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How to turn casual photos into artistic watercolor masterpieces in Photoshop


As the title says, this tutorial will help you change your casual family photos and stock images into really cool watercolor designs, which you can use them as cover for albums, Facebook timeline covers, for a creative wedding invitation… you name it!
If you’re familiar with drawing simple shapes with the Path Tool or using brushes at a basic level, this tutorial will feel like a walk in the park. It’s not nearly as hard as it looks, just pay a bit of attention to some details.

Difficulty: Beginner, Intermediate
Completion time: 2 hours
Tools: Photoshop CS3


Final Image Preview

Pretty cool, huh? Let’s see how it’s done!

First, start with the composition idea: we’re going to create a watercolor-ish composition with a girl wearing a hat. This means we’ll need to adjust the pose a bit to be in a relaxed state, preferably laid back.
The current position (slightly bent over in front) suggests implication and a desire to act. A simple solution to this matter is to just tilt the image to the left.

Go to File > Open (CTRL+O), select the image and hit OK. Hit CTRL+J to duplicate the layer.

Go to Edit > Free Transform (CTRL+T), rotate the image and hit Enter.

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Add a paper texture in the background, just like you did with the watercolor texture.
Now select the top-most layer and go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Gradient Map, Brightness/Contrast and Hue/Saturation.


With the Hue/Saturation layer selected, hit CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E, then go to Filter > Other > High Pass. Set it to 1 px, hit OK and set the layer Blending mode to Overlay.


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8 Responses


LOL! “Technical naivety” is a great way to debrsice it Alan! As I was painting this thing, I considered going online to reference some actual tanks, but it really wasn’t meant to be anything but a fun diversion, so I didn’t really see the point. Then I had the brilliant idea to pretend it was some sort of cliche post-apocalyptic scene and that someone had tricked out an old tank with random video screens and inexplicable undercarriage lights. :)Thanks though for the comments about the lighting and textures. The main reason I do these things is to work on stuff like that.

Photoshop VIP ☞ Photoshopマジック、すごいチュートリアル、使い方20個まとめ 2012年7月度

[...] Photoshopでイメージ写真を水彩画風に加工する方法  [...]


I didn’t get the brushes in the download. :(


I don’t know how to register for this site… I bought the tutorial but it doesn’t come with actual instructions or brushes. Freakin’ rip off in my opinion.


Thank you for another excellent post. The place else may just anyone get that type of info in such an ideal way of writing? I have a presentation subsequent week, and I’m on the search for such info.

Clipping Path

thanks for google who send me to your site and your great post. This is a nice blog.


great lesson :)

پرده برقی

It was very good thank you

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File details
Jun.22, 2012
61.14 MB

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