Implying Motion via Photoshop

For some photos, replacing the background makes all the difference

by Jim Zuckerman

1938 Packard
1938 Packard
© Jim Zuckerman
All Rights Reserved
Last autumn when I was in New England, I was working on producing a DVD on my shooting technique and the producer of the project was driving. I watched the beautiful trees passing by and thought they might be interesting to shoot with a slow shutter speed. So using speeds in the range of 1/15 to 1/60, I captured a lot of motion-blurred images.

Last summer, when I photographed the classic cars in Lexington, Kentucky, I thought about using one of them behind the hood of a 1938 Packard. I got down low and shot upward on the car with a 24mm wide-angle. And using the cut-and-paste technique with the pen tool in Photosop, I placed the abstracted foliage in the background. I think the results look pretty cool - it's as if I had mounted a camera on the car and drove down the street using a long shutter speed.

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About Author / Instructor / Photographer, Jim Zuckerman
Photography Instructor: Jim ZuckermanFew people are able to spend most of their time pursuing their passion in life. I'm one of them, and I feel blessed to have had a love affair with photography since I began taking pictures.

In 1970, I decided to abort my intended career as a doctor in favor of photography and have never regretted it. Photography has enriched my life more than I can tell you. My career has taken me to over 60 countries, and I've seen and photographed wondrous things.

I specialize in wildlife and nature, international travel, and digital effects. In addition, I also shoot nudes, photo- and electron microscopy, children, and other subjects that stimulate my visual or emotional sensibilities.

For 25 years, I shot a medium format camera, specifically the Mamiya RZ 67, for its superior quality. When I would lecture, Id project the large, glass mounted transparencies, and it was really an incredible experience to see the brilliant color saturation and resolution of these slides. However, I went digital in 2004 because the technology finally equaled or surpassed medium format. I now shoot the Canon 1Ds Mark II digital camera with a variety of lenses.

I am the author of 12 books on photography. My work is sold in 30 countries around the world, and my images have appeared on scores of magazine and book covers, calendars, posters, national ads, trade ads, brochures, and corporate promotions.

For many years I've led photography tours to exotic places. These include Papua New Guinea, Thailand, Burma, Greece, The Czech Republic and Slovakia, Spain, Morocco, and Peru.