January 16, 2009

Digital Montages

If you want to make digital composites – sometimes called montages – then here are two important tips that will give you the raw material you need to get creative.

1) Photograph simple objects –

Digital composites can be comprised of two images or 200, but chances are, the more simple objects you have to work with, the more themes you can explore. Try photographing fruit, animals, birds, insects, buildings, anything that might explain some concept later in a digital composite. You can later scale, rotate, shade, re-color or move these objects anywhere you want in your digital composite.

2) Photograph simple backgrounds –

Good composites start with a simple background. Look for patterns, whether in nature or manmade, to create an interesting background. Something as simple as blue or cloudy sky, water, dead leaves – anything ordinary will do, as long as you like the color and/or pattern.

Then start playing. Mix and match your objects and backgrounds and see if you can tell a story.

In the photo above, a client liked my beaver shot, but needed a green background for an ad and wanted a vertical. I simply composited a shot of some grass with the shot of the beaver in the water to get the sale. This was commercial. But in lots of places, this is art. Digital composites are sold as art all over Europe. It’s a fun way to use your digital camera and break down any boredom.