Create a Detailed Meteorite and Surrounding Space Environment in Photoshop

In this tutorial, I will show you the steps I took to create this Detailed Meteorite and Surrounding Space Environment in Photoshop. This is an intermediate level tutorials and some steps can be a bit tricky, but why not have a try!

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

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Ok Let’s get started!

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


Debris Brush

Fire Explosion Brush

Step 1

Create a new document sized 1400px * 900px with black background. Create a new layer and use the fire explosion brush, paint some nebula pattern as shown below:

(Hint: do not set the brush opacity and flow to be too high, try set them both at around 20%. Use Soft Eraser to remove part s of the cloud to create depth)

Create a new layer and draw a black circle as shown below:

Step 2

Load the rock image into Photoshop, grab the Quick Selection Tool from the toolbox, set the brush tip to be around 35px (hard brush):

Select one rock piece from the image with Quick Selection Tool:

Paste your selection to the base, desaturate it as we don’t need the colour:

Go back to the rock stock photo, grab a few more different pieces and paste them on the base, until them form the following shape: (desaturate while pasting them)

Make the base layer invisible, and here is the effect so far:

Step 3

Now merge those rock layers together, duplicate the merged layer a few times, reduce their size and scatter them around the canvas, as shown below:

Then use the debris brush you downloaded, paint some scattering effect around the meteorite (make sure you adjust the flow and opacity to be both around 40% before you start painting)

Also make sure you paint some debris to the smaller meteorite on the side:

Use the fire explosion brush, paint some cloud effect around the meteorite as shown below:

Step 4

I decided to add some motion blur effect into the image to make it more dynamic. So let’s create a new layer and paint with the debris brush as shown below:

Apply the following Motion Blur settings to it:

and you will have the following effect:

Go to Filter > Sharpen > Sharpen and sharpen this image a bit:

and you will see parts of the image become brighter:

Reduce the layer opacity to around 50%, and you will have the following effect:

Duplicate this layer a a few times, and scatter them around the image, adjust the size and opacity of them accordingly:

Step 5

We’re almost done. For some final touchups, I added some lighting effect with a soft round, white brush to the position shown below (on a new layer):

Warp this light to fit the top left corner of the meteorite:

and you will have the following effect:

Add the following Curves Adjustment layer on top:

and you will have the following effect:

You can add more colour to the image, and dodge/burn the following areas to increase the image depth:

I also made some slight colour changes and here is the final effect: (click to enlarge)

That’s all for this tutorial! Hope you enjoy it and find it useful :) Till next time, have a great day!


  • My name is James and I have been using Photoshop since version 5.0 (long time ago!). PSD Vault is my spare time hobby and I write majority of the Photoshop tutorials and articles here. I hope you enjoy my blog, and feel free to leave a comment or contact me if you have any questions.

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