How to Create Picture-in-Picture Effect in Photoshop

Unlock the power of double exposure with our step-by-step guide to Photoshop's picture-in-picture effect.

In Photoshop, you have to be smart about how to Create Picture-in-Picture Effect in Photoshop. To begin, open your picture in Photoshop and make a copy of the background layer. Then, find the part of the original picture you want to use for the smaller picture and copy it to a new layer.

You can resize and move this layer around in the original image to get it where you want it. You could make the effect better by giving the smaller picture layer a drop shadow or a border. This will help it stand out. You can also try different blending modes and opacity settings to make the smaller picture blend in with the bigger one. Save your work when you’re happy with the arrangement.

You can use this method to draw attention to a certain part of a composition or make a layout that looks good for presentations, social media posts, or digital art projects. The picture-in-picture effect in Photoshop’s flexible tools lets you be as creative as you want. Additional information is available on the official website.

How to create picture-in-picture effect in Photoshop

  1. Put the picture into Photoshop.
  2. Make a copy of the picture.
  3. Give the copy a new name.
  4. Change the pictures into smart objects.
  5. Turn off the top image.
  6. Add a black and white adjustment layer to the background.
  7. Turn on the top photo layer.
  8. Use the rectangle tool to draw a shape around the picture’s subject.
  9. Put the little picture layer on top of the shape.
  10. Make a clipping mask.
  11. Give the shape a stroke and a drop shadow.
  12. Turn the shape.

Understanding the Picture-in-Picture Concept

What It Is:

  • Main Image: This is the background picture, which is the bigger picture.
  • Inset Image: This is the smaller picture that is put inside the bigger picture.
  • Positioning: The inset image can be put anywhere inside the main image to get different effects.

Methods Used Often:

  • Clipping mask: A layer mask is used to define the shape of the image that is inserted into the main image with this method.
How to create picture-in-picture effect in Photoshop
  • Layer styles: Adding drop shadows, inner shadows, or strokes to the inset image using layer styles gives it more depth and makes it look more real.
  • Blending modes: If you use different blending modes, like “Multiply” or “Overlay,” the inset and main images can interact in different ways.

Enhancing the Picture-in-Picture Effect with Filters and Effects


  • When you use the Gaussian Blur, the picture-in-picture stands out from the background because it has a dreamy, soft focus. Change the blur radius to make the effect more or less strong.
  • Motion Blur: Make the picture-in-picture look like it’s moving to give it a lively look. Change the direction and intensity to get the effect you want.

Changes in shape:

  • Ripple: Give the picture-in-picture a soft wave effect to make it more fun. Change the ripples’ number and size to get a different look.
  • Pinch: Make the picture-in-picture look like it’s being pushed in, giving the effect of being distorted and moving. You can change how much you pinch to get the intensity you want.

Leads to:

  • Drop Shadow: Use a drop shadow to give the picture-in-picture more depth and dimension. Change the blur, distance, and opacity to make it look more real.
  • Inner Shadow: Give the edges of the picture-in-picture a soft glow to make them stand out from the background. You can change the distance, blur, and opacity to make it your own.

Tips and Tricks for Perfecting Your Picture-in-Picture Creations

Getting ready:

  • Idea and Planning: Before you start, make your vision and message very clear. Draw or storyboard your idea to figure out where the parts will go and how they will interact with each other.
  • Collect Resources: Choose high-resolution pictures with lighting and angles that work well together. Get ready with any extra graphics or textures you might need.
  • Set up your workspace: Make folders for your main image, any picture-in-picture elements, masks, adjustment layers, and other things. This keeps things neat and easy to handle.

Choice and Masking:

  • Refine your Selection: To get clean cutouts of your picture-in-picture element, use precise selection tools like the Pen Tool or Refine Edge. For a more natural look, give the edges a little more space.
  • Layer Masks Give You Options: You can use layer masks to hide parts of your selection that you don’t want to show without destroying them. This makes it easy to make changes later.
  • Refine with Masks: Gradient masks and luminosity masks give you more precise control over how your element blends in and out.


How do you do photo effects in Photoshop?

Darken or lighten the grey values of particular colours for better contrast. Go retro with artistic filters. Add film grain from the Artistic submenu in the Filter Gallery or add noise to simulate dirt or scratches on an old photo. Create painterly effects.

How do you overlay a picture on a picture?

Use the free YouCam Perfect photo editor app on your iPhone or Android to add a picture on top of another one for free. Just add your picture to the photo overlay app and press the “Add Photo” button in the room for features.

Does Photoshop have filters?

Use a filter. Pick out the area where you want to use the filter: To use a filter on the whole layer, deselect any areas that are already selected and then click on the layer in the Layers panel. To add a filter to a certain part of a layer, pick out an area with any selection tool.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
The Bollyinside editorial staff is made up of tech experts with more than 10 years of experience Led by Sumit Chauhan. We started in 2014 and now Bollyinside is a leading tech resource, offering everything from product reviews and tech guides to marketing tips. Think of us as your go-to tech encyclopedia!


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