Create a 360° panorama in Photoshop Elements

Create a 360 panorama in Photoshop Elements

W hen on location, your peripheral vision tends to give you a much wider perspective than your camera’s lens, which is why landscape shots often lack the sense of space you experienced at the scene. Here, we’ll show you how to use Photoshop Elements’ picture-stitching powers to combine six shots into a 360° panorama composite that reveals much more about the location. We’ll also show you how to adjust the image to get a more balanced composition, which is especially important when creating an architectural 360° panorama.

Fake a tilt-shift effect in Photoshop Elements

Fake a tilt-shift effect in Photoshop Elements

When shooting miniature buildings such as those on a train set, the camera’s close proximity to the subject can create a shallow depth of field. This makes some of the model buildings look sharp, while closer and distant ones are blurred; this narrow plane of focus reveals that the scene is a model. You can take inspiration from this focus effect and apply it to life-size scenes for creative results.

8 steps to atmospheric lighting effects in Photoshop Elements

How to get atmospheric lighting in Photoshop Elements: tutorial

Hidden Photoshop tricks can easily be applied to images to enhance atmospheric effect.

The creative use of light can transform almost any photographic scene, helping to isolate detail, enhance colour and form a visual structure. In the quick Photoshop tutorial below, we’ll show you how to you can give new life to your images by emphasising light.

How to fix bleached out skies in Photoshop

Photoshop Effects: how to fix bleached out skies - after image

Pale skies are usually much brighter than the land, so if the ground is correctly exposed the sky will wash out. You can use an ND grad filter, but they’re quite fiddly.

Another workaround is your SLR’s facility for compressing tonal range, such as Nikon’s Active D-Lighting or Canon’s Auto Lighting Optimizer. A better solution, though, is to use a tripod and take two shots; one exposed for the sky, the other for the ground.

You can then merge them together using an image-editing program such as Photoshop Elements to get detail back in your skies. Even then, branches and leaves that move between shots can cause problems. The answer is to take a single shot in raw and ensure the exposure is sufficiently dark. You can then process this raw file twice to create two images to merge together. Here’s how to do it…

Recreate a zoom burst effect in Photoshop

Photoshop Effects: recreate a zoom burst effect

A zoom burst is a great way of adding dramatic impact to your images. Zooming out with your lens during an exposure can give your shots a real sense of energy. All you need to do is choose a shutter speed slow enough to record the blur of the zooming action during the exposure. This can also be enhanced by adding a burst of flash to freeze and highlight your main subject within the frame.

Doing this in-camera with a static subject takes a little time and patience, but add some movement into the equation and it can take hundreds of attempts to get the zoom burst effect spot-on. Use Photoshop, however, and you can get the zoom burst look you want in a matter of minutes.

6 photo editing steps every photographer should know

6 photo editing steps every photographer should know

We’ve listed these essential adjustments in the order in which you should make them for the most efficient work process, or ‘workflow’. For example, it’s sensible to crop first – there’s no point spending time removing dust or adjusting exposure on areas of the picture a new crop will get rid of anyway.

You don’t necessarily need to apply every step to all of your images, either. For example, there are times the exposure is perfect, so you won’t need to adjust the Levels. Simply check whether each step is needed on each image as you go through them.

Video: how to share photos on Flickr and Facebook via Photoshop Elements

How to share photos on Facebook and Flickr via Photoshop Elements

Despite all the fuss over the recent announcements of Photoshop CS6 and its new features, it’s worth remembering that Photoshop Elements is also quite a powerful piece of software. And a fraction of the CS6 price tag!

In the short video tutorial below, we show you how you can use some of Photoshop Elements’ new sharing options to post photos on Flickr and Facebook and start doing more with your photos.

How to make a photo book in Photoshop Elements

Photo Ideas: how to make a photo book in Photoshop

Despite all the fuss over the recent announcements of Photoshop CS6 and its new features, it’s worth remembering that Photoshop Elements is also quite a powerful piece of software. And a fraction of the CS6 price tag!

In the video tutorial below we show you how you can make a photo book in Photoshop Elements that looks just as slick and professional as some of the templates you find on many photo printing websites.

Star Trick: how to make fake star trails in Photoshop

Photoshop Effects: how to fake star trails in Elements

Previously we showed you some of the common errors of night photography and how to fix them, and specifically within that tutorial we talked about making star trails. Now that you’ve had some time to try and achieve the effect in-camera using a long exposure, we thought we would show you how you can fake it and make star trails with a lot less hassle.

Capturing the movement of the stars across the night sky would normally involve exposures of several minutes, but on a digital camera this can result in unwanted noise. The easiest way to overcome this problem is to take a sequence of shorter exposures (of around 30 seconds each) and combine them into a single image in Photoshop.

How to make a fantasy Photoshop composite

How to make a fantasy Photoshop composite

One of the great joys of Photoshop is the ability it gives you to take a person from one scene and put them somewhere entirely different. This enables you to make fantastical composite images. But while it’s a fairly simple matter to cut someone out and drop them on a different background, it’s slightly trickier to make the scene look convincing.

Success depends on two main factors. First, photograph the images that make up your composite under similar lighting conditions. Our books were lit from the left to emphasise their shape and texture. The girl was also lit from the left and the camera was positioned above her to mimic the perspective of the book scene.