Thursday, August 16, 2018

BTS: Captain America Comic Book Cover

During the latest round of the Scavenger Hunt, I did all 7 entries in the style of comic book covers, and used action figures as the main subject matter.

You can see all my entries here, but I wanted to go in depth to give a bit of a behind the scenes look into how I created these images.

I picked the image for the word "Photographer" as it is one of the most straight forward ones.

These are very complex shots, so I can't show every last detail.  All told there are over 50 layers, adjustments, effects, and filters, spread out over 5 smart objects. A lot of detail.

However this should cover the basics.

The concept for the word "Photographer" was gear acquisition syndrome - something that plagues many photographers. Many of us always want the latest and greatest equipment. It is a real problem.

With that in mind I dug into my toybox.  I fixated on Danbo, the themed action figure.  I decided to capture the joy of opening that box and pulling out new gear.  I settled on Captain America for two reasons. First, I hadn't used him yet in my work, and second he is one of the few action figures that has a normal looking face. Since the emotional reaction was important, having a recognizable folks can empathize with seemed important.

I tossed the figures into a light box, and took the basic shots.  That and some textures from my library, and some clip art, and I was ready to assemble my image.

These are the elements that went into this image:

The comic logo I created and used on all my images for this round.

I tossed a bunch of layers into an animated gif so you can see how I went thru the process of constructing this image.

Some things of note:

  • All the text was done with the Photoshop text tool, and adding some effects. 
  • The comic book effect on Cap and Danbo was done with a combination of the Poster Edges, Glowing Edges, and Color Halftone effects. Pro Tip: This is where smart objects become your friend.
  • I did adjust Caps face with the liquify tool to add a bit of a smile.
  • The glow from the box was done with brushes in Photoshop
  • No plugins were used in the creation of this image.
Here is the order of events:

So now you know how the magic is done.  You have no excuse for not creating your own.  Good luck!