This will show how to create an effect that will make a subject pop out from a photo.
1. Open up your image in Photoshop. Right click the Background Layer and select Duplicate Layer. Give the duplicated layer a name e.g. “popout”.
2. Create a new layer and name it “frame”. Using the Rectangular Marquee Tool, create a rectangle then fill it with white by pressing CTRL+Backspace. Remove the marching ants by pressing CTRL+D. Press CTRL+T and right click inside the bounding box and select Distort. Modify your frame to look as if it’s tilted. Press Enter to apply the transformation. Here’s how mine looks like.
3. Press CTRL and then click the Layer Thumbnail of the “frame” layer in the Layers Palette. This makes a selection of the distorted frame image. Select your “popout” layer in the Layers Palette, click Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection from the menu. Drag your “frame” layer under the “popout” layer.
4. Click the Layer Mask Thumbnail on your “popout” layer. Press “D” to load the default foreground and background colors. Press “X” to switch them which makes white as the foreground.
5. Using the Brush tool, trace the edges of your subject. You’re able to do this since the Background layer is still visible. Zoom in to make tracing easier. After brushing the edges, click the Visibility icon (the eye image) of your Background layer. You’ll see that the parts that you brushed were revealed. The following image is how my work looked like after this step.
6. Reveal the other parts by brushing inside the image. Make sure your Background layer is now invisible, white is still your foreground color, and Layer Mask Thumbnail is still selected.
7. After revealing the subject’s complete image, press “X” again to make black as the foreground color. Brush out the unneeded parts – those that came when the edges were revealed. Here’s how my work looks like after I brushed the said parts out.
8. Create a new layer and drag it between the “popout” and “frame” layers. Name it “border”. Press CTRL and click the “frame” Layer Thumbnail to create a selection. Select the “border” layer and from the menu, click Select > Modify > Expand… and type in “6” to make the selection expand by six pixels. Press CTRL+Backspace to fill the “border” layer with white. Press CTRL+D to remove the selection.
9. With the “border” layer still selected, click Layer > Layer Style > Drop Shadow from the menu. Play around with the options to add a shadow on the image. Here’s how I set mine.
Opacity = 70%
Angle = 60˚
Distance = 7 px
Size = 14 px
10. Download any image that you can use as background. I got one free from Vector Jungle. Open it on Photoshop and add it as a layer on your work. Place it below the “frame” layer. Here’s how my finished work looks like.
Here’s another example.
For questions, you may email me at . You may also download a PDF version of this tutorial from Scribd.