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Photoshop 14 – Basic Photo Manipulation

Basic photo manipulation in Photoshop allows you to combine multiple images to create creative composites or add interesting elements to your photos. Let’s walk through the process of combining images and creating simple photo manipulations:

Creating a Composite:

  • Open the main image in Photoshop, the one you want to use as the background.
  • Drag and drop or open the secondary image(s) you want to add to the composite as separate layers.
  • Use the Move Tool (shortcut: V) to position the secondary images on top of the main image.

Blending Images:

  • To blend the secondary images seamlessly, adjust their opacity and apply blending modes.
  • Select the secondary image layer in the Layers panel.
  • Reduce the opacity (in the top-right corner of the Layers panel) to control the transparency of the layer.
  • Experiment with different blending modes (in the dropdown menu at the top of the Layers panel) to find the best look.

Layer Masks:

  • Use layer masks to hide or reveal parts of the secondary image and blend it more naturally.
  • Select the secondary image layer and click the “Add Layer Mask” icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to add a mask.
  • Use the Brush Tool (shortcut: B) with black or white color to paint on the mask to hide or reveal parts of the image.

Adjustment Layers:

Adjustment layers help in making global changes to the entire composite without affecting the original images.

Click the Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel (e.g., Curves, Levels, Hue/Saturation).

Adjust the settings in the properties panel that appears.

Transform and Warp:

  • Use Free Transform (Ctrl/Cmd + T) to resize, rotate, and position the secondary images.
  • For more complex adjustments, try Edit > Transform > Warp to reshape and fit objects into the scene.

Shadows and Lighting:

Create realistic shadows and lighting to blend the objects into the scene.

Duplicate the secondary image layer and place it below the original layer.

Transform and adjust the duplicate layer to create a shadow effect.

Apply a Gaussian Blur to the shadow layer and adjust its opacity to achieve a subtle, realistic shadow.


Final Touches:

  • Make any necessary adjustments to color balance, saturation, and sharpness for a cohesive look.
  • Add filters, textures, or gradients to enhance the overall atmosphere if desired.

Saving the Composite:

  • Once you’re satisfied with your photo manipulation, go to File > Save As to save the image in the desired format.

Photo manipulation in Photoshop is a creative process that allows you to transform ordinary images into extraordinary compositions. Experiment with various techniques, blending modes, and layer adjustments to create unique and visually appealing composites.



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