Multiple Exposure

Multiple exposure photography is a fun technique to add creativity to your images.   Layering one or more images to create one final image allows you to really showcase the subject, create impressionistic images, and express your subject creatively. All genres of photographers use multiple exposures, from portrait to street and macro or close up. 

Multiple exposure shooting and editing look difficult, but it really is an easy tool that anyone can use.  I will share some tips for capturing and some images to give you some ideas. 

The first step is to check your camera manual to see if you have “in-camera” multiple exposures as an option. If the answer is yes, then read all about it and even find a video to watch that is specific to your camera.  Understanding how your camera works to take these images will make all the difference in your success with shooting these images. There will be an option in the settings to shoot average, bright or additive. I find that the average setting works best. 

For in-camera shooting, start with a location or subject that is simple. I suggest starting with just two images: a garden scene,  a park area, or a landscape scene. Take your first shot, then take the second shot, almost overlapping the photos together. This will create an impressionistic look. It is an easy way to get started with double exposure images. Once you get the hang of how it works and how your camera processes these images, you can explore. Some additional ideas are to shoot a building and then overlay it with an image of flowers or a tree. Shoot a portrait and then place an image of clouds or flowers in the person’s hair. I like to capture street scenes and then overlay an image of the sky or concrete to add texture. The ideas are endless. 

If you do not have in-camera multiple exposures or want to have more control, you can create the images with an editing program like Photoshop. Taking multiple photos and blending them in Photoshop allows you to combine, mask and create the scene the way you want it. 

One technique that I like is to take one image in focus, take a second image slightly out of focus, and then the third image totally out of focus. Then you can blend the three images in a layer editing program, like Photoshop. 

Some applications will create double exposure images from your cell phone, the application called  Double Exposure is fun to play with. 

This is a technique that you have to play with. Images will not always work out, but trying it can yield some creative looks. Next time you are outside, give it a try, play with different options and see how you like the image. 

Here is a quick tips video and how to edit in Photoshop. 

Using Format