|Photo-Based Art Emulating natural-media painting techniques|
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Isle of Capri Harbor
Wow--this image was tougher to work with than I thought it would be.
Bill--I like the way you softened the image and made it look less busy. The watercolor was especially effective on the buildings in my mind.
Chuck--The modified Cardiff Bay was excellent on this image. I don't know if you added it on purpose, but there seems to be a ray of sunshine coming down from the right to focus closest boats. Brightening the whites gave the entire image a "cleaner" feel. More of a "this will be fun place" instead of "oh jeese--it's going to be crowded" feel.
PM--I liked the midnight sepia version. It's got a feeling of a castle under siege to it.
It took me several tries to be happy, but when I was done I'd wound up taking a very simple approach.
1. Made a duplicate of the background and ran Buzz simplifier at around 90.
2. Duplicated this layer and ran cutout. I set the blending mode on this layer to soft light and then merged the layer down into the buzz layer.
3. On the merged layer, I ran Texture--Grain--Speckle option. And set the opacity to around 75% to let a little of the original come through.
4. Added a pattern fill layer with a blending mode of soft light to give it texture
I took a stab at making my own texture this time and was pretty pleased with the results. I'd made it the same size as the document and it worked very well. Does anyone know what size I should use if I want to build some for reuse?
I tried this, the same as the Vietnam shot on mini challeges...I thin it worked better on this one. The only difference in the 2 is that I didn't put a texture on it.
Made 3 dupes of the background, applied dry brush, smudge stick, and spatter (one filter to each layer). Changed blend mode to luminosity on each layer, then a levels layer. Merged them and then used a very light craqueler texter.
Don't anybody panic or run for the doors. I'm NOT expecting THIS LEVEL of detail in your how-to-detail.
I was on a roll and decided to unload the while 9-yards.
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This was a fun image to work with, Bill.
Here are the key points to my interpretation. The following post contains a snapshot of the Layers Palette.
First, I enlarged the image to about 12" wide. I find I get better results working with larger images than smaller ones.
Layer B: Posterize adjustment layer
This can be a fun one with which to experiment. The advantage (like all adjustment layers) is the ability to “change your mind” after the fact. Remember: The fewer the levels specified, the more “simplified” (color-wise) the image becomes. Since layer A was a desaturated version of the Background, layer B rendered black, white and shades of gray.
Layer C: Find Edges
Nothing magical here and no specific reason why I chose Color Dodge and 65%. It just “looked good.” Experiment with blend modes and opacities.
Layer D: Levels (grouped)
That’s grouped, not groped. Notice that I painted black on the layer mask to suppress the effect on the middle section of the image.
When you group a layer, it only affects the one(s) below it, in this case layer C. Applying a Levels adjustment layer to a Find Edges layer allows one to control line characteristics, e.g., thickness, density, presence or absence. Experiment with the sliders to see what I mean. As you experiment with D note layers A and B are not affected.
Layer E: Background to which the Dry Brush and Ocean Ripples were applied.
I’ve found this combination of filters renders a rough, brush-like result. I wanted to apply this to the water, but not the rest of the image. Using a layer mask (Layer > Add Layer Mask > Hide All) allowed me to isolate the effect. When “Hide All” is selected, the layer mask is filled with black, completely hiding layer E from view. Painting the water area with white revealed the “brushy water” in Layer E.
Could I have just clicked the “Add layer mask” button at the bottom of the Layers Palette to add E’s layer mask? Sure. This is the functional equivalent of Layer > Add Layer Mask > Reveal All. The downside would have been having to paint all that black to hide the non-water areas of layer E. Just call me lazy.
Layer F: Copy of Background set to Overlay
After turning down the opacity this layer brought back some subtle colors which I wanted, but almost negated the results of the carefully crafted layer E and it’s layer mask below. Not good.
Option A: Create a layer mask for this layer and paint black where I didn’t want the Overlay blend to take effect. Not terribly difficult, but here’s a faster, more accurate way.
Option B: Copy E’s layer mask, paste it into F’s layer mask and invert it.
* Create a new layer mask for F (Layer > Add Layer Mask > Reveal All)
* While holding down the Alt key, click on E’s layer mask icon, filling the screen with E’s layer mask.
* Ctrl + A (to select the layer mask)
* Ctrl + C (to copy it)
* Click F’s layer mask icon in the Layers Palette
* Ctrl + V (to populate F’s layer mask)
* Ctrl + I (to invert it)
(almost) Instant F layer mask that’s exactly the opposite of E’s layer mask.
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In summary there are many ways to blend layers and effects. This is just one of countless combinations.
While I’m not expecting everyone to like this particular combination (fact is I'm not 100% crazy about it myself), it does illustrate different methods to combine layers regardless of what the contain.
I started with edge preserving smooth (smart blur?), and then used Amphisofts Simplifier filter. Over that, I used a basic ouline created by dodge/negative/gaussian blur. On the very top was a gray layer in overlay mode, to which I added a texture.
Beautiful work, folks. The complexity of detail and color in this photo really raises both problems and opportunities. You don't want to lose too much of either, but you know you can't really keep it all. I have to say that the one Lacto did is a great solution to the problem! Thanks, everyone!
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