Tutorials photoshop : Create a Fiery City War Scene in Photoshop

Learn how to create this amazing photo manipulation by Andrea García! This tutorial starts by compositing the city landscape using several stock photos then moves on to adding fire and flame. After that, you’ll learn how to add a gas mask to a model and finish up with a warm color effect and a few additional details.

Preview of Final Results

Evaine April 3, 2010

Tutorial Resources

Step 1 – Size

Go to the menu File – Open. The file has to be Width200px. Height 1700px.


Step 2 – Base

You have to star with a base image, this is the one is going to be at the bottom of everything, you can use a texture and add a Gaussian blur (Filter –Blur – Gaussian blur) to have something like this:


Step 3 – Wall

Let’s start with the wall, place the image of the street and add a layer mask, You can find the layer mask option at the bottom of the layers menu.


Step 4 – Hide

Paint over the layer mask with the black brush until you have something like this, remember to make the edges of the wall, don’t worry if is not perfect is just to have the idea.


Step 5 – City

Open the image of the city and place it like this:


Step 6 – Blending

Repeat the process you did before, create a layer mask and hide everything except the buildings, you can make the selection with lasso tool and then pass the black brush to hide the undesired parts.


Step 7 – Multiply

Change layer mode from normal to the option multiply.


Step 8 – Sky

Place (Menu File – Place) the image of the sky above the other images.


Step 9 – Soft Light

Change layer mode to soft light.


Step 10 – Dark

In a new layer ( Ctrl+Shift+N) Pick a soft round brush (black) and paint around the buildings and sky, all the upper part of the image, use the layer in soft light mode. You can set the opacity of the brush to pen pressure if you have a tablet, if you don’t you can use 40% of opacity.


Step 11 -Fire

Like you did before place the layer of the fire


Then change the layer mode to soft light and  change the opacity to: 60% and the fill to 50%.


Step 12 – Gaussian Blur

You can add some Gaussian blur to this image, because right now this layer is going to create the lighting of the flames, So go to Filter- Blur- Gaussian Blur.


Apply 50px of radius.


Step 13 – More Fire

Now add more fire, place another image of the fire and add a layer mask like you did before, so you can hide the edges and make a better blending of the image.

Tip: Is important that all you elements or at least most of them, are smart objects because you can always go back if you make a mistake, is a lot easier to fix it.


Step 14 – Layer mode

Change layer mode to screen and reduce the opacity of the layer to 50% and the fill to 80%


Step 15 – Fire

Add another layer with the fire and repeat the process add a layer mask to it and hide the edges to blend the image.


Step 16 – Screen

Change layer mode to screen


Step 17 – Duplicate

Duplicate the layer and rotate the image, to make the fire from behind the building


Step 18 – Reduce Opacity

Change the opacity of the layer to 55%


Step 19 – Decay

Add some texture to the buildings, for this you can use images or brushes or also mix both. For the front wall you can use an image, place the image and reduce the opacity so you can see underneath that layer.


Then create a layer mask and hide most of the layer just leaving some of those holes in the wall like this:


Change the layer to soft light and reduce the opacity to 70%


Step 20 – Cracks

For the city buildings far away you can use crack brushes with a layer in soft light mode, you can change the opacity of the layer and also of the brush to get better results.


Step 21 – Fog

You can add some dark fog in the bottom of the buildings to blend the image. The brush can be set at 40% of opacity. Also you can change the opacity of the layer to 70% or 60% if you think is too strong.


Step 22 – Painting fire

Now paint some flames on the top of the buildings, use orange and yellow tones to create the flames, you can start making some lines like that


Create a new layer and create bigger flames and with less opacity, you can set your brush to pen pressure or use it at 30% use a soft round brush image029

Now pass the blur tool to it, to the first ones you made also you can use the smudge tool


Add more blur and also create a new layer and paint more around the flames, reduce the opacity of the layers to 60% and you will have something like this:


Step 23 – Shadow

Add a new layer and paint with a soft round brush to paint at the bottom of the buildings.


Also add shadows over the buildings too.


Step 24 – Reflection

Now pick a yellow tone and a fine brush can be 5px and paint in the edge of the wall to create the reflection from the fire behind


Step 25- The model

Place the model at the image and select all with the magic wand tool or the lasso tool


Step 26 – Layer mask

After you have the selection create a layer mask and instantly you will have only the model without the background


Step 27 – Gas Mask

Repeat the process before to cut the gas mask, press ctrl+ T to change the size of the mask to fit the model.


Step 28 – Helmet

Pick the same color of the helmet pressing ctrl+ I and then in a new layer paint over the star and reflections of the helmet.


Step 29 – Radioactive

In the model’s weapon paint with a brush a radioactive symbol, use layer in overlay mode.


Duplicate the symbol and put it in the model’s shoulder change the layer mode to divide.


Step 30 – Bullets

Add some bullets repeat the process you did with the mask and duplicate the layer ( ctrl+J) to have 2 bullets.


Step 31 – Dirt

Create a new layer and with a chalmy brush paint over the model’s skin with a dark brown tone to create dirt. Go to the brush menu and click the option shape dynamics, use size jitter in 10% and Angle jitter in 82% Also use the spacing in 90%


You are ready to paint.


Step 32 – Suit

Change the tone to a gray tone and paint in the model’s suit . Use the same configuration of the brush


Step 33 – Blood and Cuts

Create some cuts and blood in the model, to do this pick a soft round brush with 3px or 2px and paint.


Step 34 – Shadow

Make the shadow of the model in a new layer with a soft round black brush use 150px size and 50% of opacity


Step 35 – Light

Paint with a soft round brush over the model’s suit.


Then reduce the opacity of the layer to 80% and change the mode to color dodge


Step 36 – Ground

Repeat that process on the ground near the model, to make the effect that the ground is reflecting the light from the fire of the scene. Use a orange tone and layer mode in color dodge also the opacity can be 40%


Step 37 – City Strokes

With a soft round orange brush (2px size) make strokes over the top of the buildings to create lighting


Step 38 – Model Light

With the same orange tone paint over the model to create the lighting, you can also add some Gaussian blur(Filter-Blur-Gaussian Blur) to give a softer look, add 15% of radius in the Gaussian Blur


Step 39 – Radioactive Sign

Place the radioactive sign and select the sign and add a layer mask to hide the rest. Press Ctrl+T to change the size


Step 40 – Metal

Then add the metal stick for the sign from another sign, repeat the process: select the metal part with lasso tool, add layer mask and resize it (ctrl+t) to fit the sign


Duplicate (ctrl+J) the stick layer and use the layer in multiply mode, then reduce the opacity to 70 from the sign and the stick


Step 41 – Cracks

With the same brushes as before in color black make some cracks over the sign


Step 42 – Details

With a soft round brush (2px size) with orange tone make strokes to the sign and to the model’s weapon, you can make them softer by passing the blur tool over them.


Step 43 – Fire

Add fire close to the sign, erase the edges with a layer mask and use the layer in screen mode with 90% of opacity


Step 44 – Fire Reflection

Duplicate the fire layer (Ctrl+J) and then with Ctrl+T modify the position in the top of the menu of transform you have to add an (-100) at the option H:. This will rotate the image to look like a reflection.


Step 45 – Details

Reduce the opacity to 55% and hide the part that are far from the original fire, the closest reflection is stronger and the one that is farthest is going to be softer.


Step 46 – Light

Below the model’s layer create a new layer and paint around her with an orange tone, use the layer in soft light mode with 70% of opacity


Step 47 – Color

In a new layer paint with a dark brown tone and with some other lighter tones. When you need a lighter tone go to the color picker, see the image below.


Paint something like this:


Then apply a Gaussian blur to blend about 50 of radius


Step 48 – Layer mode

Change layer mode to soft light and reduce the opacity to 60%


Step 49 – Orange

Add a new layer and with an orange tone fill the layer with the Paint bucket tool.


Use the layer in soft light mode with 65% of opacity


Step 51 – Color Lookup

Go to the menu create new fill or adjustment layer on the bottom of the layer’s and then select the option “color Lookup”  select the option film stock reduce the opacity to 25% and the fill to 65%

Color Lookup is only available at the cs6 or cc version of Photoshop.


Then use another color lookup this time tealorangepluscontrast. With 50% of opacity and 50% of fill.


Step 52 – Curves

If you don’t have that version of Photoshop you can use curves, the result is very similar. And that’s it.


Final Results

Evaine April 3, 2010

Download the PSD


War.zip | 27.8 MB

Read more at http://www.photoshoptutorials.ws/photoshop-tutorials/photo-manipulation/create-fiery-city-war-scene-photoshop/#Tw12762TzxCIU8gc.99


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