Fantasy Portraits By David Cuerdon

3 hr 18 min
Difficulty Difficulty Difficulty

David Cuerdon shows off his process from start to finish. First, shooting a model, then adding fantasy elements using Photoshop.

Video transcripts available with a subscription.

David talks about what he will be covering in this course
We start with a photo shoot in which the subject will be showing off both a good and evil side
Creating a background behind the model using the cloud filter in Photoshop
David talks about the different ways to mask and outline a subject and shows how he prefers to work
The first step in making an angel wing is creating the first feather
Starting with that first feather, it is time to start designing the entire wing
Grouping the feathers and creating the layers of the wing
Taking the wings and adding them to the shot of the model
Shooting the model with a color gel on the light and trying to bring out a darker side
Using the darker image of the model, the process begins of transforming the subject into a vampire
Using the clouds filter to create the dark background behind the vampire
Adding a full moon and clouds behind the vampire subject
Adding details to the face of the model to make her appear more like a vampire
Add the finishing touches to the vampire by darkening the eyes and adding spot light glow
Starting with a shot of the subject, the first step is masking the subject and adding a crescent moon
Adding elements to the background and foreground of the fairy image
Cropping out some excess size and adding some shading a highlights
Adjusting the hue and saturation to put the finishing touches on the fairy image
Adding fairy wings to the subject
Creating a fairy dust brush and then using it to scatter fairy dust patterns into the image
Adding reflections of the moon and fairy dust towards the bottom of the image
Creating fairy wings takes some technical knowledge but here are some step-by-step directions for how to do it
Using an earlier shot, this lesson shows how changing wings and ears can transform an angel into a fairy
Thanks for following along. Hope you enjoyed the course
Profile photo of David Cuerdon

Meet your instructor

David Cuerdon


David Cuerdon is an award-winning visual artist and a true digital pioneer, who was among the world's first digital fashion photographers. He is widely recognized for his rare combination of creative vision and advanced technical skills. David's clients have included Playboy, Glamour Magazine, Neiman Marcus and May Company. He has had wor...

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Join the Discussion
  1. Profile photo of jzucker jzucker

    beautiful work and very instructive. However, I was very disappointed that you didn’t share your technique for creating the top feathers of the wings along with their shadows. What you should have done IMO was skip the presentation of the 3rd set of duplicate/transformed feathers on it and instead showed your process for the top of the wings (assuming time constraints were the issue)

  2. Profile photo of Carol Beggs Carol Beggs

    This is a great course. Thanks for the downloads. I learned a lot and managed to create my own little fairy.

  3. Profile photo of Lorrie S Lorrie S

    I learned so much! Thank you for the generous downloads. —- No, I’d keep it between us

  4. Profile photo of Tamyra Ayles Tamyra Ayles

    I found the downloads! —- Yes, please post my feedback

  5. Profile photo of Tamyra Ayles Tamyra Ayles

    Dave kept referring to the downloads of things like the wings. I can’t seem to find them. —- Yes, please post my feedback

  6. Profile photo of Theresa Theresa

    I loved this course. It will definitely go in my favorites.
    Thanks —- Yes, please post my feedback

  7. Profile photo of Ray Warren Ray Warren

    Brilliant course. Thanks Dave for passing on your knowledge and providing some source materials. —- Yes, please post my feedback

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