Water Droplets Tutorial

When the rainy season is nearing or around the corner, it’s a cool way to have a creation in tune with the weather – something wet like rain or water droplets. In this tutorial, we’ll make realistic water droplets on a maple leaf. You can have your own choice of leaf, preferably the broad ones so you have ample room to place your droplets.

STEP 1. OPEN STOCK PHOTO AND DUPLICATE

Open your leaf photo into your Photoshop. A Background layer will then appear at your layers palette. Duplicate it to have your Background copy. This is optional actually but quite helpful for newbies so as to ensure there’s always a copy to return to in case of messing-up in the middle or, worst, may lost all the work.

STEP 2. MAKING THE DROPLETS

Create a new layer (Layer>New>Layer… or click the icon before the trash icon below your layers palette). When done, select the Elliptical Marquee Tool and make a circular or elliptical shape into the leaf. Don’t bother whatever the shape created, we’ll distort that anyway in making the droplets.

Now, click the Gradient Tool and select the Line Gradient. Be sure to have your foreground and background colors be white and black. Make a gradient now to the elliptical shape you’ve created by clicking your mouse (while holding it down) from one end to the other end, like the figure below.

STEP 3. APPLY LAYER STYLE

It’s time to make that elliptical figure into a real water droplet. To do this, first, set the Blending Mode to Overlay and Opacity to 50%;

2nd, select Drop Shadow (click the fx sign below your layers palette and select Drop Shadow) with the following settings:

3rd, Inner Shadow with the following values:

This is how it looks like now.

STEP 4. APPLY LIQUIFY FILTER

By applying the Liquify Filter, we’re making the droplet more realistic with uneven or random shape. You can freely make the shape you want as long as it looks natural to be a droplet. Here is the outcome after applying the filter.

STEP 5. ADDING MORE DROPLETS

To make more droplets, just follow the procedure above, but this time, the shapes had to be different in sizes and shapes.

STEP 6. MAKING SHINING LIGHTS ON THE DROPLETS

To do this, highlight each of the droplet layer first, then choose a small white brush and click it into each of the drops. You can apply Gaussian Blur if necessary, with the appropriate radius value.

STEP 7. FLATTEN IMAGE AND SAVE

When done with all your droplets, merge all visible layers or flatten image, then save your work.

Here is the final result:

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