Photography has always held a weird space in my head. In my mind, I make things that look neat. I have always held great envy to those who create such complex, emotional narratives to their images. I sit and observe with awe and wonder at the tales that come from them, their reasons for color, pose, and other infinitesimal details. Pixels for me are a means to an end, but it’s still something I can’t help but create. It’s how I tell *a* story, but it’s not how I tell my own.
Photographer and Digital Artist Renee Robyn survived a devastating motorcycle crash that nearly left her paralyzed. Unable to leave her bed while recovering from the accident, she discovered a new way to express her boundless creativity without having to travel: digital composites. She’s now a critically acclaimed artist. Learn more about Renee’s inspirational story through her SmugMug Film, the latest in a series of stunning video shorts that we hope will inspire passion, ignite possibility, and encourage you to throw your own shutter wide open to the wonders of the world.
Below, Renee shares some of the tips she’s learned through years of “trying to make things suck less.”
When you look at a photo showing a fantasy world, there is often that moment of armament on how the final photograph looks so real and yet unreal at the same time. That is because good compositors use real elements from real photos and have the ability to blend them in well. Of course, there is more to this art than just selecting photo parts and throwing them together. In fact watching how a composite comes to life is almost as looking at a piece of art that is disconnected from the final photograph.
Photographer and retoucher Renne Robyn records her process of compositing a photo and they are a delight.
On my last post I talked about my backup workflow, but I am probably more known for my editing style. So this time I decided to break down a photo. A question I get asked a lot when I showing my portfolio is how I make images like the one above (This one is featuring the wonderful Renee Robyn, click here for a bigger version). With all the organic shapes and details in there, it seems like a non trivial edit. With this tutorial I’m going to show the basics of the effect, which should give you an insight into the creation of such images.
It is not uncommon to find a photographer who is also a retoucher, it is way more rare, to find an excellent photographer who is also a great model and a talented retoucher. This is why I was so happy to have the chance to interview Renee Robyn, a Model, Photographer and Retoucher based in Alberta Canada (yes, all with capital letters).