Bonfire night's just around the corner which means an evening of photographing fireworks is nearly upon us. But if the skies cloud over and the rain puts a stop to your evening of firework photography you can pretend you got some cracking shots with the help of Photoshop
These are the images we'll be combining.
Step 1: Open your images
You need a night scene and several images of fireworks open in Photoshop. Once you have them open drag the fire work images one at a time onto your image. We worked on one image, getting the placement and tone right before dragging the next one over but feel free to drag them all in at once if you want to. Make sure you rename each layer as things can get a little confusing later on if you don't.
Step 2: Make the firework fit
At the moment your firework will be sat on the background you dragged across with it and it doesn't look like it belongs to the image underneath but there is a simple fix. Double click on the layer you're working on in the layers palette to open the layers style box. Once it's open look to the bottom where you'll find a box which says 'Blend if'. Make sure Grey is selected in the drop down menu and drag the black marker on the 'This Layer' slider until the background the firework is sat on vanishes. This can take a little bit of adjusting as you don't want to lose some of the firework detail in the process. Do remember to make these changes to every firework you add to the scene.
The firework now looks like it's sat in the sky of our night image but it still doesn't look quite right. We need to blend it in slightly more and the easiest way to do this is to reduce the opacity of the layer. Anywhere between 60-80% will be fine.
Step 3: The buildings are in the way
If you're using a shot that has buildings, a bridge or some other object in the scene you'll probably want to make the fireworks fit around them. You can use the Quick Selection Tool to draw around the building, copy (Cntrl + C) then paste (Cntrl + Z) it onto a new layer and finally drag that layer it above the firework layer. Or, an easier way is to put the fireworks into position and simply use the Erase Tool to remove the parts of the firework that are over the building.
Once you're happy with the positioning of the fireworks your image is complete.