Carro (lessrest) wrote in icon_tutorial,

Doctor Who tutorial

I was asked to do a tutorial on how I made this icon (the one I'm posting with). :)


Program: Photoshop Elements 2
Difficulty: Medium
Translatable: Yes
Steps: 29


Okay, so, I didn't save the .psd so this will be from memory. The coloring is pretty much the same, though, it's just the textures/brush work that are different.
I used this screencap from killcolor. You probably need a screencap with colored lightening on it to get the full effect I do in this tutorial. Science fiction shows (like Doctor Who, in this case) use that type of lightening a lot.
The textures I use here were all made by me and posted here ("Do dinosaurs dream of primeval sheep?"), because I was playing around with some textures I had just created, when I made this icon. :)
Oh, and my PSE is in Swedish, so it's possible I've translated some things wrong. But it should be correct, I checked.


STEP ONE: SCREEN LAYERS
Picture
I copied the layer three times and set each layer to screen. The first two at full opacity, the last at half that. The purpose of this is to make the image brighter, so it isn't as dark.


STEP TWO: SATURATION
Picture
I added a saturation layer (layers -> new adjustment layer -> hue/saturation) and increased the saturation. I set this saturation layer to the blend mode "color", because if you leave it on normal mode saturation layers can create jpeg artifacts.


STEP THREE: SOFT LIGHT
Picture
I copied the image once again, dragged the copy to the top and set it to soft light. This added contrast to the picture.


STEP FOUR: OVERLAY
Picture
I copied the top layer and set the copy to overlay at 50% opacity. Overlay adds contrast and color.


STEP FIVE: RED FILL LAYER
Picture
I added a dark red fill layer (layer --> new fill layer -> monochrome) on blend mode screen. The purpose for this is to make the shadows brighter and red instead of blue. I wanted to enhance the red in the picture, as it was being overpowered by all the blue color.


STEP SIX: RED FILL LAYER
Picture
The previous step made the picture way too bright. I moved the fill layer down two layers, so that it ended up beneath the soft light and overlay layers. This way, the red fill layer no longer removed the contrast added by the soft light & overlay layers. So I got the red coloring without losing so much contrast in the process.


STEP SEVEN: MINOR ADJUSTMENT
Picture
I switched places on the soft light and overlay layers, because this created a better contrast (in my opinion). It's just a minor change, though.


STEP EIGHT: LEVELS (ON SOFT LIGHT)
Picture one & picture two.
I added a levels layer where I played around with brightness and color. I changed the coloring (by moving around the different arrows) until I liked the result I got.
I set this layers on soft light, which adds contrast.


BONUS EXAMPLE
I did the first eight steps on another Doctor Who screencap (also from killcolor) to try it out.



The background was already bright in this screencap, that's why the background looks brighter here. Since we're gonna erase the background anyway, that doesn't matter. :)


STEP NINE: SATURATION
Picture
I wanted the icon to be slightly more colorful, so I increased the saturation slightly. I set the layer on blend mode "color", for the same reason I explained earlier.


STEP TEN: REMOVE BACKGROUND
Picture one, picture two and picture three.
I removed the background. I added a fill layer in a contrasting color below it, to make it easier to see what I was doing. I erased the background using a soft brush. Then I smudged the hair using the smudge tool at a low opacity effect, in order to make the hair look more natural.


STEP ELEVEN: CROPPING
Picture
I cropped the picture to 100x100 pixels, using the crop tool.


STEP TWELVE: BACKGROUND
(Picture of how I did this)
I added a texture to the background. I then copied the texture and dragged it to the top and set this top texture to "soft light". This made the icon's coloring look more cohesive.


STEP THIRTEEN: BACKGROUND
(Picture of how I did this)
I wasn't satisfied with the background, so I added another texture to the background on the blend mode multiply.


STEP FOURTEEN: COLORING ON JENNY
(Picture of how I did this)
I added a teal fill layer on soft light that I grouped with the Jenny layer (Layers -> Group with). By grouping it with the Jenny layer the fill layer only affected Jenny and left the background unchanged.
I added this teal fill layer because I thought the coloring could use some more blue.


STEP FIFTEEN: BACKGROUND
(Picture of how I did this)
I still weren't happy with the background, so I added another texture, this time on soft light mode.


STEP SIXTEEN: BACKGROUND
(Picture of how I did this)
The background was now too blue, so I added a brown fill layer set on soft light (as a new layer right beneath the cut out of Jenny). This made the background look less blue and slightly more red/orange.


STEP SEVENTEEN: BACKGROUND
→ (Picture of how I did this)
As I still wasn't happy with the background, I added yet another texture to the background on the blend mode multiply.


STEP EIGHTEEN: BRUSHWORK
(Picture of how I did this)
I created a new empty layer on top and used some grunge:y looking brushes (made by blimey_icons, posted here) to paint on it in black.


STEP NINETEEN: BRUSHWORK
(Picture of how I did this)
I changed the blend mode to soft light. :)
Black color on soft light (or overlay) creates shadows.


STEP TWENTY: BRUSHWORK
(Picture of how I did this)
Repeat the previous two steps, but with white color this time!


STEP TWENTY-ONE: BRUSHWORK
(Picture of how I did this)
Change the blend mode to something that looks good. I chose overlay at 70%.
White color on overlay (or soft light) creates highlights.

Comparison before/after the brushes:



STEP TWENTY-TWO: COMPOSITION
(Picture of this)
This is where I decided that the icon I had made so far was way too boring. I decided to change the composition, since I was mostly happy with everything else. I changed the size of the icon to 60x60 pixels.
I defined this as a pattern (Edit -> Define pattern).


STEP TWENTY-THREE: COMPOSITION
(Picture of how I did this)
I created a new, blank 100x100 canvas. I added my new "pattern" to this canvas (Layers -> New fill layer -> Pattern). I moved it around until I had the original icon roughly in the middle of the new one.


STEP TWENTY-FOUR: SATURATION
(Picture of how I did this)
I lowered the saturation of the background, since it was a bit too high. I masked away the parts covering Jenny, though, since I was happy with the saturation on her.
I used the blend mode "color", which I always do when I change the saturation.


STEP TWENTY-FIVE: COLORING
(Picture of how I did this)
The coloring was starting to bore me with its sameness, so I changed it using a hue/saturation layer.


STEP TWENTY-SIX: COLORING
(Picture of how I did this)
I masked away the parts covering Jenny (by painting over her with a black brush while having the hue/sat layer selected) and then I masked away part of the background as well.


STEP TWENTY-SEVEN: COLORING
(Picture of how I did this)
I repeated the previous two steps several times, to change the color on the rest of the background.


STEP TWENTY-EIGHT: OVERLAY
(Picture of how I did this)
I merged all layers. I copied my one layer and set it to overlay at 30% opacity. This added contrast and color to the background.


STEP TWENTY-NINE: SHARPENING

(Picture one, picture two, picture three)
I merged all layers, copied my one layer, and used the high pass filter on the top layer (Filter -> Other -> High pass...) at 0.3 radius.
I then used a 5px soft brush to erase the parts covering the "edges" in the icon, since I didn't want them any sharper.
Then I changed the blend mode to overlay and the opacity to 70%.

And we're done! :D

Ask if something is unclear/confusing/wrong, and if you have something to add let me know.
Originally posted here. :)
Tags: colouring: miscellaneous, colouring: saturation, graphic effects: sharpening, graphic effects: textures, program: photoshop, tutorial: colouring
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