Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Composite Imaging

One of those wonderful things that you can do on Photoshop and with a lot of work in some cases, is make a composite image from a range of images, textures and brushes. I have had an idea for a composite image for quite some time and it is only now that it is starting to come together.

At TAFE we had to complete a project last year which I did this one. It was 8 images and a clock image which I didn't take, but got from the net. The whole project was done by following a tutorial of sorts from the net.

The images were
- Sky on a cloudy day
-Coffee Table (the rustic table)
-Biochemistry Textbook (now lined with grass)
-Dirt Road (The one that goes to the Tip in Sale)
-Shane in a suit in the hallway at home with borrowed hat and glasses I bought from $2 shop

So big key to the success of a composite image is:-

Get the idea....use books and headlines in magazines, anything to make you think outside the circle and then you have to decide what images you need to have and you have to have images that are of a similar white balance. For example if you have images that look like they were shot under tungsten light which we know can produce a yellow cast, and then mix them with images under bright studio light or fluoro light which may have a more blue cast, then they are mismatched.

STEP 1. Sketch your design and plan and begin to get some ideas in your mind on how to tackle the job.
STEP 2 - Do some background research.

My current project has an umbrella, a girl and water running, I am learning new stuff everyday.

I had to start with a background, which I got from "Deviant Art". I am not keen on using stock images as I prefer to take my own, but for the project and for the practice I really liked this dirty wall and the checkered floor which were exactly what I had in mind. The wall needed to be dirtier though and I wanted a floor covered in water so back to the web and I used the following images, a texture and some water over the basic background to build my background.

Meanwhile I had been busy in Photoshop removing a photo of Olivia from a busy background as I wanted to put a person into the scene to begin my whole creation.

 This was the water, added it as a layer and changed the blending mode and hue to make it transparent and to get rid of the bright blue.
This texture also did the job as it was busy but not too busy.

Had to add a bit more water so used part of this waterfall and part of the drippy scene to get the water spilling from the picture and dripping onto the ground.

 This was my first attempt, I had a beach scene which I took in Merimbula and began with lots of water and added seagull and still had some finer cutting out to do around Olivia, but I printed out a copy and it really didn't gel that well, so I went back to Google Images and searched for an umbrella pic which would suit the mood of this shot. 

This was the final product after I changed the image in the frame and then subsequently changed the birds and added some glitter and a bit of magic, added shadows to Olivia and a second texture changed to a Color Overlay Mode at around 17% opacity...(seriously I could bang on about the whole thing, but as most of it was trial and error I am glad to get it finished) I got rid of the seagull and added a pigeon too as it suited the artwork more, and I found a great white bird which fitted really well.

It will be totally trial and error. I used AdobeTV You Tube clips, particularly the Russell Brown show (Google them) and they are great, BUT as usual, when you see something done on the internet in a tutorial it looks really EASY........but in reality NOTHING works that well...seriously I had to do a painstaking eraser around Olivia and especially the boots, the hair and fingers to get rid of the old background......The Tights were also tough as I kept putting holes in her legs if I tried the Background Eraser (so gave up on that one).....

Anyway it is done now...Very happy...Time to move on to a new project.......

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