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Ghost Photos Tutorial with Rebekah Sews

Who loves this time of year? I know I do! Nothing beats the smell of fall, the change of colors on the trees, the cooler days. This time of year I try to be especially crafty with all the different holidays just around the bend.

Oh! Before I forget, let be do a quick introduction before I get into my 31 days of Halloween tutorial. I'm Rebekah and blog over at Rebekahsews.com and post over on Facebook too! Now if you follow me you know I love to sew. But you may have also seen that sewing isn't my only passion! Can you guess what the other one is?? Yes photography!!! So I decided that since my family doesn't really celebrate Halloween (although I do like to participate in the blogging world) I would do a little something different and give a little tutorial on how to make a ghost photos for scary Halloween images! Yes you read it right! Just look below:


What is this exactly you ask? Well it is two images (or more) that are almost the same laid on top of one another. The bottom layer is just the background. The top layer is the subject in the background. You then change the opacity on the top layer making it translucent which in turn makes it look like a ghost. Make sense? Don't worry, it will soon.

To start making scary Halloween images, you don't have a fancy camera or fancy editing software don't worry. You can still have fun too! You need just a couple basic things. First your camera, a tripod (highly recommended), and of course your subject! You will then need to take a photo of your subject and then another photo of just your background. Don’t move your camera when doing this though! This is why I highly recommend a tripod, because if you take photos of your subject and then without or vice versa you are bound to move the camera a tad and change the perspective. If that happens the photos won't line up perfectly when you layer them. If you don't have a tripod that is ok too. Try your best not to move the camera. A little later you may need to erase around your subject to get the look we are going for. Here are my two photos:


My Subject:

So let's start the tutorial. If you don't have editing software you can download Adobe Photoshop Elements 13 off the internet and get a free 30 day trial. I am not affiliated with this software at all, it is simply what I am used to (I actually use the full Photoshop version however the elements is great to start off with and a little less confusing).

1. Look at your images in Organizer. Pick out the one with the subject and just the background that you like best. (Think about which would be a scary Halloween image when it is done.) Select both by holding down your control button on your keyboard and right clicking both photos. Then click on editor. This will now open them in Photoshop Elements 13.

2. After they open click over to Expert mode. You will need all the tools in this area to create the ghost image.

3. The first photo we are going to work on is the photo with your subject in it. We are now going to click on our rectangle marquee tool.


4. Use that tool by clicking on the photo and drawing a box around your subject that will be a ghost. If you used a tripod and your photos are exact you could select the entire photo.


5. Now click on the Move tool.


6. Using the move tool on the area you put a rectangle or square around earlier press your right click button and hold it down. Now drag that selection to your background photo by dragging it up to the box with the filename of the photo in it. This will make the background photo pop open.


7. Once your selection or subject is on the background photo, you can move it into place with the move tool or using the arrow keys on your keyboard. The arrow keys will help you move by little increments in order to get it lined up just right! 8. At this point you will want to make sure you have the layer window open. If it isn't open simply click on Window at the top and then click on Layers. You will then see a box pop up to the right showing your layers! Cool right?


9. Now comes the fun part. Select the layer with your subject in it in the layer window. Right above that layer you should see a line that says opacity. Currently it will say 100%. Click on that little arrow and you will now see a slide bar pop up. Click on the ball and slide it down. You will now see your subject's opacity change. This is what gives it the ghost look! Feel free to play around with it and make it as transparent as you want! Also you can now crop in closer to your subject if you'd like too as I did!


Easy right?! Just a couple tips: -If you edit your image prior to making it a ghost image, make sure you edit both the subject photo and background photo the same! -If you don't have a tripod and things don't perfectly line up when you change the opacity then you can erase around your subject on the subject layer to get rid of any areas that don't align. Most of the time you will need to erase everything except the subject. -If you want to add any contrast or continue editing your photo, flatten image first and then edit. You will find the option to "flatten image" under the layers heading at the top. -HAVE FUN!! I know I did with my ghost images!! RTC_5590 RTC_5588-3

Thanks for having me! Enjoy whatever holidays you celebrate and continue to be creative. I wonder...will there be lots of ghost sightings soon...


Don't forget to hang up all those scary Halloween images and enjoy!