Make motion blurs
Add slow shutter speed effects to your pics using stacks and layer masks
Streaks of motion blur can convey movement in action shots and produce a more dynamic–looking photo — an effect you can create with some skill and an SLR set to a slow shutter speed.
When shooting action with Apple’s Camera app for iOS, though, you can’t set the shutter speed manually. Indeed, to try to ‘improve’ iOS’s photographic results, most subjects are automatically captured using a fast shutter speed, which freezes every detail. To add motion blur to an iPhone shot, you could snap a Live Photo, then swipe up on the pic in the Photos app and choose the Long Exposure preset to turn your clip into a motion–blurred streak. However, this tends to produce an abstract–looking blur that lacks detail.
Another advantage of using an SLR when shooting at slow shutter speeds is the ability to add a burst of flash. This inserts a sharper key frame into a motion–blurred shot and results in an image where you can clearly see the subject and get a sense of motion.
The results can be impressive, but it’s a real challenge to make the flash fire at the end of the exposure. Fortunately, you can use Affinity Photo to recreate an effective long–exposure action shot.
Here, we held down the Camera app’s shutter button to shoot a burst mode image of a child on a swing. Burst mode captures a series of sharp shots, which you can merge using Affinity Photo’s Stack tool. The Stack tool automatically aligns shots and then blends them to create a motion–blurred subject. The static areas of the shot, such as the swing frame, and background, all remain sharp.
To add a sharper version of the child to the composite image, and mimic a burst of flash, we used layer masks and the brush tool, as you’ll discover below.