Tuesday, 28 February 2012

The power of Photoshop

I was going to talk about snow in this blog – the blindingly white stuff that crunches under your boots and melts on your tongue – but I’ve entered my first ever photography competition and been bowled over by Photoshop.  The competition's website said they wanted digital entries with a creative approach or treatment, which means using a camera to capture the image but using a variety of techniques to edit it, which means Hello Photoshop. 
As I didn’t have Photoshop – I do now, due to the love and kindness of someone dear to me – my friend Terry said to come round and he would give me some quick lessons. I selected seven or eight images and played with them, and I ended up choosing three out of those eight and submitting them in the categories Best Digital Landscape and Best Digital Abstract.
I had a lot of fun, and was gobsmacked by what you can do to a simple picture.  And excited, too. So I’m sharing some of the before and after shots here.

One of my own personal rules dictates that I try as little as possible to interfere with the original shot, except in two instances, where I went a little wild.

The other example I can't show because I've submitted it to the comp. 
I didn’t add things to the photos – no computer graphics, for instance – except for colour and contrast and something called temperature. I did, in one instance, take out a handrail. Simply rubbed it out, which was a weird feeling.

A good friend tells me that I make frequent use of vanishing points in my photography. I didn’t know what a vanishing point was, so Lesley explained how the lines in the photograph converge in the middle distance, and I see now that I do use them quite often. She wondered if my many photos of pathways/roads/lanes means that I am searching for something. I don’t know. I like to think rather that I am intrigued by the unknown, by what lies beyond. Do other photographers out there relate to this, to finding a theme in your pictures?

It’s fairly obvious how all this relates to writing. Get something simple or straightforward down and keep adding layers to it until you have a piece that is worth looking at or, in this case, reading.  The trick of course is to get something down to start with... 

Ah, well, back to the real world.

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