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Professional Portrait Design Tutorial

Create a new document choose a color from the color or swatch palette to fill the background layer.

image 1

Choose Pattern Fill from the adjustment/fill layer icon on the bottom of the layers palette. There you will see several Adobe preset pattern fills.

I'm choosing the upper right one which has a smooth, liquidy kind of feel. Go ahead and choose that as your fill.

You can now adjust the scale of the fill and see it in the preview window. Here we want to create a larger silky wave pattern so increase the scale to around 300.

image 2

Now that you have the pattern fill layer (on its own layer), go ahead and change the blending mode to Hard Light. This will let the fill layer blend with the purple light of the layer below (purple background layer). This gives us a nice silky texture.

Here I have a portrait layer which I've dragged into the document...go ahead and do the same.

image 3

Now create a layer mask and use the gradient layer mask method on diamond or radial. You are masking the darker areas of the layer to blend in with the silky effect below (as you can see the masking on the rubylith and in the layer mask icon).

image 4 


You can do some other adjustments such as changing the color balance. You can do this by creating a color balance adjustment layer or by going to Image: Adjustments: Color Balance when you are on a layer which you want to adjust. Adjustment layers are covered in depth with video tutorials in the Basic Photoshop DVD training.

Here I'm tweaking the sliders to go in favor of a more purplish/blue tint. Minor adjustments like these can often make a big difference; esp. if you have a layer that was off color to start with. We want the portrait to fit in more with the overall color theme and this adjustment does it very well.

Lastly, create a text layer using your font library and add some bevel and stroke effects to it in the blending options/layer effects dialog box (right click on the layer in the layers palette)....and voila!

An elegant, interesting and colorful portrait. Keep in mind that when you start out with great photographs, the easier it is going to be to produce a little quality design 'enhancements'. ;)

Professional Portrait Design Tutorial

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