04 March, 2014

How to create DOUBLE EXPOSURE in Photoshop TUTORIAL - 1 kilo of seeds, frozen fingers, 19 photos and 10 minutes of Photoshop:)

how to create double exposure effect in Photoshop

This is how I spent my day off - 2 hours on the balcony when -5 outside, 1 kilo of seeds and frozen fingers.

Concept and shooting part
When I made this photograph of a girl I knew that there should be birds flying out of her chest, something that would symbolize freedom, hope, belief. It's actually the hardest part for me - to pick the right photograph with a right style, mood and sense for the double exposuring.
Well, this time I didn't have one prepared so needed to make a photograph which would fit perfectly. What I've done was putting on my winter coat, taking a looot of seeds - food to attract birds (as far as I live on the 11 th floor and needed bird with the sky on the background). I was feeding them and waiting till at least one of those greedy and lazy birds will fly up to the sky so I could photograph it :) it took me 2 hours, 25 pictures of birds which I had to put together so they would look like a crowd flying in the sky.

Processing part
I usually make exposure, white balance, hues and saturation corrections in Lightroom, and all the layering & blending work in Photoshop.
First of all I blended 17 best images I got with the birds together, plus image with a little bit of clouds to make it look more volumetric and cover a little bit of chest part of the girl.

It's totally ok if the background is dark and doesn't look good, after you blend the layers it becomes lighter and less detailed. To blend the layers I used Screen, Multiple & Soft light modes in Photoshop. As a result:

Yes, it still looks a little ugly, the background has this dirty grey color with smudges and blurs. But when you blend it with the main picture - it will change, you'll see. Let's take a look and talk about the main picture now.

I have already worked on it: erased the background and made it solid pink/grey color, dodged the highlights on the hair, face, arms so it would look contrasty after the blending, burned some shadows on the face and body as well to make clouds appear more bright. After I've prepared the main picture I put the picture with the birds above and blend them using Screen mode - which lightens the background and dodged parts and releases birds and clouds where the shadows are dark on the main picture!
Here's the result again:
how to create double exposure effect in Photoshop

So, basically what you do if you already have photographs prepared ( I mean main picture with plain background color and second "background" picture):
1 - place your main picture under the "background" picture;
2 - change the blending mode of the "background" picture from Normal to Screen.

Easy? :) if not - let me know and I'll try to make more detailed explanation.
Thank you!