Here is my entry into the Halloween Photo Editing contest.  I was browsing through my photo library  trying to find an idea for a Halloween photo edit when I came across some pictures of trees.  Now I am not that great at capturing with a camera what I am feeling about a place, so my photos seem lifeless and boring. This seemed like a good opportunity to transform a photo with some editing tools. 

I didn't want my photo to be overtly ghoulish I wanted to take a more subtle approach.  I think our imaginations can conjure up more frighting things then what are really there.  My photo doesn't have any vampires or ghost but if you were alone in these woods and night was falling you might be kind of freaked out.  For those of you that want something a bit scarier, I created another one that includes Slender Man.

I used only my own photos in this Instructable, the original image is taken on Cortes Island in British Columbia (there was a deer that I was trying to take a picture of but it got away).  The crow I drew in Sketchbook Pro and the photo with the prayer flags I took at a meditation retreat Centre near Whistler.

Step 1: Crow

My original photograph of the trees is poorly composed as it is lacking a focal point.  There was actually a little deer that I was trying to photograph but it scampered away when I snapped the picture, so I was left with a boring photo.  I needed to add a point of interest to this photo.  I guess I could have went with a ghost,  zombie or Slender man since this is a Halloween contest, but as I mentioned in the intro I wanted to keep this subtle.  I decided to use a bird in flight.  I guess I could have found an image of a bird to use on the internet but I wanted to use my own images for this instructable so I drew a crow myself.  I use Sketchbook Pro since I still had a few days remaining on my free trial version. I probably didn't need much detail since it would be small and silhouetted in my photo. Here are some step by step instructions on how I made it.
  • I sketched a few crows by hand first when I had one I liked I photographed it and opened it in Sketchbook Pro and traced it on a new layer.  I don't have a drawing tablet and find it really hard with a mouse. This is the same  approach I took with my Grim Reaper drawing.
  • Once I finished tracing the crow, I deleted the original photo.
  • I added a new layer and coloured in the shape of the crow with a dark blue copic brush then with a smudge brush I blended the colour.
  • On a new layer with a paint brush I added some black over the shape of the crow and again blended it with a smudge brush. I also reduced the opacity of the layer so you see some of the blue beneath.
  • With an eraser I cleaned up the black and blue layers were I coloured outside of the lines.
  • On a new layer I added some highlights on the wing with a lighter grey colour as well as defining the eye.
  • On another new layer I added highlights to define the shape of the body and the beak.
nice final image.
Great job! It looks like Slender Man would be there. :D
Waydago, Nice work.
eh, its good i guess.but what would make it very scary is putting a picture of slenderman in it but only showing a little bit of his head and body. sound good? YES IT DOES!
It's strange how many people have heard of slenderman.
I hadn't heard about him until I saw a review for the <a href="http://parsecproductions.com/slender/" rel="nofollow">PC game</a>.
Lol, I'm talking about the <a href="#" rel="nofollow">real</a>&nbsp;slenderman.
Thankfully I've never seen him!
he actual came into existence Thur a photo editing contest on the something awful form
Really! That's so cool.
and now i plan to make him for this contest XD
Awesome! Looking forward to seeing it.
Don't speak to soon! =P
Impressive amount of editing :)<br> I wonder if a pixel viewer could discover your corvid insertion ?
I was hoping the crow would look natural in the photo. Putting a drawn object into a photograph doesn't always look realistic enough.
Shoot, I could never do this - but it is amazing!
Nice effect.

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Bio: I like sewing and crafts,and trying new things. I'm vegetarian and always looking for new recipes. My cat's name is Mirko and ... More »
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