Photo Manipulation

Stylish Surreal Portrait


Step 9

Move both the “poster edge” and the “black & white” layers into the folder to view the result. You may need to refine the mask to include the nice black outline of her face. To do so use a small soft round brush and paint over the folder’s mask. All New Layers that we’ll be creating in the next few steps should be created inside this folder.


Step 10

Let’s add some funky clothes on her. Load the Victorian Brushes and use the brush (1) at it’s actual size. In black, using the Brush Tool (B) paint one flower on her left shoulder and another on her right shoulder.


Step 11

A quick way to color in her missing shoulders is through the Clone Stamp Tool (S). Use a soft round brush of about 180 – 280 px. Alt pick an area of her body (layer “poster edge”) and apply it to her shoulders. Continue to pick and patch her shoulders very roughly. It doesn’t have to be smooth and perfect since they are hidden beneath her clothes. Moreover the rough patches will look stylish and blend with the overall look in the end.



Step 12

Next we’ll highlight her eyes by adding some eyelashes. Load eyelashes brushes. Create a New Layer and using the Brush Tool (B) paint in black along the top & bottom eyelashes of both eyes.


Step 13

Now it’s time to give her a hairstyle masterpiece! Start off by making her hair base using these splatter brushes. Create a New Layer, use the Brush Tool (B) and paint in Black with the brush shown below at its original size.


Step 14

So far our layers are organized as below. Check to make sure you’re on the right track. Then create a New Folder above the stack and call it “Hair”.


Step 15

Duplicate the “hair” layer and place it in the “hair” folder above.


Step 16

Next load the Japanese flowers brushes and Beautiful flowers brushes. Use a combination of both to create a canvas of flowers. Be wild and bold!


Step 17

At this point, take a step back to view the overall artwork. I decided to unify the harsh contrast of smooth glowing skin gainst rough edged shadows on her jaws, neck and eyes area. Instead of getting rid of the edges, I decided to enhance them by going for a watercolor look. I chose this beautiful paper to work with.


Step 18

Open the paper texture and make a copy of it. Place one of it at the top of all layers and the other one at the bottom. Change the top paper texture’s blending mode to Overlay. Change the bottom paper texture’s Opacity to 10%. Here we have a harmonious skin tone and texture.



Step 18

The next thing to do is create a little surreal world inside her head. An enchanted world of fairies. Begin by adding a Layer Mask to all 3 hair layers.


Step 20

Use these Watercolor Splatters and paint over the layer masks to erase off part of the black hair while retaining soft cloudy edges for a dreamy watercolor effect. Begin with layer “hair3”, use the Brush Tool and experiment with different brush shapes and sizes.


Step 21

Then continue painting on “hair2” and “hair3” layer masks.


Step 22

Add little clouds in the sky by using the Eraser Tool (E). With the same watercolor brushes but much smaller brush size, work on “hair3” Layer mask.


Step 23

Add some trees to our landscape. Create a New Layer and use the brushes below. Again play with various sizes and opacity to achieve depth.



Step 24

Shorten the trees with the Transform Tool (Cmd/Ctrl + T) to be 90% of its original height. We need to make some space for the fairies.

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