Photoshopped: Poet’s Table/Estes Park

I’ve been really trying to hone in on my photoshop skills lately by editing some of my favorite photos and seeing what cool things I can do. Recently, I’ve been practicing with combining two images into something that looks real, but actually isn’t at all.

While doing this I realized how deceiving this practice can be and it made me stop and think about how we perceive images that we see online. Many artists from all kinds of industries use photo editing technologies to manipulate the images that they have taken and enhance features in a way that can make it more appealing than it really is. In the picture above, I did just that. this is actual a combination of two pictures from two very different places in the midwest. One is from the elusive Poet’s Table in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and the other is from Estes Park, in the Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado.

Poet’s Table, SD
Estes Park, CO

To create this deception, I used the Magnetic Lasso tool on the foreground to cut out all unwanted parts of the image. When I got to the pine tree that stretches into the background in the real picture I deleted the part that hangs off the rock and used the clone stamp tool to erase the rest of the branch and cover it with rock texture. I did the same thing with the wine bottle that had been left on the shelf by a previous traveler. I then turned my attention to the background, and for the most part, all I had to do was crop it and drag it into place. To finish, I added a grain filter to the background and brightened it to match the foreground lighting.

It’s as easy as that! There were a few other blending tricks I used, but for the most part, it was an easy process. This just goes to show that you can’t really trust anything you see anymore because it can be easy for a professional (or student like myself) to manipulate images and deceive your mind into thinking something is real when it’s not even close!


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