Cloning Myself In One Photo

Discussion in 'Graphics Programs and Photo Gallery' started by dan.rpo, Aug 17, 2009.

  1. dan.rpo

    dan.rpo TPF Noob!

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    So i want to make one of those self-portrait shots where i appear in multiple sections of the same photo, for example, me sitting at every seat of a table.

    I know id have to use a tripod to take each shot seperately, but what do i do as far as post processing? i am a graphic artist and should probably know how to do this via photoshop, but have never done so. thanks!
     
  2. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    First, you've got to take the pictures properly. Errors in taking the separate images can't be fixed in PP.

    When you take the pix, everything needs to be set to manual; exposure, focus, ISO. You need to be certain that nothing changes between images. other than you position. Any focus change will cause alignment issues. Any exposure change will cause difficulty in blending the images.

    To composite the images you need an image editor that supports layers (e.g. Photoshop, ...). You open the images so that each on is on a separate layer. The easiest way in PS is to open the first two images, set the disply to tile the windows, and then drag the layer entry for the second image and drop it onto the first. Close that second image and open the remaining images, one at a time, repeating the drag and drop.

    You now need to create Layer Masks for each of the layers other than the bottom one. Turn off all but the bottom two layers. Next fill the Layer Mask for the upper image with black (masks the whole leayer) and paint white on the Layer Mask to reveal the second you. Repeat for each of the other layers one at a time from the bottom up.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Separate layers and layer masks.
     
  4. dan.rpo

    dan.rpo TPF Noob!

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    how does the white reveal just me? or better put, how does painting white on the layer mask reveal me and nothing else?
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Think of a layers as sheets of cellophane laid on top of one another. Each layer covers what is under it....but if parts of that layer are clear, you will be able to see what is under it. If it helps, imagine old school animation.

    A basic method for this, would be to erase parts of the layers, so that your multiple images show though. Using a layer mask is sort of like erasing parts of your layer, except that it's only hidden, not erased.

    It's just Photoshop convention that white/black are used for hide/reveal on layer masks.

    You can use any of the painting/drawing tools that you might normally use, on the layer mask, to hide or reveal what you want.
     
  6. dan.rpo

    dan.rpo TPF Noob!

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    so i fill with black, and then paint with white over the area that i want exposed, meaning, myself? how should i go about painting over myself with exact detail (not going outside the boundaries of my body)
     
  7. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    By zooming in really close, using a small brush and taking your time.
     
  8. Goontz

    Goontz TPF Noob!

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    There's a thread somewhere around here with doing just this. It even included explanations and youtube tutorials...wonder if I can find it...
     
  9. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    There are countless methods. You can start with any 'selection' method like lasso tools, the pen tool, select color etc.
     
  10. Goontz

    Goontz TPF Noob!

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  11. JayClark79

    JayClark79 TPF Noob!

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    What i did was open all the images, then cut portions from each picture out and dragged them all to 1 image
     
  12. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    That's why its critical to shoot the images correctly.

    If nothing changes shot to shot, other than your position, and if you don't overlap yourself you then will have a reasonably wide space between the portions of the various images that differ (you). Its isn't important which image is revealed in the areas where they match exactly, so there is no great difficulty painting on the mask. You just need to paint solid white over the image of you and not over anywhere that you appear on the image on the layers below. Here's and example; look carefully at the Layers panel to see the two composited images and the Layer Mask on the upper layer:
    [​IMG]

    Painting the mask only gets tricky when an edge of one of the "yous" touches another "you". Then you need to zoom in very close, set the Brush tool so that its blurred edge approximates the same slight blur on the edge of one of the "yous", and then paint very carefully.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2009

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