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Overlay photograph in viewfinder

EmHayKayTee
Apprentice

Does anyone else try to recreate old photos (family or historical)? I’d love to be able to overlay an old photo in my viewfinder at say 50% transparency. It would make it so much easier to compose the new picture.

3 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

melankaya
Contributor

Noob here, but if you have a ninja V you can use the onion skin feature in the monitor.... 
Another completely unrelated option could be using your phone, theres an align feature if you are in reels on instagram that also allows you to overlay. G'luck!

View solution in original post

jaewoosong
Rising Star
Rising Star

If you have a R series with digital viewfinder, you can kinda get away with this.  this will work with DSLR if shooting with live view but only mirrorless with digital viewfinder will display playback in viewfinder.

  1. take picture of the old photograph you want to emulate with camera.  this will be the first picture in your camera.
  2. setup the background and people as close as you can, get the shot ready in your viewfinder
  3. once people are posed, press the playback button and you'll see the original pic in your viewfinder/back screen via live view to see as reference.
  4. press shutter slightly to exit playback and you'll now see the live view.
  5. repeat playback/half shutter to pose the people.
  6. once pose is ready, take the actual picture.

-jaewoo

Rebel XT, 7D, 5Dm3, 5DmIV (current), EOS R, EOS R5 (current)

View solution in original post

AtticusLake
Mentor
Mentor

The feature you're looking for is called onion skin.  I don't know of any camera that supports this, but some monitors do.  As melankaya pointed out, the Ninja V has this: search for "Atomos Monitoring Features - Frame Grab and Onion Skin".

 

View solution in original post

8 REPLIES 8

Tronhard
Elite
Elite

Some Canon cameras have the ability to take dual exposures, but since we don't know anything about what gear you are using, it's hard to give advice. 

The easy way to do it is to use Post Processing software, create layers and merge them.  As long as you have all of the elements within your photos you can crop, burn etc to manage the result you want with far more control.


cheers, TREVOR

"The Amount of Misery expands to fill the space available"
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

Thank you for the detailed and thoughtful reply.

As you suggest, I think some post processing is all there is right now, but without knowing the full frame equivalent focal length and elevation/angle of the camera, the shots will never really match up. I’m trying to combine a picture from my childhood taken beside cast iron railings with my son standing beside the same spot. A squirming easily bored child grows bored quickly of endless variations of focal length and shooting angle, and the railings are….unforgiving. That’s why I thought an in-camera approach was better. But I guess that’s many firmware or even camera upgrades away.  

At this point, without knowing what camera you are using, it's hard to give advice about the potential for picture on picture images in-camera.


cheers, TREVOR

"The Amount of Misery expands to fill the space available"
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

Thanks again and my apologies for not telling you my camera setup. I’ve got an R5 and planning to use the 28-70 2.0 to approximate the focal length of my mothers old fixed lens camera. I’m going to dive into my R5 manual - I never thought of the dual exposure solution you and some others suggested. Thank you!

melankaya
Contributor

Noob here, but if you have a ninja V you can use the onion skin feature in the monitor.... 
Another completely unrelated option could be using your phone, theres an align feature if you are in reels on instagram that also allows you to overlay. G'luck!

jaewoosong
Rising Star
Rising Star

If you have a R series with digital viewfinder, you can kinda get away with this.  this will work with DSLR if shooting with live view but only mirrorless with digital viewfinder will display playback in viewfinder.

  1. take picture of the old photograph you want to emulate with camera.  this will be the first picture in your camera.
  2. setup the background and people as close as you can, get the shot ready in your viewfinder
  3. once people are posed, press the playback button and you'll see the original pic in your viewfinder/back screen via live view to see as reference.
  4. press shutter slightly to exit playback and you'll now see the live view.
  5. repeat playback/half shutter to pose the people.
  6. once pose is ready, take the actual picture.

-jaewoo

Rebel XT, 7D, 5Dm3, 5DmIV (current), EOS R, EOS R5 (current)

This is great! I’ll see if I can do on my R5.

AtticusLake
Mentor
Mentor

The feature you're looking for is called onion skin.  I don't know of any camera that supports this, but some monitors do.  As melankaya pointed out, the Ninja V has this: search for "Atomos Monitoring Features - Frame Grab and Onion Skin".

 

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