How to Create a Ghostbusters Ghost Effect in Photoshop and Lightroom

Well, all the ghosts I photographed are now busted.  You can see their finished pictures here, here, here, and here.  So all that is left is to show you how I did it.  This will be an intermediate-level tutorial.  Anything I don’t spell out specifically – like how to cut someone out from a background – can easily be found in written or video form online.  However, if you are still struggling with something after you do a search, don’t hesitate to ask questions in the comment section below.

A special thanks to Film Riot for giving me the idea to do this when I watched this video.

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Self Portrait: The Stinging


***UPDATE***  I thought by adding a small radial (really zoom) blur it might help and it did.  I’ve replaced the image.  I think the rock looks cooler and I like how the trees now point to the sword subtly.  This image is ok considering the original was so crappy.

I had the privilege of visiting the actual film location outside of the troll cave where Bilbo unsheathes Sting for the first time.  They even had a toy Sting sword so you could recreate the movie still.

Technically it’s a portrait rather than a self portrait, but I think it counts since I helped set up all aspects of the shot and I’m the subject.  Unfortunately my photographer missed the focus pretty badly in all of these pictures so I combine a couple exposures to try and emphasize the magical quality of the moment by making everything look shaky, soft, and glowy.

How to Display and Store One Sheet Movie Posters


In the days of my youth I collected movie posters.  Not to the same extent as comic books but when I saw a really cool image or I really loved the movie, I’d try my best to track down a copy.  Since it was pre-internet, finding the things could be a real challenge.  It helped that I had friends who were really interested in this stuff.  In fact, one was a movie poster designer for many years.

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Movie Reviews: Rango and Get Low

Well it has been a den of sickness at the Patz household this past week. As the week progressed, I continued to get worse and I manged to infect Melanie just in time for the weekend.  Joy!

With few channels on TV and only so many hours that we could sleep, we were able to download all of the movies on our wishlist that are currently available.  Most were ok.  None felt like a waste of time (except A Town Called Panic = crap!).  Two were head and shoulders above the rest though.

This one you’ve probably heard of.  Johnny Depp stars as a chameleon lost in the desert in this animated tale.  If you’ve seen any images from the movie you know that the detail is amazing.  Probably the best I’ve seen.

You might be expecting a standard Pixar/Disney-like story but there is something different about this tale.  I think a heavy-duty movie buff could point it out, but I’m not sure what it is.  It is definitely more adult (grown up) but there is more than that.  Maybe it is the pacing or the way the jokes are formulated?  Maybe it is the character design?  I wouldn’t take my young nephews or nieces to see it just because the main villain is a little too scarey.

If you are an adult, I think these differences could be part of the appeal.  You get an animated tale that isn’t quite as predictable.  Overall, it is one of my favorite movies of the few I’ve seen this year.  Recommended.

Get Low stars Robert Duvall and Bill Murray in a tale about a hermit and his plans for his own funeral party.  It is a very Robert Duvall-y kind of movie with rich characters, old people, great dialog and plenty of humor and heartache.

Melanie and I both really loved this movie.  I’m willing to go as far as to say that it is the best film I’ve seen this year.  The question we asked each other afterwards is “How did we know about this movie?”  It was released last year and has been sitting on our wishlist.  How did it get there?  I think it must have been from a high critic and audience rating over at Rotten Tomatoes.

This one was a little tougher for us to find but Redbox had it.  Highly Recommended.