A Pirate’s Dream – Photoshop Composite

I’ve been practicing several Photoshop techniques building posters, blending images with textures and adding special effects.  I decided to bring several of these design techniques together into one composite that I named, “A Pirate’s Dream”.

As I don’t have access to models or a studio, I used images that I captured on several of my trips both abroad and around the US.  I have a pretty vast library of images and general capture everything interesting that I see, just in case I might want to use it in a graphic design sometime.

So the first thing was a basic pencil drawing to get a concept down.  Then I needed to define my horizon and set the perspective lines so the entire scene would look balanced.  I used a technique I learned with the star shape, where you set several sides with 99% indentation and then draw out a star. 

The center of the star becomes your vanishing point on your horizon.  This grid can then be turned on and off to ensure that you set your other elements into the picture in the right perspective.

I also knew that I was going to have essential three scenes in my composite.  The background was the scene outside the cave, the cave where the pirate’s treasure chest was setting and then the pirate in the foreground with his monkey.  So again, the cave needed to be “in perspective” to the horizon.

I use a cool technique with the vanishing filter where you can actually draw the grids for the entire cave and then “render the grid” to Photoshop.  By doing this, I was able to match the vanishing filter grid to the perspective lines from the star and horizon element and then layout each of my elements in the composition  in exact perspective based on whether they were in the background or the middle ground of the composition.

The vanishing filter also allowed me to drag my rocks and dirt floor into the grids and the vanishing filter aligned them “in perspective” to the walls, floor and ceiling.

I used several images from my collection for the composite.  I did download a couple of .png files for swords and the skull that I didn’t have.  The remainder of the elements were cutout with various techniques using the pen tool, channels, color range, quick selection, or whatever selection technique best fit the image.

Here is a collection of the images that were used in the final composition.


And the final composition – A Pirate’s Dream.

#terributlerphotography, #photoshop, #composite, #composition, #manipulation, #blending, #cutout, #vanishingfilter, #perspective