Last year, OnOne Software introduced a new product to bring layer processing to both Apple Aperture 3 and Adobe Lightroom called Perfect Layers. While using layers is a staple of Photoshop processing, it is not available in either Aperture or Lightroom. The latest version of Perfect Layers works also as a stand alone. Photographers using Elements, Gimp or any other non-layer editor can now have the power of layers. The best thing, OnOne Software has recently made Perfect Layers 2 a FREE download as an introduction to their Perfect Photo Suite 6 product.
With Perfect Layers in mind, I photographed some action sequences during a performance of Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney’s Hollywood Studios last October. I have seen my Photoshop buddies produce similar composites like these and now I can make them, too.
What Perfect Layers 2 allowed me to do is select a series of photos which featured the same scene with the red Hero car in a different position and puts each photo in a separate layer. I then select the car in each layer and paint it onto the next layer. Notice the camera truck is only seen once even though it was in a different position in each of the six selected photos. I only selected it once. When I save the file, it flattens each layer together into one final image.
I did have some trouble getting this to work at first. Coming from Apple Aperture 3 which lets me change anything from anywhere, to get these composites to come out, I had to follow a set of exact steps. Once I figured that out, it was easy to create them. You know how guys are. ;)
Here’s Photoshop Guru Scott Kelby with OnOne Software’s Brian Matiash explaining more about how Perfect Layers works.