advanced compositing stock images 2 after

Advanced Compositing with Stock Images 2


We’ve received such great response about Advanced Compositing with Stock Images that we’re back for round two!

Follow along and transform 8 free stock images into an epic science fiction scene. Learn how to combine multiple photos together, create sci-fi lightning and disintegration effects, and match light and color for a seamless final image. But best of all, we show that you all you need are some free stock photos and some Photoshop savvy to unlock your creativity!


  • 8 Sample Images
  • 2 Photoshop Brushes
  • 1 Sample PSD


Table of Contents

Chapter 1 | What You'll Learn
  • 01 - What You'll Learn
Chapter 2 | Creating the Scene
  • 01 - Placing the Mountains
  • 02 - Circle and Lightning
  • 03 - Floating Rocks
  • 04 - Clouds and City Lights
  • 05 - Coloring and Finishing Touches

advanced compositing stock images 2 after

advanced compositing stock images 2 after


Build Conceptual Composites From Scratch

Out-of-this-world compositing doesn’t require big budgets and crazy gear. Join us and learn how to create your own fantasy landscape images using free stock image resources and some Photoshop savvy.

Fantasy Worlds With Free Stock Photos

advanced compositing stock images 2 after

advanced compositing stock images 2 after



Create Composites Using Only Stock Photos

Looking for a new project? We’re here to show you that you can get creative at any time using free stock images and your Photoshop skills. Learn how to take a group of photos and use powerful compositing tools to combine them together to make your own fantasy worlds and scenes.

Light, Color & Perspective

Learn how to match lighting, color, and perspective between multiple photos to create a seamless composite image. Use Adjustment Layers to adjust exposure, change colors, and even check to make sure elements from multiple images match perfectly in the scene. New to compositing? Learn the fundamental of matching light and color in Intro to Photoshop Compositing for Beginners.

Create Depth

We show you how to composite mountains from one image into the background of another, adding atmosphere, lighting, and coloring so that they realistically fit the landscape. And if you haven’t already, be sure to watch the original Advanced Compositing With Stock Images in Photoshop. By the end of both courses, you’ll be a master of crafting your very own fantasy worlds.

advanced compositing stock images 2 after

advanced compositing stock images 2 after



Rock & Cloud Photoshop Brushes

We include 2 custom-made Photoshop Brushes that will allow you to create photo-realistic clouds and fog, and surreal disintegration effects. Best of all, we walk you through the process of creating these Brushes so that the next time you need a stunning special effect, you’ll know how to make it yourself.

Amazing Sci-Fi Effects

Learn how to create dazzling lightning and lighting effects, disintegration effects, and even a sci-fi city! We break down the process step-by-step, showing you how to layer multiple images and effects for a balanced and realistic fantasy scene.

Professional Photoshop Skills

While we’re working on creating a fun image in this course, these tools and techniques are the same ones that professional artists and creatives use on daily basis. Learn how to analyze and modify light, make precise cutouts and selections, seamlessly blend different photos together, and add beautiful coloring.

Lightning & Disintegration Effects

advanced compositing stock images 2 after



Clouds, Fog & Atmosphere

Create realistic clouds, fog, and atmosphere with the included PHLEARN-made Photoshop Brushes. Great tools for adding depth and dimension to any photograph–and they’re yours to keep and use forever.

Learn About Check Layers

Check Layers are tools that we’ve developed to help with the compositing process. More specifically, they’re special Adjustment Layers that we use to help match luminosity, saturation, and hue across multiple different images. We show you how to create and use Check Layers in Photoshop which will help you create seamless, ultra-realistic composite photos!

Color Grading

Once the compositing is complete, color grading is how we tie it all together. Learn how to add beautiful coloring effects that will help put the finishing touches on a composite image while adding richness and realism to the scene.

advanced compositing stock images 2 after

advanced compositing stock images 2 after



8 Stock Photos Included

Is it possible to create a complete science fiction world with just 8 free stock images? You bet! Watch and see for yourself as we take a small collection of free stock photos (from some great artists on Unsplash.com) and composite them together to create a scene that’s out-of-this-world.

Sample PSD

Not only do we show you how to create a beautiful scene in Photoshop, we also provide the complete PSD file so that you can see how a professional artist assembles and organizes their work. Take a look at how the entire image was created, with every Layer, adjustment, and effect available for you to see.

Master Photoshop Compositing

We love compositing in Photoshop! So much so that it’s become a pillar of our course catalog here on PHLEARN. If you’re new to the craft, we recommend trying some of the courses that break down the fundamentals. Try Photoshop Compositing: Essential Tools & Techniques to level up your compositing skills!

Class Instructor

Aaron Nace

PHLEARN Founder – Class Instructor

Aaron Nace is a photographer, Photoshop artist and founder of PHLEARN. He is the #1 Photoshop instructor in the world with millions of YouTube subscribers.

View More Classes by Aaron Nace


  1. Anytime I want to learn from scratch or just a technique I usually check your library first. most of the time you have just what I’m looking for. In the last year I’ve started using more compositing in my photography. Boxing, vampires, pirates, martial Arts is something I would like to see more of in compositing.

  2. Another great tutorial Aaron. I’ve been following and learning from Aaron from way back when he first started. Quite a ride, and I always learn something new. A suggestion for future content. As an “advanced tutorial” I think we spent too much time on many of the basics. I would think in an advanced tutorial you might be able to just say “clip it” without having to explain what a clipping mask is. You can just say “let’s use the blue channel to make this selection” without having to explain channel selections. Advanced users should know how to make a brush. In lieu of the above, we could revisit some of the concepts that I do think are advanced and present in many of your early generation compositing tutorials: advanced perspective, puppet warp, displacement maps, advanced highlighting and detail work, etc. This might also provide an opportunity to dive into the newer features, like perspective warp, new warp features, and the AI algorithms. Thanks Aaron, despite the tutorial being beginner to intermediate levels, I still always have a blast listening to you and enjoy learning from you. Thank you for all the lessons over the years.

  3. Great! Would love to see more of these type of landscape composites.

  4. Great, third time through it and I pick up more each time. I would love to see more of these. Thank you!

  5. Aaron your content is great. You lay things out in a very easy and understandable way for anyone to pickup and run with or create with after watching the tutorial. Having signed up for “PRO,” I would have expected a few more advanced techniques or less explanation. Of course, you need to consider your audience. You obviously want everyone to enjoy the tutorials. In other tutorials, you have basic, more advanced, and advanced cut outs. Maybe you could do something similar with compositing? You could have basic, more advanced, and advanced tutorial or lesson plan.

  6. loving these, more please 🙂

  7. Lesson is called “Advanced Compositing”. Half-way through, and 50% of the tutorial has been Photoshop 101 stuff. This has been a theme for almost every pro tutorial class I’ve done here. Aaron, your one of the best instructors, which is why I signed up. However, you do not have to spend half of every tutorial explaining the most basic elements of PS. If someone doesn’t know what check layer is, selection tools, S&M, etc., they shouldn’t be taking an ADVANCED compositing class. Please stick with your one tutorial for the basics of PS and after that, please assume it should be known for other lessons. It’s maddening having to waste hours sitting through the basics in every lesson. Either that, or have tutorials for “basic” learning, and a separate section of tutorials for those that are more intermediate/advanced and are here to learn your more expert level techniques.

  8. I just love all of your tutorials about compositing. I really learn a ton here!

  9. First vid I watched and so glad I joined the Pro Subscription!!! Highly recommend this course and looking forward to the rest.

  10. Great tutorial I would like to see more like this.

  11. Really helped me to overcome some of my misunderstandings and constant mistakes of compositing.

  12. Amazing tutorial! Learning a ton of tools and techniques that are helping me with blending images. Thanks Aaron.

  13. I am pretty well versed in compositing and I still learned a ton from these videos. Phlearn is seriously the best resource for all things Photoshop! Thanks Aaron! 🙂

  14. Fun concept and great explanation as always

  15. Great work. I used to approach light and colour in a similar way, however he has actually broken it down into layers and segments which gives better results.

  16. This tutorial sucks… I am just playing, i think is very useful how he takes short pauses sometimes to explain how he does something or why he is doing it. Also, he helps you understand not only how to make that image, but also how to apply the same elements in other compositions.

  17. Brilliant, love these compositing tutorials, really inspiring with so many tips and tricks perfectly explained. Aaron is always engaging to watch.

  18. Aaron you are the master. Thanks as always for sharing your knowledge. Thoroughly enjoying this one

  19. As always, great tutorial. Definitely would love to see more composites, using landscapes or more like Baxter. They are so fun and creative and a way to get out of ones own head and just have fun with imagination.

  20. Great tutorial again. Always something to take away. Like we salute in Nigeria, 1000 gbosa for you. However, can you do a tutorial on photobook album compilation and design?

  21. Thanks, Aaron, for your fantastic tutorials. You always inspire us 🙂 Can you please do a tutorial explaining the colour toning of images like the artwork of “Dan Hecho” and “David Dubnitskiy.” I am also interested so much in learning the way Black and White images of”Hengki Lee.” 💕

  22. Best thing about these composites is that they are all about problem solving. You have to think. What technique works best here? Mask or Color Range selection? What creative idea can be applied to this stage? Birds in? Birds out? Even Aaron can be undecided. I find myself diverging. Like the reflections in the pools of water. Not quite so subtle for me. How? Work it out. Keep them coming.

  23. Awesome!!! Never bored during watching videos. I love the details. Thank you!!!

  24. Once again you brought us another amazing composition with a lot of new learning techniques. I so look forward to your new stuff. I always learn so much, especially the circle of light, how awesome was that. Greatest teacher ever

  25. Such an amazing and informative tutorial. I love how easy Aaron makes it through his organization and clear communication. Best teacher/mentor ever!!!!

  26. So glad to have joined Phlearn. As someone who loves doing composite work, it’s great to watch Aaron share his extensive Photoshop knowledge in these awesome videos! Would love to see more of these advanced techniques as the final results are stunning!

  27. I have never tried composite images and it is not really my thing normally. This course is awesome and has changed my mind completely! Bring on the composites

  28. This was a fantastic tutorial. I love creating composites with stock images. I hope there are lots of these composite tutorials in the future. Aaron is wonderful to watch land listen to. He carefully explains his thought process and shows us how some changes work and others do not.

  29. I really enjoyed this tutorial, Adam covered many techniques that come in handy when doing this type of work. Also Adam is always a pleasure to listen to.

  30. Great tutorial and don’t worry, you couldn’t hear the children at all.

  31. Again a great example what you can do with just a few stock images. Easy to follow and fun to watch. Makes you want to start composing right away. Please more of these tutorials. Maybe a bit more advanced, by which I mean you do not have to explain smart objects, clipping masks and so on (it’s a PRO tutorial).

  32. Hi Aaron This is excellent tutorial learned alot. However, I would like to see more on Check layers technique specially when you have multi colored composite using stock images. Excellent job thank you once again.

  33. Aaron Nace is my modern day Bob Ross. The talent and artistry he applies to his Photoshop compositions is inspiring. This is a great tutorial on composition jammed packed with a ton of useful information. There is so much to learn from this lesson and the full Phlearn catalog. I wouldn’t be where I am in my career as an artist if I had never discovered Aaron and Phlearn. That’s a scary thought. Happy Phlearning!

  34. Amazing tutorials Aaron its looks so realistic no one can figure out that this image are composites. I have a suggestion though for a beginner like me it would be supper helpful if you can put in place a ‘tutorial Playlist’ starting from beginner – advance skills one each for photo editing, retouching and compositing. Please direct me if playlist is already available.

  35. Great tutorial! If you are like me and are stuck at home constantly with either bad weather or some sort of pandemic happening, then you’ll enjoy this and it will get the creative juices flowing. I personally learn so much more when Aaron creates conceptual images and to see more to come

  36. This was awesome, I love this kinds of images. You are going to have to make this an entire series. LOVED IT !!!! Great work :)))))

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