I use Corel Paint, an affordable alternative to Adobe Paint Shop to assist me in drawing new illustrations for my fiction stories. I search for photographs, mostly my own, but also a few on-line public domain pictures. I then outline the parts I want and paste them into a new scene that fits the story I'm working on. A composite of six photos were used for the picture above.
This is a picture of my fictional character, Sarge T. Douglas and me at Black Castle, Republic of Turkey in 1973 or 74. Sarge has his back to us. The real me is facing outwards at us.
Sarge is made up of two photos, one below and the other above the waist line. The picture of me is made up of three photos, jeans, main body trunk, and a photo of me from around 1973 taken in Turkey when I was in the USA Air Force. The back ground scenery is of an actual section of the ancient, deteriorating Black Castle in Turkey situated between Adana and Tarsus.
Each part was digitally cut from the original photos and put in place in the Corel photo program. I made the drawing from that composite. Attention was given to ensure that hair style and clothing and any items in the final composite photo and drawing adhered to period fashion, technologies and items. In other words, one should not see the outline of a cell phone in the pockets, nor a hair or clothing style that would come after the date or period involved. Skintight jeans were in vogue for teens and young adults in the 1970s, as was long hair. However, these two individuals were in the military at that time and thus would have short hair. They are not on duty, thus would likely be in civilian attire.
If they were in uniform, then Sergeant T. Douglas would have had three stripes on his uniform in 1973/74. He was E-4 pay grade. Research is important for a fiction author. The rank of sergeant was changed a few years later. E-4 became senior airman, and E-5 became the fiorst (or lowest) of the sergeant ratings.