Above is a behind the scenes video for a fairy-tale themed photograph I took of my red Ford Focus (2011, Titanium). The video explains how I turned the Little Red Riding Hood idea into an image, from the two-hour shoot with Olivier Kerschen to the six-hour editing process in Lightroom and Photoshop. The two photographs below show an unedited picture with nothing but ambient light and the final edited image.
The same video is also available in Luxembourgish.
A brief Photoshop noise reduction tutorial in Luxembourgian.
One of the recent challenges over on DPChallenge was ‘Rejected Movie Posters‘. I came up with this parody of the Iron Man movie. The slides below should give you an idea of the process from the first concept ‘drawing’ to the final image.
I took the picture in a living room. Not much space, otherwise the lights would have been further away. I used to flashes with barn doors for the rim light, and two lights with umbrellas as side lights. My Iron Man, Aaron, had to balance on the ironing board I borrowed from my flat and which was propped up on a couple of pillows.
The background I ended up using was made in Photoshop using the Clouds Pixelate/Mezzotint and Radial Blur/Zoom filters. The bigger streaks are from a separate image I made with some christmas lights – I zoomed in during the exposure to create straks. The font used for the title is CGF Arch Reactor with a starting sand/soil texture from CG Textures.
I wanted to have a bit of fun for April’s Fools this year, and apart from successfully fooling my girlfriend I had come up with something for my fellow photographers over at Photogen. A couple of users had asked for an iPhone app for the site. So I made one. Except that, since I have absolutely no idea how to program an app, I made one from scratch in Photoshop. Some got fooled, some figured it out pretty quickly.
Now I’ll probably have to watch out for everyone’s revenge next year.
- Shoot-out: “What do you get when you challenge David Hobby, Zack Arias and Joey L to make an image of a surprise model(s) in 25mins in a packed auditorium.” A fun video, spiced up with comments by Joe McNally.
- BBC Wildlife Photography Masterclasses. The BBC has published a series of wildlife photography classes online, filled with a wealth of info.
- Greg du Toit takes the meaning of endurance to a new level: he spent months in a puddle to get some breathtaking phots of wildlife animals at their water hole.
- DIY rain cover. diyphotography.net has a how-to on turning a pair of old rain trousers into a protective cover that protects your camera from the elements.
- LADIG have put together a nice and easy bounce card to use with external flashes. I think I prefer this design to the one by Gardner which I’ve used so far, mainly because this one does away with the need for velcro at the top end.
- CS5 Sneak Peek: Adobe has posted a YouTube preview of a new feature for Ps CS5: content-aware fill. Looks very useful for photo manipulation.
Last week I posted a bit of behind the scenes information about the setup for the picture Zombies at an Airport. This time I’m publishing the original image along with the finished photo so that you can see what can be done to give a photo some flavour.
I actually shot this for a competition on Photogen, but then it turned out I had misinterpreted the topic, so I submitted something else instead. If it wasn’t for the competition which requires anonymity though I might have taken the picture the other way around, showing myself pushing the trolley.
I borrowed Alison’s EF 17-35 2.8L lens for this. (I don’t have a proper wide angle lens for the 5DMkII yet. I’m hoping for Canon to release the 14-24 2.8 L that’s being rumoured about this year.) The camera is mounted to the trolley’s handlebar using a Manfrotto superclamp. I dialed the camera to ISO100 to get the best possible image quality, and then closed the aperture down so that I could get a long enough exposure time. In this case I ended up with f/9 and 1,6 seconds.
The post-processing should be pretty self-explanatory from the pictures. I fixed a highlight from a ceiling light with the clone stamp, then I used Curve and Hue/Saturation/Lightness adjustment layers to add contrast and shift colours the way I wanted them. The advantage of using adjustment layers to do this is that you can re-adjust them later if you change your mind, and that you can easily apply layer masks so as to apply the effect of an adjustment layer to a specific area of the image only. As you can see it’s nothing too fancy, but I think it makes all the difference between a picture that looks fairly flat and one that pops.
In case you’re wondering what I was shopping for (I didn’t go to our local supermarket just for the photo), it’s Spicy Moroccan Stewed Fish with Couscous from Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food. Lots of great recipes without too much fuss in there. And some cool and helpful pictures by David Loftus and Chris Terry (although I think they went a bit overboard with the tonemapping on some portraits).
If the last post made you think that I’ve joined the X-Files blogscene I have to disappoint you. I’ll stick to the visual arts. Today I bring you a Photoshop tutorial based on a movie poster mock-up I made back in Canterbury.
Hit the jump for a walkthrough of the shoot and a step-by-step explanation of how I used Adobe’s Photoshop to turn my friend Ollie into a Specimen.
About an hour ago the results for a photo competition entitled The Connection Between Generations (Lëtz: D’Verbindung tëschent den Generatiounen) organized by 45Plus together with photogen.lu were announced. My photo above won the public voting and convinced the professional jury. I’m now the happy winner of a Macbook, the photo will make the first page of a calendar and I can take part in a workshop during the Rencontres d’Arles.
I’m a happy camper, and the least I can do is to share some of the behind-the-scenes info of this photo. (more…)