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Create a simple collage in Photoshop, Elements, and Pixelmator

Lesa Snider | June 16, 2015
One of the many superpowers of image editing apps that support layers is the ability to combine images into a collage. In this column, you'll learn to create the ever-popular, oh-so-romantic, soft oval vignette collage in Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, and Pixelmator. (Sorry, you can't do this workflow in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom or Apple's Photos, iPhoto, or Aperture.) This technique is perhaps the easiest--and most romantic--way to combine two images into a new and unique piece of art.

Now let's feather the mask in Photoshop. In the Layers panel, double-click the mask — the black and white thumbnail next to the image thumbnail — and the Properties panel opens. Drag the Feather slider to the right and Photoshop softens the selection right before your eyes. To alter the feather amount later on, just double-click the mask to reopen the Properties panel.

Last but not least, you can use the Move tool in each app to scoot the vignetted image around in the collage.

Save the document

In Photoshop or Elements, choose File > Save As to save a master document for further editing, and then pick Photoshop as the format so your layers are preserved. In Pixelmator, choose File > Save. To make a copy of the image you can send to someone else or post on the web, choose File > Save for Web in Photoshop or Elements, or choose File > Export in Pixelmator. Choose JPEG from the resulting dialog box.

As you can see, this technique makes for a super cute piece of art! Until the next time, may the creative force be with you all.


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