The models in the base image had to be removed and the interior space was rebuilt by Puzinkevich. “I duplicated usable pieces of the window frame, using Free Transform to scale these layers down to the new window width, then skewing and distorting to match the perspective,” he explains. “I also added 1% Noise to imitate a light grain.”
The floor was restored by cloning from its cleaner parts, however, the light reflected on this wasn’t even. Puzinkevich added two inverted Curves adjustment layers and painted to these with a soft white brush to match light and shadow.
The ladder was comped in and the Polygonal Lasso tool was applied, set with a low Feather amount. “I made multiple selections of the top of the ladder, then painted these with a light-grey brush to achieve correct lighting,” explains Puzinkevich. “I painted the parts of ladder affected by the light from the window with a darker grey.”
All models were separated from their respective backgrounds in two steps. “The guy with the laptop’s head was replaced. The new element was separated using a duplicate Red channel with increased contrast and the Brightness/Contrast tool,” explains Puzinkevich. “I used the Polygonal Lasso tool again to cut out the original model’s body. I applied a low Feather amount (around 0.5) to this selection to achieve more-believable edges.”
The Pen tool played its own part and was used to create and place the separate paper sheets in the image. “Holding the Cmd/Ctrl+Opt/Alt keys when applying this tool enables us to adjust paths perfectly,” Puzinkevich concludes.