Photog Chris's Blog

got a camera and photoshop, fun times

Halo Wall Assault

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Hi, its been a while since my last post but here we go with some new toys. First lets see the original photo

Raw imported into Photoshop already desaturated some

Raw imported into Photoshop already desaturated some

I kinda like it as is, and originally posted it to flickr without any modifications but I soon changed my mind. So lets look at the layers pallet so you can see what is going to happen, then we will step thought one at a time.

Halo Wall Assault - All layers

First step is to duplicate the background, set it’s Blend Mode to “Overlay” and opacity to 50% . This replaces the Silver Efex Pro layer, you don’t need it. Here are the results.

plus Overlay at 50%

A bit darker and contrasty now. Lets add some grime and bullet holes next. The grime are from large textured brushes , mainly noise. The bullet holes are jagged blobs with an “Outer Bevel” style. Pretty easy really, I did have to blur the grime seeing that the wall was out of focus.

Grime and Bullet Holes

Next comes the ground fog. On a new layer I added some black and white rendered “Clouds”. Next I added an “Ocean Ripple” for more distortion.


This is ground fog so I added a layer mask and used a black to white gradient to fade the clouds. The blend mode was set to “Linear Dodge” at a opacity of  30%. Here you go.

Fog added in

Okay, most of the way there. Something was missing, muzzle flash! If you have ever played Halo you will know this Flash very well. It is simply a yellow  five pointed star, blurred, distorted with an “Ocean Ripple” and Gaussian blur again. A layer mask to hide it on the other side of Master Chief and the Blending mode set to “Linear Dodge” with 100% opacity.

Muzzle Flash

It is still too saturated for me so I added a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer with saturation at -38.

Saturation -38

Okay I need to fiddle with the contrast some more at a Curves adjustment layer is needed with an oh so slight curve

Small CurveAnd the results


Finally lets add a vinaigrette to the image, makes it feel gritter and ties in the edges. How to do this? Create a new Channel, fill it with white, grab your Marquee Tool and add a square filling most of the screen. Fill it with black and then Gaussian blur the hell out of it. Load it as a selection on a new layer and fill with black. On my pic I set the blending mode to Overlay at 75% opacity.

Click to see full size

Click to see full size

Hope you like it and find this helpful. I know I skipped some stuff, but unless someone lets me know I will just assume you know how to do what I find to be easy.


Written by photogchris

August 26, 2009 at 10:28 pm

Posted in Tutorials

Tagged with , , , , ,

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