Photoshop Tutorial, Part Six

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Now we're getting down to the details, and what makes the illustration really pop. Let's tackle the taillight. As usual, it's created piece by piece, layer by layer, using the photo layer as the reference. I started out by drawing the shape with the Polygonal Lasso, then filling in color with the Brush tool, and as always, working on a new layer:


Here I've added the reflection of the taillight housing on the fender:


And added a bit of white:


In order for you to get a better idea of what I'm doing, I'll turn "off" the photo layer. Here you can see how I used the eraser to soften the edge of the chrome taillight housing reflection. I also moved the reflection layer down below the taillight base layer. You can see how the taillight base now covers the irregular top edge of the blue reflection (layers in PS can be arranged in any order... you can put any layer above or below any other layer):


The taillight continues to be built piece by piece, going back to my photo as the reference:





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Continuing on, piece by piece...




Here I've turned the photo layer back "on" so it's visible, but I'm still adding pieces to the taillight on new separate layers:




The highlight on the red lens was done by drawing the shape, filling with white, then turning down the opacity to 25%, giving me a translucent look:


Now a few soft hilights done with the Brush tool, and my other illustrated layers turned back "on":


and the illustration up to this point:


You'll notice that I didn't recreate every single tiny detail of the taillight assembly. It's not necessary... all you need to do are the basic shapes. When you look at the illustration at normal size (not zoomed in), your eye "fills in" the details... and the resulting illustration looks very realistic.

More to come...

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