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Discover how to create an intimidating scene featuring a dark warrior using Photoshop, even if you’re new to the software. This tutorial breaks down the steps in an easy-to-follow manner, guiding you through the process. Plus, you can access the PSD file and boost your creativity by becoming a member of PSD Vault VIP for just $6.95 per month. Unleash your artistic abilities and craft stunning visuals with the help of this detailed tutorial.

The PSD file of this tutorial is available via the PSD Vault VIP members area.

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


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

Rock Stock

Warrior by CathleenTarawhiti

Flowing Lava Stock

Some Cloud/Smoke Brushes (Download a few from the list)

Step 1

Create a new document sized 1440*800px with black background. Use the cloud/smoke brush you downloaded, paint some background effect as shown below:

1 paint

Load the rock stock into Photoshop, use the Lasso Tool to select a piece of it:

1 sel rock

Copy and paste the selection to our document, place it at the bottom and use the free transform tool to adjust its shape:

1 pers

Use a soft eraser to fade the bottom of the rock texture:

1 fade

Apply the following image adjustments to this rock ground layer:

Black and White

1 bw


1 lvs

and here is the effect so far:

1 effect

Step 2

Load the warrior model image into Photoshop. Cut out the model and paste it to centre of the canvas:

2 place

Use a soft eraser, remove the following portions of the model – we will add some break-apart effect later in the tutorial:

2 erase

Apply the following image adjustment layers as clipping masks to this warrior layer:

Black & White

2 bw


2 lvs

and here is the effect so far:

2 effect

Step 3

We will apply some rock texture to the warrior. Go to the rock stock image and select the following piece:

3 sel

Copy and paste the selection to our document, adjust its size and place it over the right side of the warrior. Change the layer blend mode to “Hard Light” for this rock layer:

3 hard light

Repeat this process, add a few more rocks to the model:

3 more

Step 4

Load the flowing lave stock image into Photoshop. Select the top right lava with lasso tool:

4 sel 2

Copy and paste the selection to cover the sword of the warrior:

4 paste 2

Change the blending mode to “Vivid Light” for this lava layer:

4 vivid

and here is the effect:

4 after v

Repeat this process and add some lava effect on the ground:

4 ground flame

We will add some floating rocks around the warrior. Select the following piece from the rock image:

4 sel

Copy and paste the selection to our document, place it next to the model:

4 paste

Add more rocks around the model as shown below by duplicating this new rock layer, make sure you adjust the size of each layer:

4 more

Add some lava effect below the rocks using the same method as above. You will need to reduce the size of the lava according to the size of the rock:

4 more flame

Step 5

We will add some flying rocks around the warrior. Go the rock image and create a new layer, paint some particles using a particle brush:

5 paint

Select this new layer:

5 sel

Go back to the background layer and maintain the selection, press Ctrl + C and make a copy:

5 go back

Paste the rock particles to our document, adjust its size and place the new layer around the warrior. You can make a few duplicated layers for extra effect:

Hint: As you add the rocks, use a soft eraser to fade some parts of it, this will create more depths for the image.

5 paste

and here is the effect so far:

5 effect

Step 6

We’re almost done! For some final touch-ups, I flattened the image, duplicated the background layer and apply this Accented Edges filter to the duplicated layer:

6 ae

Add the following layer mask to the duplicated layer, so the filter effect doesn’t cover the whole image:

6 ae mask

Apply the following image adjustment layers on top:

Selective Color

6 red
6 neu
6 black

Color Balance

6 co bal
6 col hid

Layer mask on the above color balance adjustment layer:

6 col mask


6 bc

and this is my final effect: (click to enlarge)


That’s it for this tutorial! Hope you enjoy it and find it useful! If you have any questions about the steps, please contact me or leave a comment below. I will try my best to answer them.

Till next time, have a great day!

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