Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Lesson 8/60 - On-Location Safety Tips


Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography


Lesson Info

On-Location Safety Tips

So what we did before all of this stuff here in the studio, we went out onto location, and we did a pre-shoot. So we actually photographed a model on location, and then we actually photographed the background pieces that we're gonna use for the studio stuff tomorrow. So we're basically gonna go through tiny little segments of film that we pre-shot, and we'll do questions and explanations all the way through it, and then we'll go through the series of culling the images. So the first one here that we're gonna go through is just safety, so it's brief. They cut out the part where I was cursing at the sun when the sun came out, I was kind of sad about that, but, yeah, I guess I'll just hit play, and we'll go from there. Okay, so we made it to our location. We hiked everything out here, and we want to make sure when we get here that there's major concerns to look after. One of them of course being safety, making sure everybody's warm, making sure the equipment stays safe and stays dry, and ...

then making sure that everything just kind of stays the way it's supposed to. So I want to make sure there's no equipment failures, no equipment breaks, and more importantly, no people get injured. So one of the things that I like to look for, is in this case we actually have a cliff behind us here, but iw ant to make sure that our model's far enough away so that she's not gonna get hurt. So there's no risk of her stepping back and falling away. It would take a lot of effort for her to fall off this cliff, especially if we even have a lot of wind, which it's kind of windy today. Next we have computers, we have computers propped up on stuff, so there's no sand getting in anything, there's a platform to put the camera, so there's no dirt getting into the camera or the lens, and then we have lighting, and we have people here who can hold the light to make sure it's not gonna fly anywhere. Originally, we had planned on using a lighting modifier, but it's way too windy, so we're just gonna use a bare bulb. All righty, so that is video number one. So do we have any questions on safety? Because basically what we have there is that we're shooting on a cliff edge so that it's relatively easy to cut out, right? But I'm keeping her far enough away so that if she actually fell over backwards, it would take so much effort (laughing) that it basically would be like the perfect storm. Which the perfect storm can happen, but we want to make sure that there's enough safety steps in place that we can keep everybody and the equipment safe. So there's no equipment gonna fall on her, we didn't have anything overhead that the wind could catch and fall on her, or on anybody else for that matter, because life is necessary. And yeah, I wanted to make sure that the equipment stayed safe, because of course this is a laptop, sand getting into things is bad, and as I learned when I was in Death Valley a couple weeks ago, and I got caught in a sand storm, sand in your lenses is really bad. So my lens is off for repair right now. (laughing) But do we have any questions on safety before we go into the next video? These are all pretty short, so. Yes? Just a question from me personally. Can you talk to us a little be about what kind of insurance you have, and where you get it through. Yeah, I have, so there's lots of places to get insurance, I just have private insurance. So I just have commercial liability insurance. If you're part of, say, PPA, or PPOC, depending on what part of the world you're in, a lot of times you can get discounted insurance through those agencies, but mine is just through private insurance, that I have everything covered, so. That's, insurance is a really great thing to have, especially if somebody was to fall off and get hurt, that perfect storm happened, she jumped, and then gale-force winds took her and threw her off the cliff, it's really nice to have a healthy insurance policy sot that your people are looked after.

Class Description

With the right 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.

Join us for “Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography” and 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.


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

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. :)

Tristan Wilhelm

Very good class. I enjoyed the very friendly, approachable and quirky style Renee teaches with. I did feel, as others have said that she could get off on bunny trails and tell stories and I was glad for Creative Live's option to speed up the video. But great tips and it was extremely helpful watching it how she would do it. Thank you much Renee, and also, I'm a PC user that unites with you.