Character Composite, with Glyn Dewis

Starting from scratch, Glyn will teach you every step in his process; from cool ways to use social media for brainstorming and communicating ideas to the importance of building your own stock image library while on location.

Get ready to have a blast learning how to create character-based composite images with photographer and retoucher Glyn Dewis! Starting from scratch, Glyn will teach you every step in his process; from cool ways to use social media for brainstorming and communicating ideas to the importance of building your own stock image library while on location. Glyn demonstrates how he works with non-professional models and shows you how to bring all the elements together in Photoshop. Along the way you’ll learn numerous tips and tricks and leave the class inspired to go out and create your own fantastic composites.

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Course Lessons:

Lesson 1: Introduction (Duration 01:43)

Join Glyn in a junkyard searching for background elements as he goes over all the concepts covered in this class.

Lesson 2: Finding Ideas (Duration 04:53)

Ideas can come from all over the place.

Lesson 3: Sketching (Duration 05:14)

Sketching out ideas helps to make the shoot more efficient. Everyone is on the same page.

Lesson 4: Choosing Locations (Duration 02:33)

You will need to find a location that you can use for background elements.

Lesson 5: On Location (Duration 09:53)

After gaining necessary permissions you will want to explore the location and capture elements you want included in your final shot.

Lesson 6: Building Your Collection of Stock Photos (Duration 03:43)

Whenever you are on location you should consider capturing a wide variety of shots that you can use to build up your own library of stock photos you can use in your work.

Lesson 7: In the Studio (Duration 04:42)

Sitting with the model for this shoot, Glyn shares a number of tips and tricks for working with non-professional models.

Lesson 8: The Lighting Setup (Duration 09:08)

Glyn walks you through his lighting setup and his thoughts on background choices before taking a few shots of his subject.

Lesson 9: Making Selects (Duration 05:06)

It helps to give yourself a little time between capture and when you sit down to review your shots.

Lesson 10: Prepping the Portrait (Duration 08:11)

Glyn starts his post-processing in Lightroom before sending photos to Photoshop.

Lesson 11: Dodging and Burning (Duration 15:38)

Dodging and burning brings out the character in the portrait.

Lesson 12: Cutting the Subject Out (Duration 09:20)

There are a number of ways to cut a subject out of a background. Glyn demonstrates his favorite method.

Lesson 13: Building the Background (Duration 07:49)

Now it is time to send the background elements to Photoshop to start putting them all together.

Lesson 14: Putting the Subject in the Background (Duration 03:38)

Adjusting the color cast on the subject to match the look of the background is an important aspect of helping the composite to look more natural.

Lesson 15: Playtime (Duration 09:57)

A few additional background elements can be a fun way to add more visual interest to the final image.

Lesson 16: Conclusion (Duration 03:45)

Glyn wraps up the class with a few ideas to help you get the most out of your composites.

Meet Your Instructor: Glyn Dewis

Glyn Dewis is a Photographer, Retoucher, Trainer and Photoshop World Instructor currently based just outside of Oxford in the UK. Working both Nationally and Internationally his main area of work…


  1. I absolutely loved this class! I've been anxiously waiting for it to go live and it did not disappoint. The format was great with how it started with the planning then into the photography and finishing up with the post processing. Glyn's teaching style is great. And I finally got to see how he does that cartoon effect of his that I love. There's so much info in here I'll certainly be watching it several more times. Great job Glyn!

  2. Excellent course and I imagine will be as helpful to amateurs as it will with pros. Getting everyday people, even paid models, into character and planning for the final product is going to ultimately get better pictures, and let's face it: that's what we're here for! Top tips as usual from Glyn, looking forward to putting them into practice and also seeing more videos from him. Top marks :)

  3. This was such a great class with Glyn... I like how he keeps it simple and yet fun... The steps on how he takes the photo shoot is a big help. Having a better understanding of how to shoot the background and your model were great. The post processing process was also a huge help. Would love to see more courses with Glyn in the future...

  4. I have been looking forward to this course and Glyn produces the goods. He is particularly good at showing how the power of Photoshop can be used with simple techniques which produce his signature look. From planning to portfolio, Glyn explains the essential steps in his workflow. A new star has been born for Kelby Training!

  5. Excellent tutorial! I've waited for weeks for this tutorial to come out and fullfilled and surpassed my expectations. It was fun, full of interesting things to think about regarding preparation, model releases, taking extra photographs for stock library use and, of course, it did exactly the first thing I was hoping: Glyn Dewis let us know exactly how he gets that amazing look to his composites. Thank you to Glyn and to Kelby Training for another wonderful set of videos!

  6. This was a fantastic course from a first class trainer. I have no interest in doing compositing personally, but there was so much information in this course that I will incorporate into my work. It was presented in an entertaining but informative way. Glyn Dewis is an excellent addition to the outstanding group of Kelby Trainer instructors.

  7. A suburb class. As a teacher, you rock (as they say in the States). Everything is well explained and is made accessible to the less able!! Thank you Glyn! I hope to catch your in Wokingham soon.

  8. WOW !!! I just finshed this course and it is awesome! I probably have to go through it a couple of times but can't wait to experiment. Hope the wife is up for it and she will be signing a release. LOL! The course was great! And all others I have seen so far rate A+++ they are not like listening to somebody reading an instuction manual.

  9. Great tutorial! I learned so much and "had fun" while watching it. Very inspirational too. You did talk a little bit funny and used some weird terms such as "bonnet," "carry on," and "pounds." Just kidding---this is a wonderful tutorial and I'll be trying this out soon. Smashing!

  10. I thought that this program was good. The only problem is that the instructor is using Lightroom and Photoshop and I have Elements. Elements does not come with all the bells and whistles.

  11. Fantastic Class! Covered everything from how to plan out your photo shoot, what to use in the planning phase like apps, and tech tools. Shooting on location what to look out for, and then shooting the model in studio and the studio lighting. I thought his Photoshop work was brilliant and very insightful. Will definitely be reviewing this class again and again and again!!!!!

  12. I've been waiting for this course since last November, it was worth the wait as Glyn explains every single detail. It's an amazing course that even my 7 year old son wants to watch. I hope to see lots more of Glyn and his courses on Kelby Training

  13. Glyn, I guess that you receive many texts for congratulations, and you know what? All they are right. You are excellent and your course has been extraordinary. Congratulations and thanks for sharing. Very professional.

  14. Glyn, you mention that it is important to keep fun doing it. You know? watching the video was fun too! I like the fact that you cover the entire process: from getting the inspiration, to building the moodboard, shooting the backgrounds (and some extra shots), to finally putting it all together. I will be watching this one a few times more!

  15. Just watched this video---it was AWESOME! Literally the best time I have ever spent learning on this site. This course changed my editing and processing on the spot, and the few pics I have processed since then...can't even believe they are mine. Love Glyn's style, both as a photographer and as an instructor. Going through the whole process from concept to post production made it such a powerful learning experience. Cannot wait to see more of Glyn's stuff on the site!!!!

  16. Great to have a course like this which walks through the development of a concept, the approach to working with non-models, lighting set-up & post production technique. A very insightful, informative and motivational course - I now want to get out there and try some character composites. The course is akin to reading a good novel – Glyn's down to earth, easy listening style makes it an easy course to get into, the useful tips throughout each section hook you and keep you going to the next chapter and then before you know it it's over, you've finished it and are left fulfilled but wanting more at the same time :-) More courses like this from Glyn please! —- Yes, please post my feedback

  17. I really enjoyed the course and the engaging presenter style. I also saw some Photoshop tricks I'd never seen before. Very well done.

  18. great class. Something I have tried on my own but not well. HOw did Glenn click on a image in PS and move it into another image? I tried that and it did not do anything. I had to "copy pixels" then open the new image and paste. thanks R

  19. I saw Glyn at The Photography Show on Monday! What a super talented man! This was a fantastic class and I learnt so much. He explains everything perfectly. A great trainer and teacher. Thanks Glyn! - Francesca

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