There's only so many things around the house that are interesting enough to photograph. If you follow me on Facebook you obviously know my obsession with photographing my dog Bailey. And if you know me personally you know that aside from photography, I also enjoy playing the drums. But how many boring old shots of my drum set can I take? That's when I came up with the idea to make my first attempt at a composite photograph.
The final project looks like this.
I just wanted to take a little bit of time to explain how I was actually able to make this shot. First and foremost, I'm so thankful to have a pretty neat attic as a backdrop. The old wood up there is really photogenic in my opinion. Since this is a composite photograph most of you are able to figure out that this is actually a number of shots all stitched together through the power of Photoshop.
The biggest key to making a shot like this work is consistency. In order to achieve the desired affect I had to make good use of a sturdy tripod. Because if the camera were to movie during any point of this shoot, it would have made it a lot more difficult to piece together. Aside from having a sturdy tripod, I had to make sure the camera settings were not going to change at all during the entire session. So in order to keep each shot in focus, from the back of the room, to the front of the room, I had to use a small aperture. I chose to go with f/16 because that was the smallest I could go to, while still maintaining a proper shutter speed. If you are interested in learning about photography and want to know more about aperture, check out this link.
I should quickly mention, since you will notice in the individual pics to follow, my lighting set-up is not very spohisticated at all. I had two spotlights on the ground, and one spotlight over head. So now with a couple test shots and my lighting all set up it was time to figure out how I was going to position each piece of the drum set. This step was fairly easy I just moved each piece into position, would run back and take a quick shot to make sure everything was focused and that there wasn't much overlap between each part. Then I simply marked off on the ground each piece's position with clear tape so I would be able to place it correctly when it was time to photograph.
From this point on it was fairly simple. First, a picture of the entire room emptied out. This would serve as the base photo where I would later stitch the other smaller pieces.
Then, I would simple grab one piece of the drum set, put it into position, and start snapping about 5-10 pictures of whatever random poses came into my head. I would then clear out that piece, bring in the next piece, and start the same process over again. During this entire time, keep in mind, the camera should not be touched and no settings should be changed. You want all of these shots to be perfectly consistent.
Here are 4 of the poses that didn't make it into the final cut, but I thought they would still be fun to share with you.
With all the pictures taken, I then processed them in Lightroom, before moving them over to Photoshop. As for explaining my process in Photoshop I don't think I could do a good enough job, so check out this article for a simplified way to make a composite image in Photoshop.
If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will try to answer them as best as possible. Also please feel free to leave me any ideas you might have for other composite shots you would like to see me do.