**UPDATE** Andrew, my blog designer, helped me figure out how to offer the below tutorial as an Photoshop action to download. Check out the bottom of the page for the download link.
I’ve recently received a few questions about creating my different Diptychs and Triptychs on my blog, which are fancy names for what I call “double ups” or “triple ups”. Dumb name, I know. It’s just what I got used to calling them when I didn’t know they were apparently referred to as diptychs and triptychs.
Now literally forever ago, I bought an action that helped me create them, but it wasn’t perfect. I wanted to know actually HOW to create them, so I could create all different kinds…two verticals, two horizontals, one vertical and one horizontal, three verticals, etc. So today, I want to teach you how to do it.
For this tutorial, you will need: Photoshop CS3 or later (I haven’t tried it on Elements, but I’m guessing it’s close to the same), two (or three) images, and a tiny bit of math. The first time it will take quite a few minutes, but after you get the hang of it, you can do it in a minute or so…OR, you can create different actions (future blog post on creating actions) and then it’s literally the click of one button, and BAM, you’re done.
Lets start by opening up two vertical images in photoshop (Note…in Photoshop, there are honestly about 15+ different ways to get from point A to point B. This is just how I do it. There’s probably a faster, easier, better way. If you find it, let me know : )
You need to determine how wide you want your finished diptych to be. For example, I have all my images and dip/triptychs set to 900 pixels wide for my blog. Today we’re going to pretend like you need your image to be 700 pixels wide since that seems like an average size.
**Shortcuts. For PC users, mac “command” key = PC “control” key. Mac “option” key = PC “alt” key.
1. Select the image you want on the right side of the diptych. First we need to resize the image. So click “Command+Option+I” (I’m seriously ALL about shortcuts…LOVE them). That will bring up this resize box. For a final image that is 700 px wide, divide 700 by 2, and you get 350 px. So resize your image with width at 350 pixels (make sure your units are in Pixels instead of Inches or something else). Also, make sure those three boxes are checked at the bottom as well. Press ok. (note that your image might be different proportions. If all three of the boxes are checked, just change your width to 350px and your height will adjust on it’s own)
2. Now press “Command+A” to select all.
3. Press “Command+C” to copy, and close that image. When it asks if you want to save, choose don’t save.
You should now have only one image open.
4. Now first we’re going to get this image on a new layer. Press “Command+A” to select all.
5. Press “Command+Shift+J” to create a new layer with that selection, leaving the background or bottom layer blank.
6. Now lets resize. Do the exact same thing you did in step one. ”Command+Option+I”…resize width to 350 pixels.
7. Now for the canvas size. Press “Command+Option+C” and the canvas size box will appear (see below). We want to make room for the other image. So do these things:
7.b. Change unit to Pixels if not done already
7.c. Change width to 350 pixels to make room for other image.
7.d. Click the LEFT arrow. Basically what we’re telling it to do is make 350 pixels worth of room on the RIGHT side of the present image. Now click “Ok”
K, so as of right now, you should have two layers in your layers box, and your image should look half way done. You should have your actual picture on the left with a blank white vertical rectangle on the right.
8. Click “Command+V” to paste your first image back from step 3. This will probably place the image right in the middle on it’s own new layer.
9. Now press “Command+A” to select all on that layer.
10. (We could just get the move tool and drag it in the right spot, but if you want to make an action out of this in the future, dragging into the right spot wont always work) SO…after step 9, go to the top drop down menu “Layer” (third to the right from “File”). Go near the bottom to “Align Layers to Selection” and inside there, click on “Right Edges”. This should drag that image to the right so everything looks good.
11. This step is optional, but I like a border in between the images. The border I use is 4 pixels wide, and white, but you can use any border you’d like. To do this, double click on the thumbnail of your top layer (probably called Layer 2) (your right image layer). This will bring up the box on the right. Make sure you check “Stroke”, change the size of the border to however wide you want it (I use 4 pixels), and then change the color to whatever you want the color to be.
And that’s it! Somehow I’ve managed to take something VERY simple, and make it seem very complicated. It’s really easy to do. Promise! You can use this “formula” for any images. So if you want two horizontal images, it’s literally the exact same instructions. If you want three verticals, you’ll want to resize each image to 233 pixels wide (making a final image of 699 pixels wide). The best part of all of this, is you can create an action for this so that you can create diptychs and triptychs with literally the click of one button.
So viola! Check out the finished product below. This is my brother and my adorable niece. Isn’t she the cutest.
**Click here to download the action! (Safari users right click and choose “Save linked file to downloads “). Once you have the .atn file, you simply double click it and it should load in your actions palette in Photoshop. If you’d like the action to be for a different size, let me know in the comment, and I’ll send it over.
Also, do you like these kinds of posts? Do you want more tutorials in the future? I’d love to hear your thoughts and things that you’d like to see in the future. Have a wonderful Wednesday!