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Placement and Techniques


Well-Known Member
Are there any specific tutorials or techniques to use ... for placing a .png image of a person on a sofa/chair (example) ... and making it look "real"?

I haven't seen any tutorials specifically for chairs and sofas, but there are many videos containing general considerations for realistic composites. Some of the things to think about include:
  • Matching the light direction of the subject and background.
  • Matching the hardness or softness of the light (dark distinct shadows on sunny days vs. diffuse shadows in low light or cloudy days.
  • Matching the focus and graininess of the subject to the background.
  • Matching the perspective of subject to background. (If we're looking up at the subject while looking down on the background, it's a mismatch.)
  • Separately adjusting the luminosity, saturation and color to match the subject to the background.

At first glance, I think your composite looks fairly believable. Your drop shadows, where she comes in contact with the sofa, are very good. But I noticed a couple of things.
  • The sofa is in focus; we can distinctly see the ribbed fabric texture. We can also see the fabric texture of her sleeves and stockings. But across her stomach and chest are large blurry areas. The knitted texture disappears where it probably shouldn't.
  • The sofa has a lot of contrast, but the woman seems flatly lit to me. Perhaps make her more contrasty.
  • One small point... between her arms and torso we can see the back of the sofa. That sliver of sofa should probably be in shadow because her body is blocking the light.

Here are some good tutorials on composites.

Another thing I didn't think of before. I'm assuming the woman is on a separate layer from the sofa. She has weight, so she should be depressing the sofa cushion. I would try using the liquify filter on the sofa to make a depression where she is sitting.