Photography Tutorial: How to Create a Levitation Photograph

As some of you may know, fellow photographer Jayce and I recently started up a photography group on Facebook. The point of the group is to issue a monthly challenge to photographers. Photographers then have a month to create a photograph based on a chosen theme, and post their photograph at the end of the month. The theme for March was ‘Levitation’, and I actually shot two concepts for this theme. Here is the first:
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I’d like to tell you how I created this image.

The first thing I did was CONCEPTUALIZE: I did some browsing, and found some levitation photographs that inspired me (a few recommended photographers to check out for levitation photographs: Brooke Shaden, Lissy Elle and Miss Aniela). I found this old telescope in a spare room at my parents, and decided it would be a great prop for my levitation shot.
I then began to SET UP my shot:
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I decided on this location because of the sliding glass door on the left.
For my lighting, I had my large octabox set up outside of the glass door, shining in. I decided to shoot at night so that the lighting would be more dramatic.
Once I was happy with the lighting, I set up the two wicker tables. These are what I used to balance myself in the shot. I also set up a fan (bottom left of the shot), which gently blew the curtains around (again, for dramatic effect).
I set up my camera on a tripod and manually adjusted my settings until I was happy with the look and feel of the shot. Then I began TAKING THE SHOTS:
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It was uncomfortable and a bit painful trying to balance on the tables, so I decided to be my own model for this shot. My boyfriend assisted in the actual taking of the photos. (I do have a remote, but between trying to balance and pose, it would have been difficult to take the shots myself.) I would basically hold my breath, quickly stretch myself out and pose, wait for the shutter to click, then relax and breathe before trying again. Once I had a shot I was happy with, my next step was to TAKE A “BLANK SHOT”:
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I removed the tables and without adjusting anything else, I took this blank shot. This was my foundation layer in Photoshop. I then did the EDITING:
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To edit this image, I took the shot that I liked best of myself, and placed it over my blank shot in Photoshop. I then erased the tables I had been balancing on. I also did some general touch ups (for example, removing the cord from the blinds), and I also used liquify to reshape the areas where my body or clothing looked odd. I liked the reflection in the window, so I decided to keep it. A few more edits I decided to do:
5I loved the way that the curtain was billowing out in a different shot, so I decided to add that curtain into my final shot. I also edited in a piece of my skirt, to make it look more natural.
Finally, I MADE IT MY OWN:
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I changed the colors, and added a texture layer in Photoshop. I wasn’t a fan of the orange walls in the original shot, so I desaturated the walls and gave them more of a soft pink color.

That’s it! I hope you like it. If you’re interested, you are welcome to join our photography group on Facebook.

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10 thoughts on “Photography Tutorial: How to Create a Levitation Photograph

  1. This is amazing! Truly a wonderful work of art! I’m a photographer wannabe (I don’t even have photoshop 😥 ), but this has inspired me to get to it! Thank you!

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