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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Exploring a texture’s effect

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Since discovering the idea of adding textures using the blending modes in Photoshop, I have used this technique a lot to create interesting and lovely images. In each photo pair the one on the left is straight out of camera.

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My approach is to experiment and I admit that I do not have an idea of what the texture will do to an image before I apply it so generally I choose a texture and then open several photos and apply the texture to see what happens.  The texture in all of today’s images is by Kim Klassen called yesteryear and you can download it from her site.  Because the texture is square and has an edging on it I cropped all of my photos to square before applying the texture.

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Often I then go through all of the blending modes to see what they do.  For this set today I used ‘soft light’ blending mode for them all, so that I could compare what happens.

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I did vary the opacity so that in some the texture effect is decreased.  I noted the opacity in each case.  Again I experiment by sliding the opacity slider until I think it looks good.

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Often none of the textured images is wowing me so I concentrate on one and add some more textures, or sometimes another layer of the same texture with a different blending mode.

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Again I approach this process in a trial an error way rather than having a good idea of what any texture will do.  I have tried following a recipe from someone’s image that I like but have not found it satisfactory because my original photo is so different from theirs.

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Sometimes I like part of the effect, but part of the original photo has been lost – for instance the bluebells above.  In this case I used the eraser tool to remove the texture on the bluest parts of the flowers.  This can be a fiddle but often adds the necessary pop to the image.

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And sometimes I love the effect but decide that the image needs something else so I add some words

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Having thought about my approach, I am content to continue in my exploration approach.  I don’t feel a need or desire to study the impact so that I can predict the effect of a texture on a photo.  I am happy in using my creativity in knowing when to stop, save and print or post.

As the quote suggests, we all have different perspectives and goals.  This was my favourite of the images I played with in this session – which was your favourite? 

Kim Klassen sets a texture challenge each Tuesday – this week it was to use the yesteryear texture.  To see the wonderful images created by others using this texture check out all the linked up posts here.

[oh and the quote is by Adenaur – first Chancellor of Federal Republic of Germany]

12 comments:

Dianne said...

thanks for dropping by my site--these are all great but I especially love the "horizon" one--

Sian said...

I love seeing all these before and afters! You have a lot of patience to experiment so much - I get frustrated too quickly if I can't achieve the look I'm after I think

Allison Hoffman said...

beautiful job - I love seeing the before and after next to each other - and I agree completely, the horizon shot is beautiful!!

Linda Makiej said...

Terrific texture work!!

glad to be following you now!

Marilyn said...

Really nice work. Amazing what a difference the texture makes -- and a bit of tweaking.

Amarie said...

The texture definitely "warms up" the images! Lovely work! Please come back and visit again soon :-).

Renee Howell said...

Wow - you have been busy. I agree with the play around to see what happens approach to photoshop. So much learning going on! Thank you for posting all the photos!

Oliag said...

This is exactly how I aproach adding a texture too...I just try lots of different photos with each texture. My favorite here is the beach too...Love it!

NatureFootstep said...

wow, you have done a lot of work. :)

debsea said...

you are inspiring! love all your photos, but the last beach image really sings~

Miss Smith said...

Really beautiful photographs, it's inspiring to see the ways you've worked with them and enhanced them.

A Box of Chocolates said...

Helena that is what I think it is all about just getting a photo and fiddling till it comes out just the way you like it. I love the last horizon one particularly.