Add Objects or People to Existing Images

When I was starting out as a digital designer, I did some work for a photographer who specialized in outdoor wedding photography. One of my tasks involved removing extraneous elements (and sometimes people) from shots taken in public (such as a new bride and groom walking along a beach). In other cases, I was asked to actually add people into a photograph if, for example, they weren't able to be in the picture for whatever reason.

More recently, I wanted to give my mom a photo of her three grandkids to use as the desktop background on her computer. The problem was that my two kids live with me in Maine, my nephew lives with my sister in Maryland, and we didn't have any recent photos of the kids together. The solution? I took a photo of my daughters with a digital camera, then scanned a picture of my nephew and used Photoshop to add him to the photo of my daughters.

TRY IT To add an object to an existing image, make sure both files are open in Photoshop. Use one of the following techniques to move the object from its own file into the destination file:

• Use the selection tools to draw a selection around the object. When selecting an element to be placed in another file, I like to add a slight feather to soften the edges a bit. After you make a selection, choose Select I Feather, specify a Radius of 2, and click OK. Choose Edit I Copy to copy the selection, switch to the receiving photo, and then choose Edit I Paste to place the selection on a new layer in the destination file.

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