How to Add Multiple Images to One Image

This is a picture I did for a friend of mine just for the heck of it.  My husband took a picture of her daughter with his smartphone and shared it with me.  I wanted to take his black and white and turn it into something different for her daughter.

Here was the original picture.  I saw something in her face that I wanted to examine and focus on and did so with a few Photoshop touches.

I scanned the internet for some pictures of butterflies and flowers.  When I finally settled on some, I added those pictures to my image.  I took the move tool and adjusted their size and positiion.  If you hover over a corner of the outlined image you are moving around a curved arrow will appear, letting you also rotate the image.

So, I had my flowers and my butterfly postitioned in the exact right spot.  Now it was time to start making it blend in.

I copied the butterfly layer.  Moved the copy to the side so I could use it as a reference.  With the original copy selected, I used the Background Eraser tool to erase the background to the butterfly image and the flower image.  I used the eraser tool to touch up the rest and leave no trace.  Again I repositioned, using the move tool.

Once I had the butterfly and the flower in the positions I wanted, I turned them invisible and added another layer.  On this new layer, I selected the paint brush.  This is where I was going to paint over the little baggy in her hand.  I didn’t want to see a trace of the baggy left.  As the part of the image that it’s over is on the softer side, I decided to use a softer brush

Most of the time, I’m not particular about the brushes I use.  Once in a while I will make myself a new brush, but I will also mostly just use the built-in brushes that come with the program.  So, I used the Soft Round Pressure Opacity and Flow brush.  I took the Opacity down to around 50% and the Flow to 50% as well.

From there, I painted over the baggy in her hand, so that it appeared she didn’t have anything there at all.  Because I was going to replace the baggy with something else, I didn’t focus too highly on the detail in the shirt and where the baggy was not anymore.  I wanted the baggy to be hidden, but didn’t want to take up all of my time hiding it from view.  So, I didn’t put a whole lot of detail into it.

Holding down the alt key, you can sample from all the layers the different colors while you’re painting.  This gives you a quick use of painting the colors and blending them together.  A wheel will pop up when you hold the alt key down and the bottom color on the wheel will be your previously used color while the color at the top will be your newly selected color.

After getting the baggy out of the way, I turn on the visibility of the butterfly pictures and the flower image.  Adding new layers on top of this, I paint a little more to my liking.

Time to add the shadows.  No matter how small a thing is, it’s going to have some kind of a shadow.  I added a layer on top of the girl photo but underneath everything else.  I wanted the shadows to be on top of the girl, but underneath the butterfly and flower.  Sampling darker colors from the girl image I was able to get a bit of a shadow on her hands and even on her shirt.

Now it was time to add a reflection to her glasses.  I had the butterfly in one group and copied them.  I merged all of the copied layers together and copied that.  I used the move tool again and moved one copy to one lens of her glasses.  I adjusted the opacity so it wasn’t too obvious.  Once I had it where I wanted and at the angle I wanted, I copied that and moved that copy to the other other lens, adjusting it with the move tool.

Because of the awe in her features, I wanted just a little bit more to my image.  So I added a little bit of a blue “dusting” around the butterfly with a soft paint brush on a new layer.

I wanted to do something with her hair as it looked a little chopped off in places.

So, taking a hair brush I created, I sampled some colors from her hair and, on a new layer, I started adding in the strands.  After I was happy with that, I took that same Soft Round Pressure Opacity and Flow brush to add in a few extra stray strands of hair.

These are the strands I added to the image:


Here is a bit more detail to the extra single strands I added to the image:

I checked for anything else that might draw attention away from the story of the picture and found a little spot on her shirt I wanted to erase.  So, I took the clone stamp and Alt + selected the sample I wanted the cover up to look like and painted over the little spot until the spot was gone.











After I was satisfied with everything I saw, I selected

the crop tool and cut off some edging.


The end result is this:

Was this helpful?

Hey!  Thank you so much for reading this post!  Let me know if you have any questions about this or if you’ve got any experiences using these techniques!

Happy creating!



  1. Nice looking photo.  I do a lot of photo editing but only on may iPhone or iPad.  I haven’t ever tried too do it on Photoshop.  I use to use it years ago but probably forgot.

    I really like working with layers.  The ideas are endless.  You did some beautiful combinations there.

    • Hi, thank you so much, Stew!  Actually, Adobe has just released news that next year they will be releasing the full version of Photoshop for the iPad.  I’m really looking forward to that 🙂

      I think you’d be surprised how quickly you could pick it right back up 🙂  Like riding a bicycle 🙂

  2. Thanks for this! As an affiliate marketer, I can see value in understanding how to edit images. Ha, I love the butterfly that in her hand. A quick question. Why did you decide to have the image in black and white? Is it to really show the vibrant colors of the butterfly? I’m never good with editing, so do you think this is something that one who doesn’t know much about it could learn quickly?

    • Thank you!  Actually, my husband took the picture in black and white when he was playing with his phone.  Then he showed me.  And when I saw it, I saw sooo much in it, I had to do something with it! And for me, it was perfect that it was in black and white, because, like you said, I wanted the colors to be more vibrant with the butterfly 🙂 

  3. One picture says it all! 

    The photograph and digital painting are just exquisite… not sure if I will ever be able to do that. But you made me dream… How long does it take to learn those techniques and to master them? It seems so simple, that even I can do that.

    Thank you for posting a wonderful teaching. Easy steps with unexpected results! 

    A thing of beauty is a joy for ever…

    • Wow! Thank you so much for saying so!  I don’t think it took me too long to learn Photoshop.  When I was finally able to sit down and really learn and watch tutorials and such, it didn’t take long.  I think it was more of a matter of how much time I was willing to give it.  I’ve been doing art since I was a wee tot, just not on the computer all the time.  But, once I moved over to the computer, it wasn’t too difficult to figure the program out.  To me, it was kind of easier…. I LOVE playing with layers!

  4. Hi Kelly!

    I love the image you editted. There were quite a few steps you did there. I love how you added so much detail; even including the reflection on her face and in the glasses. 

    It seems like this isn’t everyday use editing for most people. When is the type of editing most useful? Is this the same process that would be used by graphic designers to edit images in magazines and such? 

    When people talk about celebrities getting “photoshopped” for advertising, is this the process they’d undergo for that?

    Very cool.

    • Those are great questions! Yes, these would be the kind of things you could use in graphic design and with photoshopping images for advertising.

      Thank you so much for stopping by 🙂

  5. Well, I must say that I like to experiment with this but I did not do that in a long time. You really did a great job and I will surely try this in my free time. Today is technology very advanced and we can experiment with many programs and tools. Only limit is definitely our imagination.

    • Isn’t that the truth?  I love to see what others are able to do with the technology out there!

      Thank you so much for visiting!

  6. You must be really good at Photoshop. When I read ” I didn’t put a whole lot of detail into it.” and then I saw the photo, I was like: “What?”. This is little detail? I’m proud that I can change the brightness of an image with Photoshop. Clearly, I have a lot to learn.

    Do you have any videos or courses? 

    • Thank you! No, I don’t have any videos or courses out yet.  I’ve got a few videos in the making right now.  I will be putting some thought into the courses 🙂

      Thank you so much for visiting!

  7. Wow this was great! I know that Photoshop can create almost any image with another one, but it’s actually the first time I see a step by step process!  I have played a little with the free version of Photoshop, but I’m really not good with it.  One thing I would like to know is how big of a curve is it to learn Photoshop.  I am really interested in starting to use it but I am hesitant because of the time involved in learning to use it.  How long did you take to be this good with it?

    • It didn’t really take me too long once I actually sat down and used it.  I played around a lot to see what things did first and then I finally went to the tutorials.  And then, it was just a matter of getting familiar with the tools. But, I wouldn’t say it took all that long to be comfortable with it.  I’ve really only had Photoshop for about a year. I’ve used other programs before, but have really stuck more with Photoshop for most of my art.  Thank you so much for the compliments and for visiting!

      • Thanks for your prompt reply. I have been fiddling around with the free tool GIMP for a while and that one too has a learning curve. Like you said I played around quite a bit before I could do anything useful with it.

        So from what you are saying is that it’s just a matter of practice and then go to the tutorials with photoshop. I will definitely check it out. Oh, I also have bookmarked your site for future reference!

        • Yes, a lot of it practice. And as you play with some of the functions you’ll see that there are more things you want to learn how to do. And through the tutorials you’ll be introduced to a whole heck of a lot more that’ll pique your interest 🙂
          And thank you so much for bookmarking!

  8. Hi there

    I rarely post comments on the internet, but I couldn’t go without thanking you for this amazing tutorial which contains a lot of helpful information. As a newbie in Photoshop, I struggle quite a lot with editing photos. However, in the way you explain each and every step of the process, it becomes quite easy to understand.. I must say that I really found the steps easy to follow! After reading all this (+following along and doing it myself), I can say that I learned A LOT today!

    In addition, I would like to ask if you make video tutorials as well?


    • Thank you so much! I’m so glad that I was helpful to you 🙂  I haven’t published any videos yet, but I am working on some at the moment.  I’m trying to get more confident with making videos.  But, it’s getting there 🙂

      Thank you so much for visiting!

  9. Wooow, this was superb! Both the final picture and your description of how to make it. I do not really have much experience in any kind of photo editing, but I understood every step you wrote about. I guess the father was amazed 🙂 I really like this technique and will go over the photos of my children to do something similar. 🙂

    Does Photoshop have a free version to start with? Or can you offer any free platform where I can try this?

    • Wow!  That’s such an awesome compliment! Thank you!  Playing with photos is so much fun!  You’ll have a great time doing it 🙂

      Gimp is a free photo editing software.  My youngest uses it and he seems to like it a lot.

  10. Nice tutorial.  I’ve used Photoshop for quite a long time, but I can see there is still so much for me to learn.  I don’t have quite your gift of vision for artistic layout, but I like to make banners for my website and I can see that this tutorial will give some good techniques.  Bookmarking your site for the future.  🙂

  11. Hi Kelly,

    I really love your intervention on this picture. The contrast is nice and you gave a very detailed, step by step explanation. My sister is studying Digital Arts, so I think your site will be useful for her.

    I like to see what people can make with Photoshop, I’m always amazed how artists combine different elements to make something creative and unique. 🙂



    • Thank you so much!  I love the creative geniuses of people and how many different ways they use even the simplest of tools in these applications.  I like to see what people can make with Photoshop as well 🙂

      Thank you so much for visiting and sharing this with your sister!

  12. Hi,

    this is really Amazing!. I love creative work. And the way you edited the background made it too real. Though, i have some experience on photo editing But sometimes i get stuck on the way, Maybe it’s from the application I’m using, I guess!.’Photoshop’. If i tried editing the background, it will eventually affect all image, putting up white background on them.

    So, do you have another recommended application that can be too good for photo editing?

    • Thank you so much!  I actually mostly just use Photoshop.  But, I do also really like Corel PaintShop Pro.  It was actually through Corel that I learned Photoshop.  It’s a more simplified version, but a really great application!

  13. That’s so cool! My brother does a lot of work with Photoshop for his artwork and website images so I’ll have him check this out. This is a nice walk-through that even a complete newbie, like me, can understand and implement. Photoshop can have a pretty steep learning curve if you aren’t familiar with any editing techniques and stuff like this can go a long way in helping beginners understand that thought process and the capabilities of the software.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words!  I usually have so much on my mind I’ve always needed to simplify everything for myself.  So glad I can be helpful to others as well with that 🙂

      I hope your brother likes it and thank you for referring him 🙂

  14. Wow! That is so neat!! I took some courses in this a LOOONG time ago when I started college but have not really done much with photo editing since. I love how easy you make this sound with step by step instructions. Thanks for adding so many images of your steps along the way. I feel like I could actually do this myself now. I would not have guessed I could add a reflection to glasses in such simple steps!

    Very inspiring, thank you!


    • Thank you so much!  I’m glad I could be helpful to you 🙂  I know you could do it!  🙂

      Thank you for visiting!

  15. Oh, this is just lovely! I love how you included that beautiful butterfly and flowers in the picture and you were also careful enough to add the reflection on the glasses, smart! 

    Do you think the treatment that you did with her hair can also be done in a color picture? 

    I am starting to learn about photoshop and this is certainly a blog that I am going to add to my favourites. 

    • Oh, thank you so much for those kind words 🙂  Yes, absolutely, the treatment used on the hair is definitely one that can be used in a color picture 🙂

      Thank you and all the best to you!

      Thank you for visiting!

  16. You really did a great job with explaining the steps that I analyzed the photo in awe! Removing of the baggy looked flawless, while adding color to that butterfly really made the photo pop. My only drawback is the blend of the flower with her hands. It just looks like a layered photo as opposed to a blended piece.

    You explained it and I still wouldn’t be able to manage pulling this off so all in all good job. I wanted to invest in the photoshop arena but figured I don’t use it enough to actually benefit from it. 

    I heard it is pretty hard to use, and wondering if there’s any truth to that, or is it pretty basic in what can be done with the user interface? How long were you using it before you became comfortable with the program? 

    • Thank you so much!  I think I had a little drawback with the flower too, but thought it was just staring at it for too long, lol.  I’ll take another look at again and see what I can do.  Thank you for bringing that to my attention 🙂

      I think Photoshop can be used in all sorts of things – not just photo manipulation, but many other areas, like editing video! (this one’s pretty awesome!!)  You can do web design with it or graphic design.  It’s not just for digital painting and photo manipulations – that’s just what’s made it popular 🙂

      It’s really not all that difficult to use.  It didn’t take me too long to figure out how to use things.  Tutorials do help, though.  And you can find them all over the internet.  Once you start getting the hang of one thing, it’s fun to start learning what the other things are to use along with it and it gets to be so much fun!

  17. Rogier Giersthove

    I love how much detail you put into your explanation. I’ve been working with photoshop for quite awhile, because of my studies but I’ve never thought about doing things like the reflection in the glasses of an object.

    I’ll try it out on one of my next projects. Really helpful stuff you got here.

    • Thank you so much!  I’m so glad it was helpful to you!  I’ve learned over the years that I need to step away for an hour or two – sometimes a couple of days – and then look at it again.  Then I can come back to my art and see if there was anything that I missed.  There’s been a few times I’ve missed the reflections…  so, it’s one of the first things I look for now 🙂

  18. wow you did a good job at doing this. I have always enjoyed editing pictures to make them look better, but I’m not they good at it lol.

    What kind of software did you use? Right now I use Gimp to edit all my pictures. Will this be enough to do what you just did?

    Also about home long did it take you to do this?

    Thanks for the instruction and may I suggest you do a video sometime showing the process of this from beginning to end?

    • Thank you 🙂  I really appreciate your kind words 🙂 

      I think Gimp would be enough to do something like this.    It took me just under a day – with interruptions of cooking and laundry and the daily general needs of my kids, lol 🙂

      That is a great suggestion! I’ve got a couple of videos in the works at the moment!  Thank you so much!

  19. This was such a great read and tutorial to boot. You certainly have a handle on how to do/create/re-create images…and you make it seem so easy. I was really intrigued, I keep moving through the article with curious eyes as to what the outcome would be – you certainly had my full attention. Thanks so much and keep up the good job.


  20. For time to time I intended to work with Photoshop with not much success. This Quick Edit 001 looks great, and using your tutorial I will try to improve and change some photos… if I am success will tell you 🙂 I think we can name your post a Tutorial, it is very useful. Did you work all in your smartphone or in your PC? The final photo is incredible!! I love photos in black and white they have a special charm. You are an artist, haven’t you think about preparing an exhibition? Thank you for share all the steps to change a photo by adding different layers.

    • Thank you! I would love to see your pictures as well 🙂 Actually, I didn’t work too much on my smartphone.  The majority of the work was done on my computer.  I haven’t actually thought about having an exhibition, but thank you for recommending it!   That means a lot!   And you’re so welcome for all the help 🙂

      Thank you so much for visiting!

  21. Hi!
    The picture at the end looks really great! I was a little skeptical at first as I was reading but once it was done the whole picture looked wonderful! I was pleasantly surprised.

    I noticed some people mentioning Gimp. I will have to try it out and see what I think. I’ve got a whole list of photos that I have wanted to do something like this with but had to let go of my Photoshop subscription.

    And I agree that when you can, a video would be extremely helpful. I will bookmark this page for future reference.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Thank you, Tina 🙂 Yes, Gimp is good, my son really loves it 🙂 Yes, I’m hoping to start getting some videos out soon. I’m sorry to hear about your Photoshop subscription. They’ve just released a few pretty cool updates they’ve done to Photoshop this last week. I’ve been biting at the bit to get back to my computer all weekend so I can try some of them out 🙂

  22. Hey!

    I absolutely loved photoshop articles, They’re always so insightful. And yours was no different!
    I’m really trying to develop some skills in photoshop, and in that I’m trying to soak up as much knowledge as I possibly can. For me the article was entirely useful.

    Thank you for putting it together!
    Cheers and have a Great One!

  23. Very impressive Kelly ‘O! I didn’t know you were into this stuff. I have enjoyed looking through your page.

    • Thank you, Kallie! Yes, I love this kind of stuff! I love art so much! I love to see what I can do and what kind of challenges I can take 🙂 Thank you sooo much for visiting!

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