Creative photoshop Shoot the impossible
James Paterson explains how to combine three images into one to create a trick mirror-image
Reflections are a ripe subject for photographic trickery. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to create a mirror image that couldn’t possibly have occurred. It’s a neat visual trick that echoes MC Escher’s mirror ball sketch, and, like the best trickery, it all begins in-camera.
You need three images. In the first, the subject holds the camera with one hand, and stretches the other out to the surface of the mirror. In the second, he switches hands in order to capture the other arm stretched out. And in the third, he holds the camera below his chin to capture his face. If you plan to shoot your own images for this, keep your camera and body position as fixed as possible so that everything can be aligned.
Once you’ve opened these images in Photoshop, all you have to do is combine the arms and head to create a seamless composite that makes the camera invisible. This is easy enough using layer masks, selections and a little cloning to tidy things up. Here’s how it’s done…