Create an Animated Avatar with Lightning: The Dark Side of Human Nature

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Tutorial: AKVIS NatureArt

Create an Animated Avatar: The Dark Side of Human Nature


AKVIS NatureArt is designed to imitate nature effects, but its field of application is wider. It may exceed the bounds of everyday life, carrying you to the wonder world filled with magic. With NatureArt you can become a fantasy character, it lets you create your own unique avatar.

We will make an "evil" animated avatar using the NatureArt's effects and the Animation feature of Photoshop.

    Original Image Result
    Original Image Result


  • Step 1. Open a photo.

    Original Image
    Original Image
  • Step 2. Place the portrait to the dark background to increase the dramatic effect.

    Dark Background
    Dark Background
  • Step 3. Call the plugin: Filter -> AKVIS -> NatureArt.

    With AKVIS NatureArt we can endow the character with unusual eyes.

    Select the Sun effect. Add small dark sun to each pupil (use AKVIS Eclipse preset). Reduce the Power parameter to 0.40.

    Using Sun Effect
    Sun Effect

    The guy now looks like an evil wizard.

    Mysterious Eyes
    Mysterious Eyes
  • Step 4. Add more magic. Make several copies of the layer, for example, five, and use on each the Lightning effect in AKVIS NatureArt plugin.


    On the first layer, using the Direction tool in the plugin draw a "skeleton" of the lightning. Save the lines to the .nature file using the button . You will load the file for each layer. It's also helpful to save the parameters of the effect as a preset.

    Lightning Structure
    Lines for Lightning Bolts

    Start image processing by clicking on , and apply the result to the image editor with the button .

    Layer 1
    Layer 1
  • Step 5. Switch to the second layer. Launch the AKVIS NatureArt plugin. Load the direction lines from the .nature file clicking on .

    Using the same effect settings, press the Random Seed button. This will change the form of the lightning. Run image processing with . You can make some corrections with the History Brush . Apply the result .

  • Step 6. Repeat this for all layer's copies (3, 4, 5). We will get some images, each slightly differs from the others. We can now go to the animation.

    To activate the Animation panel in Photoshop, select in menu: Window -> Animation (in CS6 use Window -> Timeline).

    Switch to the Frame view. Under the frame you can see a delay time in seconds and the amount of times it will repeat (a looping option). Set 0.1 sec and Forever, then duplicate the frame by clicking on the Duplicates Selected Frames button on the panel - five times (the number of layers with the effect).

    Animation Panel
    Animation Panel

    Associate each frame with its own layer. To do this, click on the first frame and (in the Layers palette) turn off the visibility of all layers except the first one. Click on the second frame and leave only the second layer visible, etc.

    Creating Frames
    Creating Frames
  • Step 7. Save the image in GIF format with the command: File -> Save for Web & Devices… The animated avatar is ready.

    Animated Avatar
How It Works How It Works
   — Workspace — Workspace
   — Using the Program — Using the Program
   — Presets — Presets
   — Tips & Tricks — Tips & Tricks
   — Preferences — Preferences
Effects Effects
   — Rain — Rain
   — Sun — Sun
   — Water — Water
   — Lightning — Lightning
   — Clouds — Clouds
   — Frost — Frost
   — Rainbow — Rainbow
   — Aurora — Aurora
   — Fire — Fire
   — Ice — Ice
Examples Examples
   — NatureArt Gallery — NatureArt Gallery
   — Torch of Liberty — Torch of Liberty
   — Above the Sea — Above the Sea
   — Day & Night — Day & Night
   — Flaming Text — Flaming Text
   — The Sea on a Midsummer Night — The Sea on a Midsummer Night
   — Playing With Light — Playing With Light
   — Tempest in a Glass — Tempest in a Glass
   — Greeting Card with a Christmas Tree — Greeting Card with a Christmas Tree
   — Enchanted Forest: Adding Fog & Mist — Enchanted Forest: Adding Fog & Mist
   — Smoke & Sandstorm Effects — Smoke & Sandstorm Effects
   — Frosty Window — Frosty Window
   — Planet of Storms — Planet of Storms
   — Frozen River — Frozen River
   — Ice Rose: Art of Freezing — Ice Rose: Art of Freezing
   — Creating an Animated Avatar — Creating an Animated Avatar
   — Sunset Picture — Sunset Picture
   — Fiery Girl:  Drawing with Flame — Fiery Girl: Drawing with Flame
   — Water Effect on Specific Areas — Water Effect on Specific Areas
   — The Cat and the Rain — The Cat and the Rain


NatureArt v. 9.1 - Free 10-day Trial    Download


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