Don’t worry, I am not on an acid trip – and neither is my photography equipment. In fact, these are the pictures of my Christmas tree from this past holiday season – I stumbled upon them while browsing through my photo folder. Immediately I decided to play with them, and here are the tools I used:
The top bokeh photo has been enhanced… are you ready for this? …with a bokeh texture! It feels a little bit like stuffing Kleenex into my bra, but I love the results! You don’t have to reveal all your secrets.
Do you know what textures are, by the way? Textures are when you drag a textured image over your photo in Photoshop and Photoshop Elements, reduce the opacity of the textured image’s layer, set the texture layer’s blending mode to something interesting (Soft Light, Hard Light, etc), and make it look as though your original image has some texture to it! But don’t worry about doing it manually – a fabulous free texture applicator action from MCP Actions will take you there. As to free textures, they abound all over the internet. In the above shot, I used one of free textures from here.
Here’s how to use a frame in Photoshop Elements:
1) Open your image.
2) Open the frame you wish to use. Note that some frames are .pgn files (meaning that parts of the images are transparent), so you won’t be able to open it with Bridge. To open them, use the Open command in Photoshop itself. (Unless there is something I don’t know – which is possible. Very possible in fact.)
3) Drag your frame on top of your image (on Macs you can just drag and drop it with your mouse), otherwise that’s what the Move tool is for.
4) Now highlight the frame’s layer in the layers palette on the lower right and go Command/Control + T to stretch your frame over your picture.
5) At this point you will still have edges of your picture sticking all the way around certain frames. But no worries! Select the Background Eraser tool, highlight the background (your main photo) layer, and run the tool all around the edges of the photo that are showing outside the frame. You will see the unwanted picture border disappear and be replaced by what will look like a checkerboard, which is meant to show you which parts of the image will appear transparent.
6) Flatten image (Go Layers -> Flatten Image) and you are done!