Photoshop Same Subject Multiple Times: Tutorial
Learn how to make a subject appear several times in an image
Make your family and friends appear several times in an image with this fun Photoshop tutorial. These images were made in Photoshop but it can be done with any photo editing software that allows you to work with layers.
Everyone will be fascinated with the final result and will be wondering how you made it. It is a unique and creative way to make family photos.
Advanced Photoshop users can skip some steps, especially when it comes to duplicate images, but I will go step by step for new Photoshop users.
As a request from my models, I blurred their faces but the main point is that you see the final effect.
1. Taking Your Photographs
Several images with the same subject in different places
The first step, of course, is taking the images you will use.
To get exactly the same frame in all your photographs, it is important to set your camera on a tripod. Hand held photos may not be as accurate for this purpose.
If you have a remote controller for your camera even better, it can be cable or wireless, this is to avoid movement in the camera as you press the shutter release button.
Make sure to select an area where your model can move without blocking each other.
Plan ahead of how you want your image to be after the whole process and ask your model to pose accordingly to your idea.
This is so fun! That is what movie directors do when planning a movie scene.
For example, the first 2 images show a volleyball game between them. For the first image I asked my subject to throw the ball and I captured it in mid-air. In the second one she gets ready to hit it back.
2. Open Your First Image in Photoshop
Once you have it opened, save it with a different name. You don't want to ruin your original photo in case something goes wrong.
For this tutorial, I named mine 01 and saved as .jpg
3. Open Image Number 2
Here is where the fun part begins!
Open image number 2.
Now you have 2 images opened in your Photoshop window. Look at the 2 red arrows on the top left corner of the image below.
In previous versions of Photoshop you will see both images in 2 different windows. I have them as it shows here but that depends on your display preferences.
4. Duplicating Layer in Photoshop
On your second image, right click on your photo layer (the one highlighted in blue) and select: Duplicate Layer.
You can see this window in the image above marked with an arrow on the right side of the screen.
After selecting duplicate layer, a prompt window will open.
Click on the arrow next to Document box and select image 01 to duplicate your image into that file.
See image below:
Now go to your image 01 and you will see two layers as shown in the image below:
After duplicating the layer, you can close the original Image 2 so you remain with only Image 1 with two layers..
This will make it easier so you will not be confused with several images opened at the same time.
On your tools palette, select your Eraser tool (E) and select a size at the top. I chose 226px but this depends on the size of the subject and the details.
You can adjust the size along the process.
Important: Make sure the top layer is selected (highlighted in blue) as in the image below:
5. Start Erasing
Let the Magic Begin!
On the top layer, start erasing where the subject is in the image below to make it appear.
To make sure you are doing it on the right spot, you can turn the upper layer off to see the layer below.
To do this check the image below and look at the arrow pointing towards the eye icon on that layer. I circled it in red.
Click on it and you will see the bottom layer, make sure you turn it on again and keep the upper layer highlighted..
Your subject will start appearing just like magic!
Continue erasing until your subject appears completely. Now you have 2 persons in the image: my models are playing volleyball!
6. Save Your Image as PSD
This will save it layered
We are going to save your progress. To save your picture layered, we will save it as .PSD. PDD Format.
To do this go to File>Save as
In the prompt window type the name you prefer. I always add PSD after the name but that is me.
In the drop down menu under Format, select the first option as it shows in the image below: PSD PDD.
The brand I have been using for years
As I mentioned before it is important to set your camera on a tripod to get accurate alignment in the images for this tutorial.
Following is the tripod I have been using for years and I recommend to you.
Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod Legs (Black)
This awesome tripod by Manfrotto is strong, easy to use and carry. Its flip type legs are fast to release which makes it a perfect tripod for field photography. I have been using Manfrotto products for several years and I strongly recommend them. Their quality is superior to other products in the market. For more tripod options visit: Photo and Video Tripods.
7. Open Image 3
Open your image number 3. In this case it is the girl sitting by the tree.
Duplicate the layer as we did on Step 4.
In this tutorial you should always duplicate your layers into image 01 as destination and these new layers should appear at the top.
Advanced Photoshop users can use commands and shortcuts. For newbies we are doing it step by step.
After duplicating your 3rd image you will see 3 layers in your Layer Palette as shown in the image above.
You can close the original of your 3rd image now.
Start erasing as we did previously, this time remember that you have to bring the 2 previous images up. In this case the 2 girls playing volleyball and the ball in the air.
As we did before, you can turn the layer off just to check their position of your subject in the previous layer, and then turn it on again to continue.
Remember to check that the top layer is highlighted because this is the layer you are working on.
Isn't it fun to see how your images start showing up?
Now you image should have 3 models as this photo shows.
Save your image: File>Save
Save, save, save!
It is important to save your progress after each step.
Just as you do when working on any other computer project or document.
8. Adding One More Image
Open image 4.
In this case is the girl on the tree. She took the cap from the girl sitting by the tree. Isn't she a meanie?
Repeat the duplicating process as we did on Step 4 and then image 01 will show 4 layers this time.
Remember to close the 4th image after duplicating it.
Start erasing until the girls in the previous layers come up.
See image below.
Now open image 5 and repeat the whole process. In this case it is the girl peaking behind the tree.
After you're done, the image should look like this:
Save your image again.
9. Flatten the Image
We are almost done!
Now it is time to flatten the image.
There are several ways to do it:
As I mentioned before, advanced Photoshop users will do it faster. You will do too when you get a hold of the program, but for now I will show you two easy ways to do it:
Press Ctrl on your keyboard and with it pressed. Click on each layer on the Layer Palette until they are all highlighted.
Another way is to Press Shift on your keyboard and click on the top and bottom layers; all layers will be highlighted.
Now go to Layer at the top of the screen and from the drop down menu select: Flatten Image.
See image below:
Now you can save your image as JPG, PNG or Tiff. The format you prefer.
10. Your Final Result - a Bunch of Girls Having a Wonderful Day!
Put your creative cap on and have fun
The sky is the limit!
Hope you had fun with this tutorial of how to create an image with the same subject multiple times.
You can create any image you like be creative. The Sky is the Limit!
These are 2 more images with this technique. In fact the first one is the same we used in this tutorial but I added one more image.
How about creating one with: See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil....
Hope you enjoyed this tutorial about having the same subject multiple times in one image. If you have any questions, please send me a message through the contact button in my profile.
Would love to see you around again and hear about your experiences after applying this tutorial.
Questions & Answers
© 2012 Malu Couttolenc