“Composites are my favorite”
Why? Because they some of the most challenging yet creative outlet available to me as an artist. To me, a good composite is one that really looks like the real deal. You can’t tell what’s real or not (at least in a realistic photo) or what elements were added or taken away. They can be as simple as a head-swap, or as complex as where all the pieces are modified and added.
Why are they so difficult? Well, you are not only working with items usually taken at different times, but also with different gear and by different photographers. This means when combining items, you have to pay attention to not only where the light is coming from, but also the type of light. Is it flat or high-contrast type of light? Does the color temperature match? Other things to be mindful of, is things like scale, angle in which the photograph was taken, and focus. The quickest way to tell if someone swapped out a sky, is if the trees at the horizon are blurred but the clouds are in focus.
One of the most time consuming aspects of composites is cutting out the subject. Here is a SOOC (straight out of camera) shot, the subject cut out and then scaled and pasted on to a new background.
All of these composites are done by me in Photoshop CC. I do offer individual classes on how to do composites. We do offer composites to the public (just make sure you have a release if you didn’t take the photo.) Video tutorials will be coming soon, so stay tuned!
Author: Katja Wright