PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL: Tricky Cut Outs made EASY!!! #57

Hi All,

Just to let you know that a new episode (57) of my weekly podcast is now online!

So what’s covered this week?
Well, we don’t always have the luxury of a a plain and simple background to make selections / cut outs of hair and fur as easy as possible HOWEVER in the following 16 minutes I shoe you a way to Fake it!

Hope you ‘Like’ it and hey if you feel compelled to Subscribe and share that would be awesome..hint, hint;)


  • August 1, 2014 - 3:36 pm

    Thierry Paradis - Hello Glyn.

    Thanks for sharing! I really appreciated. It’s a good idea to integrate Lightroom to your tutorials.

    One question: What hardware do you use? Monitor? Keyboard? Mouse or pen or pad?

    Thanks again and have a great week-end,


  • August 2, 2014 - 9:57 am

    Glyn - Thierry
    I use a Wacom Cintiq 22HD for retouching, an Apple Macbook Pro and when travelling a Wacom Intuos Pro Small

Get Focused – Get Sketching!

Hi Folks

Hope you had a good weekend and managed to do what you had planned be it something or nothing:)

I was busy writing all day yesterday putting together another chapter that will appear in my book once published and on worldwide release in December.

Huge thanks to everyone that has already placed pre orders on Amazon; just hearing that has been quite literally overwhelming!

Ok so for today’s post I just wanted to write a short post to share something with you; a part of the process I go through when planning a new picture.

Wacom Intuos Creative Stylus
If you’re a regular reader of this blog you’ll know that I like to plan each shoot as much as possible so that I know exactly what it is I want to achieve and that process generally involves a sketch of some description.

I say ‘of some description’ because drawing certainly isn’t my strong point (Aaron Blaise I’m most definitely not) but the idea is purely to help me get a clearer understanding of what it is I want to do.


I’m currently using the Wacom Intuos Stylus on my iPad mini to sketch out ideas in the Wacom Bamboo iPad App rather than initially writing down ideas in note form. I’ll move over to the Adobe Ink and Slide combination in the near future but just to give you an idea of what I mean, below is a rough sketch showing what I want my next picture in my Animals series to be, and the great thing was being able to sketch it out whilst on the train heading into that’s multi tasking:)


So once the idea was sketched out it was then a case of finding the suitable locations to photograph the scene. For the Apes I’ll be heading to Monkey World Ape Rescue in Dorset in the next couple of weeks but where to find a view overlooking tree tops?

Social Media that’s where; no sooner had I posted out asking if anyone could recommend somewhere suitable replies came flooding back and as I often find…the locations are quite literally on your doorstep! Many people recommended Salcey Forest which is only just over one hours drive away in Northamptonshire and it looks perfect with a tree top walkway so I’ll be heading there this week.

As for Monkey World I thought it might be a good chance to organise a social gathering too so I’ll be posting the date and time real soon so if you’d like to come along you’re more than welcome; heck we could even make it a Photo Walk:)

Anyway that just covers part of the planning process I go through when looking at working on a new picture but probably one of the most important things I do as seeing it drawn, albeit badly, makes me want to get out there and get working on it.

Oh and talking of my book as I briefly mentioned at the start, I’ll be looking to add this new picture in as a ‘How To’ Chapter covering all the retouching from start to finish.

Right that’s all from me for today so have a good one and I’ll catch you back here next time.


  • July 28, 2014 - 4:44 pm

    Steve Healy - Hi Glyn,
    The monkey themed image sounds like a great addition to your animal pictures. The photo walk at Monkey World sounds like a good idea too….is there a curry house nearby? ;-)
    Best regards,

  • July 29, 2014 - 11:44 pm

    Glyn - I’ll keep you posted Steve if you fancy popping along for the day

Dealing with Tricky Cut Outs / Selections in Photoshop

Hi Everyone

Since posting my new LION – THE KING IS FREE picture I’ve had a few emails and questions posted online asking how I actually cut the Lion out from the background.

So today I thought I’d just give you an outline as to how this was done by pointing you to a few videos that I’ve previously recorded…

Just to give you a bit of a background first, the picture started it’s life from a trip to Woburn Safari Park in the UK where I saw this beautiful Lion in an enclosure which was within a large grassland area where all the Lionesses were roaming around. He was here so as they could all get used to seeing and smelling each other before he was eventually introduced amongst them.

Having seen him in there I knew straight away what it was I wanted to do with the picture so then it was just a case of taking other pictures that could be used to create the scene and also sourcing some I couldn’t take such as the vultures.

The large Acacia Tree trunk is from a picture given to me by my Buddy (Artist / Animator) Aaron Blaise [LINK] that he’d taken during one of his many trips in the past to Africa researching for movies he worked on such as The Lion King.

Here’s all the pictures that went into making the final image…

Once I’d gathered all the assets I needed to put the picture together it was then a case of getting to work in Lightroom and Photoshop.

The first task was to remove the fence lines from the enclosure that were over the top of the Lion and here’s a video I recorded showing exactly how to do that:

Once the fence lines had been removed, the next task was to cut the Lion out from the original background:

Due to the contrast and colouring behind the Lion being fairly similar cutting him out wasn’t as straight forward as just using something like the Quick Selection Tool or Channels but rather a combination of several techniques. I may look at recording a video for this and sharing in my Weekly Podcast / Show if you think that would be helpful. Rest assured I’ll also be covering ‘tricky’ cut outs / selections in my first book that is due to be available at the end of this year [LINK]

Anyway once a cut out of the Lion had been made it then also meant having to create fur / hair and to show how I do that, here’s a video by Aaron showing the technique that I learned from him…

Finally when it came to the cut out of the Lion, there was a dark outline around the mane so to remove, or rather hide  that I used a Layer Style.

Now in the video below at 8 minutes in you’ll see what I mean; the only difference being that I sampled the colour of the mane and used the Screen Blend Mode:

Obviously there was a lot more that went into making this final picture but for today I wanted to give you an overview of how I approached the cut out of the Lion.

As I’ve already mentioned I’m busy with writing the book at the moment which is a priority but once that is all complete I’ll be recording new tutorials to add into the web store and as I’ve had requests for showing how the animal series of pictures are put together I’ll definitely be recording some of those.

Right that’s all from me for today so as always if you have any questions / comments feel free to drop me a line otherwise have a great weekend and I’ll catch you back here in a few days.


  • July 30, 2014 - 4:52 am

    Julie Boyle - Hi Glyn – In your tutorial (when you get to it) will you being showing how to make each layer the same colour tone (via blurring/average)? I am having trouble when I try to add 2 different images to one new document. I manage OK when I have 1 image to add but come to grief when I try to add another image. I will look forward to your new tutorial in anticipation. I really appreciate your method of teaching – so easy to follow along – Many thanks.

  • July 31, 2014 - 9:09 pm

    Glyn - Sounds like a great idea for a tutorial…thanks Julie

SELECTIVE RETOUCHING with Lightroom and Photoshop #56

Hi Folks

Just to let you know that episode 56 of my weekly show is now online and that in this video I go through the complete retouch of my SWAN ON A LAKE picture.

All the retouching is completed in Lightroom / Camera RAW with just a very quick visit to Photoshop.

Hope you ‘Like’ it and of course feel free to share with others.


CLICK HERE to Subscribe for FREE to my YouTube Channel and NEVER miss a tutorial!

LION: The KING is FREE (New Picture)

Hey Folks

How’s it going?

Hope you had a good weekend and either got done what you wanted or totally relaxed if that was on the cards:)

Today I thought I’d kick the week off by sharing a new picture with you which is actually a new addition to my ‘Animals‘ project and I’m calling it LION: THE KING IS FREE

This picture is a composite made up of 9 separate images and later this week I’ll post a brief Behind the Scenes showing what images were used and also what some of the techniques were that I used in Photoshop to help with the trickier bits like cutting the lion out from it’s original background and blending the hair.

In the mean time though you can check out a larger / better screen quality version over in my 500px portfolio by CLICKING HERE

Right that’s all for today’s quick post so I’ll see you back here tomorrow.