Make a Collage out of Single Photograph

Photographs are the best way to preserve our sweetest memories forever. Every Photograph has many remembering and sentiments attached to it. We hold some Photographs close to our heart for they make us remember the best moments of our life.

If you have any such Photograph with you, why not make it special and frame it so that it remains in front of your eyes forever. Here we will learn how to convert an image into a collage. We have used Polaroid photo frame look which will make your Photograph look stunning. You can click on the images to view larger version.

  • Skill: Easy
  • Time: 1 hour(s)
  • Software(s): Adobe Photoshop CS4



Image Source

If you like this article, you might be interested in some of our other articles on Photoshop.

Step 1

Open Image in Photoshop.

open image

Step 2

Duplicate the original layer (Ctrl+J).

duplicate layer

Step 3

Add a new layer between the original layer and the duplicate layer (created in step 2) and fill it with black color.

add black layer

Step 4

Create a new layer above the black layer.Select your Marquee tool (M) and make a selection.

make selection

Step 5

Fill your selection with black color (you can fill it with any color) in the new layer created in the last step.Note that no change has occurred as the layer is below our duplicate layer (Don’t worry about this as it will appear soon enough).

paint black

Step 6

Select the duplicate layer and go to menu bar> Layer> Create clipping MaskThis will shift your layer to right and show a downward arrow next to it(With this tool we basically mask the area that is just below our layer).

create clipping mask

Step 7

To make a boundary for our image, create a new layer just above our black layer.Make a selection such that it’s just a bit bigger than our masked area and fill it with white color.I made the base a little thicker so as to give it a Polaroid photo frame look.

make boundary

Step 8

Create a shadow to your frame by editing the layer style (Double click on your frame layer) of your frame layer Here I used Drop Shadow:Angle: 140 degreesDistance: 4 pixelsSpread: 19%Size 24 pixelsYou won’t see any changes due to the black layer present below.

create shadow

Step 9

Link your layers (White frame layer and black mask layer) by selecting both the layers and clicking the link layer button at the bottom left side of your layer palette.

link layers

Step 10

Now select your frame layer and rotate and move it to any place with the free transform tool (Ctrl+T).Note that only our mask and frame are moving and not the image.

free transform

Step 11

Now group the three layers (White Frame Layer, Black mask layer and the top image layer) into one group (Ctrl + G).Name this group Polaroid.

group layers

Step 12

Now Duplicate your Polaroid group and place the frame and mask layer to a different position and rotate them to any other angle, to give it collage feel.

duplicate group

Step 13

Arrange effectively to give it a nice collage look.For this tutorial I took 17 groupsYou can add more if you want.

arrange effectively

Step 14

It could be quite challenging to find a particular layer in so many layers, for that you can use the auto select layer control available on top left hand corner of your screen when you are using the select tool (V). This will help you find and edit the layers at a later stage.

selecting layers

Final Result


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  • Bhring Nath Prasad

    Wow these photoshop tutorial to Make a Collage out of Single Photograph is amazing and it’s giving an effective look i like these post.

  • Kuldeep

    Nice tutorial, I’ll try this tutorial in my free time.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • Tarun Jaitely

    Nice share. Will try this tutorial on one of my photo.

  • Lars-Åke Andersson

    Awesome! Took me about 10 minutes to follow and there you have it – great tutorial!

    • Nisha Patel

      Thanks for the kind words. Glad it worked well for you!