Speeding Car with Road Dust

We’re going to make a still image of a car into a speeding car kicking up road dust.

We first have our image with our car.

Then, we add a background to it. Make sure the background is a similar perspective to your car.

Using the Blur tool in your tool box, select the Soft Round brush, Mode: Normal, Strength: 100%. You’re going to blur the back end of the car a bit.

Now, use the Smudge tool, with a Soft Round brush, Mode: Normal, Strength: 30%. Hold down the mouse button over the back end of the car you just blurred, and drag it out in the direction the car has traveled from. Do this several times until you get the desired effect.

Use the Eraser tool, again with a Soft Round brush, Opacity: 15%. Flow: 100%. Scale the brush up to a couple hundred (I did 500) so it covers a larger area. Click a few times over the smudged/blurred area we just created to make it a little transparent. The car is flying by this area, so we should be able to see the background a bit here.

Select the shadow beneath the car using the Magic Wand or Lasso tools and do the same thing with the eraser. This shadow should not be solid black.

Intensify the background some with the Levels adjustments CTRL+L. Play with the sliders a bit until you get the colors and intensity you want.

Now we’re going to make some road dust.

Using the Lasso Tool, with a feather of 10px, draw a shape that is smaller on the left, and larger on the right, almost like a talking bubble. Fill it with white, and then go to the Filters drop down, Render>Clouds.

Now scale it down a little and angle it better for the road and the car.

Scoot it over into place, then use the Eraser tool again like you did earlier, making the dust more transparent.

We’re now going to keep the Eraser tool, but change the brush. Select a Chalk brush, and adjust the Scattering feature for the brush so it is a little more random how it lays the brush down. Also, adjust the Shape Dynamics>Angle Jitter to make it even more random.

We’re going to erase in shifts here. Go around the outer perimeter of the dust we made.

Since it is only erasing 15% at a time, we can continue to go over these areas several times and still retain the visibility. You want it to be most visible in the middle, so the clouds will look thicker, and then thinner when you get closer to the edges so the clouds look thinner. This might take a little practice to get right, but it’s relatively easy to do.

We’re going to add a little color to the dust wit hthe Hue/Saturation adjustments. CTRL+U to bring up the window. We want to make this dust look a little bit brown/yellowish to match the road, but not too intense. Check Colorize, and play with all of the sliders until you get it right.

Go back to the car layer and adjust the Levels on it CTRL+L. Make it a little brighter to now match the background.

Finally, zoom in and trace around where the passenger window would be on the other side of the car, and use your Soft Round brush with your Eraser to make this more transparent.

And you’re done!

By Kirin Knapp

Kirin Knapp is a graphic designer for the iEntry Network, publishing company of FlashNewz. A flash animator and illustrator, she is the creator of her home site, Inkdu.com.

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