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Photoshop - Fireplace (2)

7. Select the Smudge Tool Smudge Tool and with a soft-edged brush of around 20px and a Strength of around 70%, click and drag a "flame" from the white part of the layer into the black part. Slightly bend your stroke as shown.

Smudge Tool Options

Now repeat this until you've smudged the whole way from the left of the layer to the right. In between, you may want to switch to different (smaller) brush sizes to create flame waves of various sizes. Top, Top Tip! By using the [ and ] keys you decrease/increase the size of the tool. This applies to all the "painting" tools - Brush, Eraser, Healing Brush, Dodge, Burn etc. etc.

Smudge Tool Flame
Try to keep the flames at more or less the same height but do vary the tool size. When you've progressed all the way across this layer, turn its visibility off and select the next blurred layer. Do the same with this layer, turn its visibilty off and repeat with the other two blurred layers. Flames on Layer 1
8. A bit of time and effort needed there but, as ever it will pay off in the results. Still, since when was fire black and white? We need to add an Adjustment Layer. Adjustment layers let you experiment with color and tonal adjustments without permanently modifying the pixels in the image. The color and tonal changes reside within the adjustment layer, which acts as a veil through which the underlying image layers appear.

9. In your layers palette, make sure the top "blurred" layer is selected (the layer with the original fireplace on it must be above this).

Click on the "Adjustment Layer" icon as shown circled in red and, from the drop-down list choose Color Balance.

Add Adjustment Layer

10. Carefully enter the following values in the Color Levels boxes:

Shadows: +100, 0, -30
Midtones: +60, 0, -15
Highlights: +50, 0, -30

Time to Switch to ImageReady!

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Color Balance