For today’s walk-through, we’re going to show you how to make a cow fly in just a couple of quick and simple steps. Read on to find out…
First off, prepare these set of images:
Cow: 7251032 © Eric IsselÃƒÂ©e 123RF.com
Horn: 6976361 © Olga Lipatova 123RF.com
Wings: 7611829 © Irina Tischenko 123RF.com
Plains: 7541820 © Ivonne Wierink 123RF.com
Feather: 1504841 © Ana De Sousa 123RF.com
Road Sign: 366908 © ondagoarts 123RF.com
Separate the legs, the tails, and the head from the body.
Reposition them and and create bends at the legs. We can copy part of the leg out, and transform it. Slowly mask out the connecting areas to look seamless.
Enlarge the head a little, and liquify the body.
Further liquify the head. Pull out 2 stubs so that it can fit the horn.
Extract horn from source image and place the horns on the head. Fit it nicely in the stubs.
Since we will be shining lights from above, increasing shadows adds realism. Draw black shades on the body just under the legs.
Duplicate another layer. Set the top layer as ‘Multiply’ and the other as ‘Overlay’. Play around with the opacity for both to achieve a desirable shadow tone.
Draw more shades of black on the cow.
Similar to the steps above, duplicate another layer and change their blend mode respectively.
The hind right leg looks a little too bright, so we will add more shade to it.
Further add shadow and highlights, by creating a new ‘Overlay’ layer (Filled with Overlay neutral color). Use white brush to add highlights and black brush to add shadows.
We will have something like this:
The black edge on the tip of the right ear just won’t do, so we will further add white lines there, resembling highlights.
Extract wings from the dove. We’ll only be using one side of the wing, duplicate and flip so that it resembles a pair.
Copy part of the right wing to fill up the gap.
Combine the cow and the pair of wings. The wings should be place underneath the cow layer.
Use the healing brush to join the connecting area.
Import background into your canvas, and place the winged cow accordingly.
Change the contrast and color of the background according to these settings.
Create an elliptical shape using the selection tool, feather it and fill it with black.
Again, duplicate this layer, one with ‘Overlay’ blend mode and ‘Multiply’ for the other.
Duplicate these 2 layers, and transform it into a bigger shape.
Draw a ring on top of the cow’s head and apply these settings.
Flatten the ‘halo’ layer (Create an empty layer and merge it with the layer with blending option). Set it as ‘Screen’ blend mode. Duplicate this layer to strenghten the opacity and glow of this halo.
We shall progress to creating a light ray effect. Add a curves adjustment layer and mask off accordingly. Drag the curves to darken the surrounding.
Duplicate this adjustment layer and invert its layer mask. Drag the curves upwards.
Here’s the result:
Create a new layer, fill it with black, and render lens flare. Apply a little Gaussian blur to it.
Set blend mode for lens flare layer as ‘Screen’.
We can further add intensity to the source of light ray, by drawing streaks of lights using white brush, setting it at ‘Overlay’ blend mode.
Next up, we will add in some feathers. Open the feather image and desaturate it.
Do a quick mask by dragging the blend if sliders, and flatten the layer.
Resize and make a selection around the feather, and define it as a brush.
We can use different brush setting to create a natural flow of feathers, or we can place them manually.
Add in more feathers and combine them into one layer.
Apply an outer glow to add some color to the feathers.
Duplicate another layer and invert this layer of feathers.
Place the inverted layer above and set blend mode as ‘Overlay’.
Create a new alpha channel (Alpha 1) similar to below.
Apply lens blur to both of the feather layers, based on this channel.
Add in more feathers with different opacity and blurness to add a sense of depth.
Import the road sign.
Extend the pole of the sign, simply by copying and extending it from existing parts.
Transform it from its original perspective to a flatter one.
Reduce the size of the cow symbol,
so that we have space for a halo sign.
Transform and tilt the sign abit.
Increased its contrast and saturation by a little:
We can then combine the background and sign layer, and apply lens blur using the same channel ‘Alpha 1’.
In the final piece, I’ve further added some glows, and sharpened the whole image a little.