Thursday, January 31, 2013

Multiplicity Self Portrait, pt. 2


Now that we have our multiple photos from part one of this tutorial it's time to put it together. If you did everything right in the first part then each image should line up with each other.

Most major photo editing software can be used to accomplish this effect. Just make sure you can work in layers. If you are a beginner it is often easier to do all the image composing first and then do a final enhancement after.

If you are more advanced and/or are working in RAW do all image enhancement first. Just make sure you apply the same enhancement to all the images in the series. This will ensure your final composition has a unified look.

Method One - Cut and Paste

Use your selection tool and cut the subject from photo A and paste it onto photo B. It will paste into its own separate layer. Unless you are concerned with overlap you don't have to be too careful with the clipping.

Carefully position the cut selection so that it lines up with the background of photo B. Use the nudge arrows on your keyboard to fine tune the position. Look at the edges of the clipping to see how well they match.

When the two parts line up simply compress the two layers and you now have a finished multiplicity photo. If parts of the pasted image hides something you want showing simply carefully erase the unwanted part before compressing the layers.

Method Two - Erase Layer

Import photo B onto a layer over photo A. If the camera was set on a tripod the two images should line up.

Give the top layer a 50% transparency. This will allow you to see the underlying layer. Use the shift arrows to nudge the top layer until it lines up with the bottom layer.

With the eraser tool, erase areas of the top layer to reveal the subject from the bottom layer. Use undo if you make any mistakes.

Once you are happy with the way it looks return the top layer to 100% opacity and compress the two layers. You now have a completed multiplicity photo.

Method Three - Layer Mask

This is the preferred method. Place photo B onto a layer over photo A like in method two.

Add a layer mask to the top layer. Layer masks allow you to do limited manipulation to an image without doing damage to the image. Depending on type of mask it will either hide or show the working layer. You will want to select show. * The black layer mask shown is for illustration purposes only. You will be working on a white layer mask.

Like in method two, give the top layer a 50% transparency allowing you to see the underlying layer. Use the shift arrows to nudge the top layer until it lines up with the bottom layer.

Use your brush tool to paint on the mask layer not the image. Black is used to reveal the subject from the bottom layer. Paint in the area over the subject you want showing through. If you make a mistake simply switch to white and repair the mistake. You can paint along edges and in tight areas without fear of destroying the original image.

If you are happy with the results bring the top layer back to 100% opacity, compress the image as in the previous methods and you’re done. You now have a completed multiplicity photo.

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