In this tutorial I’d like to show you an easy and quick way on how to blend glass and apply lighting effects and color adjustments to get the exact picture you want.
Preview of Final Results
Inspiring Light Bulb Photo Manipulation Photoshop Tutorial
- Light Bulb, Holder and Sunset– Pelleron-Art
- Desert– night-fate stock
- Crack – nighty-stock
- Fractal – PinkMonkeyLove
- Flowers and leaves – in the following text
Step 1 – Preparing the Document
Create a new document in Photoshop. To do that go to File > New… or press Ctrl + N. Set the value Width on 600 pixels and Height on 400 pixels. Press OK.
Download the picture of the sunset and the picture of the ground and place it into the new document. Name the layer with sunset SKY and the layer with ground GROUND. Place layer GROUND above the SKY. Click on the layer GROUND and press Ctrl + T. Then resize the image on proper size. Do the same with SKY. Below you can see how your image should look like so far.
Step 2 – Cutting Out the Sky From the Ground
In this step you´re going to cut out the sky from the ground picture. You can do it very easily thanks to Channels. To do that click on the palette Channels. If you don´t see it go to Window > Chanels. On the palette you can see RGB, Red, Green and Blue channel. Right click on the Blue channel and duplicate it.
TIP: If you cut out something with Channels, always duplicate the channel where is the biggest contrast between the object you want to cut out and the rest of the image.
Let make only the Blue copy channel visible and the rest invisible.
Go to Image > Adjustments > Levels… (or press Ctrl + T on your keyboard) and set the Input Levels as on the picture below.
The channel should look like on the following picture. You did this thing with Levels because you want to have solid black and white color – it indicates where the selection will be. White color will be selected, black stays unselected. Grey tones between will be selected with different opacities. E. g. 50% mid grey color will have selection with 50% opacity.
Grab the Brush Tool (B), select some hard round brush and pick white color. Paint over the grey parts of the sky. Be careful along the horizontal line. You do this because you want to have selected the whole sky – you want to cut out all the clouds not only some parts. Below you can see how the image should look like.
Click back on the RGB channel to be able to see the image in colors again. Click on the GROUND on your palette Layers and go to Select > Load Selection… and in the box Channel choose the option Blue copy. Press OK.
This step activates the selection based on the “Blue copy” channel. Everything which was white will be selected, black stays unselected. Now simply press Delete on your keyboard to delete the sky from the picture with ground. After this step you should have picture similar to the one below.
Step 3 – Adjusting the Mountain
If you take a look on the picture above you can probably see that the mountains on the horizon should be less blue and more orange because of the sun nearby. You´ll fix it in this step.
Add new adjustment layer Selective Color on the top of your layers (To do that click on the button “Create a new fill or adjustment layer” which can be found on the bottom part of the palette Layers. If you don´t see this palette go to Window > Palette or simply press F7 on your keyboard.)
I write it in all tutorials but I feel I need to mention it here too – try to use adjustment layers instead of direct adjustments as often as possible. This way you can change it during the whole process of doing manipulation not as long as History remembers your steps. In other words – thanks to adjustment layers adjustment is always reversible and changeable.
Set the adjustment layer Selective Color in the same way as you can see on the following picture.
Right click on this adjustment layer and select the option Create Clipping Mask. This way the adjustment affects only one layer bellow which means the GROUND. Click on the thumbnail of this layer (see picture below), grab the Gradient Tool (G), pick black color and fill the thumbnail with it.
Grab the Brush Tool (B), pick white color and paint over the mountain. This way the adjustment affects only the mountains and not the whole GROUND. Your image should look like the one below so far.
As you can see on previous picture the adjustment makes mountain bit more orange/rose but not over all parts and because of that they look badly stained. To fix that create a new layer on the top of your layers. Create clipping mask from it and name it e. g. MORE ORANGE.
Grab the Brush Tool (B), select some soft round brush, set Master Diameter on about 20 pixels and Opacity on 30%. pick some color similar to colors of the sky and gently paint over the parts of mountain which stay too blue. Once you´re finished your image should look like the one bellow.
Step 4 – Reflection of Sun
If you look at some sunset photos you may notice that the sun creates “aura” on the objects behind which it shines. You will create the aura in this step.
Make GROUND invisible for a while (click on the small eye icon).
Grab the Marquee Tool (M) and select the bottom part of the sun with the aura.
Copy the selection (Ctrl + C) and paste it on the top of the layers (Ctrl + V). Name the layer SUN AURA and change the Blending Mode on Color Dodge. Lower the Opacity on 80%. Make the GROUND visible again. Add vector mask to the layer SUN AURA. You can find the button Add vector mask on the bottom part of the palette Layers.
Grab the Brush Tool (B), select some soft round brush, lower the opacity on about 50% and pick black color. Paint around the edges of the aura to blend it properly. On the following picture you can see how your image should look like.
Step 5 – Adding the Light Bulb
It’s time to add the light bulb.
Download the picture of light bulb from the link I’ve provided on the beginning of the tutorial and drag it into the manipulation. Place the layer on the top of all layers and name it LIGHT BULB. Press Ctrl + T and resize it on proper size.
Tip: There is plenty of ways how to blend glass. You can blend it with the help of Channels (it’s quite similar as what you did in the step 2) or with different blending modes – e.g. if you have photo of the glass on the black background the easiest way how to blend it is to change the Blending Mode on Screen. It makes the black background invisible but the glass stays visible. You should try it!
But I´d like to show you another way to learn you as much as possible in this tutorial.
The way how you´ll do it is pretty simple. Make all layers except LIGHT BULB invisible (similarly as in previous step). Then go to Select > Color Range… and with the eye dropper click on some white part of the light bulb. The Color Range makes selection based on the color you´ve selected.
Set the value Fuzziness on 60 and press OK. Now you need to invert the selection. To do it go to Select > Invert or press Ctrl + Shift + I. Then press Delete on your keyboard to delete the selection. Some unwanted parts of the sky still stays. To hide them grab the Eraser Tool (E) and simply erase them. Lower the opacity of this layer on 65% and make all layers visible again.
Step 6 – Adjusting the Light Bulb
The glass should have more orange tones because the light on the scene is very warm because of the sunset. To fix it add new adjustment layer Photo Filter above the layer LIGHT BULB. Choose #BB6F56 reddish color and higher the Density on 60%.
Create clipping mask from the layer.
Step 7 – Adding the Holder
This will be really quick step. Open the picture of the holder in Photoshop. Cut out the background and drag it into the manipulation. Name the layer HOLDER and place it under the LIGHT BULB. Press Ctrl + T and resize it on proper size. Press Enter.
Step 8 – Adjusting the Holder
As you may see on the picture above the holder is too bright and should be more orange. You´ll fix it in this step. To increase the contrast add new adjustment layer Levels above the HOLDER and set the Input Levels on 125; 1,22; 226. Create clipping mask from this layer.
To add more orange color create new adjustment layer Color Balance above Levels and set the value Hue on -180 and Saturation on -50. Create clipping mask from this layer too.