Since the advent of digital photography, getting a great picture is no longer a matter of luck. All you need is a decent camera, a good photo editing program and some hard work. While there are many photo editing programs available today, the most popular is still Photoshop. Almost anything you have ever wanted to do with a photo can be done here. However, you should start with the basics, such as the Photoshop clipping path technique.
You can think of a clipping path as a pair of scissors. It creates a line around an object in your picture and allows you to remove the object and place it within another picture. For example, you can take a picture of a dog sitting in your studio and superimpose it on the picture of a field. A Photoshop clipping path can be created in two ways. The easy way is with the magic wand tool. This can be found in your tools palette. Once you click on a part of your picture, Photoshop will sample the colour of that pixel. It will then create a clipping path around any area with similar shades of that colour. This is good for simple shapes, but can cause ghosting or jagged edges around more complex images.
The other Photoshop clipping path method is to do everything by hand. This method involves using the pen tool. The pen tool is actually several tools in one, but for a clipping path you will be using the “Add Anchor Point,” “Convert Point Tool” and “Delete Anchor Point.” Zoom into the picture and use these three functions carefully to trace the border. The spot you will be aiming for is the centre of where the program has blended the edges of the object with the background. With time and practice, you will be able to create a perfect cut-out.
Traditional photos have always been considered fragile. While many still enjoy the challenges and accomplishments of traditional photography, they still back them up in the digital world. Why? Because the chemicals used on photographic paper are very sensitive to sunlight and air. Acid in hot, humid air can destabilise the colour dyes in photographs and make them fade more quickly. Light has a similar effect and will break down the dyes in the paper, causing the pictures to fade. Humidity can also cause the paper to warp and grow brittle. While the chemicals used in black and white photographs are more stable, if left in these conditions for long enough, they will also succumb.