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Tag : composites

Approaching, a series of composites with a train.

Once I create something I like, it’s always fun to experiment and see how alterations change the mood. Here are 5 installments after my first which can be found in the previous post. Here is the first which may have lacked balance, but still created the surreal effect I was after. Here the geese are on the opposite side. Here I’ve added steam and shifted the geese slightly and flipped the smoke. Here we are with a sunset, shadows and […]

Space Art Trio

On Deviant Art there is plenty of inspiration to explore new ideas. Space art can be a challenge, and often the results aren’t exactly what I was shooting for. However, sense I put in the effort I’m inclined to share simply because I’ve done the work. Here are the end results of 3 recent attempts. Hell’s landing was by far the simplest. I’ve stretched the aspect ratio of a shot of Hell’s Half Acre in Wyoming. This is the place […]

Night on the Bisti

I’ve only made it to the Bisti once and for a very short time. Arizona was having wildfires and the wind was blowing. Not a pleasant day. Nevertheless I got some amazing shots, and many of the features were outside the Bisti boundaries. This composite is basically two part, the Bisti foreground and a Space Art sky from my library. The sky consists of several hundred layers.

Sylvan Lake night

Sylvan Lake, located near Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota, is one of those wonderful scenic spots that has probably been photographed a million times. This composite is strictly make-believe because I’m pretty sure the moon wouldn’t come up where I have it. This is what it might look like if it did.

Arches National Park revisited

Occasionally it’s fun to look at what I haven’t published, and perhaps put a new look on an older image. So it is with Courthouse Rainbow, an early morning shot that benefited from an interesting sky and a smattering of color.

Reflections

I love water for its reflective quality. So much of the time when photographing a pond, lake, river or ocean, the water is too rough or rippled to give a mirror like reflection. In Photoshop it hardly matters. Rotate and flip anything that reflects and make it as sharp or blurred as you want it. Here are 2 recent examples. The first is Bandon beach in Oregon. This is a mid-afternoon shot, yet lends itself to a sunset shot by […]

Winter Pond

I always have an eye out for inspiration. Winter isn’t my favorite season, and actually getting out an photographing in nasty weather is a rare event for me. In the following creations I had to go through 4 years of images to come up with enough snowy trees to build the composites. Once built, it was easy enough to switch out the skies. This is my original. The clouds look like they are caught in the jet stream. There are […]

New Space Art

It’s been awhile since I’ve taken time to create in one of my favorite subjects. Space art is a place I don’t worry about getting it perfect. It’s just a matter of do I like it. Here are two new creations. The above is Northern Reflections. The aurora is a Photoshop creation. I have never actually seen them. The star field is from Heavens Reflection. The beach is Bandon Oregon. Here are a couple of rocks and a tree, plus […]

Backview

While all of the following landscapes would stand alone, it’s always interesting adding the human element in a way that the model also seems to be enjoying the view. In the above image, the superimposed model is slightly out of proportion, but in art you do what you want. It would have been easy enough to have chopped off her feet to make her appear closer, but then those fantastic shoes wouldn’t have been visible. I could have also made […]

Compositing a face (Arctic Queen)

The following I call Arctic Queen. Please note that the outfit is borrowed from the Internet, but the sky, background and combined faces are images I have taken and then combined in this composite. I find it interesting how the final product doesn’t look totally real even though all the elements are real. The face looks a bit like the 3d faces you see in fantasy art. I can’t decide if she is stunningly beautiful or fake. For now I’ll […]

Katie on Couch

More fun from our September shoot. Finding an appropriate background isn’t always easy, and in instances like these, some of the backgrounds are borrowed off the Internet, in which cases I do not copyright the image nor do I make the image for sale. Hope you enjoy this one.

English Manor Composition

This time period shot is from the Fort Collins Digital Camera Club September Model shoot. Matching lighting to a composite environment is always a critical element. Our lovely model fits the period and feel perfectly. The setting is borrowed from the movie Far From the Madding Crowd.

Comic Con Review

Shooting Comic Con was a challenge. The light was too poor to not use a flash, and the only flash I had was the built in flash on my camera. Outdoors was super bright and sunny. Although the event ran 12 hours, I was out of battery in 6. Still, the whole experience was great, and some of the costumes were amazing.

Comic Con

I had no idea anyone did the costume thing for anything but Halloween. Recently we did a photo shoot for a couple attending Comic Con in Fort Collin, CO. I decided I’d attend for the opportunity of photographing subjects that would be fun to composite, and perhaps lure people to my blog. Watch for more in the coming weeks. The event is Saturday the 12th of September.

Cos Modeling for Mass Effect

I’m afraid to say I’m out of touch. I had no idea that there are conventions where people go to play their favorite characters from video games, comics, and movies. For our FCDCC portrait shoot for August, we had two such models that were acting out parts from Mass Effect. Our models played Miranda Lawson and Commander Shepard. The detail spent on costumes was quite amazing. Above are our pair in a starship about to land on a planet in […]

Portrait Shoot (part 5)

Compositing allows a lot of choices, and a lot of control since everything is in layers. You can for instance blur a grainy sky and sharpen the foreground. In this case the foreground has a mosaic texture while other parts of the image are photo realistic. My model wore a hat for part of the shoot, but not this particular shot, so I borrowed the hat from another image. It’s not unusual to change the color of outfits, and I […]

Portrait Shoot (part 4)

This young lady came in a t-shirt. Her mom was the model, but we talked her into posing anyway. What a doll. I hope she doesn’t mind me saying so. This is one of those Sound of Music shots with nature, and I especially like her in the hat and the pretty white dress. The grass in the foreground is composited over the legs of the model that was wearing the dress. The sky is also photoshopped in. All in […]

Portrait Shoot (part 3)

Occasionally I do something that ends up on two of my three blogs. The cover mockups I’ve done are also on my Fiction with Foresight blog. Because I do book covers and illustrations, I felt these needed to be both places. Above is my Vogue mockup. I always hope this is as fun for the model. I have no clue what Vogue Magazine might think. So, if you do one you have to do two, right? This sexy dress cried […]

Portrait Shoot (part 2)

It was a rather rare event to have two male models at our July event. Most guys aren’t into such things, but both our male models were very professional. It’s probably easier for males to get jobs since there isn’t as much competition, and they probably aren’t judged as critically. With girls, if she weighs a pound more than some client wants, tough. As a photographer I try not to judge and I would never say anything to a model […]

Portrait Shoot

Fort Collins Digital Camera Club has an anual portrait shoot. This year we had some really great models. For obvious reasons I don’t give out their names and contact information, but if you’d like to make contact you can email me with your intentions and I’ll be happy to pass the request along. Winter Moon turned out to be one of my favorite composites. Our model in this case was super fun and very professional, and stunning. It’s nice to […]

Why Composite?

At top is an image as taken along I-70 west of Green River Utah headed east. The sun was close to setting and the light was magnificent. The original shot was interesting and could have been cropped and made more vibrant, and perhaps that would have sufficed. Just above I’ve added a foreground which I shot further down the road. The edge of the road in the lower left corner wasn’t attractive so below I’ve added a bush. I could […]

Digital Space Art Hoodoo

Occasionally I look back over my landscapes to see what alien worlds I’ve skipped for my space art. This particular shot was near Page, Arizona. A cloudy day made for soft enough shadows that the image works fine transformed for night. Less brightness and more contrast make the transformation believable.

Macro Photography and Digital Manipulation

Until I updated this site, I didn’t realize how few macro shots I had added. Review is sometimes a good thing. Above is one of my early composites with insects. Dragonfly Moon was a challenge in that the wings were modeled with background colors, and thus began a tedious process of making them uniform and transparent. It’s not often you have a bird of prey pose, but this was during a fieldtrip and the falcon was being held. Added is […]

Welcome

Welcome to Photo Innovations. This blog is for the non-purists who have no problem manipulating images. Since this is an introduction I will let you in on my passions, my philosophy about photography, and my justification for altering images. First and foremost, I feel photography should be fun. Of course, I’m not into photography to make a living, although I’d like to support my hobby. The fact that I’m a hobbyist may be all too evident, however my passion for […]

Nebula Iris

Combining macro and infinity can have interesting results beyond any I imagined. Using a divide blending mode made the iris a part of the distant nebula background. This image was built from multiple star fields, nebulas clouds created from photographing smoke, plus starbursts, supernova, and other space elements I’ve created over the years. It is hard to calculate the number of layers since multiple layers have been combined to form more complex elements, but this image consists of more than […]

The Digital Future

It’s difficult to not be amazed at how technology impacts our lives. It wasn’t but ten years ago I was arguing with a so-called expert at a camera store that digital was the future. In fifty years maybe was his irritated reply. Although it took longer than I expected, there was certainly a turning point in 2001-2002 that finally made digital cameras popular. The quality of images up to that point was the biggest deterrent for any photographer, and certainly […]

Delicate Arch Dazzle with 10 skies to choose from

Sometimes choosing the right sky is simple. Sometimes it’s not. What’s always amazing is how the sky changes the character of the image. Note this is a slightly different angle of Delicate Arch from the previous post. In image one the sunset is one of the most unusual I’ve ever photographed. In Image two is a bank of clouds topped with a thunderhead. In Image three is an unusual array of clouds in the east at sunset. In Image four […]

Delicate Arch sunset with storm

I’ve visited Arches National Park more times than I can count on my fingers. I can’t say without going through photos if it’s been more if I include my toes, but nevertheless as many times as I’ve been there I’ve never witnessed a really wicked storm. If you sat at Delicate Arch everyday for years, chances are you’d never see the type of storm in this picture. I hadn’t thought about that much until I saw a picture of the […]

Vedauwoo Pronghorn with digital frame

Sometimes images just don’t look finished without a frame or border. Sometimes the border can be a thin white or black line. Typically, if I’m going to bother I want something more. Vedauwoo Pronghorn is of course a composite. The separate elements are the sky (background), the rock formations and trees (mid ground), the pond (foreground), the reflection in the pond from the mid ground, the pronghorn, and the pronghorn reflection. I saved a jpeg version of the PSD, then […]

The “Fiscal Cliff” a composite in CS6 extended

My photo blog is not intended to be political, however, I often find I need my Photoshop skills to create images for my OsumPODS and Fiction blogs. Without Photoshop, getting your message across in pictures would be far more difficult. I doubt I’m a good enough artist to even do a really good cartoon, and once again Photoshop would be my software of choice should I decide to turn my work into a cartoon. My depiction of Obama driving a […]

Vedauwoo Moonrise

Yes, there was a full moon, but the one superimposed is about twice as big. This isn’t to say the real shot wasn’t impressive, just not as much. And of course because the sun hadn’t quite set, the sky wasn’t dark with stars, and there weren’t rocks for my model to stand on, so the picture has changed a little. Vedauwoo is an enchanting place in southern Wyoming for those of you who haven’t been there. It’s a favorite place […]

Ocean Sunset

This is one of my favorite images, thus the opening screen for this blog. Note the amount of cropping for the slideshow and the full image below. From time to time it’s fun to do an image just for the surreal beauty. Imagine what it would take to make this shot for real. How often does a sunset come along that’s truly unusual? What are the odds that you’d find rocks on the beach with lichen? Then you’d need a […]

Dubois Hills Photoshop Composite

A nice thing about having a personalized desktop is that you get to see favorite images every time you open your computer. Dubois Hills (2007) is a fairly early foray into compositing. The hills were pretty, but the sky was blah and the foreground was messy. Added are a new sky, some brush, a horse, and of course shadows to make the new elements fit in. Although my skills in Photoshop have advanced since this rendition, I can find no […]

Digital Space Art: Double Ringed Planets

Using our solar system as an example, ringed planets should be fairly common throughout the universe. Having two in close proximity is far less likely, but orbits could create some close encounters somewhere. If not, it’s still fun to speculate. Space certainly has its oddities. Double ringed planets was easy enough to execute. Duplicating the planet and rings, then sizing and changing colors is about all it took. I probably spent and equal amount of time scooting nebulas around. This […]

Alien Space (beyond the known universe)

Digital Space Art is always fun, but sometimes somethings turns out beyond your expectations that may incite an unexpected reaction. Sometimes things are just bizarre. Aftermath 2 is just such an image. It’s a composite with literally hundreds of layers, and probably almost impossible to replicate no matter how talented you are at Photoshop. If I started from scratch and borrowed all the same elements from my space art library, I might come close, but I’d never get exactly the […]

The Art of Digital Space Art

Digital Space Art has become a passion of mine. Compositing in Photoshop is fun, but imagining alien worlds makes it a challenge that lets your artistic creativity go wild. If you are bored with the norm, perhaps you might have some fun creating your own solar system or universe. If not, perhaps you’ll be satisfied just looking at mine. The Art of Digital Space Art (part 1 & 2) will soon be available in eBook format from Amazon and Barnes […]

Digital Space Art: Alien Worlds of the Bisti (part 3)

Although our stay in the Bisti Badlands was short, the number of usable shots was amazing. As I continue to play, I realize that another trip will have to be added to my agenda. The landscape in the Bisti yields to my alien worlds more than any place I have ever visited. Bisti Evolution (above) seems a natural place for a lava flow burning its way down natural erosion. This is one of those creations I’ll probably play with, but […]

Portraiture Photography with people and horses

The Rocky Mountain Lazy J bar S Ranch is a great venue for a photo shoot. This year’s emphasis was on portraiture, and although portraiture isn’t my gig, it’s always fun with exuberant participants. For me it is all about postproduction anyway. Paige Riding (above) was one of those shots where the background was full of distracting element since the shot was taken inside their outdoor arena. It’s not that it didn’t make a good shot, but with the right […]

Digital Space Art: Planets & Moons (part 1)

Creating spheres is very easy with Photoshop. Finding good textures that give good results is another matter. My daughter-in-law occasionally bakes bread in a cast iron pot, and the loaves have incredible texture. I’ve made most of my planets from just a few textures. With a little manipulation, such as using inverse, saturation, and hue, you can have planets of most any color. Add a few clouds and a shadow, and perhaps an outer glow for an atmosphere, and for […]

Digital Space Art: Alien Worlds (part 3)

In any art you can let your imagination run wild, but certainly space gives you an infinite pallet. Most of what’s out there is very random and often stranger than one can imagine. Although some space art falls in the amateurish category, most of what you find on the web is really quite exceptional. Some goes too far for my taste, and a good deal of it delves into science fiction with alien spacecraft. Until I can build digital models […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 7)

I find it very invigorating to revisit images from most of my photo expeditions because they bring back great memories. Klondike Ridge is just one of those places I’d happily have my ashes scattered, and perhaps my spirit could be its keeper. It’s fortunate that the area didn’t yield enough uranium or some other precious element, otherwise it may have been leveled. Whenever I’m there I say my gratefuls. There is something special about this next shot in the way […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 5)

If you visit Klondike Bluffs or Herdina Park, or perhaps drive the four wheel drive road from Klondike Bluffs south, you’ll notice a ridge of rocks that line the western boarder of Arches. I call this ridge Klondike Ridge since I’m unable to find a map that gives the area any specific label. As splendid an area as it is, I’ve always wondered why it hasn’t been annexed by the park. I’ve climbed in this area as often as I’ve […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 4)

Tower Arch isn’t the largest arch in the park, but it’s tall enough to accommodate a 4-story building. If someone were climbing the face of the tower behind the arch, they’d look smaller than a sugar ant crawling up your finger. I’ve taken some shots of the arch without realizing people were standing there. Unlike Delicate Arch, you might actually sit down and eat your lunch in solitude. We have never seen more than a handful of people on any […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 3)

I have visited Klondike Bluffs a dozen times I’m sure, and I have hiked to its core from every direction. If you have a high clearance 4×4, you can drive directly to tower arch, but you see so much more if you hike. However you go, be assured you are in for a treat. Entering from the Salt Valley Road, a short climb from the Tower Arch Trailhead parking lot will bring you to a ridge and a view of […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 1)

Herdina Park is closer to Balanced Rock than Delicate Arch, yet due to access is seldom visited in contrast to the other attractions in the park. Yes it takes a high-clearance 4×4 to drive to the Eye of the Whale Arch, yet by parking on the Willow Springs Trail Road several miles from Balanced Rock, the hike north to Herdina Park is less than a half-mile. There is no trail, and the trek is full of obstacles due to a […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: The path most traveled (part 10)

Devils Garden has been our destination on several occasions, and I suggest going early before sunrise so as not to be tempted to stop along the way, otherwise it takes a long time to get there. Also, it is one of the most popular trails in the park, so it doesn’t take long for the parking to be overflowing. However, I’ve been there when not another sole was around, so it depends upon season. In January, especially if it’s below […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: The path most traveled (part 8)

Chances are if you’re in Arches, you’ll venture to Delicate Arch, although some aren’t prepared for the climb, which is slightly strenuous. Not so many years ago my daughter accompanied us on a trip, and she being a fitness nut had me running up the slickrock. Keeping fit enough to do such things is important, but age is definitely catching up with me. I’ve been there with a lot of different people, and few will crawl around the arch or […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: The path most traveled (part 4)

If Delicate Arch is the number one attraction in Utah, Balanced Rock isn’t far behind. Midway into Arches, the icon is only yards away from the highway. I’ve never found it all that big of an attraction, and because of its proportions, difficult to photograph. I’ve had fun in Photoshop making it topple, I’ve taken reflections shots every place I could find a puddle, I’ve been there at sunrise and sunset, and yet I’m never pleased with the results. The […]

Arches National Park Photo Guide: The path most traveled (part 3)

The fact that the vast majority of visitors spend just a few hours in Arches National Park is a sad commentary of the way many people vacation. If you don’t stop and ponder your surroundings, it’s a little hard to appreciate the magnificence that is there. Probably millions of people have seen the Tower of Babel, but how many have seen it glowing at sunset in the fall with the golden leaves of the cottonwoods in full splendor? Yes, there […]

Space Art and the Hubble Telescope (part 2)

So, here is more as promised. This is butterfly nebula as taken by the Hubble Telescope (above), and my rendition (below), which was not meant to be a duplicate in any way. Part of the fun is to try and make the spectacular even more spectacular. The outcome is debatable, although I’m somewhat partial to the more translucent effect I obtained. The process as explained in the previous nebula is similar except that I used an image I had taken […]

Enhancing images with filters in Photoshop

Mechanisms is the April monthly topic, which is not the normal sort of thing I photograph. My best selection of mechanical things are trains, since that is one of my favorite subjects after space art, landscapes and flowers. This particular set of SD 90 Mac locomotives was used to create my jacket for Harvesting Terra, but in quite a different color scheme. This blue was one of my renditions. First the locomotives: When you look at color schemes and wonder […]

Alien Lake: Multiple layered Photoshop composite

Compositing is seldom so complex or time consuming as Alien Lake. Some projects have promise and it’s difficult not to see them to fruition. The rock formations surrounding the lake are made up of three different shots from different locations, the left and center on a road trip between Green River, Utah and Capitol Reef, and the right from Castle Garden in Wyoming. Blending these shots truly created something out of the ordinary since these stark formation are so geologically […]

Winter Moon: Creating dramatic night scenes from daytime shots with Photoshop

Most road trips are in daylight hours, just to enjoy the scenery. This particular mountain range, one of many in Nevada, just happened to have a fresh dusting of snow with none on the prairie. The daytime shot was a favorite of this trip back from Oregon to Colorado, but I couldn’t resist adding some backlit clouds with the moon, and redirecting the shadows on the mountain. The end result was a surreal dreamscape that is far more unusual than […]

Mirroring skies in Photoshop

Occasionally I have a landscape that begs for an unusual sky, and although I have a great collection, I don’t always find exactly what I want. The effect created by mirroring skies can transform an image into something beyond the ordinary. Monster of the Id is one of those creations that takes on a slightly frightful and sinister appearance. The thought of seeing anything like this in nature would give me pause to say the least. The process to create […]

Sculpted Reflection of an Alien World

Sometimes it’s fun to go a little bit nuts. I see other Space Art that I admire and I’m tempted enough to experiment and make my own version. Creating an image you like is kind of a hit and miss process. What I envisioned in this image wasn’t exactly the end result. I didn’t originally have the reflection, but when I added it, the image truly seemed alien. This particular image consists of 37 layers, 8 for the stars, 2 […]

Creating sunrays in Photoshop

Sometimes images can gain a dramatic effect adding sunrays. First, I selected a sky that had potential and increased the canvas size to accommodate the foreground. I then found a landscape image that was taken at sunset but lacked a pretty sky. In that image I selected the sky with the magic wand, then the inverse and used the move tool to drag the foreground into the composite. I cleaned the horizon using a 5-15 pixel eraser at about 80% […]

Out of Frame Dragonfly

3d effects are always fun with Photoshop. Some images are already so sharp you feel like you can jump right in, but the illusion of an image extending beyond the frame adds that third dimension even if the background is blurry. With this particular dragonfly, I had already spent a painstaking few hours separating the wings and cleaning up the translucency, which was dappled from a multicolored background. This was not a task I’d wish on anyone, but it’s a […]

Locomotives in Exotic Places

There are places in the world where rail lines pass through exotic places. I’m always interested to see how often such locations as the Glenfinnan Viaduct  or the Arten Gill Viaduct show up in films. Since I’m not planning any trips to Scotland or England in the near future, I have to manufacture my own exotic rail lines. The UP engine was shot at the Cheyenne rail yard during a fieldtrip with the Loveland Photographic Society. The landscape is west […]

Challenge: Disney Pictures Logo (part 3)

If you missed part 1 and 2, please go to older posts. The image is now taking shape. The next additions are the roads or bridges leading up to the castle on the right and left. Rather than create them from scratch, I borrowed one of the walls I had just built, then stretched and flattened it to fit the space. I used a round eraser to create the scalloped effect on the under side, and the smudge tool set […]

Challenge: Disney Pictures Logo (part 2)

If you missed part one, go to older post. Since this is a twilight shot and a representation of the Disney Logo, I added stars, which isn’t totally realistic, but this is art and adds a nice effect. I borrowed my star field from my space art. I will have details on how I make a star field in a future post, I promise. Next I added my horizon. Once again I went to my library, and in sunset shots […]

Challenge: Disney Pictures Logo (part 1)

Occasionally the Loveland Photographic Society asks members with certain skills to put on a program. For February, the challenge was to take an image submitted by another member, and alter it with your artistic interpretation in Photoshop. You of course have no idea what image you will get. For this event I had 14 images to choose from. One was a highly detailed and beautiful daytime shot of the Disney Castle at their amusement park. As soon as I saw […]

St. Malo Chapel Sunrise

St. Malo Chapel is a popular landmark to photograph that is just south of Estes Park, and is near Long’s Peak and Rocky Mountain National Park, all big attractions for tourists. Even though I live within 50 miles, I rarely drive past, especially early in the morning. This fall we had a field trip for the Loveland Photographic Society, www.lps.cc, that took me past the chapel just at sunrise. Although the chapel and reflection were spectacular, there was nothing exciting […]

Ocean Sunsets

Sometimes sunsets are so spectacular you can’t stop staring, but when you revisit your photographs, there is something missing. This can often be remedied by compositing, but you certainly don’t want your foreground or mid-ground to steal the scene. To make a good picture, you want the elements to complement each other. Ocean sunsets are great because of the straight horizon. In the 2 images, Ocean Sunset 2, and Arago Sunset, the sky and sun are still the main focus. […]

Enhance your photos with digital frames 12 easy steps

If you’re like me, my best photos are viewed on a monitor. Very few ever get printed. No doubt your computer desktop is displaying dozens of your favorite images because it’s a great way to enjoy your digital photography. Full screen viewing definitely brings you right into the picture, but it also crops the image to the aspect ratio of your monitor. Also, your folders, tool bars, icons, and other mouse-operated links can clutter your desktop, and thus your image. […]