Settings: f/2.2, 1/500 second, ISO 400, 50mm prime
Set up. For the photos. Try to find an area where the light isn’t going to change between your shots (eg. open shade or in this case, indoors). Pick an area where the background isn’t going to be too busy either (you can always place your subject further from the background in order to blur it out). Start in AV mode with a wide aperture. Set the ISO to allow a fast shutter speed (faster than 1/100 preferably) & use spot metering. Look at the view finder as well as the histogram to check the exposure & if you’re happy, transfer these settings into “manual” mode (this will help ensure the exposure remains constant throughout the shoot). Don’t be afraid to move in closer or further away for different parts of the image.
Creating the triptych. Select all three images & make sure the white balance is consistent with all three (if not, you can always adjust it provided you took RAW images). Go to Image>Crop & in the width & height boxes enter sizes (in cm) to provide a 2:1 ratio. You can then further adjust the crop (pressing “shift” first will allow you to resize the crop without distorting the image). On the torso image, double-click on the “Background” in the layers palette & click “OK” to unlock the layer. Now go to the head image Select>All & then Edit>Copy. Back on the torso layer Edit>Paste. Repeat for the feet image. Activate the feet image in the layers palette & while holding down “shift” use the “Move tool” to drag this layer down. Move the head layer upwards in a similar fashion. Image>Reveal All & all three layers will be visible. Adjust the alignments as required. If the images aren’t the exact same width you can select all three layers simultaneously & crop the entire triptych.
Create a border. Select the “Move tool” & with the head layer active, hold down the “shift” key & tap the “up arrow”. Count how many taps & repeat this step for the feet layer. For the external border, select the “Crop” tool & draw a line around the whole triptych. Now drag the crop outwards to create a gap around the three pictures before pressing “Enter”. Layer>New Fill Layer>Solid Colour choose white & click “OK”. Drag this layer to the bottom of the layers palette.
Opinion. After reading an article in “Digital SLR Photography” magazine (May 2015 edition) & checking out the work of Adde Adesokan (“Triptychs of Strangers” on Flickr, see below) https://www.flickr.com/photos/theblackstar/sets/72157626117942754/ I couldn’t wait to try creating a triptych of my own. I call this one “The Home Baker”. It was really fun to do & I can see myself creating a small collection of them over time.