Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pair of English Roses

Nature has a way of giving us little gifts when we least expect it.  This bouquet was a gift from nature, two rose canes, different roses intertwined and opened almost at the same time giving me this little present next to where I park my car.

The image was shot in open shade, IE in the shade with a bright blue sky above which shifted colors.  In the old days you'd have to compensate by adding more "yellow" to your print, but with the magic of PC and great RAW processors you can just use a pull down menu to compensate.  I'm liking this whole automation thing.

The final image was post processed in the Orton style as I love the romantic impressionistic image you get at the end.  I post processed all with CS2 and Virtual Photographer.

Enjoy, "Pair of Roses".

Saturday, April 18, 2009

"Peach Blossom" ala orton

A little stroll in my garden yielded this English Rose "Peach Blossom" fully blown and ready to drop its petals.  Post processed in the Orton style from the raw file and dumbed down for ease of uploading and downloading.  Final image to be hung large format style at Paint n Play 2 Art Studio and Gallery soon.  Enjoy this teaser, see the real deal next month.

Friday, April 17, 2009

My rose got a "sport"

A sport is a new rose off an existing bush.  All hybrids are susceptible to the phenom, but it is pretty rare.  I got one on an English Rose "Golden Celebration" and it bloomed this week for the first time.

I knew something was up when the bud unfurled into this evil red multi pointed star.  Eventually each of those points opened into hundreds of feathery petals.  Very unusual as Golden Celebration is a fully cupped and doubled traditional rose.  Here it looks like a chrysanthemum or daisy on crack.  IT still SMELLS like Golden Celebration, just took on a new form.  

Regardless, it is interesting and I may just contact the Huntington Library.   They have a large collection of English Roses including one called "Huntington's Hero" that was a sport from the English Rose "Hero".  Never know, maybe they'd want to propagate.  We could call it "fraz's celebration" since it sported of my plant.  Maybe, or the ego just needs to be reeled in.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Its not the size of the tool...its how its used

Just like the bad old saying goes, its how you use the tool.  In this case the only camera I had handy was the trusty cell phone and I used it to grab a quick pic of Monrovia High School when I was by earlier today.    The play of shadow and highlights is what caught my eye the way it all framed the old Bell Tower at MHS.  I had to take the pic.

Of course the images are just passable but post processing in the orton style and using virtual photographer to clean up the color and contrast and voila I have an image I like.  Hope you do too.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Twas a nice spring afternoon to play with orton

Yesterday after a basketball tournament wound up at the Y I had a bit of time to just enjoy Recreation Park here in Monrovia.  Just soaking in the late afternoon sun and enjoying all the brilliant green of spring was enough.

I grabbed this pic with the trusty "fam cam" a casio EXilim 10.1 megapixel point and squirt then gave it the orton treatment.  Enjoy "Rec Park Afternoon".

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Bearded Iris ala Orton

Among the garden flowers I think the Bearded Iris, sometimes called the "Siberian Iris" is the most attractive if not outright sultry and sensual.  I love the deep rich blues and purples contrasting with the yellow "beard".  All told its pretty risky business for a "g-rated" blog.  

This lovely was done in the Orton style.  I'll give you the steps I used to get to the final image.

The image was shot bracketed to allow for the dark backgrounds and sunlit petals.    Turns out the 1 stop over was the better exposure to work with from RAW so there was the starting point.

In photoshop open your RAW file and do what you need to do IE exposure fine tuning, color and light temp balancing and contrast.  When you have an image you like create the new file.   From that file "Duplicate image" and give it a name.  Close the original file to prevent accidentally working it and losing the original data.

From the newly named file go to "Layer" and create a duplicate layer.  That is automatically labeled background which you can leave as is.  

With the new layer go to Image, adjustments and chose the exposure tab.  Increase the exposure by a factor of 1.  

The next step is to go to Image, adjustments, saturation and adjust your saturation upwards.

The next step is to add the blur to the layer.   To do this go to Filter, Blur and chose Gaussian blur.  Blur by a factor of 10-25 pixels to get to a blur that suits your eye.  I generally am in the 15-18 range and this one was 15 pixel blur.

From this point use the blending tool to determine how the final blending will look.  I used Multiply and typically do.  However, others such as saturation and linear burn turn up some pretty interesting results, in short experiment until you get the one you want.

Save the entire file as a PSD file at this point.

Now take this file, go to layer and hit merge visible.  Fine tune your levels manually by going to image, adjustment, levels.

At this final point you "save as" with some sort of notation like v2 after the name as a jpeg file that you can publish or use to work with in other files.

This image had one additional step to give it the old 'chrome look printed on cibachrome by running it through Virtual Photographer.

Enjoy the image, use the steps at will to create your own "Orton style" images.