Isolating the Subject on a Budget Studio

Subject Isolation in Photoshop

Isolating the Subject

Isolating the subject on a budget studio: Cheating


Isolating the Subject

I was reading about flash photography and the simple technique you used with:

  • A white sheet
  • Natural light
  • Flash

...for that wonderful shot of your wife and son. To get the studio effect I used a layer mask and added an adjustment layer and then used the white eye dropper and clicked on the white sheet. I then changed from RGB to the red channel and did the same, making some minor adjustments along the way. Does this bear any resemblance to what you do?


That bears a resemblance to what I have done in the past. Nowadays I try and get the white background as white as possible during shooting and then add some tweaking afterwards. This of course requires additional lighting in the form of speedlights, studio lights or any light brought enough to bring the background one or two stops brighter that the foreground.

If more radical work needs to be done, you can also use the pen tool to create a path around the subject, feather it slightly, select the inverse and just paint in the whiteness in Photoshop.

There are many ways to skin this cat and if you find one that works well for you then stick with it! It is a handy string to your bow if you want to sell "isolated" stock images.

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