Create a Beautiful Rainbow Photo Composite in Adobe Photoshop

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  By Julian
Create a Beautiful Rainbow Photo Composite in Adobe Photoshop

Hello all,

Today I going to be bringing you another inspiring Photoshop Composite tutorial.

I’ve been doing a lot of scanning through Instagram and I’m loving a lot of the pictures with rainbows in strange places that would n’t expect any sort of rainbow to possibly exist, so I thought I’ll make my own strange placed rainbow.

OS the first thing I’m going to be doing is opening up my own PSD file where all my other Images will be added to.

Go to File – New (or Ctrl N for a shortcut)

For the Preset select Web and then for the size you can go with 1024×758 or if you have good stock images that are larger than the file we are creating you can go with 1280×1024 which will be my size as most of my stock images are larger than 3000pxs.

Set it to RGB and 72 Resolution.

Then press OK.

The first part that I want to create for my image is some sort of highway so I chose this image below.

Then selected the Polygonal Tool and changes the Feather to 5px.

You can see in the top bar there are several menus, you will find Feather just below Type and Select in that menu bar, all you have to do is select to highlight like you would any normal text and type in your number and press return.

Then I click on the area that I want to select, go to Edit – Copy

When you have you selected piece copied you can close the window and go into your main file.

Paste it in to Edit – Paste.

Once you do this you will most probably have to resize your selection.

Ctrl T will allow you to free transform the image, this means you have click on the edges and drag the sides of the image to whatever size you’d like.

By holding shift on your keyboard it will constrain it, this means it will scale down perfectly.

So I have a few more Highways, what I’m going to do with those is I’m going to select and paste in the exact same way as we just did, but I’m going to try to merge some elements.

I’m going to add two more highway images, so you can do the same if you’d like.

The images look like so.

I add both in at a time and then drop the opacity of the layer to 50%

Now once this is complete I’m going to blend them in.

So with each of the new two layers, in turn, I go to Layer – Layer Mask – Reveal All

Now using a Brush Tool and Black you can start to paint out the areas an blend them in.

To do this right click on your screen, and choose the first brush that comes up, this is the soft brush and it is best for blending.

Now drop the opacity of the brush to about 50% but you can move it up and down depending on the situation, I always shift it up and down constantly.

You click on the white box thumbnail beside your thumbnail image of the actual selection you will see on the right-hand side inside the layers panel.

Then start to paint on the actual image and with using black you will see the image start to disappear and blend, you can increase or decrease the size of your brush by holding Ctrl and hitting your bracket keys on your keyboard.

If you make a mistake you can switch your brush to white to bring the image back.

Good, now I have the old looking weather road that I’m after.

Now I’m going to add the background.

In the same way that I created the road, I’m going to add a scene of my choosing.

I select it with the rectangular marquee tool which is just above the Polygonal which we originally used, and I copied and pasted it into my image.

I then resized it with Free Transform just like we did previously.

I also re-positioned by clicking and dragging my layer below all the other layers but above the original white background layer.

Because my road is a little blurred I figured the background would look well blurred to for my final image to show a little perspective.

So I went to Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur

So this is what we have so far.

Now I’m going to create some mist across the road for a little bit of atmosphere.

I do this by activating the Brush Tool as you see below.

Right-click on the screen and you will see that ther are options that you can chose from, the only one that you have to be concerned about is the very fist brush, the soft brush.

I change the size of my brush by using the bracket keys on my keyboard.

Then I create a new layer on top of all the other layers.

Then I paint across the road to create a kind of mist looking mark right across the entire image.

When this has been painted in I go to Filter -Blur – Gaussian Blur.

I set the radius to around 30, I found with my image that setting due to the size was best, yours may vary a little.

You don’t have to go crazy just a decent blur that looks anywhere near mine will suit.

When this is done the next step is to drop the layer opacity, you can find this on the middle right-hand side, in my image it’s highlighted, to change it just highlight it by clicking and dragging and then typing in the number that you want, I chose 50%, it worked perfectly for me.

Cool, next I’m going to add a fellow world traveler to my image.

The images that I’m going to use is the two below, I think it suits the picture perfectly for going for a sort of crazy surreal but possible scenario…um kinda.

So my idea is to have both ladies in the image but has one on either side.

I’m going to have to crop these both out, and the Tool I’m going to use to achieve it out of the many is my Polygonal Tool.

Then I’ll zoom into my image using the keyboard.

I do this by holding Ctrl – and +

You can also hold down the Spacebar to activate a grab hand which will let you move around your image by clicking and dragging so long as you’re holding the Spacebar.

You will see at the top as well under where it says Type and Select you will see Feather, type into the box there 0.5, that will give you a tiny blurred edge just to help your image look a little more natural.

Then using you Polygonal Tool you click around the edge of your image the whole way as best you can until you get back to where you began.

Once you do that click on Edit – Copy

Then you will be able to go to your image and paste it in there.

So with the second lady, I cut out all around Her but I did the hair really loose, the reason being I’m going to sort that out when I’m in my image as it will be easier to work the hair.

Now using the Free Transform Tool I’ll position my models where I think it looks best/fits.

Next, I zoom in to see the hair better.

Select my Lasso Tool

And create a selection that I think will look ok when I delete the hair I want to get rid of.

It will look a little sharp, especially if you don’t include Feathering.

So I’ll choose my Blur Tool and just give the hair a once over around the edges.

Now I’m going to create some shadows, I did this by creating a new selection on a new layer, for the selection I just use my Polygonal Tool and then paint black in it using my Brush Tool.

I’ll give it a blur, I go to Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur.

About a 3.5 will work ok.

Then I’ll drop the opacity on the layers until I think it looks good.

I’ll also go to Image – Adjustments – Levels for both models.

I’ll darken the front model by sliding the middle slider to the right. Just a subtle amount.

Then I’ll do the opposite for the rear model.

I also zoomed right into the feet of our front model and creating a new layer below Her I painted black in a shadow shape under Her feet as you can see below.

I then give it a Gaussian Blur and drop its opacity.

Lastly, I gathered up some Free Stock images of Rainbows in the sky until I choose the one you can see Blending.

I copy and pasted it into my image, created a mask as softly erased the bottom until I think it blended nicely, I also dropped that layer opacity slightly too.

When finished I ended up with the image below. Hope you create some awesome images out there. 🙂


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Graduated from college in 2002 with a degree in Art & Design, I started exploring my way in Graphic Design and Professional Post Production. Full-time freelancer since 2011.

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