Model: Natalia Kuternoga
Model: Natalia Kuternoga

The Process

  • At first I shot photos of the model, Natalia Kuternoga in the studio of the Polish photographer Jacek Ura who arranged the lights and provided the lightning equipment.
  • After the photo shoot I did some basic adjustments to the photo in Adobe Lightroom, exported the result and opened it in Adobe Photoshop.
  • The first thing I did in Photoshop was to make selections to separate the model and background.
  • Then I created a displacement map from a photo I took of a worn down graffiti wall in an old fort near Krakow in Poland.
  • I added the displacement map plus a few details from a color splash photo.
  • Separated two copies of the models left eye. Changed the settings, dodge and burned and finally merged the layers when I had my wanted result.
  • Brushed in a couple of leaves from the standard Photoshop brushes
  • I then changed the overall colors of the photo by adding several layer masks (the following numbered list is reversed, so # would be the bottom, # 5 on top):
  1. a black & white layer
  2. gradient map red/orange set to color and with lowered opacity
  3. copy of gradient map set to soft light and a very low opacity
  4. a gradient fill ranging from dark to light green and set to soft light
  5. a color balance layer with a medium opacity and individual settings for the shadows, mid-tones and highlights
    • The first layer was set to screen mode with a high opacity before I brushed out the unwanted parts leaving the effect basically on the left side of the photo.
    • The flames was added as 3 layers from two different shots I have in my catalog.
    • The second layer is another photo of flames, set to darken and medium opacity. Also on this layer I brushed away the effects using a layer mask.
    • The third flame layer is a copy of the second, but now set to luminosity with a medium strong opacity (and off course with an individual layer mask like all the other layers).

Now the image looks something like what I wanted it to look, so it’s time to go through all the layers and layer masks, change the opacity if needed, brush out masks, and do minor adjustments. I decided to make another copy of the eye, create a selection, border the selection and paint a white circle. I sat the blend mode to lighter color and lowered the opacity and fill drastically,  so that it left a hint of some crazy iris but without becoming too dominant.

Studio Jacek Ura
http://www.jacek-ura.com

Photo Work Shop
http://www.krakowlight.com

Model: Natalia Kuternoga.

Photo, execution, idea, design, layout: Cardinal Guzman

This was my entry for WordPress’ Weekly Photo Challenge: Hue.