Make a cosmic composite portrait – N-Photo 147 video tutorial

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For a treasure trove of space photos simply head to the NASA website and start exploring the collections of high-resolution, incredibly detailed images of stars, planets, nebulae and more. 

They’re stunning as they are, but you can also make use of them for creative effects in Affinity Photo, like our star-studded portrait treatment. This involves a cunning combination of tonal tricks and blending modes, and it only takes a few minutes. We begin by preparing our portrait, then copying in a star image and blending it with the Multiply blending mode. This lets us merge the bright stars with the brightest parts of the portrait for stellar results. We finish by using Curves to perfect the tones and colours.

Along the way we’ll explore a host of fundamental layer skills in Affinity Photo. We’ve supplied a portrait to download, but if you want to use your own then it’s best to frame the person against a perfectly white background. This way, when we invert the portrait the background becomes fully black and therefore the stars are restricted only to the details in the subject’s face. 

Don’t worry if your chosen portrait isn’t against white, we’ll show you how to blow out the backdrop on any portrait to get you started.

Download the project file(s) to your Downloads folder

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N-Photo: The Nikon Magazine is a monthly publication that's entirely dedicated to Nikon users. As a 100% independent magazine, you can be assured of unbiased opinion from a trustworthy team of devoted photography experts including editor Adam Waring and Technique Editor Mike Harris

Aimed at all users, from camera newcomers to working pros, every issue is packed with practical, Nikon-specific advice for taking better photos, in-depth reviews of Nikon-compatible gear, and inspiring projects and exciting video lessons for mastering camera, lens and Photoshop techniques.

Written by Nikon users for Nikon users, N-Photo is your one-stop shop for everything to do with cameras, lenses, tripods, bags, tips, tricks and techniques to get the most out of your photography.