How To Create Surreal Collage Style Artwork in Adobe Photoshop

How To Create Surreal Collage Style Artwork in Adobe Photoshop

Hello everyone this is Chris from Spoon Graphics back with another video tutorial.

Today'swe're going to have loads of fun creating an abstract—and quite surreal—collagestyle piece of artwork in Adobe Photoshop.

This kind of art style has been popular foryears, although originally it would have been made using traditional photomontage techniqueswith photographs, magazine images and newspaper clippings, all cut apart and reassembled usingscissors, glue and photocopiers.

These days we can use digital techniques to make thingswithout even getting our hands dirty! Plus there's a wealth of source material readilyavailable in the form of stock imagery that we can pick and choose from.

If you browse Google or Pinterest for someexamples of surreal collages, you'll see there's literally no limits to what you can produce.

I personally love the ones with comical outcomes that are made with completely random combinations.

For this Photoshop tutorial, we'll use a selectionof free stock images along with basic Photoshop compositing techniques to create a fun abstractpiece of artwork.

Traditional artists sometimes used paint or pastels to add colour to theirwork, so we'll do the same with pixels.

Then to mimic the analogue reproduction methodsoriginally used, we'll distress the result with some effects that mimic bad photocopyprints with high noise and harsh contrast.

You'll find all the images I used linked inthe description area below, so download them to follow along and create this weird lovescene between a skull faced man in a flowery shirt, and a lady whose head is on fire.

The first source image is a photograph ofBarbara Stanwyk and Ralph Meeker, a public domain image originally from Wikimedia Commons.

We'll combine this with a skull.

Open them both in Adobe Photoshop.

Use the Pen tool to trace around the outlineof the skull, staying a few pixels within the edge to avoid capturing any of the blackbackground in the selection.

Click and drag each point and extend the bezier handles tocreate smooth curves.

For angular corners, give the point a click to remove the bezierhandle, which allows you to set more acute curves.

Once you've reached the starting point andclosed the path, right click and choose Make Selection.

Hit CMD+C, or CTRL and C on Windowsto Copy, then paste the clipping into the main document.

Scale and rotate the skull roughly into place,then hit Enter to apply the changes.

Reduce the opacity of the layer to 80% so you cansee the original subject's head underneath, then hit CMD+T to Transform, and scale andposition the skull more accurately.

Next, go to Image > Adjustments > Desaturatethe remove the subtle green colouring.

Add a layer mask to the skull layer, thenuse the Pen tool to draw a selection around any excess overlap that needs removing.

Fillthis area with black within the mask to effectively erase them.

Use a soft brush to erase the skull whereit overlaps the subjects hair.

Painting with black will erase the artwork, while paintingwith white within the mask will restore it.

Activate the actual artwork, rather than themask by clicking the layer thumbnail on the left within the Layers panel in order to paintover any unwanted details in the shadowy areas in black.

The hard edge between the skull and the neckcan be blended using a soft brush within the layer mask.

The result doesn't have to beperfect, since the distortions we'll add later will help disguise any bad Photoshopping.

In order to set the woman's hair on fire,we first need to quickly remove the existing perm.

Draw a rough selection using the PolygonalLasso tool, then go to Edit > Fill.

Choose Content Aware from the dropdown and let Photoshopdo the best calculation it can.

The rest of the hair can be removed with somesloppy Clone stamping.

Choose a soft brush, then ALT and click a sample of the grey background.

Paint around the remaining areas to delete what's left.

Once again the result doesn'tneed to be perfect since the messiness will be disguised later.

Open the first fire image into Photoshop andcopy and paste it into the working document.

Set the blending mode to Screen to renderthe black background transparent, then press CMD+T to Transform.

Scale, rotate and position the flames intoplace to where the original hair style was, aiming to cover as much of the obvious clonestamping as possible.

Paste in the second flame image, set the blendingmode to Screen and position this image to overlap the first set of flames.

This second image has a hard bottom edge,so add a Layer mask and blend it in using a soft brush.

For the next step we need to make a selectionof the guy's shirt.

Create a new layer, then trace around the outline using the Pen tool.

Aim to stay fairly accurate, but don't worry about making a precise selection.

Rememberthat originally collages were cut out with craft knives and scissors, so a rough selectionadds to the aesthetic of this style of art.

Right click and select Make Selection foreach segment of the shirt outline and fill the area with black on the new layer.

When you're done, open up the flowers photographand paste it into the working document.

Hold the ALT key and click between this flowerslayer and the shirt shapes layer below it to make a Clipping Mask, then hit CMD+T andscale the image to size.

One more addition to the composition is tostick an eyeball over the watch face on the man's arm.

Use the Elliptical marquee toolto make a selection, holding ALT to start the selection from the centre, and Shift tomake it a perfect circle.

Copy and paste it into the main document and scale it to size.

Add a new layer, then use the Pen tool totrace around each character's clothing.

Fill the selection with a colour of your choice,then change the blending mode to Multiply.

We can use this same process to add some comicalmakeup to the lady's face.

Draw rough selections around the eyes and mouth and fill them withblue and red.

Once you're happy with your collage, go toSelect > All followed by Edit > Copy Merged.

Create a new document and paste in this duplicateof the artwork.

Go to Filter > Noise > Add Noise and configureto settings to 5%, Gaussian and Monochromatic.

Then head to Filter > Sharpen > Smart Sharpen.

Change these settings to 100% Amount and 10px Radius.

Select All and Copy, then switch back to themain document and paste this distressed version at the top of the layer stack.

Swap over to this duplicate again to add afurther effect.

Go to Image > Mode > Grayscale and selectyes to Flatten the image.

Then head to Image > Mode > Bitmap.

Choose Halftone Screen under the Method dropdown,then a Frequency of 10, an Angle of 45 degrees and Shape of Round in the following options.

Copy and paste this halftone effect onto themain artwork and change the blending mode to Soft Layer to add more distressed printeffects.

The final result is a surreal piece of collageart that would make the basis of a fantastic gig poster, unique album cover or just a funart print in itself.

So if you had fun with this tutorial, please add a Like to the videoto help spread the word.

If you want to stick around for more, hit the subscribe button.

If you want to grab some free resources and browse inspiration showcases of various artstyles, be sure to stop by at my Spoon Graphics website, otherwise thank you very much forwatching, and I'll see you in the next one!.

Source: Youtube