The Fine Art Composite Image: Adventures with Photoshop Masking & Compositing


Photographer, author, and educator Seán Duggan has been making images for more than 30 years. He creates his photographs with a variety of cameras and technical processes, using everything from wooden pinhole cameras and medium format film to digital SLRs and advanced compositing techniques.

In this presentation, inspired by his best-selling book “Photoshop Masking & Compositing,” which he co-authored with Katrin Eismann and James Porto, he shares his process for creating intriguing and compelling multiple-image composites. In showing how some of his composites came into being, Duggan shares not only the essential methods and techniques that make these images a reality in Photoshop, but also shines a light on the ideas, inspiration, brainstorming, and concept development that is a vital part of his compositing process. The importance of narrative and the element of mystery in a composite is also discussed as a way to elevate an image beyond simple technical perfection, at the pixel level, into something more that references the themes, symbols, and archetypes that flow through our internal worlds.

This is a presentation for anyone who is fascinated by the possibilities of the composite image and wants to learn some of the essential techniques and concepts for making your own visions a reality.