Learn how to create a surreal stormy scene in Photoshop. In this tutorial I’ll show how you can achieve a dark, ghastly and lightning weather atmosphere in Photoshop. The main technique here is blending and making the scene more realistic and believable.

Tutorial Resources

Preparing the Background

Step 1

Create a new document in Photoshop by selecting File > New and then use the following setting or feel free to choose you own.


Step 2

Place the road image to our main document by selecting File > Place and then place it.


Adding Sky to Make the Scene Dark and Stormy

Step 3

Add a Layer Mask (Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All) to road layer. Activate the Brush Tool (B) and set its opacity and flow about 30%. Now hide the upper parts of road by painting on the layer mask of road using soft round black brush.


Place the sky 1 image to the main document. Use Move Tool (V) drag it under the road layer.


Step 4

Now add sky 2 to our main document and place it between the road and sky 1 layer.


Set the blend mode of sky 2 layer to Luminosity and reduce the its opacity to 50%.


Step 5

It’s time for adjusting the sky parts of scene using adjustment layer. Make a Gradient Map adjustment layer above the sky 2. Use the color #071625 for Shadows and for Highlights use color #161830.


Set the blend mode of Gradient Map to Soft Light.

Results :


Step 6

Make a Color Balance adjustment layer to add more colors to sky parts. Use it with the following setting:


Results :


Step 7

Make a Gradient Map adjustment layer again. Here are the values for Gradient Map .


Set the blend mode to Color and reduce the opacity to 30%.


Step 8

Now select the road layer, make a Curves adjustment layer to reduce the lightness of road and also add a Hue/Saturation to reduce the saturation. Don’t forget to clip (press the red button to clip it to road layer) these adjustment layers to road layer.


Reduce the opacity of Curves to 80%. Here are the Results:


Step 9

Continue colorizing it using Color Balance adjustment layer. Here are the values:


Results :


Step 10

To create more focus on the middle of background, we need to make the center section brighter. To achieve this, create a new layer by pressing (CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + N) on the keyboard. Fill this layer with black color by pressing ALT + BACKSPACE (make sure your foreground set to black, set it by pressing (D) on the keyboard). Now set your color to white one and using a soft round brush, with opacity and flow about 70%, make a brush stroke on the middle of it.


Set the blend mode of this layer to Soft Light and reduce the opacity to 30%.




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