Articles, Blog

Photoshop: How to Create a GHOST!

November 15, 2019

Hi. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. I’m going to show you how to create a ghostly
apparition. This is an update of tutorials I’ve many years
ago on earlier versions of Photoshop. This version is quicker and more streamlined. Before we begin, if you’re not already a subscriber
to Blue Lightning TV. Click that small “Subscribe” button at the
lower, right corner to let you know as soon as I upload new Photoshop tutorials. If my tutorials have helped you learn or improve
in Photoshop or even inspired you to explore your creativity, please join my community
of patrons for just two bucks a month to show your support and to help me to keep my tutorials free. I provided this background for your convenience. Its link is in my video’s description below
or project files. Feel free to use your own background if you like. Just keep in mind, dark backgrounds work best. The darker the better. Open a photo of someone that you’d like to
turn into a ghost. I downloaded this one from Shutterstock. We need to separate our subject from its background. There are many ways to do this and I covered
them all in my tutorials. Choose the method that’s the easiest your you. Once you make a selection around your subject,
press Ctrl or Cmd + J to cut and copy it onto its own layer. We’ll convert it into a Smart Object, so we
can modify it non-destructively. To do this, click the icon at the upper, right
and click “Convert to Smart Object”. To place it into the background, make sure
you’re Move Tool is active and drag it onto the tab of the background. Without releasing your mouse or pen, drag
it down and release. To resize and reposition it, press Ctrl or
Cmd + T to open your Transform Tool. Go to a corner. If you’re using a Photoshop version earlier
than CC 2019, press and hold Alt or Option + Shift as you drag it in or out. If you’re using CC 2019 or later, just press
Alt or Option as you drag it. To reposition it, go inside the Transform’s
bounding box and drag it. Then, click the check-mark at the top or press
Enter or Return. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click
“Black & White”. We’ll convert our desaturated subject into
a Smart Object by Shift-clicking the subject to make it active, as well, and clicking “Convert
to Smart Object”. Make a copy of the layer by pressing Ctrl
or Cmd + J. Hide the copy and make the original subject active. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click, “Curves”. Adjustment layers affect all the layers below
them in the Layers panel. We want to restrict it to affect just the
subject below it and not the background, as well. To do this, click the “Clipping Mask” icon
or press Alt + Ctrl + G on Windows or Option + Cmd + G on a Mac. You can also go to Layer and “Create Clipping Mask”. In the Curves panel, the top of the diagonal
line represents the lightest tones of our subject. Drag it to the left to approximately here. This makes all the lightest tones from here
to here, pure white. We want this to only affect the eyes. To do this, invert the layer mask by pressing
Ctrl or Cmd + I. This hides the Curves effect by making the
layer mask black. Think of layer masks as stencils: black masks
out and white reveals. We’ll brush white over the eyes to reveal
the Curves affect through the layer mask. If your foreground and background colors are
not white and black respectively, press “x” on your keyboard to invert them. White should be your foreground color. Open your Brush Tool and Brush Picker. Pick a soft, round brush. We’ll adjust its size in a moment. Its Hardness is 0% and its Opacity and Flow
are both 100%. Then, press Enter or Return. To adjust the brush’s size, make sure your
CapsLock key is off and press the right or left bracket key on your keyboard. Now, carefully brush over the irises. Make the top layer visible and active. Go to Filter, Blur and Motion Blur. Make the Angle: 0 degrees and the Distance: 100 pixels. Click the Layer Mask icon to make a layer
mask next to the blurred subject. Black should be your foreground color. Adjust the size of your brush and brush over both eyes to reveal them through the layer mask. Reduce the brush’s opacity to approximately 40%. We’ll make our brush bigger to brush over
the face. Shift-click the lower subject to make it active as well, and convert both subject layers into one Smart Object. Change its Blend Mode to “Screen”. Make a layer mask next to the subject. Make sure your foreground color is black. With your brush’s opacity still at approximately 40%, brush over areas of your ghost that you’d like to fade out. Make the subject active and go to Filter and
Filter Gallery. Open the Distort folder and click “Diffuse Glow”. Make the Graininess: 0, the Glow Amount: 6
and the Clear Amount: 12. Make a copy of it and make the bottom subject active. Change its Blend Mode to Color Dodge. Next, we’ll give our ghost an otherworldly color. Make the top layer active. Click the Adjustment Layer icon and click
“Solid Color”. In the hexadecimal field, type in 176A23. Then, click OK or press Enter or Return. Change its Blend Mode to “Soft Light”. Since we want only the ghost layer to have
this color, clip the Adjustment Layer to the ghost. Lastly, if you’re using version CC or later,
I’ll show you how to distort your ghost’s face. Double-click any of the subjects to open its
source image. Make the your subject active and go to Filter
and Liquify. Make sure the Forward Warp tool is active. This pushes pixels forward as you drag it. Adjust the size of your tool and drag the
features to warp them. Click the “x” to close the document. When you see this message, click “Yes” to
save the changes. Close this source image and click “Yes”. As I toggle back and forth, you can see the changes. This is Marty from Blue Lightning TV. Thanks for watching!


  • Reply Brother skierder June 3, 2019 at 12:42 am

    Love the video

  • Reply Irineu Bishop June 3, 2019 at 12:57 am


  • Reply hussain mohammed. mahf June 3, 2019 at 1:56 am

    Excellent 👌 Sir

  • Reply Dg Visual June 3, 2019 at 1:59 am

    Wow… excellent!!!

  • Reply se7en June 3, 2019 at 2:51 am

    The best
    As always

  • Reply RetardedGeek June 3, 2019 at 3:02 am

    🎶 Spooky Spooky young lady 🎶
    🎶 Creepin'in Photoshop🎶
    🎶Glowy eyes will click your soul 🎶
    🎶Bring the Doom on your mouse 🎶

  • Reply Armando Media June 3, 2019 at 5:21 am

    i want to be a ghost too

  • Reply emma lissette alvarado vasquez June 3, 2019 at 5:36 am


  • Reply dipak bairagi June 3, 2019 at 6:34 am

    how to make Dr. strange portal effect?

  • Reply Özenç Çetin June 3, 2019 at 8:09 am

    Nice 👻

  • Reply Mario Pires June 3, 2019 at 8:46 am

    Great Marty ! Sexy ghost ! kkk.

  • Reply Cricri June 3, 2019 at 9:48 am

    Great tutorial, Marty. I suppose the anim at the end (and beginning) of the tut is done animating variants of the distorted face on the Photoshop timeline,but it's not clear to me how you get the morph effect. And extended tut or an additional tut on this points would be great. Thanks Marty.

  • Reply Censored_Sherm June 3, 2019 at 10:05 am

    Just send my crush a date invitation.

    Boom, I'm a ghost now.

  • Reply LUIS FRANÇA June 3, 2019 at 2:03 pm

    Fabuloso tutorial, continue assim

  • Reply naha razan June 3, 2019 at 4:48 pm

    Marty you are only one always best in PS in YouTube we love your way to teach how to use Photoshop and if you know how to edit videos in Adobe premier pro or after effect pls teach us
    Your way is different and unique….

  • Reply Redha Nessah June 3, 2019 at 4:55 pm

    great job bro


  • Reply Adeni Lugongo official June 3, 2019 at 5:51 pm

    Good job sir, even if I'm sick I will never stop watching and practicing your tutorials.

  • Reply Adeni Lugongo official June 3, 2019 at 5:51 pm

    Good job sir, even if I'm sick I will never stop watching and practicing your tutorials.

  • Reply Vladimir Vcelar June 3, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    I'm a simple man; I see Marty with a new tutorial, I click!

  • Reply Jaime E. Campuzano T. June 3, 2019 at 11:17 pm

    Thank you very much Marty

  • Reply abdelouahab ait si June 4, 2019 at 3:13 am


  • Reply Dj-TonyMix Mundo June 4, 2019 at 2:22 pm

    Good job Marty Question, How? To make the Ghost 👻 alive ??

  • Reply Dexter Quinn June 5, 2019 at 6:11 pm

    Making her do the creepy smile actually spooked me. Hahaha

  • Reply JOSE LENIN ARCOS SALINAS June 5, 2019 at 8:15 pm

    Great tutorial

  • Reply King of Fire June 8, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    The best always! Thanks so much, Sir!!

  • Reply Dream Girls Daily June 20, 2019 at 10:28 am

    I pooped my pants it was so scary!

  • Reply ACG3FLY June 23, 2019 at 10:26 pm

    Gracias Marty Mcfly eres una vergota en esto de los tutoriales

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