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Thursday 24 September 2009


The concept of compositing has been around for a very long time. Many artists combine images and mediums to create collages and composited images. With modern software programs, this process has become easier and faster. I too have created many photographic composites over the years. In fact, I’m often on the lookout for subjects that would make an interesting photo illustration. One example is this image of a plane flying into the sunset. The plane was originally shot in the daylight. I stripped it out of its background and laid it on top of a sunset I painted in Photoshop. The result is a simple but effective composite.
Composite plane image - click to view original

One that was a little more complicated was this image of the old lighthouse at Cape Spear on Newfoundland. I had to turn the image into a “night” image with the lights on and then composite in the snow and the moon. Here are the stages of the image:
Original Cape Spear Lighthouse daylight imageSnow on ManitoulinMoon
Point mouse at any thumbnail for larger view

Cape Spear final image - click for larger
Recently, I was shooting in southern Ontario. I came across a Steam Locomotive at a museum in Brighton. I instantly thought it would make an interesting composite. I shot several images, some close some further away. The sky was a washed out grey. The first step was to choose the right composition. I then went about replacing the sky. Next, I wanted to turn on the light at the front of the train and last, I added the “smoke” from another image. I think it has much more power and interest like this. What do you think?
Steam Engine Composite Click to view largerOriginal Train Image
Click Composite left for larger view

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