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Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Lesson 44 of 60

Composite Test with Final Shot


Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Lesson 44 of 60

Composite Test with Final Shot


Lesson Info

Composite Test with Final Shot

So just put the background, the beach layer, over top of my model. I'm gonna throw this onto overlay just to see how we're looking. And it's not too shabby. How do you guys think that looks? You know, from the bird's eye perspective. Do you think we can sell that? Do you think she's little bit to big in the frame, think she's a little bit too small? I'm asking you guys too, because I want you guys to critically think. It's a little big, perfect. So what we're gonna do, we're gonna duplicate it. I never like to shrink down my original layer. We could get into smart objects, but we'll do that on another, that's way more complicated. I'm gonna shrink down my middle layer. Let's make her a little smaller. Now we're starting to look not too shabby. And actually I like her over here. Now if I move her back a little bit further she's gonna get a little bit too tall again. Shrink her down a little bit. Lookin' not too bad. What do you think? For bird's eye view? Looks a lot nicer with the mo...

untain in relation to her in the background. Before the mountain looked really tiny compared to her. Yeah, so in this case here we're kind of splitting the difference. I'm getting close to that threshold that I tend to not want to play in too much where I'm getting, you know, model and background competing for each other. But if I find that, I'm just gonna crop it in. So if I'm sitting here going like oh man I really like this here and this is looking really nice, I like the size of her compared to everything else, of this, what's going on here. I might just crop it in the end. Because I don't want, I don't have enough landscape here for it to be a landscape with a person, but I don't have enough person for it to be a person and a landscape. So I would make the decision and I could either put this little tiny version of her onto this landscape, which could also work. I'm gonna put her on multiply. Right so we could put her here. And actually that's not too bad, that actually looks even better. So this could work. Now one thing that's a little bit off about this is what? From where I have her placed right now. Light? Lighting's not too bad. It's relatively close, so this is similar to what was going on here, but we just have a fill light. Right so this is our natural light. But then we're pretending that we brought in a fill. Right so but there's something that's a little bit off. Does it change the focal point there? Change the focal point? No, this is within that tolerable allowance. She's pretty close. Is it the angle of the beach? Not so much the angle of the beach. If we had been photographing her on this location we would see more of this side of her body than we would see of this side of her body. We photographed her, I photographed her quite straight on. So there's a little bit of tolerance there we could probably, you know, fake it a bit, but what I might do is I might flip her and see if that works a little bit better. Because here with her head turned we're creating the illusion that we're seeing more of this side of her body, right? So you could probably fake it a little bit easier this way. So it's not exactly perfect, because when I was photographing this remember I was like okay I'm gonna do this in portrait. Sometimes this happens in composites where it's like oh well you know what, it's not bad but this is better. So this is one of the reasons. So I'm sitting here going like okay if I move her around a little bit, right here she's dead center of the scene. And so there, I think that could probably work. But I mean we'll know more once we get into the post production side of this, once we start masking, once we get closer. Yes? But you flipped the lining, the lighting, sorry. Well if you remember when you look at this shot here of her, she has more light on this side of her face than this side of her face, this side here is actually darker. So it actually works. I'm just curious, because you set up all the lights to like, a little bit brighter on the-- Yeah, because I did plan on flipping it. Oh. And then when we were working on the portrait one here, oh where is it, one more, there. This was actually working, this was like oh it's actually not too bad, I kind of, you know. It doesn't, it's not conflicting right? Because the lighting is so, it's so general here, right, we have so much tolerance. Whereas if we had had really directional harsh light there would be no tolerance for, we couldn't flip that because it would be completely against it all, so in this case here this is working for us. So that's, that's why I wanted to do this with an overcast day, because otherwise like when the sun came out, it just all of a sudden everything gets a lot more complicated. And we're not gonna get into that this class, so. [Man In Plaid Shirt] Thank you. Yeah no worries. Yeah I really want this to be like, if you're just getting into compositing, and you're just trying to, like getting your feet wet and you want to learn some new stuff, that's what this class is designed for. I'm not, I don't want to throw anybody into something that is like elbows deep right off the bat because then it's just frustrating, right? This is already, there's a lot to consider. So if you're just getting into this I don't want to scare anybody off of like, nope. Not doing that, right? I mean I'm not here to intimidate anybody away from making this stuff. I'm trying to make this accessible so that every single person here who's listening actually kind of wants to check this out and see if it's their thing, and if it's not their thing that's cool and if it is your thing like let's run with it. Right so, I'm pretty happy with this. I'm totally digging it. Ms. Lady, how do you feel about it? It's good? Awesome, could we give our model a round of applause, she's awesome. (audience applause)

Class Description

With the right Adobe® Photoshop® know-how and studio shoot experience, you can merge fact and fiction into a reality that lives up to your imagination. Renee Robyn has made a career of turning everyday photos from her travels into eye-catching images. Robyn will teach you how to add people and other elements to your existing landscape photos using ethereal custom effects.

In this class you’ll learn:

  • How to choose or set up a shoot for your background image
  • How to direct posing during a shoot, and work with directional light in-studio to make your subject fit into the background image
  • How to composite your subject into your image using Photoshop

Photo compositing allows you to breathe interesting ideas into your photos. Open your hard drive, walk into your memory, and turn past experiences into fantastic new realities.


  1. Class Introduction
  2. Why You Should Sketch Your Composite
  3. What to Look for in Your Background
  4. Posing Your Model
  5. Communicate with Your Team
  6. Elements of Compositing
  7. Learning from Failure & Criticism
  8. On-Location Safety Tips
  9. How to Nail the Right Perspective for Your Composite Photo
  10. Gauging Light & Exposure On-Location
  11. On-Location Posing
  12. Cliff Shoot Location Final Thoughts
  13. Tips for Culling Images
  14. Culling Images Q&A
  15. Preparing Your Image for Composite
  16. Composite Image Cleanup
  17. Adding Background Image to Composite
  18. The Difference Between Flow & Opacity
  19. Composite Sky Elements
  20. Using Curves to Color Match
  21. Adding Atmospheric Depth to Image
  22. Using Color Efex Pro to Manipulate Color
  23. Using the Liquify Tool
  24. Color Theory & Monitor Calibration
  25. Adding Smoke Layer to Image
  26. Selective Sharpening
  27. Crop Your Image
  28. Goal Setting for Digital Artists
  29. Review of Location Composite
  30. Understand Angle & Height for Your Base Plate Image
  31. Base Plate Focus Point
  32. Base Plate Lighting Tips
  33. How to Use a Stand-In for Base Plate Image
  34. Capture On-Location Base Plate Image
  35. Student Positioning Demo
  36. Base Plate Sketching
  37. On-Location Sky Capture
  38. What to Look for in a Base Plate Model
  39. Building Composite Model Lighting
  40. Composite Model Test Shots for Angle Matching
  41. Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing
  42. Composite Model Shoot: Working with Hair
  43. Composite Model Shoot: Posing Techniques
  44. Composite Test with Final Shot
  45. Lighting Setup Overview
  46. Culling Model Shoot Images
  47. Adjusting Skintone Colors
  48. Merging Background with Model
  49. How to Mask Hair
  50. Creating a Layer Mask with the Brush Tool
  51. Creating Shadow Layers
  52. Removing Visual Distractions with Stamp Tool
  53. Replacing Sky with Layer Mask
  54. Drawing Hair Strands and Atmospheric Depth
  55. Creating Contrast in Your Composite
  56. Adding Atmospheric Elements
  57. Using Particle Shop
  58. Selective Color Adjustments
  59. Cropping, Sharpening, & Final Touches
  60. Closing Thoughts


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. :)