Building an Entourage Library

After you create some quality entourage and realize how much time can go into preparing each object, you will want to find ways to reuse your assets in future projects. It is helpful to create a library of entourage in a single Photoshop file where you can quickly see each piece and evaluate it for its appropriateness. Often the entourage that you can use in a given project is determined by the camera angle and the lighting conditions of your composition. Instead of trying to come up with descriptive names for each piece, it is faster to locate pieces visually within your library.

In the Chapter 4 folder on the companion CD, I've provided a starter library for you. I recommend that you keep adding to this library with entourage that you make. You can then drag and drop pieces from the library into your projects as needed.

Open the file EntourageLibrary.psd from the companion CD, and save it to a convenient location on your hard disk. This file contains three pieces of entourage, each on its own layer with a transparent background. Figure 4.35 shows the beginnings of your library. You are welcome to use these images in your projects.

Figure 4.35

Beginning your entourage library

Figure 4.35

Beginning your entourage library

Transparent Library

As you get new pieces to add to your library, increase Canvas Size (choose Image > Canvas Size) if necessary so that there is more room, and drag in a new piece. Make sure that each piece you add has already been extracted so that you're always ready to drag and drop from the library when needed.

You can also purchase ready-made photographic entourage on the Internet. When you consider how much time it takes to photograph and extract entourage yourself, it may make sense to buy it instead, especially if you are facing a deadline. On the other hand, you can reap a huge savings if you plan ahead and make entourage to your own specifications.

WARNING Anyone well acquainted with computer graphics can spot specific pieces of entourage that seem to get used over and over again by beginners. Chances are, any free entourage you can find on the Web has been used countless times by others looking for an easy way to dress up their renderings. Your best bet is to either make or buy quality entourage. Your renderings will appear more professional.

Check out these websites for more information on buying professional quality entourage:

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