In this tutorial, we’ll learn how to make a collage of polaroids in Photoshop from just a single photo.
Open your image in Photoshop.
Press Ctrl+J (Windows) / Command+J (Macs) to duplicate the image.
Ctrl-click (Windows) / command-click (Macs) on the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers palette to add a new layer between Layer 1 and background layer.
Press D to set black as the foreground color and fill the new layer with black by pressing Alt+Backspace (Windows) / Option+Delete (Macs).
With Layer 2 selected, press the New Layer button at the bottom of the Layers palette to create a new layer.
Make sure that the new layer is active. Now, select the Rectangular Marquee Tool and make a selection inside your picture. This will be your first polaroid. It doesn’t matter what you select since you will be able to move it afterwards.
Press Alt+Backspace (Windows) / Option+Delete (Macs) to fill the selection with black.
We will now create a clipping mask. Select Layer 1 and go to Layer > Create Clipping Mask.
Select Layer 2 and click on the New Layer icon to create a new layer.
Make sure that the new layer is selected. Now, select the Rectangular Marquee Tool and make a selection around your first selection. This will be the border of your polaroid so make sure that you leave more space at the bottom as shown below.
Now, press Ctrl+Backspace (Windows) / Command+Delete (Macs) to fill the selection with white. After that, press Ctrl+D (Windows) / Command+D (Macs) to deselect your selection.
Let’s add a subtle drop shadow to our polaroid now. Select Layer 4 and click on the Layer Styles icon at the bottom of the Layers palette.
Choose Drop Shadow from the list and make the following changes.
We will also rotate the polaroid to make it more interesting. With Layer 4 still selected, shift-click on Layer 3 to select it too.
Press Ctrl+T (Windows) / Command+T (Macs) to enter Free Transform. You can now rotate or move the photo as you wish. When you’re done, press Enter (Windows) / Return (Macs).
Now that we have created our first polaroid, we can use it to create as many as we want. Firstly, select Layers 1, 3 and 4 by shift-clicking on them.
We will group these layers together by pressing Ctrl+G (Windows) / Command+G (Macs).
Let’s duplicate the group now by dragging it onto the New Layer icon.
Like our first polaroid, we will again rotate and move our second polaroid. First, select both Layers 3 and 4 in the duplicate group.
Now, press Press Ctrl+T (Windows) / Command+T (Macs) to rotate or move the polaroid as you wish. When you’re done, press Enter (Windows) / Return (Macs).
Repeat this step as many times as needed to create your collage. This is how my collage looked after creating 16 polaroids.