How to Make a Fairy Collage
In this Adobe Photoshop tutorial you will see how to make a little girl into a fairy princess with tender butterfly wings.
1. First of all I cut out the image of the girl out of its original background. Then I found a more or less suitable flower background image . It needed some preparation - I had to make sure it is the same resolution as the girl picture and has appropriate size.
2. The next step was to paste the selected image into the new background (a new layer is automatically created by Adobe PhotoShop).
3. Then I used edit>transform>rotate command to create a flight effect and the Move tool to find a good position.
4. Then I used Crop to cut away extra background spaces. I also had to crop to the legs, as they were not in the picture originally).
5. I cut out a butterfly wing from a photo to make the fairy wings.
6. The left wing was put onto a new layer. I used Free transform on it to properly position the wing behind the girl's back and make it look natural (to create the effect of flying).
7. To add the right wing I pasted in the same wing selection the second time, flipped it horizontally, used Free transform. The wings should look natural enough.
Then I merged the two layers containing the wings,
8. The next step was to make the shadow fall from the girl. I duplicated the layer with the girl and applied image>adjust>threshhold (to maximum) to it.
9. Staying in the same layer I used filter>gaussian blur (adjust the amount, looking at the shadows in the background image).
10. Then I created the wings shadows in the same manner.
11. The girl's shadow is partly falling on the background flower and partly - on the wings. These parts are differently distanced from the viewer. So, using a rectangular marquee, I shifted the appropriate parts of the girl's shadow.
12. Out of the butterfly picture I took the antenna, pasted two copies of it onto new layers, flipped one of the copies horizontally and placed the antennas onto the girl's head. To make a better transition between the antennas and the hair I used a soft edge erazer.
13. At this time I merged all layers except the bacground layer.
14. Then copied the resulted layer and applied gaussian blur to it.
15. Here I changed layer blending mode to Multiply instead of Normal and put Opacity to 60%.
16. Layer>merge down.
17. Finally I used curves and levels to adjust the color in the girl image to the background.
To make it look softer I also used a Warming (LBA) photo filter.
18. The last step was to merge all layers and save the collage with needed resolution and size.
When I showed the result to my daughter (who is the model), she was very excited about it but wanted to see something else. So we played a little bit with different filters and tools. Here's the one effect she liked especially - the use of Art History brush on the parts of the background.