Create a Winter Scene with Fire Particle Lights in Photoshop

April 7, 2024

Learn how to create this photo manipulation that mixes a winter scene with fire. Find out how to create particle lights using Photoshop’s brush tool and some layer styles then complete the image with an old-style paper texture.

Photoshop Tutorial

Downloads you need for this Photoshop tutorial

We’re going to use 3 stock photos. Download the files below:

Step 1

Open the Winter photo into Photoshop. You can open files in Photoshop by going to File > Open.

Step 2

Next, go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Brightness/Contrast. You’ll get a new layer like this.

Set the Brightness to –150 and Contrast to 100. If you don’t see this panel, go to Window > Adjustments. Make sure you have the “Use Legacy” setting turned off – if you have it on Photoshop will use the old Brightness/Contrast tool which gives less appealing results.

Here’s the image darkened. It looks more like a nighttime photo now!

Step 3

Go to File > Place. Pick the photo of the girl in the blue gown then click OK. Transform it to something like this:

Now go to Image > Transform > Flip Horizontal.

Step 4

Now we’re going to work on the lighting and color of the girl so that she matches the background image. This is really easy to do and you don’t have to guess so much. First, fix the lighting so that it matches.

Before we can edit the image, you need to rasterize the layer. Go to Layer > Rasterize Layer. Now go to Image > Adjustments > Brightness/Contrast. Use the settings shown below.

Step 5

Next, we’re going to fix the color. Make sure you have the layer with the girl selected then go to Image > Adjustments > Match Color. First, in the Source area, pick the file that you’re working on – in my case it’s called Untitled-3. Then in the Layer area, pick the Background layer. It should find the background layer.

Next, adjust the Luminance and Color Intensity settings so that you get something like this:

Step 6

Now we’re going to work on the shadow for the girl. Duplicate the layer of the girl and place it as the 2nd layer. Name this layer Shadow.

Step 7

Now go to Edit > Free Transform. Transform the layer like shown in the image below. Basically we flipped it upside down then skewed it. To skew, just hold the Ctrl or Cmd key and drag one of the nodes.

Step 8

Hold down the Ctrl or Cmd key then click on the Shadow to create a selection of it. You have to click on the layer thumbnail (not the layer name) to make the selection.

Step 9

Now go to Edit > Fill. Set the contents to Black then click OK.

Here’s the shadow! Press Ctrl+D or Cmd+D to deselect.

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