Creative Fun with Double Exposure Composites in Photoshop

Double Exposure, or Multiple Exposure, is a photographic technique that combines 2 different images into a single image. The technique has its roots way back in the film days, but has fallen out of favor since the introduction of digital. Double exposure is making a come back recently, due to the fact that graphic editors like Photoshop making the effect so easy to recreate.

Fun With Displacement Maps

Photoshop layers feature are great at pasting one image onto another and blending the pasted image into the background layer by changing the blend mode. The layer blending modes control how the colors in the top image combine with the pixels in the underlying image. They do not affect the texture of either image.

That's where displacement maps come in. To make a image blend into the texture of the base image and make the final image appear more realistic, you can use a  displacement map.

A displacement map is simply a grayscale version of an image saved as a Photoshop file. The Displace filter then uses the displacement map essentially as an applied texture. The black areas are the low points and the light areas are the high points of the contours of the original image.

You create a displacement map of the background image and save it as a PSD file. Then you apply the "Displace Filter" to the second image to be placed of top of the background image. 

In this example I showed you how to simulate face painting with a displacement map. But you'll find many more uses, should as wrapping text and textures to irregular surfaces. Once you see how easy it is to work with displacement maps, you'll make them a ready tool for your photoshop toolbox!

Fun Polaroid Collage with Photoshop

Polaroid? What's a Polaroid?

How many of you remember the good old Polaroid? Back in the day, Polaroids were a really big deal. It was the first camera ever to produce a print in under 60 seconds. It was magic back then. Now not so much. Today a Polaroid is almost a forgotten thing, and most of today's generation have never even heard of a Polaroid, let alone actually seen one. For me, I grew up with Polaroids, and Polaroids were a big part of my life, despite being dated and forgotten, Polaroids still hold a special place in my heart.

Today I thought we would do a fun project and make a collage of Polaroids with a twist. Instead of layering multiple images, I'll show you a unique way to make a collage out a of single image.

So watch the video, and let's bring back the Polaroid! Happy Shooting! 

Which is the best lens for photowalking?

Best Lens For Photowalking Is?

Best Lens For Photowalking Is?

I get asked this question all the time. Which lens to buy for photowalking? Now, I don't normally give away trade secrets, but here it is.. It's model number 56-67850..Wait.. I'm of course kidding.  :-) The correct answer of course, is it depends on the type of photowalk your embarking on. If your photowalk is taking you through lots of beautiful vistas and landscapes, a nice wide angle lens would be ideal. On the other hand,  If your photowalk is taking place in more of a urban setting,  then, maybe a longer tele-zoom would suit you better. Or if street photography is your thing, then maybe a nice 35mm prime would be just what the doctor ordered.

For me, I've gotten in the habit of carrying  2 main lens with me on all photowalks. I carry a 16-35mm f/2.8, and a 70-200mm f/2.8. I find that these two lens are usually more than ample to cover most shooting situations. For that missing gap in-between 35 and 70, I zoom with my feet!

Even if you don't own a DSLR, most of today's point and shoot cameras are outfitted with great general purpose lens. My trusty 8 year old Canon G9 is outfitted with a 35-210mm lens, which is perfect for photowalking.  Remember, photowalking is about the experience, not how expensive you gear is.

So get out and photowalk this weekend!

If you have a question on photowalking or photography in general, or would just like to suggest a topic for us to cover, be sure and drop us a line in the comments below.

Your photos matter more than you think....


Ask yourself a question, if you had time to save one possession from your burning house, what would that be?

I asked several of my friends and family this very question. The answers really surprised me. The mass majority answered they would save their family photographs before anything else.

When faced with losing everything you own in life, it’s interesting that we would grab our family photos rather than valuable jewelry. This impulse to save our memories is a powerful force which tells us how much the role of photography plays in our everyday lives.

We endeavor to preserve the important events and people in our lives. The   birthdays, weddings and anniversaries, holidays and even death are all recorded because they matter. Photographs are our personal story, a timeline of our lives filled with faces and places that we love. They are our story, which we can share with others. The hundreds of images come together to form a narrative of our lives.

Photographs matter because they freeze moments of our lives. Photographs are much more than a box of snapshots. Photographs can express joy and sorrow, wonder and sympathy. Photography speaks to the best and most generous part of our human nature; the desire to share what we find beautiful and interesting with others. 

Photography, is a language all its own, and a powerful language at that. So pickup your camera and make some memories!