In this tutorial, I will show you the processes of creating this unique “Trapped in the trees” photo manipulation in Photoshop. The idea of this photo manipulation is to surround a face with tree trunks and branches and create a trapped effect. We will achieve this by utilising a few simple Photoshop techniques.

This is an immediate level tutorial and some steps can be a little tricky, have a try!

Note: The Photoshop tutorial is done in CS6 – therefore some screenshot may have slighting different layout as in the earlier version. Some brushes are exclusive to Photoshop CS6.

Here is a preview of the final effect I have for this tutorial: (click to enlarge)

tree face manip flatten 550x314 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

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vip sign up 250 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

OK Let’s get started!

To complete this tutorial, you will need the following stocks:

Model by anettfrozen

Fallen Tree by faestock

Fire

Crow

Splatter brushes (pick a few)

Step 1

Create a new document sized 1400px * 800px with white background. Load the Model stock image into Photoshop and select the facial area of the model:

1 sel 550x366 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Copy and paste the selection over to our document. Re-size this new face layer with the free transform tool, and rotate the face clockwise slightly as show below:

1 rotate 550x371 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Add a layer mask to this face layer and use some of the splatter brushes you downloaded, remove some portions around the face edges as shown below:

1 erase 550x411 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 2

We will work on the face layer further in this step. Let’s add the following 3 adjustment layers as clipping masks to the face layer:

Black and White

2 bw Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Reveal the eyes area on this black and white’s layer mask:

2 bw mask 550x254 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Levels

2 lvs Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Curves

2 curves Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Load the fallen tree stock into Photoshop and select a piece of the tree:

2 sel 550x251 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Copy and paste the selection over to our document and set it as clipping mask (make sure it’s above the previous adjustment layer), and you will have the following effect:

Hint: you can use the free transform tool to re-size and rotate this tree layer, to achieve the best result.

2 clipping 550x387 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Add one more black and white adjustment layer as clipping mask on top of this tree layer. Set the layer opacity of this black and white adjustment layer to around 40%:

2 bw 2 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

and here is the effect so far:

2 effect1 550x457 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 3

We will start adding the tree branches in this step. Grab another piece of the tree from the fallen tree stock and paste it over to our document. Use the free transform tool to re-size and rotate it to the angel shown below:

3 branch 550x260 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Add the following 2 adjustment layers as clipping masks for this tree branch layer:

Black and White

3 bw Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Levels

3 lvs1 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

and here is the effect so far:

3 effect1 550x230 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 4

We will keep adding the branches in until the face in surrounded by them. We can use the same process as mentioned in step 3, and make sure your select different pieces from the fallen tree stock image, so we can ensure the variety for our image:

4 bran 2 550x405 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

4 bran 3 550x321 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Make sure you adjust the size of each branch pieces with the free transform tool as well:

4 bran 4 550x332 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

4 bran 5 550x319 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 5

We will add the fire texture to the image in step 5. Load the fire stock image into Photoshop and select the fire:

5 fire 550x311 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Copy and paste the selection over to our document and set the blending mode to “overlay”, and move them to the following portions:

5 fire overlay 550x282 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Add some fire texture around the eye area as well:

5 fire copy 550x229 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 6

We will work on a series of extra effects in this step. Load the crow stock image into Photoshop and add it to the position shown below:

6 crow 550x362 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

We will render some smoke/cloud with the cloud filter or brush as shown below:

6 smoke 550x251 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Use the splatter brush to add some abstract patterns below:

6 paint 550x312 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Step 7

We’re almost done! We will apply a few filter effects to touch up this image. Flatten the layers and duplicate the background layer, apply the following Ink Outlines filter to the duplicated layer:

7 ink outlines Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Attach the following layer mask to this ink outline filtered layer:

7 mask ink outline 550x311 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

and here is the effect so far:

7 effect ink 550x357 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Optionally, we can duplicate the background layer once more and move this duplicated layer to the top, and apply the following Stained Glass filter:

7 stained glass Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Set this layer blending mode to “Screen”:

7 screen 550x288 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

Add the following selective color adjustment layer to fine tune the colours a bit:

7 sel red Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

7 sel whites Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

7 neu Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

7 black Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

and this is the final effect I have: (click to enlarge)

tree face manip flatten 550x314 Create Trapped in the Trees Photo Manipulation in Photoshop

That’s it for this tutorial! Hope you enjoy going through it and find it useful. Drop me a comment below if you have any question.

Till next time, have a great day!