How'd he do that ?

Category: How’d he do that ?

How’d he do that ? – Creative Portrait


This was my final graduation project from the Langara Professional Photo-Imaging Program.

A little something different than the average portrait. - © 2010 Kurtis Stewart

Started as a simple portrait of a gentleman I met on 4th Ave.

Right now, just another portrait....but wait...

Took that image and used the Cutout Filter in Photoshop to reduce it to only 7 shades of grey.

Kurtis, what have you done ?

Now I wanted to add a bit of myself to this so I used 812 images I shot of Furious George at the 2008 WFDF World Ultimate and Guts Championships. Selected them all made a couple contact sheets and moved images here and there until I ended up with something that looked like this…


I then went back and took those 7 levels of grey to make layers masks for some curve adjustment layers. Once those were all in line it looked closer to the end product.

...we're so close it hurts.

Since a lot of the adjustment layers were a little more extreme than usual it really made the focus on the collage rather than the portrait. My solution, black and white filter set at 70% opacity. I think it reads far better after this change….

Voila, finito !

I’m not so good with glue and glitter so this is my version of getting “messy” in photoshop. It was a good experience to play around and arrive on solution that looked different than I would have anticipated. Can’t wait to play with more creatives like this in the future.

How’d he do that ? – Anti Smoking Advertisement


This is an anti smoking advertisement that was hiding at the back of my old portfolio.

My mocked up anti smoking ad- © 2010 Kurtis Stewart

I had a couple swipes kicking around that I wanted to try my hand at recreating in Photoshop.

Smoking Baby, Grim Reaper

The inspiration for the advertisement

Started by first shooting my wonderfully patient smoke conjuring model Gabrielle Beer.

Two parts lighting, one part framing and whole lot of serendipity – © 2010 Kurtis Stewart

From here I used a shot of a huge tattoo as a reference point to add the rest of the tiger.

Not being the best illustrator in the world, I needed a reference point to add the rest of the tiger

Used a combination of blur,smudge, liquify, layer blending modes etc. to mimic the smokey effect.

Things are starting to take shape

Tiger seemed like it was just dropped there so I used a part of an earlier capture to bring in a little more of an I-just-exhaled-a-tiger feel.

Little less dropped in, I’m seeing it !

Now for a Black and White filter to make sure you focus more on the tiger instead of the talent and a little boost to the image to separate the tiger from the background.

We’re close….promise.

A little hilarious copy in the corner and BOOM…

Finito !

How to create an Ad:

  1. Attention
  2. Problem
  3. Statement
  4. Solution/Benefit
  5. Call for Action

How’d he do that ? – Creekside Gym


New site is now LIVE, you can see the post about it here. As promised I would provide a little more of an in depth look at how each image was created with regards to the post production. So many of you will now be familiar with this image here:

Basketball, Badminton and Fashion Shows this space does it all - © Kurtis Stewart 2010

Now some of you have asked me what kind of lens did you use to get a shot like this? Well it’s not one shot…it’s actually 101 images stitched together as you can see here:

1 of 101 images that make up this shot - © 2010 Kurtis Stewart

Stitching can take a while and frequently needs to be redone so all the layers register correctly with each other. In this case I stitched the ceiling and the floor separately and then stitched THOSE separate files together. The result of stitching all the images together is right here:

Creekside Gym Stitch
Result of all 101 images stitched together - © 2010 Kurtis Stewart

So a little tweaking of curves and a nice clean crop and this is the final result:

Basketball, Badminton and Fashion Shows this space does it all - © Kurtis Stewart 2010

I’ll be attaching this explanation to image on my website here later today.