In this Photoshop Tutorial I'll show you how to create a dark scene with forest, grave, skull, crow and mist. You'll learn useful manipulation techniques, such as blending, adjusting colors, adding mist, using brush, masking, creating lighting effect...and more. Resources needed: Forest LINK Grave LINK Skull LINK Cobweb brushes LINK Crow LINK Bat brushes LINK Moon LINK    

By pureromance88, on October 21, 2013, under Photoshop Tutorials

Final Result Preview


Step 1

Create a new document and fill it with any colors you want. I use white and the size of 1000x1000 px. Drag forest stock into our white canvas, resize it as shown below:


Step 2

I use an adjustment layer with Clipping Mask to create some mist effect for the ground. Go to Layer-New Adjustment Layer-Curves:


On Curves layer mask, use soft black brush to erase the top of forest (tree part) as I don't want to apply this effect for it:


Step 3

Extract grave and place it at the middle section of ground:


Click the second button at the bottom of Layer Pallete to add mask to the grave layer. Use soft black brush with opacity and flow about 40-50% to blend the bottom of the grave with the ground:


Step 4

I use a Curves layer with Clipping Mask to darken the grave a little:


Use black brush on Curves layer mask to remove darkened part on the top of the grave:


Step 5

In this step we'll make shadow for the grave. From the light on the grave, its shadow must fall on the right. To do it, make a new layer under grave one. Hold Cmd/Ctrl while clicking grave thumbnail layer to load its selection:


Fill this selection with black, choose Edit-Transform-Flip Vertical, lower opacity to 30%. Press Cmd/Ctrl+T to transform it as shown below:


Go to Filter-Blur-Gassian Blur:


Add layer mask to this shadow layer and use soft black brush with very low opacity 20-30% to blur the top a little:


Step 6

Cut out the skull and place it beside the grave:


Step 7

Make shadow for skull as done with grave:


Step 8

I add a Curves layer to darken the skull:


On Curves layer mask, I use soft black brush to make some bright parts remained:


Step 9

Make a new layer on the top and change foreground to white. Use cobweb brush, number 696 to paint on the left of the grave and transform it as the image below shows:


Lower opacity to 30% as it's too visible:


Step 10

Continue to use another brushes to "decorate" the grave. I lower opacity of this cobweb to 50% and erase a part of it a bit with layer mask: