My Little Boy | Adryane
Step 1. Photo Blur. Select and open a photo of your choice in tho the Adobe Photoshop/Elements workspace. Go to Layer> Duplicate Layer to create 2 additional copies of the image layer. Click on the eye icon next to the topmost image layer in the Layers panel to turn off the visibility of the layer.
Click in the second image layer in the Layers panel, and rename it *blur*. Now, go to Filter> Blur> Smart Blur and adjust the sliders as desired. A good starting point is to enter values as follows: Radius 10 and Threshold 30.
Step 2. Apply the Sketch Filter. Turn the visibility of the third layer back on by clicking on the eye icon next to the layer in the Layers panel, then rename the layer *sketch.* Go to Filter> Filter Gallery> Stylize> Glowing Edges, and then set the parameters as desired. Try an Edge Width of 3 and then play with the edge brightness and smoothness to suit your preferences.
When you are happy with the result, go to Image> Adjustments> Invert to desaturate (convert to black and white) the layer. Set the blending mode of this layer to Multiply and reduce the opacity of the layer to 75 percent.
Step 3. Apply Blending Mode. Duplicate the *blur* layer and rename it *paint.* Select this layer in the Layers panel then go to Image> Adjustments> Invert before applying the Color Dodge blending mode.
Apply a a layer mask to the layer by clicking on the layer mask icon (a white box with a dark circle in the center) at the bottom (Photoshop) or top (Elements) of the Layer panel, or go to Layer> Layer Mask> Reveal All.
Step 4. Coloring Using Brushes. Use the techniques demonstrated in AnnaBlendz #3 Blending With Brushes to manipulate the layers in your layout. Adobe Photoshop and Elements both have a good range of default brushes or you can visit the Tools category of the aA store to locate a number of distressing BrushSets.
Painting with brushes will reveal the underlying color image. Experiment with both differing opacity and size of brushes to yield desired results. For Duck Pond, I used a “dry brush” and a small, soft, round brush from the default brushes.
Step 5. The WaterColor Effect. Duplicate your original photo layer and drag it to the top of your layer stack in the Layers panel. Rename the layer watercolor effect. Go to Filter>Filter Gallery>Artistic>Watercolor and set the parameters. I like to start with Brush Details 14, Shadow Intensity 0, and Texture 3.
Now, set the blending mode of this layer to Luminosity and reduce the Opacity until you like the result. You can stop here, or go on and experiment further with the masking of photo layers.
Step 6. Create Composite. After completing steps 1 through 5, I create a composite of all the layers currently in the Layers panel by simultaneously pressing the CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + e buttons on your keyboard.
Open a new 12 X 12 document at 300DPI and drag the image onto the new page using the Move tool from the Tools panel. You can leave the background white, or choose a texturized background paper that compliments the image.
Step 7. Masking. I like to use the FotoInspired Edge Templates for masking the composite image. These templates are .psd files consisting of 3 to 6 layers. Drag all the layers included in one of these .psd files onto the new document clip duplicate copies of the composite image to each of the layers. Add additional mask layers as desired to yield desired result. For example, in *Duck Pond,* I added layers over the figure of my daughter and experimented with applying different blending modes until she had a soft glow about her.
Step 8. Embellish. Add additional brushwork or elements, and a title, as desired.
Oscraps member, Sharlamb, tried this technique with wonderful results: