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Author: Captain Jack
Painting elements into an image can be difficult if the painted parts need to go behind some of the elements of the scene. This tutorial describes a way to do that.
In this example, we have the DAZ dragon stalking through the woods, looking for the hatchling dragon, who's taking a nap. We want to add some fiery smoke coming from the adult dragon's nostrils, but the tree is in the way. We need to paint between the tree and the background.
From the menu, select Layers - > Duplicate. This layer will be named “Copy of Background”.
In the layer palette, click the “eye” icon for the original Background layer to make it invisible.
Then, click on the copied layer to make it the current layer.
The image will still look the same at this point.
Select the eraser tool and carefully erase the image to the right of the tree. Make sure to keep all of the tree, but don't worry about erasing too much of the rest of the image. Erase everwhere that will be painted later.
In the layer palette, click the “eye” icon for the copied layer, which will make it invisible.
Click the “eye” icon for the original layer, which will make it visible again.
Click on the background layer to make it the current layer.
Add the painted parts to the image. In this example, select a round brush of 50 pixels diameter, 50% hardness, density of 50, and opacity of 50.
Click in the area where the nostrils would be, and further out. Do this with a light gray, then add some yellow and red.
Note that the tree is partly covered with the smoke.
Click the “eye” icon for the copied layer, making it visible. The smoke will be visible through the erased part of the upper layer, the tree in the copied layer covers up the smoke that we don't want to see, and the 3D character of the image is preserved.
From the menu, select Layers - > Merge - > Merge All to convert back to a single layer. Save the image and you're all set.