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Bret Malley

Photography with epic editing



Bret Malley Creativity

Bret Malley is a professional photographer, Photoshop expert, author, and educator specializing in imaginative, surreal, epic, and often magic-enhanced image creation. Residing in Corvallis Oregon USA, he is the author of Adobe Master Class; Advanced Compositing in Photoshop and works commercially across the US and is published and translated worldwide. He shoots on location (wherever that may take him) and loves to collaborate with clients in realizing their visions (or helping create one with them). Recent client work includes LG and The Mill as well as Photographers in the NW region.

Full Service Composite Work

If you are interested in having a full composite or series of composites done from start to finish, this option gives you full control as a collaborator with seamless results.

Base price for this option is $1,200 (excluding airfare and travel expenses) for a single composite–however final images range hugely in complexity and it is a good idea to contact Bret directly for a quote.

Photoshop Editing

Whether working with creative directors, other photographers, or anyone looking for some photo retouch work, (or any other digital editing needs such as book illustration, Album covers, etc.), Bret enjoys working with a range of clients in this field.

For general editing, he charges $70/hr, but each job is unique, so it’s a good idea to just contact him directly.

Private Lessons

Bret is also an educator and speaker, whether for large events such as Photoshop World, the Society for Photographic Education, or teaching in person and online, he simply LOVES teaching. In fact he wrote his book (published through Peachpit, Pearson, and Adobe Press) as an education tool for his courses.

So if you are interested in a guest presenter, or even private lessons, send him message with your details and interests.

About the Shoot and Composite Process

After several collaborative conversations with clients, Bret sketches out a few ideas and lays out a plan for shooting the necessary parts of the image to be combined into a composite. Available for shooting Friday through Sunday, and any day during the summer, Bret travels to your location of choice for the shoot (yes, outside of the USA is doable as well, with client covering travel costs).

The shoot itself can last anywhere from one to three hours, depending on the idea complexity. For some epic scenario backgrounds not shot on location (such as adding a massive jungle, volcano, canyon, etc.), these either need to be shot and traveled to separately (ideal for total lighting control) or procured through a stock photography source. Each new background location costs roughly $500 plus travel expenses. With that said, Bret has an extensive personal database of backgrounds that may be suitable (shooting various scenery from around the world is one of his specialties).


Here's a little more about Bret

With an MFA in Computer Art from Syracuse University, Bret teaches his craft and techniques at the college and university level as well as online through In addition to his book, he’s been published and featured as an editor's choice in Advanced Photoshop Magazine, Photoshop Creative Magazine, and presents at regional and international events such as Photoshop World and the Society for Photographic Education among others.

In addition to immersing himself in the world of Photoshop, Bret Malley is occasionally a filmmaker, animator, composer, and documentarian–working in environmental themes of global and regional import. Most know for his feature film Greenwashers (2011), he has won numerous awards and is continually screened internationally.

Outside of the creative digital universe, Bret enjoys hiking and adventuring with his family in the North Western United States in and around Corvallis Oregon. His wife and son often find themselves having to be grudgingly patient as they are frequently his creative obsession outside of teaching and commercial work. He appreciates their continued tolerance and always feels their love, regardless of how much he "occasionally" annoys them.

Originally born and raised in a small cow-town outside of Yosemite National Park, Bret Malley was constantly immersed in the outdoors of epic proportions and majesty. The combination of having two environmental activist parents and his father’s computer business, Bret took to these two themes from a young age and has fused them into his artwork ever since. Combine this with his imagination-focused Waldorf education, obsession with Fantasy fiction books and movies (such as Game of Thrones before it became part of popular culture…), and the results more or less explain themselves in his artwork.

Bret is also an Irish Bodhran drummer, avid adventurer, juggler, origami enthusiast, world traveler, didgeridoo player, and animal lover. While he loves all adorable creates (yes, including dogs), he has a special place in his heart for cats especially.

Photo Illustration
Create from Imagination
Edit for Realism

— Imagine, shoot, believe. —

Other Products


Don't miss out on other educational goodies such as Bret’s online class through craftsy and his tutorial based book on Photoshop compositing–

Online Class: Compositing in Photoshop from Start to Finish

33% Off Through

Start compositing in Photoshop and watch your wildest image ideas come to life alongside digital artist Bret Malley. Begin by learning how to use the Quick Selection, Magic Wand and Refine Edge tools for accurate, clear composites. Then, gain complete creative control over your images by working with masks and adjustment layers as you clip your curves, color and saturation edits. Move on to uniting your images with cohesive global adjustments such as dodging, burning and vignettes. Once you can edit composite images, get Bret's tips for setting up a photo shoot that will make compositing so much simpler. Finally, learn how to combine your new skills by working on a fun, surreal composite project.

  • 6 Streaming HD video lessons with anytime, anywhere access
  • Class materials, including a gear list, prop-building guide and practice images
  • Hours of close-up instruction
  • Answers to student questions from instructor Bret Malley
  • Closed captioning available (web only

BOOK: Adobe Master Masterclass; Advanced Compositing in Photoshop

In Bret Malley’s world, a father is suspended in the air among his baby’s collection of toys . . . a big-box store and parking lot can be transformed into a scene of reclaimed nature . . . and an ordinary person can sculpt fire with his bare hands. And in Adobe Master Class: Advanced Compositing in Photoshop, Bret shares the techniques he uses to elevate an image from the everyday to the extraordinary, showing you how to make seemingly impossible scenarios come to life.

  • Features an engaging, writing style that makes learning advanced Photoshop techniques fun
  • Provides detailed, step-by-step examples, walking through complex compositing projects from start to finish
  • Includes “Visual Masters” spreads that highlight beautiful and innovative work by current digital artists to inspire you to bring what’s in your imagination–the wildly impossible–to reality
  • Includes access to downloadable resource files so you can work through the projects along with the author
  • For more information on the book, take a look on the publishers website

FILM: Greenwashers (2011)
Feature Film

DVD purchase here, youtube link here

Featuring renowned environmentalist Bill McKibben and business executive Scot Case, Greenwashers is a satirical documentary that blurs the line between green and greed, truth and believability, environmentalism and marketing. Misleading consumers about the environmental benefits of a product or service has become a new marketing standard and Greenwashers takes this practice to the extreme. Following a pair of Greenwashers, the film illustrates the various strategies, sins, and consequences of greenwash.

Purchase the DVD here, or watch the full film on youtube for free.


Have questions for Bret? Contact him directly:

Tel: +1 (209) 484-4801

Corvallis Oregon
United States

bretmalley AT