HOW TO COMPOSITE - PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL

Hey lovely people! Thank you for landing on this blog post, you are most likely here because you are curious as to how I edited my latest image ‘Attachment’. Well, you are in luck because I’m here to tell you the exact techniques that I used to merge all the images together in Photoshop to achieve the overall ‘realistic’ image, yey!

Here's a before and after of the original image and the final image:

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STEP 1: TAKE A SET OF IMAGES IN THE SAME PLACE USING A TRIPOD.

Before we dive in to the edit, you might be interested to see the behind the scenes video showing how I shot the image. We took ourselves to Hargate Forest (which is aprox. a 4 minute drive from my house - it’s amazing having a wonderful location so close to me!). We shot the image in one of the open fields in the middle of the forest, I’m always drawn to this area! In the video, I explain my process from drawing out the idea, choosing the props, comparing locations, setting up the tripod, shooting the base image and finally, shooting the composite ‘ribbon’ images.

Here’s a link to that video so you don’t have to go anywhere (because I’m kind like that! lolol);

STEP 2: CHOOSE BASE IMAGE

Let’s begin with what I like to call the ‘Base Image’. This is an image that usually consists of the best pose for the final shot. I select the image with the most suitable facial expression or poise. I like to start with the expression, because it’s always easier to add in hair, legs, arms, dresses if needs be.

The process of choosing the base image starts with narrowing down the images by a process of elimination. I use the program ‘Bridge’, which everyone always questions, because it’s the forgotten Adobe program that CC provides. I’ve used it since starting photography and my process of choosing the images hasn't really changed since the start of my journey. It seems to be the best way for me, but you can use whatever you like! (You don't need bridge but it makes it easier.) 

I’m quite the indecisive person so I always like to start by going through the images putting a '5 Star Rating' (shortcut - Cmd + 5 on Apple) on the images that I think will work in the final image. See below image for example: 

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As you can see in the above screenshot, I managed to choose 102 images, and although this includes the composite images, I will need to narrow it down further. 

I then go through the images again and label the next round with a 'Red Label' (the correct term is 'Select' in Bridge - Cmd + 6). On this time round, I'm looking for images to use for the base image. 

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Once I have a selection of images that is easier to manage, I then go through a third time and label the images with a 'Yellow Label' (the correct term is 'Second' in Bridge, but aint' no body got time for that!)

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Finally, I open the last selection of images (in Yellow) into Photoshop and analyse these images to pick the best one for the base image. In this case, I was stuck between these two images:

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In the end I decided to go with the left image because I felt the composition had more connection with the camera/viewer and reflected my original idea the best. 

3. EDIT THE BASE IMAGE & BEGIN COMPOSITING ON TOP

I usually clean things up and do a light retouch/edit on the image before I start compositing, however in this case I decided to start with pasting in the composite images first. 

We took SO many images of the ribbon (as you saw from the behind the scenes video!), so I decided to open each of the selected composite images and paste them onto the image using the following technique:

Using the 'Lasso' tool with the 'Feather' set at 0 px, I drew a selection around the ribbon with about a 1-2cm gap around the edge of the selection, to allow for layer masking later. 

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Once I made the selection, I copied and pasted the selected image onto the 'base' image. To do this I did the following:

EDIT > COPY on the selected image.

EDIT > COPY on the selected image.

EDIT > PASTE SPECIAL > PASTE IN PLACE

 

4. COLOUR/LIGHT ADJUSTMENTS

The ribbon selection has now been pasted into place onto the 'base' image, and the next step is to match the images using the adjustment tools. 

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As you can see, although this image was taken on the same day, the light changed as we were shooting. So before I start the layer masking, I need to make sure the images match in tones and colours. To do this I select the layer that contains the ribbon selection;

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I then go to IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS and start with > Brightness/Contrast. 

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I upped the brightness and contrast to match the background.

5. LAYER MASKING

After I matched the brightness of the selection, I then began to erase out some of the background of the selection using LAYER MASKS.

To add a simple layer mask, select your layer and click on the button at the bottom of the layer panel that has a black circle in the middle. See below; 

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The next thing I did was select the brush tool, making sure to change the brush colour to black. 

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Using the brush tool I went around the ribbon selection and erased away any unwanted areas. This blends in the layered image and makes it more realistic. 

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I then repeated this process to all the other layered ribbons. 

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6. CROPPING

After I had added in the final ribbons, I decided that the image looked much better as a square image. I spoke about this in my behind the scenes video. I felt it didn't balance as well being a landscape image. So I  cropped it square and evened out the ribbon so that it flowed better in the image. 

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7. COLOUR GRADING/USING PRESETS

Finally I opened up the image into Lightroom and added my presets. I usually start with LXC and build upon the colours in Photoshop after the preset has been applied. 

Here's a little process of change that the image went through as I edited the colours. 

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Annnnd that's it! 

Hope you enjoyed this littler tutorial, I've uploaded a speed edit over on my YouTube too so you can go check out the quick version of this tutorial. Let me know what you thought to this and if you think I should do more of these. Leave a comment below!!

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SPEED EDIT

Thanks for reading guys! 

Holly x 

HOLLY’S 10 TIPS FOR CONCEPTUAL SELF-PORTRAITURE

Self-portraiture in the conceptual and creative photography world is HUGE. We all know that. People use self-portraiture for various different reasons and all photographers thrive off different motivations. I specifically used self-portraiture as a way to build my knowledge and skill, and to keep momentum in my work whilst trying to build a business after leaving University. I started the project just after I had finished my ten thousand word final year dissertation. I was FED UP of writing, in fact after that and until I started this blog, I did not want to write again. I needed to express myself in a way that didn’t conform to any module or university deadline, and also without having to answer to any tutor or lecturer. I needed to take control of my work. I felt like I had been pigeon holed at university. Although I learnt a lot whilst I was studying there, and I loved my time there. I sometimes felt forced to be a certain artist and I didn’t like that lack of control over my exploration and experimentation. So I decided at the beginning of 2015 that I wanted to experiment everyday (or every week at least). I wanted the release because my projects at university had failed to establish to their full potential because of the 8-12 week deadlines. I decided to take the plunge and start my very first 52 week project. This would then allow me to focus on one image per week at a rapid rate of renewal. Therefore I could train myself to act quickly in creative situations, and learn how to create an idea I was proud in such a short space of time.

The project consisted of constructing a unique conceptual self-portrait every week for one full year. I finished the project in the last week of 2015 and to view the full project, follow the link – 52 Week Project. When I started the project I felt highly self conscious of taking photos of myself, especially trying to express myself fully without the entire control of the camera and the angles. I would take photos in the most horrendous angles, the focus would fail, and I would give up after taking just a few images. I felt awful about myself and I did not start the project with the intention of feeling self-conscious about my own body insecurities, it was there to allow me to practise techniques and feel better about my photography and my art work.

The project started off slow, but in the process I learnt so much about how to pose, what angles work when setting up a self portrait and how I could create an image that I envisioned from paper sketch to the finish product. I also learnt how to adapt when an image didn’t go the way that I had intended, and how to make it something new. I would highly recommend this project to anyone learning and growing and are feeling creatively stale. I do talk more about that in my round up blog post which you can follow the link to above.

So, upon finishing the project, I wanted to share my top 10 tips on how to create a successful self portrait!

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TIP 01: GO GET YOURSELF A WIRELESS REMOTE TRIGGER!

The easiest way to take self-portraits is to use a wireless remote trigger. This may seem super obvious, but I couldn’t create tips on self portraiture without mentioning that these are the holy grail. If you are considering a self portrait project/image then you NEED to get one. The wireless remote trigger enables you to have more control over the cameras shutter whilst you are in front of the camera. Alternatively you can use the simple built in self-timer and a shutter release cable. However running back and forth from the camera to your specific spot can be tedious and makes the image more unobtainable. (STILL DO ABLE, I USED IT ALOT THROUGHOUT, just a lot more hassle).

When I started the project I was using a Nikon D700 camera and at the time I wasn’t able to afford to buy a wireless trigger so I bought a 1 metre remote cord. I found one on eBay which was under £5, huge bargain! I would use the 1 metre cord to stand in front of the camera and focus by pressing it down half way. Then I’d set the timer so that I was able to pose myself into position and hopefully create a successful image. I would recommend getting a longer cord though because the 1 metre cord only allowed me to stand around 2 metres in front of the camera.

I then received the Nikon ML-L3 as a little side gift for my birthday from my boyfriend. It has been super helpful. It allows me to photograph from a far and helps so much with shooting the focus.

Another option (although a little on the pricey side) is to buy yourself a camera with WIFI. I got my D750 early last year and it’s so handy for self portraits. I connect my phone to the camera, and then use the screen of my iPhone as a wireless view finder. I can then pose myself, tap the screen to focus and shoot using a 3 second timer or instant shutter.

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1 Metre Remote Cord – GET HERE

3 Metre Remote Cord – GET HERE

Nikon ML-L3 Remote Control – GET HERE

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TIP 02: A TRIPOD WILL BE YOUR THIRD ARM(s), SUPER SUPER HANDY!!

Again like the remote trigger, a tripod is the another obvious tool for keeping your camera still and in place whilst shooting your self-portrait. The main reason for a tripod is to enable you to set up an image up and to have full control when it comes to the subject, rather than to worry about the angle or if you aren’t in the frame. When producing composite self-portraits like the ones below, the tripod is your best friend. If your aim is to photograph a composite image, keeping the camera in the same place with the same focus is going to help you out when editing your images later in Photoshop.

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I have a really heavy manfrotto tripod which is great for any weather condition because it keeps the camera stable. I would definitely suggest investing in a decent tripod, purely because cheap ones have potential to break more easily. I have used a cheaper tripod in the past, but it broke once whilst I was shooting a self-portrait and my camera almost hit the floor (if it wasn’t for my fast reactions!!). So now I use the heavier more robust tripod for any situation that I am not able to be near my camera. HOWEVER you can also find the nearest table or chair and balance it on those if you need to!

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MANFROTTO 460MG Tripod – GET HERE

 OTHER TRIPOD – GET HERE

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TIP 03: INVESTING IN A PORTRAIT LENS IS THE BEST THING YOU’LL EVER DO FOR YOUR WORK!

I would highly recommend investing in a prime portrait lens to shoot self-portraits with and if you read tip 1 & 2 then you’ll have already established I use Nikon. I started shooting self-portraits originally with a 50mm 1.8 and I got this lens from eBay for around £60. It was used, but not very much and still works today. It’s not going to break the bank and it is a VERY good lens to start with.

If you have a higher budget then I’d thoroughly recommend the 50mm 1.4 this has a lower aperture and creates absolutely beautiful portraits. I have used this as my go-to lens for years. I’ve shot full weddings from start to finish with this lens, and also full fashion stories too.

Another lens which I would recommend is the 85mm 1.8. This lens is absolutely stunning for close, cropped in shots and creates a creamy, yet sharp image.

I’ve also recently got the Sigma 35mm 1.4 Art and WOW I can’t recommend this lens enough. The only thing I would say for shooting close up portraits it’s not as sharp or crisp as the 85 & 50. But it works a TREAT for all those long, landscape, breathtaking images!

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Nikon 50mm 1.8 – GET HERE

Nikon 50mm 1.4 – GET HERE

Nikon 85mm 1.8 – GET HERE

Sigma 35mm 1.4 – GET HERE

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TIP 04: A ‘PLACE SAVER’ WILL SAVE FOCUSING ISSUES!

So you’ve got your camera set up and its now time to take the photos. As you are essentially the subject of the picture, it can sometimes be difficult to gain the correct focus whilst setting up the shot. If you can get a friend to jump in for you whilst you focus your camera then that’s great. If not then using a place saver is the next best thing!

A place saver is a phrase that I came up with (there may be an existing word but I just don’t know it!) to describe an object that is put in place so that you can focus the camera. I always get questions as to how I focus properly whilst in front of the camera and apart from using the wifi Nikon iPhone app, I use a place saver to help focus the image without being in the shot. An example of a place saver is to use a lighting stand or a spare tripod. The larger the object, the better the focus will be. Ideally you need something that can stand on its own, but is also easily removable when shooting the image.

For example, for this first image I used a mirror facing against, and leaning on the wall. I wanted to be able to focus on the mirror (where I will be standing) so that when I photograph the the clock separately, it would be in the correct focus.

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Another space saver that I have used is the existing props for the shoot. So in the house image below, I used the houses which I was using as props, as the place saver. I focused fully on them, then took them away from the scene and photographed myself.

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And finally, for this image below I used an old cardboard print box that was free standing on a table next to me. It was directly in line with myself, which allowed focus to be the same through the image.

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TIP 05: KEEP THE CAMERA SETTINGS CONSISTENT (APPLIES MORE TO COMPOSITES)

So you have set up your camera with lens, on your tripod, with the remote trigger and the focus is correct. Once you have chosen the aperture, speed, white balance and ISO settings for the framed shot. You now want to keep your settings consistent. This applies more to composites but should ideally be used under any circumstance. This is because when shooting an image made up of more than one image, you need the images to have the same consistent balance in colour, depth of field and brightness. If you are shooting with natural light, stick with natural light. If you are shooting with a flash from the left, stick with the flash from the left, and so on! This is mainly for 2 reasons:

Reason 1 – It will save you so much time when editing the images. If you have chosen say, 10 images that you think would work together as a composition, but 5 of them are dark, and 5 of them are light, you will have to adjust the 5 images so that they match.

Reason 2 – Keeping the consistency will create a balanced image and ultimately give that realistic surreal image effect that you want. This then prevents from one of the image composites standing out and bringing down the quality of the image.

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TIP 06: KEEP THE PERSPECTIVE THE SAME (APPLIES MORE TO COMPOSITES)

Following on from tip 5, you want to make sure when shooting composites that you always take the images from the same perspective. This can apply to intentional composites but will also apply when you want to swap an element from one static, straight image to another. (e.g swapping arms, feet, smile, smoke, other props etc)

For example;

The image from Week 17/52 is a prime example of where I used the same perspective to achieve the final image. To begin I shot around 15-20 images in total with the camera in the same position each time. I felt I had achieved an image in camera that was going to work for the final image. However when I opened them up into photoshop, I wasn’t entirely happy with the way that my arm sat on the base image (The base image is usually a photo that I work upon but can add to if needed).

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I decided to have a look through the other images to see if I could pick out an arm from one image to replace the base image arm. After I had replaced the arm, I was then happy to continue editing the final image.

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This is the final result from the composite and this was all possible because I had taken the images from the same perspective.

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TIP 07: KEEP THE LIGHTING THE SAME WITHIN EACH IMAGE (APPLIES AGAIN TO COMPOSITES)

This tip is closely related to tip number 5, and is as important to highlight it fully. When shooting with the intention of composite or just in general, it is important to keep the lighting the same within the image(s) so that your image is going to remain balanced. A good example of this is a miniature image that I shot in late 2014. To make the image look as realistic as possible, I kept all the components of the image including myself and the candle in the same light.

In this example, the lighting was a flat natural light coming in from the window to the left (my right). It was a very dull day and the light stayed the same throughout the shoot so the light stayed consistent whilst shooting.

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TIP 08: SHOOT LOTS OF FRAMES, AND KEEP GOING!

When shooting your image you need to capture more than enough, and even if you think you have got it within camera, always go that extra mile and take more. You never know how the image will turn out, so having more images to work with will save editing time and even prevent from re-shooting. I couldn’t stress this point more, I think its so important to over shoot. When you feel that you have done enough, DO MORE! I have learnt my lesson from this, there have been many times when I think I have shot enough frames, and then I come to edit and realise that I didn’t capture the most successful base image.

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TIP 09: SKETCH & WRITE DOWN ALL YOUR IDEAS INTO A NOTE PAD

When I’m thinking about new conceptual ideas or when Im having a flurry of new inspiration, I tend to forget old ideas. I find that a very useful way of storing your ideas, is to write and sketch them out as they come to you. By doing this you can concentrate on more than one idea at once. You can then also revisit ideas that you may have forgotten about, or if you are having a dry time for ideas, you can use ideas that you have written down weeks, months or even years ago. I carry a note pad around with me at all times, and then when I experience or see something that I know might make a good image I write everything down.

I find sketching ideas out is a really good way of visualising your image before hand, and keeping you motivated and inspired. Even if the ideas don’t surface from the note pad, at least they are down there.

Excuse my lack of arm drawing ability! 

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TIP 10: USE PROPS/OBJECTS/KEY WORDS!

If you are struggling to come up with a concept for your self-portrait, you should always turn to props, objects or key words. During the 52 Week Project I was always kept motivated for ideas by the theme of each week. I would remember the word for the following week and mull it over, it began to embed in my mind and everything I thought about was to do with that word. This can also work with props and different objects too.

Take an object, word or prop and ask yourself questions, for example; ‘How can I use this within in an image?’, ‘What else do I need to make a picture of a ***** and me successful?’, ‘Do I use this literally or hint at it?’, ‘What relates to this object, word, prop?’, ‘Will I be indoors or outdoors?’, ‘What mood do I want to portray?’ and so on!

This helps me to focus on the prop, object or word and create a story around the subject that I have in front of me.

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And that’s it!

I hope you enjoyed reading through the tips! They were short and sweet but should help you get started in self-portraiture, or add to already existing knowledge around the subject! I will be writing more in-depth, focused posts on different parts of self-portraiture over the next few months so keep checking back for those. Let me know what you thought, or if you have any other questions in the comments below. If you don’t want to write in the comments then drop me an email, I’d love to chat with like minded photographers!! – hello@hollyrose.co.uk is my email!

Thank you for reading guys, look forward to hearing from you and seeing what everyone creates!

PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL – HOW TO ADD IN A DRESS

I’ve been seiving through some old archive work recently and I came across this image that I created at a workshop that Rosie Hardy held in 2013. There were some amazing photographers on the workshop that day and I had such a good time. It was so inspiring to see Rosie and the other photographers get really involved and how different everyones worked turned out from the same concepts. The workshop really has impacted my work greatly over the past couple of years. I was extremely new to photography then, and I would definitely recommend attending one of her workshops because it was a real eye opener into the world of conceptual photography. So thank you Rosie!

Anyway, I wanted to show you this image of the beautiful Chelsea. Looking back on it now after much more experience and time has passed I can see so many mistakes that I would resolve. However if I had not created this image, I wouldn’t have bagged my first destination wedding, which happened to be my second wedding ever. (Crazy right? I don’t know how it happened fully myself) But I do know that putting in the effort made all the difference. When it came to booking that wedding, they mentioned this image and stated that this sealed the deal for them and they knew they wanted me on board. So for that reason I wanted to share the before and after, and how just one image can make a big difference in your career.

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BASE IMAGE

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SHOOTING

We all now how amazing Rosie’s skills are at styling, so when Rosie mentioned this black widow concept to us, it was something I really wanted to delve into. It was windy (and extremely rainy) on that day and therefore the dress was amazing to photograph. It flowed in the wind so beautifully (I wish I had more shots I could show you but as it so long ago I think I may have lost the originals, I do have the photoshop file though so I can run through the editing). Always over shoot, you can never go wrong with more than enough!

EDITING – PHOTOSHOP

I started by expanding the frame, I did this by using existing wider angled shots and the original base image, and cloned them together to create a neat square image.

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I added the flowing dress from another image by using the lasso tool and erased around the edges to blend it into the image.

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I then added the sky from another image I had previously taken. 

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I removed the rogue black object (think its part of her dress?!) because it was slightly distracting in the frame. 

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I then sorted the sky out by changing the opacity to around 50% (I think it was 49% if you really want to get precise) and then blended the sky into the sand by using a layer mask. I slowly erased it using a extremely soft brush to create a clean seam between the sky and the sand.

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I added a vignette on the outside to create amore dramatic effect.

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The next thing I did was add a curve layer, and as you can see from the image, I usually start with a ‘S curve’ then play around with opacity.

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I played around with the exposure layer to create duller blacks and deeper tones. 

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Finally, I added the black smoke using blend modes!

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And there we have it! I hope you enjoyed reading through this simple tutorial. I will be doing more in-depth tutorials very soon so bookmark my blog for regular updates!

PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL - THE MANIPULATION

Hey guys! 

Today I’m going to  give you a quick overview on some basic editing and how I created this image. You can read all about the motives and ideas behind this image by following this link – The Manipulation.

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SHOOTING THE IMAGE

To photograph the image I used my Nikon D700 and a 50mm 1.8 (I have the D750 which I use now but this was taken over two years ago). I also used a ring flash which is based on the camera (fixed to the lens). I used a blank white wall and also used natural light coming from a window to my right (left from your point of view). At the time I only had a trigger lead and access to self timer so I used the lead to help me focus in the shot and then set the timer to 10 seconds. I then jumped into shot and create different poses by just experimenting with the eye shapes. For the jewels on my face I used an old necklace from New Look and broke it up into small pieces. To stick them to my face I used snazaroo special FX glue which is skin kind/friendly and it was easy enough to wash off after the shoot. (In fact it was so fun pulling it off, but I’m weird like that!)

THE EDITING – PHOTOSHOP

To begin editing this image I chose two of three specific images that I wanted to play with and opened them up into Photoshop. Before I retouch and image, I usually start off by choosing the base image, and then add in the extras on top from the other images I have chosen to use. 

 So for example on this particular image, I began with the arm and the shoulder. I decided to remove the arm so that it looked like an exterior person was pulling my eye away, like I was being manipulated.

I chose a shoulder from another image from the shoot (as you will see below in my beautifully drawn diagrams) to replace the arm. To do this I used the lasso tool to move the shoulder from one image and copied and pasted it onto the base image. Once I had got the shoulder into a place I was happy with I then used the clone stamp and the paint brush tool to fill in and erase the existing arm.

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Once all the basic manipulation is done, I then moved on to retouching the skin (best tutorial for skin retouching, here)

Finally I colour corrected the image using mainly curves and also sharpened the image using unsharp mask!

THE FINAL IMAGE

Ironically I titled this image is ‘The Manipulation’ – again if you missed the link at the top of this post, you can see my musings behind why I decided to shoot this idea and what channelled my to create it, here.

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I hope you enjoyed this short but sweet insight into the editing of this image!

HRS x

PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL – 52 WEEK PROJECT 2015: WEEK 3

Welcome to my first tutorial in the form of a blog!

I’ve been asked numerous times to do some online tutorials so I thought I’d start by producing some blog posts around how I’ve edited specific pictures. I like the idea of producing blog posts about editing because I think its a really effective way to show a step by step of the process that you can come back to later on and have another read over if you need to! I also love these type of tutorials because it’s one of those things that you can print out if you need to and study hard. So I’ve taken it upon myself to produce some for you all! This post will be quite chatty and informal, I’ll try my best to explain things clearly and easily!

I’m currently part of a group called ‘Lets Get Creative 2015’ on Facebook which is a group of creative photographers who are all undertaking the 52 week project. I wanted to start by showing week 3, from way back in January when I produce this image:

3/52 – Put down your phone and see the world

SHOOTING

The process of shooting self-portraits differs from idea to idea. I will be doing a video very soon on my top ten tips for shooting self portraits so look out for that, but for now I’m just going to explain briefly how I shot the images and include some examples.

1 .To start off I set up my camera facing my bed/pillow and shot landscape. At this point I used only my timer and manual focus. After a few test shots I decided I wasn’t happy with the focus point and the composition so I changed it to shooting portrait. I’ve included the landscape images to show you exactly how I created the illumination on my face in the final shot. I have an iPhone and as iPhone users will know there is a torch which can be used and is located next to the camera on the back of the phone. I turned the torch on and held my phone so the torch was facing down towards my face. It was VERY bright so I had to close my eyes, wait for the timer and then open them just before the shutter released on my camera. (As you can see in the first image it failed a few times!! haha)

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2. After changing the composition I repeated the process of holding my phone with the torch facing down and took around 20-30 shots. I also took some images with the phone facing the correct way so that I could use this for the final image.

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I chose the below image as the base image and you can JUST see here the torch facing down. But I also highlighted the top images because I want to use the hand in the final image too.

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EDITING

After I had chose the base image and the images that I wanted to use for the hand, I opened them up into Photoshop and began editing.

  1. Firstly I retouched the image by using the frequency separation technique. I mainly used youtube to gain all my knowledge on retouching, in particular this amazing youtube tutorial by Sara Kiesling. I won’t go into too much depth as it can be a lengthy process but here’s a GIF on some of the corrections I made. I brightened my face and balanced the skin tone, then brighter the eyes and changed the colours of my lips, and then burned and dodged both my hair and shadows including the eyebrows and eyelashes.
RETOUCHINGGIF1.gif

2. I also removed the torch/iPhone from the top of the image by using the clone tool. I took the clone tool and pressed Alt, selected a similar section colour at 100% opcaity and covered over the light with the existing section.

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3. I then warmed up my skin tone by adding a solid colour layer and a ‘layer mask’ to select just my face. The layer mask essentially masks out only the areas in which you want the colour to enhance. (See below and where to find the layer mask!) The black area on this mask is the ‘negative’ area. This area is blocked out and not in use. The white area is the ‘positive’ area and this area is in use and can be seen on the image. You can add and subtract from the mask by choosing the paint brush tool and colouring the mask in black or white.

(WARNING: Not always the case!! The layer can be inverted to have the opposite effect so please be aware which colour is adding and which is subtracting, you’ll know through trial and error!)

Using the blend modes (make sure you are highlighting the solid colour area) I changed the solid colour layer to Overlay with an opacity of 24%. Along with this I took some of the yellows out of the hair and made it a more warmer yellowy/orange as the hair was beginning to look ashy and green. The layers below show the properties that I used.

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layermask.jpg
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4. Adding the arm! – Using the Lasso tool on the tool bar I changed the feather to 30 px and selected the area which I wanted to take from the image to the base image. I copied and pasted from this image and placed it onto the base image.

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HEY ARM!

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On the base image I selected the hand/arm layer and created a ‘layer mask’ (similar to earlier, see STEP 3). As you can see I took away the areas that over lapped or didn’t look natural by using a black paint brush tool on a large feather to blend in seamlessly.

5. ADDING THE SPARKLE! With a 600 px, 100% opacity & flow paint brush, using an off-white colour I added a bold light coming from the phone.

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I added a layer mask and slowly erased the light which was on and behind the phone.

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6. Once I added the initial glow I then added the sparkle using a freebie sparkle brush that I had found on deviant art. Alternatively you can use small and large brushes to map in the sparkle yourself, changing the opacity and the hardness of the brush. I then added more glow by using different opacity brushes (See below!)

light21.gif

7. The final step in Photoshop is to sharpen the whole image. I sharpen by using the High Pass filter (it’s my fave!) – The first step is to group all your image manipulations and layers, make a copy of the group and merge the copied group down so that it becomes a flat image. Remember to keep the original group the same.

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When the high pass box opens, change the radius to around 1.5/2 pixels depending on how sharp you want the image!

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8. To colour correct and create the dreamy effect I then saved the image in photoshop and opened up into Lightroom. I then applied a variation of VSCO presets and played around with them until I was happy with the outcome!

AND THAT IS IT!

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I hope you liked this mini tutorial! – Watch out for more tutorials in the future, but in the mean time if you create anything using this tutorial, then please please please give credit where credit is due (it is all I ask!!) and also use the hashtag #HOLLYROSETUTORIALS on all social medias!! 😀

HRS x