Using the same principle as in step 12, sample a portion of hair from a different part of the headdress and copy and paste it into a new layer. Stretch it using the Distort tool (see step 10), stretching it into a rectangular shape to cover a larger area. We add another layer mask to the layer (see step 11) but this time hide everything. With the mask selected, use the same leaf brush as before and paint strokes, varying the size as discussed in step 12. Repeat this process with a new layer but leave the layer mode at 100%. Tweak the settings until you’re satisfied. Adding more layers will give the illustration extra depth.
Create a new layer and start painting using your leaf brush (I used #6c061c), again varying the brush size and opacity level as before. Then apply a Gaussian blur with a radius of around 10.1 pixels to the leaves, setting the blur’s blending mode to Overlay. Again, make sure this layer is below the ‘summer model’ layer.
This is the point where you tweak your image to make it exactly to your liking. Add some adjustment layers to create highlights, shadows and colour tweaks. Here are three different adjustments, with the brushed areas highlighted in the mask area. In the first (above), I adjusted the levels (Cmd/Ctrl + L) of an area of the model’s shoulder to create a deeper shadow. In the second (left), I tweaked the output levels of some of the highlights surrounding the model to make her glow more, and in the third (below), I adjusted the hue and saturation to make the image redder.
Who: With over ten years’ experience in digital creativity, London-based Vince Fraser is a freelance designer and illustrator. He has worked for major international brands including British Airways, PC World, the BBC and T-Mobile.
Software: Adobe Photoshop
Time to complete: 2-3 hours
On the CD: All files for this tutorial can be downloaded here.