How to Create a Photo Montage

by Timothy Burns

Digital photo montages can be created in a number of different formats. Simple slide shows are one type of photo montage. Popular at weddings and high school graduations, slide-show montages put a number of pictures centered on one theme into a single visual presentation. Digitally manipulated photos can also be combined to create a composite montage.

Slide Shows

Scan any printed pictures to be included in the montage, and save the images as standard photo file types, such as JPEG or TIFF.

Select the digital photos to be used in the montage. Pictures over a lifetime are often used for wedding, anniversary and funeral montages. Pictures from a person's school days work well for high school or college graduation montages.

Pick a theme for the montage. The theme can be as simple as the passage of time. Other themes can include favorite songs or encouraging messages that represent the purpose of the celebration.

Using digital photo slide show software, place the pictures an the order that suits the event. For example, high school graduation montages are often designed following the student's journey through grade levels and significant events.

Select a music track for the background and a transition scheme, which are both options typically offered in slide show programs. Save your work.

Single Composite Montage

Select images to convert into a single composite image. Image manipulation software allows users to insert images as layers that appear together a single photo file.

Remove the backgrounds or extra portions of the digital images to create each focused element of the montage.

Select a basic foundation image or background on which the other images are layered, or placed. Choose a background that will function as the theme or set the mood for the final montage.

Add the individual images onto the background image, with each being on its own layer. Move the images around to assemble the montage.

Save the montage as a single image when you are satisfied with your creation.


  • check Burn a copy of the slide show onto a CD or DVD to ensure safe storage. Also, the CD or DVD can be given as a gift.
  • check When working with composite montages, save a copy with the layered images so that you can add, subtract or move around individual elements in the future.

Items you will need

About the Author

Since 2003, Timothy Burns' writing has appeared in magazines, management and leadership papers. He has contributed to nationally published books and he leads the Word Weavers of West Michigan writers' group. Burns wrote "Forged in the Fire" in 2004, and has published numerous articles online. As a trained conference speaker, Burns speaks nationally on the art, science and inspiration of freelance writing.

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