In this special tutorial, we will teach you how to create a creative winged rebel poster design using Photoshop. This guide will give you insights on how to merge different layers creatively, as well as how to add extra details and “dirtiness” into a background to make it more intricate and creative. Using these tricks should help you create a fairly intricate and dramatic full color poster design of your own. So let us start.
1. To make it easier for you to submit your design to a printer, it is good to setup your document properly at the start. So once you open a new document in Adobe Photoshop, try to be precise with your measurements. Set the width and height according to the correct dimensions of the poster or flyer print that you want. Use a high grade value resolution (300ppi or more) and if the printer is using four colors, change the color mode to CMYK.
2. First we begin by using a light grey color for the background. Then, we paste in an image of a woman in a stylish pose. This will be our free-wheelin’ winged rebel. Position the image relatively at the center, compensating a bit for the wings that we are going to out later. For now, do not worry about the rough edge cut at the bottom.
3. This next step depends on your image. With the image selected go to Image -> Adjustments -> Brightness/Contrast. If you got a fairly dark photo or image, you might want to boost the brightness and contrast value. If you already have an image that is too bright though, it might be good to tone it down a bit by adding negative values to the brightness like so. Just set until you are comfortable with the detail and lighting of the image.
4. To tone down the red of our image a bit, we use a Photo Filter to balance things out. Just go to Image -> Adjustments -> Photo Filter and use an orange Photo Filter at 50% density.
5. Create a new layer on top of our model layer. Do this by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+N. Then using a couple of different grunge brushes paint out a few spots off to the side of our model. Use the same color as her dress and hair as appropriate. You can do this by just using the eyedropper tool to get the color.
6. Next, add a layer mask on the original model layer. Then using the grunge brushes that you used before, paint some spots on the left side of our model. This gives the impression that the model is being deconstructed (or reconstructed depending on your view).
7. Next, create a new layer on top of our background layer. Then, using the gradient tool apply a radial gradient with a dark grey-grey combination. Try to position the lighter grey spot at the model while the rest should be darker. This gives a more emphasized spotlight effect on our feature image.
8. Next, look for a nice Bokeh type image effect from the Internet. There should be tons of free ones out there. Open one in Photoshop. Then press CTRL+SHIFT+U to desaturate it.
9. Now, paste in this Bokeh effect image to our design. Position it above the gradient background. Then change its blend mode to Screen and adjust the fill value to around 40%.
10. Now, create new layer just above the Bokeh layer. Use a large and soft brush to paint in a darker grey tint at the bottom of our poster.
11. Create a new layer on top of our model layer. Then using the rectangular marquee tool create a diagonal 45 degree color block that will cover the rough cut edges of our model. Use a white to black linear color gradient for this layer. Erase the parts of the rough cut of the model layer by selecting the area of the new layer (CTRL click on the thumbnail of the layer) and then using the eraser tool to erase the rough cut of the model with that model layer selected.
12. Change the blend mode of this layer to “screen” and then reduce the fill percentage by 20%.
13. Create a new rectangle layer with a white fill and rotate it diagonally in the center of our poster like so.
14. Change your foreground color to gray, and your background color should be black. Next, go to Filter -> Sketch -> Halftone Pattern. Use a size of 3, a contrast of 2 and the pattern type should be a dot.
15. Reduce this layer’s fill to around 60%. Then add a layer mask to it by clicking on the add layer mask button in the layers panel. Using a brush, erase part of the bottom left part of the layer to blend it creatively at that area.
16. Create another new layer again by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+N on top of the background layers, but just behind the model layers. Select a hard edged round brush and then go to the brushes panel. Click on “Scattering” in the brushes panel. Set the Scatter to 1000%, Control to Off, count to 1 and the count jitter to 100%.
17. Afterwards, just paint with this brush in the new layer. Do 3-6 passes of the brush around your poster design. Use a white color first, a grey color and then a black color. Repeating it again around the design gives us more “dots” density.
18. Next, go to Filters -> Blur -> Motion Blur. In the window that opens, use 45 degrees for the angle value and 600 pixels for the distance value.
19. Then, change the blend mode of this motion blurred layer to “Soft light” This gives us a very creative color lines effect over our design like so.
20. On a new layer, create another rectangle. This time color it a dark yellow. Then press CTRL+T to transform and rotate it 45 degrees. Align it on top of the halftone patterned layer we created earlier to get this nice look.
21. Duplicate this yellow layer and paste it behind the first stripe layer at the bottom right like so.
22. Now, before we move on, we open a separate image document of a city street. This will be pasted into our poster design layer. Adjust the image so that it is brighter and more easily visible. Do this by going to Image -> Adjustments -> Brightness/Contrast. Increase the brightness and contrast valued accordingly.
23. Now, paste in the city image just below the yellow strikes and the motion blurred layer. Set its blend mode to overlay and reduce its fill value to around 40%.
24. Depending on the type of city image you pasted, it might be necessary to erase some of the hard edges of the city with a soft eraser brush.
25. The background should be looking pretty detailed and intricate by now. But we are still going to add a few more special effects. Create another new layer just behind our model and color brushes layer and brush in a large soft white round spot. This gives our model an additional extra highlight.
26. Great! Now we will add some wings to our model. We are going to use a free wing image document from this great artist here.
27. We paste in one wing image to our model like so.
28. To integrate the wing better, we move the colored grunge brushes layer down behind the wings. Then we create a new layer above the wings with just a few bits more colored grunge brushes painted in. Finally, we also use the eraser set with a grunge brush to make it look like the wings are also being constructed (or deconstructed) with the model.
29. Once done, let us add some more refinements to the wing itself. With the wing layer selected go to Image -> Adjustments -> Levels. Adjust the black point input to around 58 or to where the graph actually starts.
30. Next, we get a smoke image from the internet like so. Make sure that you get an smoke image that has a black background. Press CTRL+SHIFT+U to desaturate the image.
31. Paste it into our design, behind our model. Change its blend mode to SCREEN to remove the black areas and blend it correctly. Position it beside the model and near our white spot.
32. To still add more color variation, we add another color stripe, just like the yellow stripes we created earlier. This time we put in on top, and it should also overlap the yellow layer stripe there for an interesting yellow green effect. Adjust its fill value to around 45%.
33. If you look closely at our design, the bottom stripe seems to be lacking in extra detail. We are going to use an image of the star cluster below to add some interesting spots into it.
34. So paste our star cluster image into the poster design. Desaturate it by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+U. Then set its blend mode to Exclusion. Erase its edges with a soft round brush. DO NOT WORRY about the colors for now as we will be dealing with the color blending later.
35. To merge parts of the star cluster and the lower part of our model, we pasted in some extra smoke images on Screen blend mode in this area. We also blurred it a bit with the smudge tool.
36. Then, finally we use a couple more light grey colored grunge brushes to complete the blending.
37. Then, we type in our text at an angle that matches the stripes. Make sure to use a very thick kind of font for this design so that the text does not get lost. Use a light grey or white color.
38. Just like with the girl model, we brush in some grunge brushes on top of the text. Then we create a layer mask and use a black brush to “dirty” up the text making it look like it is still being painted.
39. Finally, we add some extra black text below our main title.
40. This gives us a pretty decent design already, and you can stop here if you like the colors. However, we are going to make the colors look more integrated with each other.
41. First, create a new layer on top of ALL THE OTHER layers. Fill this with a bright yellow color (#ffff00) and change the blend mode to Linear burn.
42. Finally, create a new layer again. This time fill it with a light purple (#c87fc6) and then change this layer’s blend mode to Linear light. Reduce its fill to 50%.
43. Lastly, create a new layer on top of this again. Use a blue color with a large soft brush and paint around the poster design just like a border. Change the Blend mode to Soft light and reduce its fill to 63%.
Great! You now have a very detailed, intricate, creative winged rebel poster design.
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