Exercise: Fish Out of Water
Feb 1, 2017 by
a file upload
jpg and jpeg
In this exercise, you will put an image of an animal from one environment into a completely different environment, so that the image is believable.
Work on color, spatial considerations, and lighting to make the seahorse look like it was in the desert tree when the photograph was taken.
Part 1: Size, place, mask
Open Photoshop file:
Flip the seahorse so it is facing left instead of right, resize and position it in the tree.
Select the seahorse, refine the selection, and save to a new layer with mask.
Part 2: Color match
Add a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer, and attach it to the seahorse layer below it. Adjust the hue, roughly.
Add a Curves adjustment layer, and attach it to the seahorse layer also. Adjust the RGB levels to refine the hue so it is similar to those in the environment.
If the fins are still an odd hue, select those on the seahorse layer and adjust using Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation/Brightness.
Part 3: Place 3-dimensionally
Decide where the seahorse is in 3-dimensional space, in relation to the tree. Adjust placement as needed.
Select portion of the tree that will be in front of the seahorse, refine selection and save to a new layer with mask.
Paint the tree mask to make further adjustments to 3-dimensional position of the seahorse.
Part 4: Lighting
Compare the shadows and highlights on the tree to those on the seahorse.
Cmd+Click on the seahorse mask layer thumbnail to activate the selection.
Make a new layer above the seahorse.
Select the brush tool, and make a very soft brush with 40% opacity, Darken mode. Choose black foreground color.
Cmd+H to hide the marching ants.
NOTE: Your selection is still active, and you will only be able to paint within it! Darken areas on the seahorse to make the lighting quality similar to that on the tree.
Cmd+D to deselect.
On the tree layer, paint any shadows cast by the seahorse.
Part 5: Get Creative
Add another seahorse or other sea life to the scene, in a believable manner.
Choose a different photo from the web, not the same seahorse already used.
Use masking, so that no pixels are deleted (allows you options for further editing).
Make sure colors and lighting fit the rest of the scene.
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