Deke’s Techniques: Assembling multiple variations into a single comp

Published by | Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Welcome back to Deke’s Techniques! This week, Deke shows you how to assemble a single Adobe Photoshop composition, or comp, from the six Warhol–like image treatments we created with the last two techniques. Learn how to precisely align each image so that not a single pixel is clipped or singed. To get started, follow along with Deke in this week’s free video and use the companion text below to help with each step. Use the portraits you’ve assembled over the last two tutorials (here and here), use your own images, or work with the exercise files included with the course.

Use Adobe Bridge to load multiple images as layers into Photoshop

1. Start in Adobe Bridge by Shift-click-selecting all of your images. Choose Tools > Photoshop > Load Files into Photoshop Layers.

This method flattens each of the files and assigns it to an independent layer in Photoshop.

Increase the Canvas Size to give yourself some additional room to work.

2. To give yourself more room to work, choose Image > Canvas Size. Deselect the Relative check box. Since there are six images and the plan is to place three of them in each row, you need to enlarge the image by 300 percent horizontally and 200 percent vertically. If you’re using a different number of images, you’ll need to adjust accordingly.

Also make sure to click in the upper-left corner of the Anchor Matrix to expand the canvas in the correct direction.

3. Select the second image layer and choose the Move tool (V). This enables the Align menu in the panel options bar.

4. Click Align Bottom and then Align Horizontal.

Alight the image layers by selecting Align horizontal centers from the Options Bar

5. Select the next image layer. Alternatively, press the Alt+ (Windows) or Option+ (Mac) shortcut to move down the layer stack. Use the Align horizontal centers for this layer.

6. Select both of the last two images and choose Align Right Edges from the options bar.

7. Press Ctrl+D (Windows) or Cmd+D (Mac) to deselect all layers and save your work.

The final collage!

This technique is good for combining any number of images, as long as they are the exact same size. Just remember to scale your canvas size by the number of photos you want to place vertically and horizontally.

Tune in at the same time next week when Deke reveals an Illustrator technique for creating a repeating pattern of circles of various sizes and colors, the perfect decorative element for page backgrounds, print assets, or even, as Deke says, “your next shower curtain.” And as always, members of lynda.com can view the entire Deke’s Techniques collection in our library.

Suggested courses to watch next:

• The entire Deke’s Techniques collection
• Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Intermediate
• Illustrator CS6 One-on-One: Intermediate

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