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PRO The Outlaws
Difficulty: Advanced , Length: 3:10 Hr.
• Calculate Advanced Perspective
• Creating Shadows
• Adding Fire
• Cutting Subjects Out

Sometimes you try your best and your photos still come out boring. In this Advanced PRO Photoshop Tutorial we show you how to photograph and composite your subject onto a new background to make your image really stand out.

From retouching and compositing to special effects and coloring, this PRO Tutorial has it all!

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Price for both: $34.99 $29.99
PRO Tutorial: The Outlaws
PRO Texture: Smoke and Fog
What is Included
What happens when you photograph your subject on a blank backdrop and decide later to composite them into a different background? In this PRO Tutorial we cover everything you need to know including:

  • Complete Photoshop Tutorial – Over 3:10 Hours of Step-by-Step instruction
    • Section 1 – Introduction and Planning
    • Section 2 – Creating a Background From Multiple Images
    • Section 3 – Cutting Subjects Out of Background
    • Section 4 – Calculate Camera Angle and Match Perspective
    • Section 5 – Highlights, Shadow, Color
    • Section 6 – Adding Fire
    • Section 7 – Retouching and Finishing Touches
  • Original Images – 20 Images Included
  • Custom Photoshop Brushes – 3 Custom Brushes
  • Custom Photoshop Action – Special Composite Action
Creating a Background
Often times you are not going to find the exact background you want for an image, so being able to create one from many different sources is a great skill to have. In this tutorial we cover all the essential steps on how to photograph and composite backgrounds together seamlessly.After the background is created it needs to be altered to fit the subjects and make sense with lighting. This can be quite difficult if you don’t have experience changing exposure and altering color and light. That is why we pay special attention to teaching it the right way in this tutorial.

Rollover the image below to see what you will learn on transforming a background.

Phlearn PRO The Outlaws
Creating Fire
It is generally not a good idea photograph a ball of fire right next to someone’s head, that is where Photoshop comes in. The freedom that Photoshop gives you is amazing and literally anything you can think of can be done. In this tutorial we show you how to cut the fire out of its background and integrate it seamlessly into the image.You will also learn how to create the light on the ground that is cast by the fireball.

Phlearn PRO The Outlaws
Learn How to Cut People Out
Any time you plan on compositing multiple images together you are going to have to cut something out. Depending on the complexity of the image, you may need to be very precise. These subjects proved to be challenging because they are each on a motorcycle with a lot of small parts and individual spokes on the wheels.No matter how complex your subject is, you will be able to cut them out properly after this tutorial. We even develop an amazing trick to get rid of the white edges so commonly associated with composites.

Phlearn PRO The Outlaws
Phlearn PRO The Outlaws
Amazing Blue Fire
You will learn far more than just how to cut out fire in this tutorial. After it is isolated from its background, we add layers upon layers of detail to make it more realistic and dynamic.What happens when you want blue fire in your image but can’t photograph blue fire? We show you how to alter the flame color while retaining color depth and detail as well as subtle highlight color shifts.

Light Cast on the Ground
The tough part of compositing these people in the background is that they are each holding a glowing ball of light. Any time you have a light source in an image, that light needs to effect everything around it to look realistic. That means that even the ground under the bikers gets lit by this blue light and needs to transfer onto the new backdrop.
Highlighting Details
There are so many great details in this image and we cover how to bring out the details you want to see and how to hide the details you don’t. When you have this much going on you have to cut out your subject perfectly so you can see the background through parts of the motorcycle.
Interacting Subjects
Remember these images we not supposed to be composited together. At the time of shooting, these were going to be separate photos on a gray background. Only after editing the images did we decide to composite them together onto a background.This means that the subjects have to blend perfectly with the background as well as each other. In this case we had to be sure the light from the orange fire casts light on the woman biker. All of it is done in Photoshop.

  • kayhettin

    Aaron, dude, this is literally like the Konami code for doing compositing. The Full Check is sooooo OP (overpowered) in the sense that it makes it so easy to place objects within the scene. You have heavily enlightened me, many many thanks.

  • Mark Hoffmann

    Hi Aaron, decided to spend my weekend going through this tutorial, with a few slight variations. :) Have attached the resulting .gif, hope it works. I used the teal/orange colour toning you discuss in the “How to make a badass photo”, and left the headlights in and used the “how to make light beams from nothing” to turn them on. Hope it looks all ok… Anyway, great tutorial, learned a lot! Cheers, Mark

  • Mark Hoffmann

    hmmm. The attachment above is supposed to be a moving .gif, looks like I can’t post it on here as it gets converted to a .jpg. I used three fireballs for each character and did some dodge and burn to simulate flickering. Can I post it onto my Deviant Art page and link here?

  • Dimitri Otero

    Hey Aaron,

    I was so excited to buy my first tutorial that I forgot to put in the discount! I love all your tutorials and have learned so much from them. Not to sound cheap, but is there any way to get the discount after the purchase? Thanks again for all the great work you show us!

  • Geoff Anderson

    For me, the best tutorial so far. I really enjoyed this comprehensive treatment and learnt a huge amount. The end product is a terrific image. Can’t wait to create my version. Missed the discount paid full price but worth every cent.

  • Dhruv Tadvi

    where can i see the full video?

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Robert Potter

I’m a working photographer who has been learning Photoshop for at least six years and my ...
More I'm a working photographer who has been learning Photoshop for at least six years and my long term objective is to get to the level of those that do composite work for big brand names in their ad campaigns. I did manage to get so far by watching hundreds of video tutorials out there in internet land but eventually felt that many in the industry were still protecting the insider’s knowledge. Then came along Phlearn out of the blue breaking the mould in revealing the magician's code of Photoshop advanced techniques via their excellent free and Pro tutorials. They also guide you on all the other stuff you need to know like conceptualizing ideas, cost of doing business, etc. The vast majority would charge for what you get in a lot of Aaron's free tutorials and you have to agree that the Pro tutorials are available at a very modest cost or the price of a few beers when on sale.

Michael Petrachenko

PHLEARN is awesome! First off, Aaron is a character. I’ve watched a lot of other photosho...
More PHLEARN is awesome!

First off, Aaron is a character. I've watched a lot of other photoshop tutorials, but Aaron keeps it entertaining, supportive, and positive. All of that is really important for creating a learning environment that has worked for me. It's weird - watching a PHLEARN PRO episode is super-entertaining. I might honestly watch them even if I wasn't trying to learn... but as Mary Poppins once said: a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down!

And does it ever! I've gone from being intimidated by Photoshop to feeling confident using the many different tools, techniques, and strategies that Aaron demonstrates. No, more than that - now I feel confident exploring and experimenting in Photoshop.

I want to thank Aaron and the rest of the crew at PHLEARN for what they are building, and how much they have already taught me. Thanks guys!

Jose Duenas

I’ve just joined your great Phlearn community… and just bought my first Phlearn Pro...
More I've just joined your great Phlearn community... and just bought my first Phlearn Pro tutorial too... (The Last Athlete).

It was really great... In my learning experience, tutorials often goes up to 50 or 60% of the professional level you want to achieve (tech stuff, criteria, lightining, etc) ... the other percentage is totally up to you in your experience and perseverance in your work.... but it always seems to be certain PRO knowlege that is really hard to deduce... and it would take a large amount of hours (or days) to get there.

Although you always have to do your homework, this tutorials really give you that... specialized techinques and very practical ways to solve complex situations, and also... very important... they also train your eye and your brain to get a really good criteria to know what to look for in your images.

Thanks for your great work.

Sarah Allegra

I absolutely LOVE Phlearn. It is the #1 site I recommend to anyone wanting to learn about photo...
More I absolutely LOVE Phlearn. It is the #1 site I recommend to anyone wanting to learn about photography or Photoshop. There is just no comparison to the amount of information you get, the quality of it, and the entertainment you get along the way is a big bonus! Aaron Nace is a truly likeable person who very deftly explains sometimes complicated skills in a way that's very easy to grasp. I was good at Photoshop before I discovered Phlearn, but it has taught me SO MUCH. After nearly episode, I find myself exclaiming, "Holy shit, I had no idea!" about some technique or another.

I love the free episodes they make every week, but, my god, the Pro Tutorials are just unbelievable. I have purchased a number of them, including the Nude Flying Fairy and Dark Skies, and the trove of information you get for the price is just unbelievable. Aaron does a spectacular job at breaking down the steps of the photo, making what might seem like an overwhelming edit easy to digest in bite-sized chunks. The level of detail he goes into makes the techniques you learn in each tutorial applicable to any situation you might find yourself in.

You leave each tutorial feeling like a whole new world of Photoshop has been opened up to you that you never knew existed. And better still, if you find you can't quite remember how a particular bit was done, you can replay the video any time you need a refresher. Aaron's playful personality makes all these tutorials so fun; it's like a good friend is in the room with you, helping you understand the task at hand, and never judging.

In short, Phlearn is just THE BEST Photoshop/photography site around, period. After you go through a tutorial, your work will never be the same.

Scott Allan

As far as photoshop is concerned I’m very much in the early stages, but the way Aaron tea...
More As far as photoshop is concerned I'm very much in the early stages, but the way Aaron teaches even an old non-techie beginner like myself can follow along with plenty to learn in a very understandable way no matter how much, or little, they know.

Someday maybe I'll actually get decent at this stuff, but for now at least I found a place where I can find plenty to keep me going without feeling overwhelmed or intimidated... Proud to be part of the Phamily!!!

Dru Lester

To start, Phlearn is amazing! I have searched the web over and over trying to find good photosh...
More To start, Phlearn is amazing! I have searched the web over and over trying to find good photoshop tutorials that actually went into depth on the tools and techniques for creating the type of photos I see in my head. About six months ago I found Phlearn and am so glad I did. I'm only on my 3rd Pro Tutorial, but have already learned more than I could have imagined in that short time.

Aaron Nace is such a good, fun teacher and really breaks down every step and tool used to create his photos. Not only that, but he shows you how to do things several different ways so you can pick the one that is most comfortable for you. If you're questioning wether or not to get a Pro Tutorial or if Phlearn is right for you, the answer is YES! Thanks for all you do Aaron and all the others who make Phlearn what it is.

Paul Petch

WOW. I’m not a PS guru at all and do most post editing in Aperture…BUT…these ...
More WOW. I'm not a PS guru at all and do most post editing in Aperture...BUT...these tutorials and textures are amazing.

A game changer for me and my work. Thanks!

Erik Jorgensen

I run the marketing for a ski/snowboard company and this season due to budget cuts I was forced...
More I run the marketing for a ski/snowboard company and this season due to budget cuts I was forced to shoot, edit, composite, and retouch our in store display campaign for 3 of the largest sporting goods chains in North America. I panicked, then scoured the internet for help and stumbled upon Plearn.

I watch a number of the free episodes and was able to handle the pre shoot, shoot, and composite, then purchased the Skin Retouching Tutorial to handle the rest. I can now proudly say my work is displayed in over 600 stores! All thanks to Phlearn. Great instructions and a great community! Go Phlearn!!!

Ron Ibarra

The amount of knowledge you learn from the Pro videos is invaluable. I would encourage it to an...
More The amount of knowledge you learn from the Pro videos is invaluable.

I would encourage it to anyone who is just starting out - or for anyone that wants to take their craft to another level, this is the place to start. Right here at Phlearn. You will learn techniques that you had no idea existed in Photoshop!

Chris Owyoung

As a photographer, I’m constantly working to hone my skills so I can create better and be...
More As a photographer, I'm constantly working to hone my skills so I can create better and better work for myself and my clients - Phlearn Pro and the community here are an essential part of this. I've spent countless hours and dollars on photography classes but I recommend Phlearn time and time again because I haven't found a better, more up-to-date, or affordable source of Photoshop knowledge than what's available right here.

There are plenty of talented photographers who are mediocre teachers and plenty of gifted teachers without photographic talent. Aaron Nace doesn't have either of those problems
Random Tips

Want to shoot on a micro level but don’t think you have a lens for it? Take a wide angle lens 18mm or so and hold it to your camera backwards, get close to the subject and control focus with your distance. You will have no aperture control so work exposure with ISO and shutter, but you will be now shooting with a micro scope!