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Saturday, 1 March 2014

When in Doubt Add an Arty Texture

The problem with photo manipulation is that there is no set recipe.

I have been trying out some techniques from a Photoshop magazine and although they work well with the magazine's picture of a flower, they just don't suit the flower photograph I'm trying to use.

So here is my original flower photograph:

Here is the flower picture after following steps in the magazine:

It doesn't feel like anything special to me.  Now what?

Often, when I get to this point in a manipulation, I start looking at my texture backgrounds.  These art textures might be created in Photoshop Elements or in this case, it was a gelli print I did which I enhanced in Photoshop:

So I added this layer on top of my flowers and changed the blend mode to difference.  I reduced the opacity to about 50% so that the flowers weren't overwhelmed.  It was a little dark so finally I added a levels adjustment layer to lightened it and also changed the hue and saturation with a further adjustment layer. This was my final result - somehow a little more arty and not quite so ordinary.

It's All About the Detail

Ever tried to get a good picture of a creature and all you get is a little face peering from behind some leaves in the distance?  Well, all might not be lost....

My hubby took this photograph at a wonderful golf course in Hilton Head.  The little critter was darting this way and that and to be quite frank we were not close enough.  However, I thought it was such a classic picture of the little fellow I just had to try and do something with it:

The picture was pretty sharp and high resolution but I wanted to try and bring out some of the detail.  The first step was to crop it in close to get rid of all the dead space around it.  Then I used one of my favourite techniques to bring out the detail (see my YouTube video to see now it's done).  I made a copy of the original photograph and applied the pen and ink method:

I then blended this with the original photograph using luminosity.  Next I copied these layers to a new layer, turned off the pen and ink layer and decreased the opacity to 60% to bring back more detail from the original picture.  Finally, I added a frame texture (from Shadowhouse Creations), upped the saturation and changed the levels using adjustment layers.  This is the final result: