Join Steve Caplin for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating the glass texture, part of Creating a Hallway Scene with Photoshop.
That figure in the window will make much more sense if we give the impression that they're being viewed through frosted glass. We can use the glass filter to create this effect, but first let's add a background. We'll make a selection the right size, we'll make a New Layer and call it, In Window Background and lets Fill this with the dull grey color. Now, this has come out in front of our figure and our window so lets drag it behind the two of them. Now that window now looks much too garish.
So, let's select it, and use the Curves dialog to brighten that up. That's looking better. We can take all three of these elements and make a New Layer Group from them by using New Group from Layers. And we'll call it, In window. Now what I want to do is to add some filter to this group, so the first thing I want to do is to make a copy of it, Duplicate Group, and we can merge this copy.
If we use Cmd+E on a Mac, Ctrl+E on Windows, we merge that group to let hide the original. Now, first of all, before we apply the glass filter, we have to soften this entire thing. So let's use Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur. And lastly we want quite a lot of Blur on this. We're going to go for something like six and a half pixels.
Which seems excessive, but it will really help the glass texture work. Let's say okay to that, and now we can use Filter > Distort > Glass. And there is our rippling glass effect. Now we can play around with the settings here as much as we want. We could increase the amount of Distortion or increase the Smoothness. I want the Smoothness value quite low, but quite a lot of Distortion here. Let's take it down though, so we can still see the effect of the figure with the gun, clearly showing through.
And you can see what's happened here as we have good Distortion on the window and on the figure, but this background looks completely plain. There's no texture in there for the filter to work with. We'll say OK to that. And now we'll undo it. Let's select this background and we can do that easily with a Magic Wand tool, and use the Burn tool with a larger brush. Just to add a little bit of shading in here, and it really doesn't matter what kind of shading we add.
We just want a bit of a random texture, and we're also holding the Alt key down here to use the Dodge tool temporarily, and let's deselect. When we now run the glass filter again because I have some texture to work with in that background it's producing a much better effect on there. And let's zoom out and see how this is looking. Okay. Well, there's our window. It should look rather more lit up than this.
We're going to have a dark hallway. So we want a bright window showing through. Let's color this window using the Curves Adjustment. We could simply brighten it, but that looks a bit pale and washed out. Instead, let's add some yellow to it, so it looks more like it's lit by artificial light. Well this is tricky. We don't have a yellow channel to work with. What we're going to have to do instead is synthesize yellow by adding some red from the red channel. And then some green from the green channel.
And there's our yellow effect. Better add a little bit more red to warm that up slightly. And there's our brightened window, that's working much better. Now, to complete the window effect, let's add some vertical stripes to this. As if it were the kind of glass you used to see in old films that's made of several vertical strips. Let's make a New Layer. We'll call it Vertical Stripes and we'll make a Narrow Vertical selection. What I'm going to do now is use the Gradient tool set to foreground to transparent.
Which is this second icon, and I'm going to set the colors to their default black and white. Now where we drag with the Gradient it will only Fill this area, but we want it to be directly across rather than at an angle. To do this we hold the Shift key down, and now we can make a purely horizontal gradient and that's what we want. To want to repeat this all the way along, and we can do that very easily with the Move tool selected. If we were to hold down the Cmd key on a Mac and Ctrl key on a PC, and nudge it, with the cursor keys, we'd move it by one pixel.
If we hold Cmd and Shift on a MAC, Ctrl and Shift on a PC, and hit it with the cursor keys we'll move it by ten pixels. If we hold Cmd, Shift, and Option on a Mac, Ctrl, Shift, and Alt on a PC then we can move a copy of it by 10 pixels. And each time we press the Right arrow key on our keyboard we move it by another 10 pixels. And this is a very simple and quick way to create a series of strips of this graduated tone.
And I'm going to keep going a bit further past the window and deselect. Now it'll move the whole lot over to the left slightly, and let's lower the opacity of this. Well, we'll start bringing it down. 66%, still too strong. 33%, still too strong. Let's bring it right down to around 15%. I like the way this looks. And this is giving us the sense of looking through glass made of vertical strips that's also rippled. This completes our glass texture.
And the recoloring means it fits in well with the overall color of the scene.
- Working with wood
- Color correction with the Curves adjustment
- Drawing wallpaper
- Creating a window
- Adding a lamp and switch
- Working with light and shade