Depth in Photoshop

Achieving depth in a 2D image can be a challenge sometimes. While taking a picture, the photographer can use certain techniques to capture depth, but what are some good ways to add depth post picture-taking? Two easy methods that I have discovered are:

1.  Transform a layer with “skew”

2. Have a leading line go over some background objects and behind others

The first method is the easiest. Simply select a layer and then press ctrl+t (I assume the “t” stands for “transform”). A box will appear around the layer. By default you are able to translate the layer and resize it, but by right-clicking you are able to see the full transform menu. Select “skew” and then grab a corner of the layer to begin transforming. Just look at the depth you can add with this technique!

hook1hook2

Pre-skew (left) and post-skew (right)

Now I will combine this first technique with the second technique (overlapping) to really make the image pop. To do this, just imagine what the hook would look like if this fish had actually chomped down on it. Part of it would be hidden by the flesh of the fish, so I simply use the clone tool to cover up that part as seen below.

hook3

 

Well, looks like someone’s eating salmon tonight (or more like radioactive green fish…)!

So there you have it… and easy way to add depth to your otherwise flat photos. Sure, photoshop’s fancy layers let you gain a sense of depth, but when the layers interact and crossover each other… that’s when angels weep for joy.

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