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LinkedIn Learning

Photographing for Compositing in Photoshop

via LinkedIn Learning


Learn the creative and technical considerations involved in photographing with compositing in mind.

Learn the creative and technical considerations involved in photographing with compositing in mind. Seán Duggan reviews the key elements of any compositing library, and then shows how to go out into the field and into the studio to capture the photographs you need to round out your own image library. He also reviews using props to expand your creative options and some simple post-processing techniques for creating different types of composites in Photoshop.


  • Welcome
  • About the course
  • Using the exercise files
1. The Compositing Mindset
  • Types of composites
  • Seeing compositing possibilities
  • Creating a simple blend-mode composite
  • Using blend modes to create a photorealistic composite
2. The Compositing Image Library
  • Lightroom collections and keywords for a composite library
  • Discussing skies, water, and landscape elements for compositing
  • Recognizing and photographing symbolic elements
3. Photographing the Location Elements
  • Introduction: Location shooting for composites
  • Planning the shot
  • Getting the shot
  • Shooting additional angles
  • Understanding lighting, perspective, and camera angle to aid the composite
  • Using a model in the composite
  • Using props: Shooting a glass bottle
4. Photographing the Studio Elements
  • Introduction: Shooting in a studio for composites
  • Matching studio lighting to location shots and lighting the background for masking
  • Matching perspective, angle, and focal length
  • Using location elements in the studio
  • Shooting tethered in Lightroom for quick rough drafts
  • Creating a studio mock-up composite in Photoshop
5. Composite Project: Trapped in a Bottle
  • Using the Quick Selection tool to select the subject
  • Perfecting the selection with Select and Mask
  • Using Smart Objects for nondestructive transformations
  • Refinements with blend modes and adjustment layers
  • Finishing touches
6. Composite Project: Portrait
  • Masking the subject
  • Editing a layer mask
  • Adding sand detail from another image
  • Finishing touches
Composite Project: Man in a Seascape
  • Combining two seascape images
  • Modifying rocks for a realistic look
  • Final mask touch-ups
  • Using adjustment layers to create tonal styling
  • Next steps

Taught by

Seán Duggan

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