Bokeh Composite – Night Scene

For today’s exercise, I did a tutorial from Scott Kelby’s book The Adobe Photoshop Book for Digital Photographers for Version CS6 and CC.  We took two photos and combined them into one.

The first thing I did was pick a picture of a modern dancer and then I picked a photo that had nighttime lights (kind of neon).  I selected the modern dancer out of her background.  (I discovered that if I’m going to put my selection on a darker background it is best to select from an image that has a darker background.  That way if my selection isn’t perfect the darker background will cover my boo boos!  I’m still working on getting good a selections.  I don’t know why I find it so darn hard!)

I then opened the nighttime lights picture in Camera Raw and lowered the highlights part of the photo.  Then I opened the photo in Photoshop.  Once there, I used the Iris Blur tool to create the bokeh appearance with the lights.  Once I did that, I opened my modern dancer selection who had been on a darker background.  I had to do some touch-up on the layer mask to get rid of some spots that weren’t perfect.  I then add a slight gradient to the bottom of the composite to shadow the dancer’s foot.  I read in another book that it is the feet that often mess up the composite.  So the easiest thing to do is to darken that area.

I tried out a bunch of different layer blending options to see which one I like the best.  I included my top 4 picks for blending options.

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