Creativity tutorials

Artistic Photomontage Tutorial: How to Create a Narrative

Discover the key steps to tell a story using photomontage with Carlos Herrejón

Camera, Photoshop, and lots of imagination. You don't need much to tell a good story with a picture. In this tutorial, Carlos Herrejón explains the basic elements for creating a narrative through photography and creative editing on Photoshop. Internationally celebrated for his surreal style, inspired by the great artistic masters, Carlos teaches the Domestika course Artistic Photography Compositing.

Below, he shares his tips for expressing yourself through narrative photography.

Step one: have an idea, know exactly what you want to say. In this image, Herrejón wants to convey the exact moment a young beauty is inspired by a great idea. From there, he takes a series of steps to mentally structure the scene:

Place - Imagine the best situation for the picture to take place in. Refer to pieces of art and your own experiences to enrich the composition. Carlos imagines the young woman sat on a sofa in a cozy lounge with a lit fireplace in the background warming the room.

Time - Is it daytime or night? Raining or sunny? Knowing and showing this context is a subtle and practical way of translating the a scene's atmosphere. A strategically placed window helps achieve Carlos' desired effect.

Feeling - What is the scene's central emotion? Carlos decides to give our young woman's "Eureka!" moment an epic touch to contrast her relaxed attitude. Defining this before directing and photographing the model is vital.

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