Have some fun experimenting with different settings and layer opacity. There is no limit to your creative freedom so always try different things. Once all the light’s shapes are done, change the layer order, moving some of them in front of the model and others behind the model.
Create a new layer and change the blending mode to Colour Dodge. Select a soft round brush and set the colour to white. Go to the Brushes menu and change Spacing to 70 per cent, Size Jitter to 55 per cent and Scattering to 480 per cent. Start brushing areas on the canvas, altering the diameter of the brush and other settings as well.
The image now is almost complete. Select a white soft brush and start placing various sized dots around the image on a new top layer. Pay attention to the model’s edges that don’t sit well with the rest of the image. This will help you create a convincing lighting effect.
For the final touch add more elements to your illustration. Butterflies? Fairies? Why don’t you try to put some vector and hand-drawn elements? Put some dreamy music on and start thinking about elements which could fit to the subject. This is a very good creative exercise. Film is another great source of inspiration. When you think your illustration is done, flatten your image, convert to CMYK and go to Filter>Sharpen>Sharpen. You may have to increase levels and saturation as well.
WHO: Murilo Maciel is a 26-year-old illustrator from Brazil, and works as a freelance designer under the creative identity GrafikDust. His style tends to be an organic mix of different media – from photos and vectors through to handmade elements and textures. He cites movies, music, London, and psychedelia as key influences in his work.
SOFTWARE: Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator
TIME TO COMPLETE: Two hours
ON THE CD: All files for this tutorial can be found on the magazine's cover CD.