Program: PSP X2
Level: Easy-Medium, beginners should be able to figure it out
1)Crop and resize the base of your choice. This works best on lighter images but not too light. Have fun with the crop, I usually posistion the focus off to the side a bit so in the end the light texture will end up sitting on the shoulder. Make sure to choose a good to high quality image. It will make all the difference in the world.
2) Next I duplicated the base and set the image on screen 30% opacity. The image was a bit dark and screen will brighten everything up.
3) I again duplicated the base and set the layer on soft light 30% opacity. This will add some contrast to the image and brings the quality up a good notch.
4) I noticed the image was a bit blurry. I copy-merged all the layers and sharpened once. This makes it looks more polished.
5) Next I wanted to adjust the curves of the image. This will improve contrast, lighten up the highlights and deepen the shadows. I set the curves o: 25>1 , 241>255. See image below
6) Then I wanted to make the image more colorful. I set Saturation to 13 and lightness to 4. Its a minor adjustment but messing with these settings too much will make it look unnatural.
7) Lastly for the adjustment layers I wanted to deepen the shadows just a tad more. I went to adjust>levels and set it to levels: 0, 142, 255
8)Now it is time to play with the light textures! I created all the textures and a tutorial can be found on icon_tutorials. I set this light texture on screen 100%. It adds a pop of color right on Adamas shoulder.
9) It wasnt quite enough so I duplicated the light texture and set to screen 30%
10) Next I wanted to add a bit of red on the edges of the yellow glow. I put this texture on and set it to soft light at 100%. This will add the flair of red and not make the image hazy.
11) Next I wanted to give the image a bit more of a matte look. I created a new raster layer, flood filled it with a dark grey and set that on ligten 100% . This makes the blacks in the image less stark.
12) NOw I find this to be a bit too stark so I went back to that copy merged image (the one after we had screen and soft light layers) duplicated that layer, dragged it to the top and set that on overlay 68%. This keeps the matte effect but keeps the quality of the image high.
13) I think its important to add a bit of texture to the back ground. Its not very noticable I admit but it adds a nice touch. I created a new raster layer flood filled it with that same dark grey color and added noise to the layer. See image below to see how to add noise. I had the noise level set at about 30% gaussian
I erased the noise on the face but it is up to you if you want to or not.