14. With the eye now being the main focal point of the composition we need to tidy it up a little so, using the Brush tool, we’re going to add some shadow about the eye to really draw the viewer in. Create a new layer and, using a small, soft black brush of around 50-60 pixels’ diameter, spray around the top of the eye. Keep the opacity of the brush to around 20% and slowly build up the colour. Use your own discretion and add some shadow in other areas that you feel need it, such as the hands.

15. Return to the model layer and duplicate it, placing the duplicated layer above the original. Using the hue and saturation settings, adjust the colour to create a violet hue (hue – 249; saturation – 60; lightness – 29; colorize – ticked). Edit the layer mask using a soft brush so that of the violet version of the model, only the arm and a small part of the face and shoulder are visible. It’s important that you only alter the mask here, not the actual layer. Add a shadow of the swirl behind the model layer, with the blending mode set to Overlay.

16. Finally, create a group of smaller swirls using the same techniques as in previous steps, and place it in front of the raised arm of the model. Add some final highlights using a couple of adjustment layers (Select > Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Levels). For the first adjustment layer, I changed the following settings: for input layers, I set dark tones to 0, midtones to 1.00 and light tones to 101, and output levels to 15 and 255 respectively. For the second adjustment layer’s input levels I set dark tones to 0, midtones to 1.00 and light tones to 159, and the output levels to 0 and 255 respectively.


Bold colour will catch attention so use them purposefully where you want people to look. Any colour that’s all alone surrounded by another colour will also stand out. Just as with contrast, this can happen unintentionally, so check for it in your composition. Also, be aware that warm colours (yellow, orange, and red) will make objects appear closer to the viewer, so use them to create depth and space. Cold colours (blue, purple, and some green) will cause objects to recede into the distance.

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.
Contact: www.vincefraser.com
Software: Adobe Photoshop
Time to complete: 3-4 hours
On the CD: Files for this tutorial can be found on the cover CD.