…a couple of times how I did the digital layout “Together” in my previous post. So, I decided to retrace my steps and share how I did it here. Much of what I did was trial and error. So when you try it, prepare to do a bit of tweaking here and there. :)

I did everything with Adobe CS2.

1. First, open your photo using Photoshop. Make sure the brightness and contrast are right.

2. Make two copies of the background layer. Name the 1st copy B&W and the 2nd copy Cropped. Hide the Cropped layer by clicking on the “eye” in the layers palette on the bottom right side of the page.

3. Select the B&W layer and turn into black and white by clicking Image – Adjustments – Desaturate.

4. Make a copy of B&W.

5. Select the B&W copy. Click Filter – Blur – Gaussian Blur. This is where you will have to experiment a bit. I’ve set the radius to 10 but it will depend on the size of your photo. Try a 10 1st and change it later if you are not that happy. Increase radius to make it more blurry or decrease it to reduce the blur. However, you will only know the final look when you do the next step.

6. Still on the B&W copy layer, change the blending mode to Multiply. At this point you can gauge if the photo is too blurry or too sharp. If you need to change, just undo and repeat step 5. Since I have human figures in my photo, those are also blurred and dark. That’s ok. Leave it as is.

7. Go to Cropped layer. Click the box where the “eye” was to make the layer appear again. Use the rectangular marquee tool (left side toolbox) to trace a rectangle shape and frame the human figures. Click Select – Inverse. Then press the delete key on your keyboard to erase the background. You will now see the black and white portion of the layers underneath.

8. Click Select – Inverse to select the cropped colored photo. Click Edit – Stroke. Type 3 pixels, color black, click Inside, normal mode, 100% opacity and click OK.

9. Click Edit – Stroke again. this time, type 3 pixels, color white, click Outside, normal mode, 100% opacity. This will give your photo a double “frame” of white and black.

10. Add text. I’m sure you already know how to do this. :)

That’s it!

Actually, in my layout, I used a rounded rectangular marquee tool. It’s not available in my Photoshop so I just clicked File – Edit in Image Ready. In the Image Ready software, the rounded rectangular marquee tool is available. Follow steps 7-9. Then click File – Edit in Photoshop to go back to Photoshop.

Hope you are able to follow what I did. :)

Written by Alby Laran

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