Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography


Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography


Lesson Info

Selective Color Adjustments

I've added atmospheric stuff, we've added things and stuff, it's looking not too shabby, I am down to start playing with color. So now I'm gonna go, let's do, I like selective color. It's kinda fun. I'm totally gonna jump into Nik Software, it's gonna happen, but I like to play in here a little bit first, anyways. Cool tones looking not too bad. The cool tones is gonna balance out this nicely. This is actually looking a lot better, just like that. Well then. (chuckles) Happy accident. I'm gonna turn this off first, and I'm gonna just quickly do a detail extraction. I'm gonna slide the color up. Detail extractor, there we go. That's way too much, looks HDR, it's awful. Totally gag worthy. But if we pull it up a little bit here, I know I'm gonna mask it out of the sky, like I did before, because I don't really want tons of detail in the sky, but I like what detail extraction does to my subject, bringing it in to even it out with some of the stuff that's in the scene. Knock up the contras...

t a little bit. Not too bad, gonna hit OK. Gonna create a layer mask. Turn the flow up. Let's get that out of that sky a little bit. I don't really want it there. Before, after. I'm okay with it being in the cloud a little bit, just not as hardcore as it was. I have that selective color adjustment, it's looking pretty awesome. Hey, that's what I call a happy accident. (chuckles) Even better, let's turn that down just a little bit. Nice. Neat. That happens sometimes. (chuckles) I've lost some of the atmospheric work that I put in there, so I'm going to take this atmosphere layer, I'm going to duplicate it. I'm gonna drag it to the top again, because I like what that does for that little bit of separation there. I'm gonna turn it down even further, but I don't want to lose that. This is really starting to come together quite nicely, I think it's working out not too bad. I'm gonna jump into color effects again. We're gonna load up. Go into cross balance. Go away, come on. Thank you. Now remember things that are closer up sometimes can be warmer than things that are further away. Day two, my brain is like, nope, we're done. (chuckles) But if we play with this here, and I up this up a tiny little bit, and then we remask out those clouds, so we copy that mask for the clouds and we have the cooler clouds in the background, this could look actually pretty rad. So I'm gonna go OK. And I have this mask here from detail extractor, so I am going to hold Alt, click and drag that up here. So now this is not good enough, and it's a little bit too strong. (vocalizing) First thing I'm gonna do is I'm gonna make the sky super blue, which it's too blue right now, in my opinion. Click that. We're looking not too shabby. Now I'm going to invert this and I'm going to take a really big brush at a lower flow, and I'm just gonna wiggle it across the whole screen. Maybe that will lighten it up a little bit. I'm basically bringing back in some of that tungsten tone into the shot. That's looking better. It's a little too much that time though. Lower flow. That's better. That's not too bad, it's looking all right. Let's play with this a little bit. I'm gonna go color balance. Once again, this is not the end-all, be-all of editing color. Totally just sliding around here, seeing what's kinda fun. I'm gonna add a little yellow to my highlights, shadows, let's add a little bit of cyan, little bit of blue. Too much, there we go. Alright, this is the Bob Ross-y part, I get it guys, it's cool, it's boring. (chuckles) I'm gonna open up a curves here. Gonna just flatten this a tiny little bit. So this is a little bit strong. Gonna bring that back a touch. I'm actually gonna see what happens if I put my curves there underneath this. Nah, not too much. The order of your adjustments makes a huge difference. Huge, huge, huge difference. Lots of things can make big changes there for sure. Last thing, I think I'm getting pretty close here. I'm gonna go hue/saturation, I'm gonna slide down my saturation a tiny little bit. Whoa. Go away. Give me my room back. (chuckles) So I'm gonna put the saturation back at zero. I'm gonna just lightly desaturate a little bit, and I'm going to leave the saturation a little bit stronger on her, because she is my subject, my little walking mermaid. So my mask, let's see here, little bit more. My mask is very, very, very subtle here. It's so, so, so small. Let's add just a little bit more. That's our mask right there. We can probably bring that down a little bit. Cool. Let's see how that looks on your screen. Not too shabby. What do you guys think so far? Anything that I missed? Like the hair strands, that was pretty awesome. (laughs) I see here, curves could maybe be a little bit less. Not too bad though, not too bad.

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