Collage technique using Juxtaposer

You will also need the app Tiny planets for this tutorial.

 

This is a very simple introduction to the art of creating collages with an iPhone. In this tutorial Nettie is going to demonstrate how to:


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1. Create an interesting background with just one click of an app

2. Extract an element from a photograph and collage it onto another

3. Work with blur to blend two photographs together

 

I should mention that you may find making collages much easier if you use a stylus.

Here are the two photographs used to create the collage:

These were "fast and dirty" shots: there are some odd colours, noise, blur, and a couple of undesirable elements but that’s fine, we’re going to work with them "as is" without any correction.

 



 

STEP 1. TINY PLANETS: create an abstract background

 

Import the skull into the app and select the Tiny planet icon at the bottom of the screen, left-hand side

Our skull comes out of the blender looking like a piece of modern sculpture! (below right)



Now try the Tiny tube button….

We’re going to work with this second version so save it to camera roll.


STEP 2. JUXTAPOSER:
Extract fish from photograph and collage onto the background created with Tiny Planets


Following the on-screen prompts, import both photographs into Juxtaposer. Your screen should look like something like this (below, left):

Now Select Erase. The icon at the top right hand side of the screen, next to the undo icon, is the brush modification button. We’re going to erase most of the photograph so to begin with, choose a largish, opaque, hard brush…




 

Use Pan & zoom to get closer in…

As you get closer to the fish’s body, make the brush smaller, softer and more transparent to give the fish a soft edge that will blend more effectively with the background.

You may wish to use the Move Top Image tool to move the fish into the blue area where it’s easier to distinguish her from the background.



If you nibble in too far, you can always select the Unerase tool and paint some of the photograph back into the image.


Once you’re satisfied with the fish, reposition and re-size her. at this point, it’s also a good idea to save the fish as a "Stamp", in case you want to use it again: to find this option, select the icon in the top left hand corner > Save > Save masked top image as stamp.

 

Whilst in this menu, select Save Image: this will merge fish and background, and save to camera roll. Here’s a close up of the little fish in her final position:

The fish still looks a little too hard-edged and "stuck on". So on to…


STEP 3. BLUR FX: add blur

Select Gaussian blur and use the slider to modify the strength of the effect


 

 


By switching the mask on and off, you can see how much of the blur you’re removing or applying…






…and what the effect looks like. In this instance, we’re using the CLEAN brush to erase almost all of the blur effect, just leaving a soft edge at the back of the fish to blend her with the background and give a sense of movement…


 

As in Juxtaposer, the brushes in Blur FX can be modified for work in smaller areas and tight corners.


When you have erased most of the red mask from around and inside the fish, turn off the mask to check how it looks. If you’ve gone to far with the cleaning job, you can always select the BLUR tool and brush the effect back to the image where required.



 

Here’s what the final collage looks like…








 

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