In the parlance of photography, image overlay is the process of putting an extra layer to a photograph. On the other hand, overlay images are the textures you add to the first layer of a photo. This process is commonly done through a photo-editing program.
Did you know that photographers would manually create overlays by scratching negatives with pins back then? Film photography is classic and timeless. Yet, imagine the struggle of the early photographers to create brilliant photo effects. Before the digital age of photography, adding texture to a photo was painstaking. Gone are the days of overexposing and scratching the negatives with sandpapers. Digital photography now enables a drag-and-drop method of overlaying an image. Thanks to Photoshop and other photo-editing software. You can even utilize different blending options and adjust the opacity for achieving your desired effect.
But what overlay? The reason is simple--photographers use overlay to add texture and elements that were not present in the image originally. Just imagine a cake with a lot of layers--strawberries on top of chocolate, and another layer of strawberries on it. It just adds a flavor to the image so to speak. Understanding overlay is important--it can either enhance or destroy your image. For instance, when you want to pull off a fairy tale inspired photo shoot, you might want to add overlays in order to reinforce the theme in the post-editing process. It can be overwhelming at first, but a lot of basic photo-overlapping apps offer this feature. You can try it out on your phone or tablet as they come in handy.
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