around the parrots back.
Jungle image masked

Step 10

I then repeated the last two steps for the parts below the part, you may have done this already in the previous step which is fine.
Previous step repeated

Step 11

This is an optional step but also an opportunity for you to add some personal touches. You will need some cool patterns, you can download these, use the ones that come with Photoshop or make your own, I've written loads of tutorials which include the creation of patterns, 45° lines, Photoshop's transparent pattern, diamond plating. What I did was to select the pattern stamp tool, chose a pattern and used either a splatter brush or a watercolor brush then brushed onto a new layer below the parrot layer.
Unique textures added

Step 12

Create a new layer directly below the parrot then select the brush tool and choose a 2px hard round brush. Now using a few different bright colors draw some long freehand lines and make the pretty random and go wild. Use about three or four different colors, I've shown a couple of examples below.
Checkerboard pattern
Diagonal lines pattern
Abstract photo manipulation

Step 13

Next I added some details using the shape tools, I've shown some below so add a few of each in a new layer each time, you decide if it should be above or below the parrot. Here I used the line tool to create some crosses, I used a weight of 2px and held Shift to get the lines at 45°.
More detail added
I held Shift and used the rectangle tool then reduced the opacity of the layer to give a semi-transparent effect.
Traslucent rectangule
Just some simple circles her, I added a few of these dotted about.
Simple circles
I added some more simple shapes in different colors like the white rings but I'm sure you've got the idea now.
Abstract photo manipulation

Step 14

Last thing to do in almost any Photoshop image is to experiment with some color adjustments, the way I see it is if your a beginner then use the hue/saturation adjustment layer, an intermediate then go for the color balance adjustment layer and if you have a bit more experience or feel adventurous then try the curves adjustment layer. I added a curves adjustment layer with the settings shown below and mainly lowered the output of the blue channel increased the rest as the image was looking to cold I felt.

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10 comments on “How to Create an Abstract Photo Manipulation”

  1. have been wanting to try this - images like this are getting very popular in the digital scrapbooking world!! Thank you! x

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