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Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing

Lesson 41 from: Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Renée Robyn

Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing

Lesson 41 from: Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Renée Robyn

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Lesson Info

41. Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing


Class Trailer

Class Introduction


Why You Should Sketch Your Composite


What to Look for in Your Background


Posing Your Model


Communicate with Your Team


Elements of Compositing


Learning from Failure & Criticism


On-Location Safety Tips


How to Nail the Right Perspective for Your Composite Photo


Gauging Light & Exposure On-Location


On-Location Posing


Cliff Shoot Location Final Thoughts


Tips for Culling Images


Culling Images Q&A


Preparing Your Image for Composite


Composite Image Cleanup


Adding Background Image to Composite


The Difference Between Flow & Opacity


Composite Sky Elements


Using Curves to Color Match


Adding Atmospheric Depth to Image


Using Color Efex Pro to Manipulate Color


Using the Liquify Tool


Color Theory & Monitor Calibration


Adding Smoke Layer to Image


Selective Sharpening


Crop Your Image


Goal Setting for Digital Artists


Review of Location Composite


Understand Angle & Height for Your Base Plate Image


Base Plate Focus Point


Base Plate Lighting Tips


How to Use a Stand-In for Base Plate Image


Capture On-Location Base Plate Image


Student Positioning Demo


Base Plate Sketching


On-Location Sky Capture


What to Look for in a Base Plate Model


Building Composite Model Lighting


Composite Model Test Shots for Angle Matching


Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing


Composite Model Shoot: Working with Hair


Composite Model Shoot: Posing Techniques


Composite Test with Final Shot


Lighting Setup Overview


Culling Model Shoot Images


Adjusting Skintone Colors


Merging Background with Model


How to Mask Hair


Creating a Layer Mask with the Brush Tool


Creating Shadow Layers


Removing Visual Distractions with Stamp Tool


Replacing Sky with Layer Mask


Drawing Hair Strands and Atmospheric Depth


Creating Contrast in Your Composite


Adding Atmospheric Elements


Using Particle Shop


Selective Color Adjustments


Cropping, Sharpening, & Final Touches


Closing Thoughts


Lesson Info

Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing

Let's see if we can get into, we'll get some fabric wrangling going on. So, fabric wrangler, I know that ones really excited. Anybody else want to wrangle fabric, play with the fabric genie? Let's do it. Come on up. So fabric throwing is totally an art all on its own and the other art is getting out of the frame. (laughs) So are you cool with these guys in your space? Yup. Awesome. Okay so I'm going to have you from this side here, watch your feet, we're just stepping on the back of the fabric. Okay. So sometimes what happens, oh lift, this is why we have shorts. (laughs) So sometimes what happens is a lot of people will pull the fabric and then it like snaps, right, and it doesn't always photograph really nicely. So, cause what can happen then is right before it lands the fabric flips up like this and it kind of shorten it and it just isn't as pretty as it could be so if we hold it from the end here and every kind of fabric behaves differently. It's different density, different we...

igh, different amount of air is gonna get through it, right, so all fabric throws differently. For this case, this stuff is kind of nice and light and we can literally just hold the edges here. One, two, three, and see how it fills out really nicely. Right? So I try to not make fabric look like it been thrown everywhere by 50 million assistants. If that's your style great, it's just not mine. You know, that's, it's just like a thing that I like. So Jessica, let's get you on the other side here. Yup, lift, yup, we'll just grab the edges a little bit there. Okay. So now if we were to get your hands and we're just going to combined a little bit of posing with this. Let's just get your hands kind of up a little bit like this. Yeah, that's pretty and just like tip your head down. Yeah. Okay. Cool. And so if we could do this, so I'll get you to hold this here. Yup. One, two, three. Okay. So then on three, what we'll do is we'll just get you to throw it forward, just gently, right. And so let's see what's going to happen. I'm going to try to photograph it and we'll see how it works. Actually, let's tip your head towards me this way a little bit. Yeah. Very Pretty. And let's bring the elbow, yeah, good, and let's, nice hand on the face. Awesome, and just look down your shoulder. Awesome. So see happen there, her elbow was facing towards me, right, which makes forearm look, makes her arm look really short so I just rotated it a little bit and I saw pretty hand and she got dance experience, her hands are like on point. (laughs) So on three, let's see how we get this. One, two and three. Nice. And there we go. All right. Well done fabric wranglers. (laughs) But then it's also a matter of timing it so let's try this again and I'm gonna shoot it offtime. I'm gonna try to shoot it offtime. So, let's -- just do the same thing again. Awesome and everybody doing a great job of hopping out of the way, which is great. One, two and three. Right, so now if you look at that sometimes that can be really pretty and if that's what you're going for great, but I don't really want that in this case. You know, I want something, I want this fabric to just look nice and full. So if you photograph a dress with a hoop on it. So if you're not sure what a hoop is, there like these big, you know, sometimes there wooden, sometimes there plastic, but there hoops that go underneath the skirt and they make it really big and those are really pretty, but they're really stagnant and they just kind of sit there so unless you have lots of layers of fabric that add a lot of you know, texture or movement to the material, it just kind of looks flat. So a lot of times, these are made to, like there's a reason why this is too long cause it's made to go over a quite large hoop. You can get the hoop on Ebay for like 20 bucks or Amazon or wherever, you can get them really cheap, but I tend to not like using them because I find that if we get people to just like toss up the fabric a little bit, we get this really pretty nice, natural A-line that can be very feminine and very appealing to me. So I have shot some stuff with a hoop before, but then we're like, we're still pulling the fabric, we're still pulling the hoop and we have one person on one side and we're like, one, two, three, go, but we have one person holding the fabric of the dress and holding the hoop separately so that they drop differently so we have a nice staggered material. They're still throwing it. It can be more of a pain in the butt. So in this case here, even if we had a skirt that had like an extra two or three feet of fabric we could get back even further and then just drop it out and it can be super fluffy or you can get, what's also really fun, are those like, you know, those little Halloween crinoline, that you wear if you're like, you know, trashy Barbie or something like that. You can get them so that, what it does is it creates this kind of like fluffiness around here so that this A-line isn't quite as, you know, if you don't like the A-line look. If your style is you want something that has like a little bit more curve, right, you can get one of those fluffy little crinoline, you can shack two or three underneath, spend five bucks and you can get the fabric and still throw it out the same way, but then it's just gonna get a little more poofier around the waistline. Remember, that if it's fluffier around the waistline like that, it's gonna sometimes shorten this. So sometimes what I'll do if I have something that sticks out really far like that, I'll wiggle it further down the hips so that it's like here so that the illusion is, is that their torso is still quite long cause blobs of fabric, of course, it can shorten things. So, do we have questions, cause I kind of rambled a lot there? (laughs) Folks, wanted to know if you could reiterate where you found this dress and what recommendation you would have for finding cool outfits like this? Um, I like to find stuff on Ebay, on Amazon, through clothing swap, use areas like Goodwill, Value Village, consignment shops are always fun. You can take strips of fabric and pin it over elastic bands or belts if you're really, if you're super stuck, actually this works really well. So you take a belt, just a normal belt and you put it on yourself or your friend or whatever and then you take strips of fabric and you just like, you buy some crappy fabric somewhere as a color that you like and then you just fold it over the belt and pin it and then you just get a shirt that covers the belt areas and then you have fabric for days. (laughs) So that works really nice. It you're like super on a budget you can get things like that or you can hack up items and you know make fluffy things out of them. I mean you could pull the Burke Shandon thing and just use a sheet and just throw it around and then cut it in Photoshop to make it look like a dress. So I mean there's so many places to get this stuff and though this one specifically was from a theater, is an opera house, that was, you know, flushing out all of their old costumes and it's pretty much a very terrifying place to be, if you value your life (laughs) because there's a lot of women in there who will like fight to the nail for something. So I just like showed up late, when I knew all the broken stuff was gonna be there cause I was like, I'm like kind of into that, so, (laughs) That's cool. Yeah. So this question regarding your camera position and your body position, uh, this person thinks, uh, was it possible that the beach shot that you did, was taken standing up and if so why are you shooting the model kneeling down? Because I photograph the background on my knees. On your knees? Yeah. - Okay. So you'll match that exact position? Yup. Yeah. I photograph, I mean the one benefit of having a leg that doesn't function properly is that I have one position when I'm that low. (Laughs) I might, well I have two, I'm either sitting on my butt or I'm like in that exact same position. So it's just, it's a limitation that my body has that I know I'm probably going to be at the exact same height and angle at that lower angle almost always. Cool. And do you ever gel your lights to match the color of the background and the background shot any better? Totally. Sometimes I absolutely gel lights. I just wasn't going to go into that this class cause that just adds to the complexity a lot, but I absolutely will gel my lights sometimes. I also have some Soft Boxes because my lights are crappy. Some Soft Boxes where if you ever shoot with Alien Bees, you know, how they like, they just change color temperature while you're shooting. That's great. (laughs) That's really fun. Sometimes that happens and I have some Soft Boxes, that just the way they're design the material makes the color way cooler than everything else. So I'll throw, you know, some CTO gel on or something like that just to get it more balanced out. Yeah. And CTO means? I don't actually know Color temperature -- It's just what it's called. Okay. (laughs) Yeah. - CTO is orange. Yeah. I think Color Temperature Orange, I think. Color Temperature Orange, there we go. Yeah. I got it from some film people. They were like, here you want some color gels? I was like, yes and it's just CTO. (laughs) Cool. Thank you. No Worries. Yeah. This is where people are like, what. Anyways. Wow! It looks like you have -- Okay. We need to, I just noticed in this shot here, (laughs) I was like, it looks like she has no arm, like her forearm is totally gone so maybe well change her pose a little bit from it being top so maybe we can like bring it underneath. Let's see. Uh, (indecisive tones) So this is where yesterday if you were watching, where I was like going through the photos and I was like drawing all the arrows on the poses and what I like and what I don't like. I'm sitting here going like okay well maybe we can like, I'm like visually doing that in my head right now cause I just noticed out of the corner of my eye while I was answering the CTO and I was like, oh, man, what's that stand for again. Um, (laughs) that I'm sitting here looking at this elbow and I was like oh, wow, where did, how did we mess that up, but then I see her hand on her bicep, but I know that if I noticed it someone else is gonna notice it so I'm probably gonna see about maybe changing your pose a little bit, with her hands and we'll see what we get here. So let's, I really like your head position on that, it's very, very nice. It's very soft. So maybe we can, maybe we can bring hands up. Yeah, Let's try that. Let's see how that looks. That's pretty. It's nice. (laughs) And let's do some fabric wrangling again so we don't have any tutus on underneath so I can't exactly demo what it looks like when you have other stuff under there, but you get the idea. And if you want to do it yourself, go, Halloween will be here on the Fall so you can get some cheap tutus and shove it up underneath there and throw fabric around. So let's try this again. Let's see about, I'm gonna get one person to drop first before the other so this is all still gonna be like fabricky stuff, we're gonna work a little bit more at this and just get kind of a formula that works because once we figure out how we want it to look, it gonna, we'll get it right and I can always stitch together, if I'm feeling really industrious. (laughs) So I'll just get you to back up a little bit, Jess. Great. Awesome. And can I get your feet position just a little bit. Yeah, and let's just lift your heel just a titch. Yeah. Perfect. So the reason why I'm moving her heel just a little bit, is just in case we wind up seeing a little bit of her foot. So same thing as the girl that we were shooting in the previous lesson. I always like to have nice feet just in case we see something because sometimes it can look really nice and sometimes it looks awful, but let's just, just stretch your torso a little bit for me. Yeah. There we go. Beautiful. One, two, and three. Awesome. Let's see. So that's actually not to shabby right, cause we have one side, we have that nice curvature again here that happening, we have this nice little swoop here and that nice little S-curve there. So both of these are really nice. This on here though, I still really like, but the pose doesn't quite do it for me so I could, I'll mark this as a three. I could take the skirt from this and her upper body from somewhere else. We'll see how this afternoon goes. So these hands are nice and pretty, but what I'm going to do though is we have like a ton of hair here so it like epic neck beard. (laughs) Throw that over you shoulder. Yeah. Awesome. So now we're also going to see her beautiful neckline, right. So it gonna look very, very nice and pretty. So give me an arm position, let's see it you were to do this, what would you do with your hands? There we go, and Katelyn, let's get nicer hands right back here. Yeah. Uh, little bit more unto the leg. Yeah. Great and just nice and soft. Yeah. Awesome. Okay. Let's try that. Let's do some nice fabric. That's great. That's very, very soft. Very pretty. One, two and three. Shot it a little soon, I think. Actually, it's no too bad. Can we just hold a little more of the, see that strip there in the fronts folding under quite quickly. Yeah. Right on. Yeah. There you go. Perfect. And we can actually, let's let it flip up just a little bit before it fall down. Let's just see how that looks. Okay. One, two, and three. Nice. That's pretty. See that's very nice and so this one if we were to look at a photo of this, we wouldn't be like Oh, my God look at that fabric. It one of those details that we wouldn't notice and that, I think, is what makes it a nice detail is that it doesn't stand out and it not overpowering of like look at the massive dress flying everywhere. It's just part of the ambience of the image and it's very soft and it very feminine. So I really like that. I think that ones actually pretty darn close to my favorite so far.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Texture Sample Pack
Layered Beach PSD Composite
Layered Cliff PSD Composite

Ratings and Reviews

Dino Maez

i have to say, the class was AMAZING! in every way from the tricks and technique's of mastering this art form to the personalized attention given by Renee. through the class you are able to learn information that would normally take the average person years of trial and error. Renee gives you the gift of benefitting from her her experiences and what she has learned THE HARD WAY! Renee is an outstanding instructor full of passion for what she does, and with a strong desire to not only improve the art, but more importantly, pay it forward, by sharing her knowledge with others. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the event in person, truly a once in a lifetime experience for me, the staff at creative live were THE BEST! they are helpful in every way and really made this event something special, i can't say enough about the experience i had and would highly recommend that anyone who has the opportunity to go down for a class, it will be an experience that you will never forget. but the best part of creative live is that wether you are there in person or wether you are watching from the comfort of your own home, you are involved in the class in REAL TIME, you have the ear and attention of the skilled artist giving the instruction, being there myself i can tell you that Renee was regularly given questions and comments from the viewers via the creative live staff and she would respond to them as they came, in that way you are very much apart of the class you are never left without getting that personalized attention of an amazing artist or that specific question you have answered, and even better you have the option to purchase the class and have it as a constant resource in your tool kit that you can refer back to at any point that you need a refresher or want to recall that special technique that was demonstrated. thank you thank you to renee and all the staff at creative live you have a life long member in me. and i would recomend that everyone take advantage of this valuable resource dino maez

stephen lenman

I have completed many creative courses. This is by far the best so far. Quite the most amazing and inspiring presenter with a true passion for their craft. The core information is excellent, but the thing i liked most were her subtle tangents, dropping incredible information completely on the fly. A complete real world honest view of business and practical side of the industry. Especially her advice on how she started to her business. Saving up enough in her day job so she could pay the rent, and do photography for 3-6 months.

Sheldon Carvalho

Awesome class. I've been following Renee for a very long time. I love her work and to finally see her work and get an image done from start to finish was quite something.. I love the way she sees things and the way she treats her work and all fellow creative. I would recommend this to everyone interested in getting into composting. Looking forward to creating and making my own art work. But it now :) Have fun creating. :)

Student Work