After combining the photos, I had to flatten the images to make them grayscale. While the end result is interesting, it was not exactly what I had in mind. In the end, the images still look pasted together. It will require some more time and patients in order to achieve the desired result. I did learn some valuable tools in the process. One the most convenient tools is the quick selection tool. I had attempted the process before but did not fully understand the refine edge window. With my new knowledge, this procedure is quicker and more accurate. I will be able to get much better results with the extractions. The greatest challenge is in the merge mode. The images are difficult to fully integrate and the end result is a little choppy.
Photoshop in general is very detailed and the endless options can make it somewhat overwhelming. The use of Lynda.com tutorials made the process manageable but the shortcut commands were not useful to me. Overall, I feel much more confident using Photoshop and I have learned to perform the specific functions that I need for production work. When I have the time, I plan to experiment more with different tools and I hope to spend some more time on Flickr to get innovative ideas.