Hi guys! Today I felt inspired and made a simple collage of two different photographs (scroll down to see the originals). This one isn’t very complex, but I made a couple more before, so I thought I’d share a few tips that I usually keep in mind while cutting and pasting:
1. Pick the right photos: Picking photos that have only 1 or 2 striking focal points will give you a sure start to making an awesome collage. When collecting the photos you’d like to use, look for photos that have an interesting subject/object as a central eye-catcher, paired with a more quiet, understated background. This makes designing your composition a lot easier.
2. Focus on the Brights: Every landscape has its own colour palette, so when you combine different elements from different landscapes, it’s smart to be conscious of colour coordination. With so many pieces, a collage can become a little crowded, so focus on the colours that pop. Try to emphasize 3 or 4 bright colours and tone down the more neutral tones to make the most of every photo.
3. Perspective: What helps make an interesting collage is creating perspective. You can do this by placing eye-catching elements in the foreground of your picture and smaller ones in your background. When working with landscapes, it is also important to incorporate and integrate the different horizons into a single harmonious picture. Give your audience a viewpoint.
4. Imperfection: It’s not about copying reality, but about creating an imaginary world, filled with adventure. Your photos don’t need to seamlessly fit together, that’s not the point of the genre. The first three tips I gave you will hopefully help you as a guideline, but you should always let your fantasy run wild. Play with impossible perspectives, layer multiple horizons, turn the world upside-down. Sometimes it makes for the most spectacular collage!
5. Spice it up: While editing your original photos you may want to stay away from overly manipulating your image, but don’t be afraid to stylise your collage. Like I said, it’s not about accurately portraying reality. Turn up the contrast and fiddle with your saturation levels. Never let your editing overpower your image, but use it to your own advantage to create a dynamic collage. It will help you tell your story.
Photo 1: Waterland, Holland (February 2014).
Photo 2: Gold Beach, Normandy (May 2013).