Have you already mas­tered all the basic retouch­ing tech­niques and want to learn some­thing new? Try Pho­to Mon­tage! With it, you can cre­ate images from which it will be dif­fi­cult to look away. In this arti­cle, we offer sev­er­al options for inspi­ra­tion.

5 Creative Photo Montage Ideas

Pho­tomon­tage is not lim­it­ed to col­lages and back­ground replace­ment. Over­lay­ing one pic­ture on top of anoth­er allows you to real­ize many orig­i­nal cre­ative ideas. The main thing is to decide what exact­ly you plan to get as a result.

Idea 1. Silhouette and nature

An easy idea to imple­ment is to take a human sil­hou­ette and fill it with nature. For exam­ple, you can use high moun­tains, for­est, sea, sun­set. Pho­tographs where the sil­hou­ette express­es some kind of emo­tion are espe­cial­ly effec­tive — this can be achieved through a pose or by eas­i­ly show­ing facial fea­tures.

Moun­tains show through the sil­hou­ette of a girl
A sad mood is cre­at­ed due to the black and white palette.

Idea 2. Portraits with a twist

In the open spaces of the net­work you can often find works with the effect of dou­ble expo­sure. For exam­ple, in such pho­tos, a seascape and an ordi­nary por­trait can be har­mo­nious­ly com­bined. Such com­po­si­tions are fas­ci­nat­ing to con­sid­er. How­ev­er, you can also fill them with mean­ing — show a girl dream­ing of the sea, or a man who feels uni­ty with nature.

Mys­te­ri­ous por­trait telling about cher­ished dreams
The “for­est” hat of the girl looks fresh, and the trees empha­size the bru­tal­i­ty of the man

Idea 3. Reflection in glasses

The glass­es of a beau­ti­ful girl’s sun­glass­es reflect the seashore or palm trees. Usu­al­ly? But no! After all, the hero­ine of the pic­ture is locat­ed in the city cen­ter, sur­round­ed by traf­fic and sky­scrap­ers. You can also go in a more non-stan­dard way — for exam­ple, put the hero’s dream glass­es in the reflec­tion.

Reflec­tion in glass­es tells a sto­ry — who is the hero of the pho­to and what does he do

Idea 4. Paradoxes

Face or hand? It is imme­di­ate­ly dif­fi­cult to under­stand what is wrong in para­dox­i­cal pho­tographs, but many peo­ple like such rid­dles. You can make fun­ny and atmos­pher­ic pic­tures where facial fea­tures will show through the palms with which it is closed.

“Pho­to-para­dox­es” are inter­est­ing to con­sid­er

Or try to show the “inner” world of a per­son and what wor­ries him. For exam­ple, in the right pho­to, the heart of a bru­tal man is giv­en to a dog.

Idea 5. Oxymoron

This is a tech­nique based on com­bin­ing incom­pat­i­ble things and con­cepts. Play­ing with con­trasts is always inter­est­ing, so these pho­tos attract the eye and evoke ambigu­ous emo­tions. You can show the con­fronta­tion between man and nature, or, for exam­ple, mind and feel­ings.

There are three lay­ers in the pic­ture: a for­est, a man and a city press­ing on him

Programs and services for photomontage

Have you cho­sen the right idea? So, it’s time to move on to its imple­men­ta­tion. We will tell you how to over­lay a pho­to on a pho­to on a com­put­er. Con­sid­er three dif­fer­ent options:

  • Pho­to­shop — for advanced users with expe­ri­ence and skills in work­ing with lay­ers, masks and sim­i­lar tools.
  • Pho­to­Col­lage is for begin­ners and those who want to quick­ly cre­ate cre­ative com­po­si­tions at a pro­fes­sion­al lev­el.
  • Can­va is for begin­ner pho­tog­ra­phers who are not ready to install pro­grams on a PC.


Pho­to­shop is a pro­fes­sion­al graph­ics edi­tor with great oppor­tu­ni­ties for pho­to edit­ing and image retouch­ing. With the help of soft­ware, it is pos­si­ble to bring almost any idea to life, but it must be borne in mind that knowl­edge and expe­ri­ence are required for effec­tive work in the pro­gram. It will most like­ly take a begin­ner a lot of time to get com­fort­able and under­stand the pos­si­bil­i­ties of the edi­tor.

It is not nec­es­sary to use pho­tographs exclu­sive­ly of peo­ple.

In Pho­to­shop, to imple­ment one of the con­sid­ered ideas, you can go in sev­er­al ways. Con­sid­er the sim­plest one — over­lay­ing 2 pic­tures on top of each oth­er by cre­at­ing two lay­ers:

1. Decide on an idea and choose two pic­tures. For exam­ple, take the image of a dark for­est and a blue-eyed cat.
2. Open the pho­to of the mod­el, and place the back­ground image on a sep­a­rate lay­er.

For the back­ground, it is bet­ter to choose pic­tures with con­cise col­ors.

3. Click on the first lay­er with the right mouse but­ton and find the option “Cre­ate Lay­er Mask” in the menu.
4. Select the black brush and adjust its set­tings. For exam­ple, the degree of trans­paren­cy will deter­mine how much one pic­ture will shine through anoth­er. The size of the brush should be cho­sen larg­er, since we are work­ing with a large mod­el.
5. “Devel­op the image” from the sec­ond lay­er, paint­ing over the desired areas of the pic­ture with a brush. Please note that you can go over the same frag­ment with a brush sev­er­al times — this way the mod­el will stand out more clear­ly against the back­ground.

The result of the work — the bright­ness of the devel­op­ment of the cat can be edit­ed


The Pho­to­Col­lage pro­gram is focused on cre­at­ing col­lages and offers a com­plete set of var­i­ous tools for this. Using ready-made tem­plates, you can quick­ly make a bright poster, styl­ish logo, poster or pho­to book. Design from scratch is also pos­si­ble — this is the option that is most suit­able for imple­ment­ing cre­ative pho­tomon­tage ideas.

Let’s look at how to cre­ate an inter­est­ing and styl­ish col­lage with pic­tures from one pho­to shoot.

1. Open a new col­lage in the pro­gram and select the type of project — from a tem­plate or from scratch. We will focus on the sec­ond option.

Don’t for­get to spec­i­fy page para­me­ters

2. Add the desired pho­tos — you can drag them from the fold­er to the work­ing field of the pro­gram or find them using the “Pho­tos” tab on the left side of the screen.

Move pic­tures to the right place and resize them

3. Decide on the lev­els of the pho­to. If you want one pho­to to be placed on top of anoth­er, then click on the first right mouse but­ton and select “Posi­tion” from the menu, and then “One lev­el up”.

You can also use the but­ton with sheets in the hor­i­zon­tal menu

4. Add text or cli­part. The lat­ter can be select­ed from the edi­tor’s col­lec­tion or down­loaded from your PC.

Cli­part is cus­tomiz­able — size, trans­paren­cy, shad­ow, etc.


This online ser­vice is a good solu­tion for those who do not have the abil­i­ty or desire to down­load and install pro­file pro­grams on their PC or lap­top. The advan­tages of the edi­tor are its acces­si­bil­i­ty and fast work, but you should under­stand that you will be depen­dent on the avail­abil­i­ty and speed of the Inter­net.

Can­vas allows you to make sim­ple pho­to mon­tage — col­lages, back­ground replace­ment, adding graph­ic objects to the image. For exam­ple, you can dilute a pho­to with a frame of flow­ers. The advan­tage is that all objects are con­fig­urable — you can change the size, deter­mine whether a pic­ture will be placed in the fore­ground or back­ground, etc. Also, right in Can­va, you can pick up suit­able pho­tos from the Pix­abay pho­to­stock.

Can­va does­n’t let you work with lay­ers sep­a­rate­ly

Summing up

Above, ways were dis­cussed in detail on how to super­im­pose anoth­er pho­to on a pho­to, and orig­i­nal ideas for such a pho­tomon­tage were pro­posed. At first glance, it may seem that only pro­fes­sion­als can cope with such a task, but if you use sim­ple soft­ware, then a begin­ner with­out expe­ri­ence is quite capa­ble of cre­at­ing a real mas­ter­piece. For exam­ple, work­ing with Pho­to­shop is real­ly indis­pens­able with­out spe­cial knowl­edge, but Pho­to­Col­lage and Can­vas are avail­able to every­one. And if you want to know even more, take a look at this arti­cle — there we ana­lyze dif­fer­ent ways to over­lay one image on anoth­er in detail and with exam­ples.


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