Open background image. Here we used 400 X 250 pixels at 72dpi.
Copy this image to your computer or use your own.
Create a new layer. Press “D” to set default foreground and background colors. Filter > Render > Clouds.
Filter > Stylize > Find edges.
Now adjust the levels for more definition in the image: Image > Adjust > Levels or (Mac:Command+L / Windows:Ctrl+L)
To create the drops: Filter > Sketch > Plaster. You will have to experiment to find the best settings for your image size and intensity of the effect, here we used: Balance 40, Smooth 14, Light – Top Left.
The result should resemble this
To define the edges a bit more: Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask: Amount 500, Radius 1.0, Threshold 0.
Select the magic-wand tool, Check the contiguous box on the options bar.
Set the appropriate tolerance setting, we used 10. Now select the background around the drops.
Hit the del key to erase the unwanted background. Invert the selection to the drops. Select > Inverse or Mac:Cmd+Shift+I / PC:Ctrl+Shift+I. You should now see the original image and the drops.
If you wanted the image to appear as if mercury had been spilled on it you can stop right here. For the water – proceed…
To make the drops look more like water change the layer blending mode to soft light.
We now have an image that looks like water drops on it. But lets have some fun and give it that lens-type distortion typical to real water drops
With the drops still selected, click the background layer on the layers palette to activate the background layer.
Make the distortion: Filter > Distort > Spherize. 35% (experiment to find what best works for you.)
You now have an image that looks like it was left out in the rain with realistic water drops. Play around with it and see what else you can come up with here is a graphic example of blood
Join our list to receive more tutorials and tips on Photoshop. Get exclusive tutorials, discounts and the free super guides. No spam, all content, no more than once a week.
If you’re on our list, you will receive it free by email as soon as it’s available. If not, sign up now and get the CS6 Superguide for free. Or click the image below.
In this Photoshop tutorial, Colin Smith shows how to instantly and easily change the color of something in a photo...
How to combine photos to make a photoshop composite of King Kong in Los Angeles ...