Photo Storify

Photos, Stories and Scrapbooking

Category: Photography (Page 1 of 12)

Anywhere, Everywhere

We stopped at the park last Thursday for a short time before picking up her brothers from school. I captured her moves when she jumped up on the bench at the park with my iPhone. Actually, Kate is always moving, sometimes to music and at other time just imitating what she has seen, for example these gymnastic moves. She doesn’t mind my taking pictures as long as I slide, swing, climb and dance right along with her. In fact, she will often tell me what I should photograph.

Extractions are one of my scrapbooking strengths. I use them often, so they are fairly quick now. On this page I did use my tablet to control the Quick Selection Tool and masking. Often, I just use the trackpad on my computer. Below, I detail the steps for creating this page.

To create an extraction, trace the image to extract with the Quick Selection Tool, choose refine mask and then output to a mask. With a small, hard round brush, clean up any unwanted pixels. Add a custom shadow.

Complete the other extractions and add shadows. Reduce the size to about 50%. Place psd layers of file 3 from MultiMedia Accordion No. 2. Delete the gold elements and adjust the position of the thread. Rotate the frame 90°. Clip copies of artsy paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Infatuated to each mask. Add file 1 from UrbanStitchez No. 2 to ground large extraction. Add thread 10 from ButtonThreadz No. 2 to the right side of the frame.

Note: I reduced the size of the paper and linked the copies.

Stamp brush 10 from MiniDots No. 2 vertically and horizontally behind the extraction and frames.

Note: Use the eraser tool to remove overlapping areas.

Place pattern paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Glance. Using the dots as a pattern, stamp randomly with a hard round brush some black and pink dots. Add and journaling.

I’m going to miss this girl when she’s in kindergarten next year. She is so much fun!!

Different Purposes

On Thursday during my week in California, I flew up to San Francisco to spend the day with my friends, Adryane and Don. Last year it rained, but this time, the weather was perfect t-shirt weather and perfect for making photographs.

I use the photos that I make not only to create art, but also to document the things I want to remember or share with family; in order words, I make pages that I will print through Persnickety or add to the my current book project. This two page spread is for my book.

While I have used both focal photos on this two page spread on two previous pages, I wanted to create something for the next book I will publish. Think about it from an efficiency perspective, I’ve already done some of the creative the work, so why not?

Note: I started with the photos that I previously used on layouts. For information on those previous layouts, see Quick and Simple and Pokemon Go.

I explain the process below.

Place layers of photo on left, deleting layers and changing blend modes as needed. Place photo on right, create a sketch, mask another layer to improve color and maintain blue in sky, add track extension.

Note: I used most of the layers of the photo on the left from a previous page. I placed only the photo on the right but repeated some steps, i.e. making a sketch.

Add frames, stains and art strokes from templates 2, 9 and 13 from WaterColor Template Album No. 5. Clip photos to masks and adjust as needed.

Note: I used the fotoblendz mask from template 9 on the right. I also substituted a frame and mask from template 13 to accommodate the screenshot on the right. I used the frames from template 2 on the left.

Below all the frames, place transfer 1 and 2 from ArtPlay Palette Surf’s Up on the right. On the left, place transfer 7. In the page gutter, place two gold transfers, reversing one. Stamp brushes 5 and 10 in blue. Pull layers from psd files 1 and 4 from Artsy Transfers Surf’s Up to fill in background. Stamp brush 5 in red, rotating for variation.

Note: I chose layers from the artsy transfers based on color and texture to fit my vision for this page.

Place additional photo in page gutter and add an inverted mask. Stamp with brushes from ArtsyPaint 7 and ArtsyPaint 8 on the mask in white to reveal the ship. Align photo with line of background brush on left.

Add Pokeball, red button from ArtPlay Palette Weihnachtsbaum and thread from template 15.

I think it’s okay to reuse photos for different pages, especially if you have different purposes, i.e. art or memory keeping. Both are valuable for me at this point in my life.

Quick and Simple Art

My art is what I create with my photos. On this page, I combined a brush from Pier No. 1 and a photo that I captured in February while visiting Adryane in San Francisco. My sister paints from photos; I combine photo treatments, with papers, transfers, threads and small frames to create art. Below are the steps that I followed for this page.

Stamp brush 6 from Pier No. 1 in a dark blue black. Change the blend mode to linear burn at 100%.

Place mask 4 from WaterColor FotoBlendz No. 6. Duplicate photo 4 times and clip to mask. Create a sketch, normal blend mode at 100%. I lightened the sketch with a levels adjustment layer. Change the blend mode of the second copy to vivid light at 100%. Change the blend mode of the third copy to normal at 70%. Change the blend mode of the fourth copy to lighten at 100%.

Note: While I used Topaz Studio to create a quick sketch, this can be done in the filters menu. I also masked out a part of the fourth copy.

Add a small frame and threads for the photo. Clip photo to frame and adjust as needed.

Note: I pulled a frame and thread from WaterColor Template Album No. 4 for this page.

Place solid paper 1 and pattern paper 2 from ArtPlay Palette Sea Life. Add a layer mask and divide space using the dashed brush line as a guide. Above the papers, place transfers 5 and 11 from ArtPlay Palette Sea Life.

Place word art 6 and beaded thread from Art WordART Mix No. 1. Add text to title in a different font.

Note: I erased part of the stamped title and substituted words to fit what I wanted to convey.

When time is short, I am learning that I can still enjoy my art creating something quick and simple with a photo.

Chrysanthemums

I went early for my evening classes at Lauritzen Gardens last fall just for the light at the magic hour. These evening classes are one of the few times that anyone can enter the gardens just as the sun sets. Normally, they close at five. So I’ve decided that this year, I’m going focus on attending the evening photography classes. I’m looking forward to what I find in April’s evening class.

I’ve been trying to catch up on some pages for my flower album. For this page, I used Anna’s new FotoInspired Template Pack 2H. As I have done with the previous pages, I reduced the size of the template base. However, I did not change the size of the small frame. I deleted the framed mask’s shadow. I changed the color of the mask to white and blurred it so that the photos would show behind the journaling. I then gave the frame a custom shadow using the warp tool.

I clipped my photos to the masks and adjusted as needed with levels adjustment layers.

Below the masks, I layered a brush and overlay from ArtPlay Palette Euphoria as well as layers from transfers 3, 5 and 5 in Artsy Transfers Euphoria.

Finally, I added a title consistent with the other pages I have created for this book. Showcasing my photos couldn’t be easier.

Photograph Art

After a wonderful visit with my sister last week, I’m just now beginning to work with some of the photographs that I created while in California. Although my art primarily emanates from my photography, at times, a page is inspired by both the photograph and the designs with which I work. In this case, the greens in Anna’s palette inspired me to use this photograph.

I began by placing artsy paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Heath, but soon switched it out for solid paper 2 in order to eliminate the sky. I placed transfer 1 in the same position as on the artsy paper.

Next, I created a sketch of the photo and clipped it to mask 1 from FotoBlendz Overlays No. 11. I changed the color of the mask to white to accommodate a blend mode of linear burn on my sketch.

Above the sketch, I clipped the photo, added an inverted layer mask and revealed the color photo by stamping on the mask with brushes from ArtsyPaint No. 7 and ArtsyPaint No. 8. The photo layer is on normal blend mode at 100%. I added a levels adjustment layer above the photo on overlay blend mode to brighten the photo.

Next, I roughly extracted the pagoda from a second copy of the sketch and placed it above the other photo layers. I changed the blend mode to linear burn at 100% but I did not clip it to the mask. That allowed the pagoda to dominate the scene since it wasn’t clipped to the mask. I also place art stroke 1 above the group of photo layers.

With the addition of a title and text from Inspire WordART Mix No. 1, a button and leaf from ArtPlay Palette Heath, a thread 14 from ButtonThreadz No. 1 and some journaling, I finished my page.

Initially I struggled with where to place the journaling, but after I extracted the pagoda so that it rose above the masking, I though it provided enough balance to place the little cluster, text and word art on the right side. I like that the photo still dominates the page.

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Huntington Library

My twin and I had a wonderful first day of celebration of our birthday. Today we walked the Huntington Gardens and had lunch on a patio; the weather was that fantastic. It was also an opportunity for me to help my sister learn to use her camera. She’s learning quickly.

I tried using the shrub to frame the Asian art.

This was shot with my 35mm, 50mm equivalent on my crop camera, so it’s not macro quality. However, I liked the bokeh behind the flower. Although I had brought my macro lens with me, I used only my normal lens on this walk.

Another favorite was this small nook in the Japanese garden.

White is really hard to capture, but it helped that I shot in raw. Moving the highlights to the left in Lightroom made a big difference.

I was surprised to see geese in the Chinese garden. It’s hard to see but there is one sitting on the bridge.

I liked the light coming through the openings of the bridge from the other side.

Of course it’s always a good idea to try a vertical perspective.

The glare from the ceiling lights made it difficult to capture Pinkie and Blue Boy, but working with ISO and aperture was a good experience for my sister. I shot these in raw with my Fuji X-T2 for a friend. No flash is allowed in the galleries at the Huntington Library.

 

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One Photo and an Artsy Paper

We were out playing Pokemon Go yesterday when I saw these geese, most sitting on the ice surrounding a few swimming in an unfrozen circle of water. That geese even winter here surprises me considering how long our cold winters are, but they do. Bill stopped the car and I jumped out with my iPhone in hand. The scene was beautiful as the sun was setting, although I don’t think my snapshot did justice to the view.

In this post, I share how I enhanced the color of one iPhone snapshot before clipping it to masks in order to blend it into an artsy paper from Anna’s new ArtPlay Palette Brumal.

Enhance Photo

Drag the photo onto a new blank 12×12 document. Resize to fit the page. To enhance the photo, duplicate the original and change the blend mode to Darker Color at 100%. Then reduce the opacity of the original to 75%. Add a Levels adjustment layer, blend mode Linear Light at 30%. Add another Levels adjustment layer, blend mode Linear Burn at 50%. Place a sketch layer above all the photo layers and change the blend mode to Multiply. Mask each layer as needed to emphasize and blend the color in the photo. Note: I created a composite of the layers to clip to a second mask.

Place Masks and Recolor

Place png masks 1 and 5 from Brumal FotoBlendz No. 1 just below the original photo. Note: I recolored the masks white so that I could use darkening blend modes on my photo, i.e. Color Burn, Multiply, Linear Burn.

Clip Layers to Masks

Clip the layers of photo to mask 1 and the composite to mask 5.

Place Artsy Paper

Place artsy paper 1 on Normal blend mode below the the photo layers. To intensify the color add a duplicate copy above on Multiply blend mode at 50%. Note: The design of the artsy paper creates a natural ending transition for the masks.

Add Glows

Above the photo layers, add the FotoGlow from file 7 of MultiMedia Branches No. 7 and glow 3 of WarmGlows No. 7 to enhance the setting sun in the photo.

Journaling, Button and Threadz

Add word art from Winter WordART Mix No 2, button from ArtPlay Palette Brumal, thread 5 from ButtonThreadz No. 2, thread 4 from HandStitchez No. 1. Complete journaling.

Not every page needs to be complicated to be effective. Sometimes one photo, a couple of glows and an artsy paper are enough.

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Lightroom Mobile

Have you ever tried to capture a photo of a group of kids with a great expression in one moment of time? I am bound to have someone with closed eyes or a bad expression.  To solve that problem, I use a technique that I learned from Jana Morton. In this case, I opened one Christmas photo in Photoshop and then layered three more photos above in order to replace heads, i.e. Logan’s on the left, and Corbin’s, the one sitting on the floor. After positioning the photo layers, I added inverted layer masks and used a soft round brush to reveal just the part I needed. I then created a composite of the layers and saved it back to Lightroom as a psd edit.

With my time during the Christmas break, rather than creating pages, I am working on learning how the new Lightroom CC and the mobile app integrate with Lightroom Classic, the new name for the original program. I have been viewing videos from two courses available at Creative Live. They were on sale for 60% off sale the day after Christmas.

As an example of how the sync works, I added my modified photo to my favorites collection under the Lr Mobile collection set within Lightroom Classic.

That photo synced to the same folder in the mobile app on my iPhone.  All these photos and pages aren’t really on my 68g iPhone. My phone accesses smart previews of the photos stored in the 20gig of cloud storage available with my Adobe photography plan. So the disk space used on my phone is minimal. The originals are all on my computer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After viewing the videos, I have begun to add other collections to Lightroom Classic. I began by adding my December photos as a collection for syncing to the mobile app as well as the new Lightroom CC which I installed on my computer.

I am going to continue working backwards by date until I have several years worth of photo smart previews in both the mobile app and Lightroom CC on my computer. The photos don’t take much cloud space because I chose to use smart previews in the cloud as well as on my iPhone. I can edit the smart previews in a mobile app and any changes that I make will sync back to Lightroom Classic. Adobe has definitely improved the mobile editing features, enough so that I think I am going to save for an iPad just so that I have a larger screen for editing and reading.

From my perspective, this is also a wonderful solution for keeping my daughter-in-law’s computer up to date so that she can have access to all the photos I capture. I’ve been manually uploading my photos to her computer in Lightroom 5 as a backup, something I don’t do as often as I should because it is so time consuming. Although I am allowed to install Lightroom Classic on two computers, I don’t think I need to install it on her computer in order to give her access to all the family photos that I capture. Syncing will be so much faster and easier.

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Santa Got a Hug

As I shared Saturday afternoon, Kate, Corbin, Jeff and I set off to see Santa at Mulhall’s Nursery. It really was a lovely display, complete with a big chair for Santa and his guests, a Christmas tree and letters periodically dropping through a mail slot on the wall right into Santa’s burlap bag. Kate and Corbin had a thoughtful conversation with Santa before posing for some individual photos per Kate’s request.

The light for photos was perfect. I thought I had captured everything and began to lower my camera. I smiled as I watched Corbin switch from giving Santa a high five to giving him a hug instead. By that time, I realized I had missed those shots as I fumbled with my camera. However. next to me stood my son, to whom I had given my iPhone. His first words were, “you know this video is only a little over two minutes,” but two very precious minutes that told a sweet story in my mind.

All of the photos on the right side of this two page layout are from that iPhone video. Those on the left, I captured with my Fuji X-T2. You may be wondering how I got stills from a video. I found the easiest way to do that was to open the video full screen on my computer and make screen shots of the clips that I wanted to include on my layout. On my Mac, the keyboard command is command + shift + 4 and drag the crosshairs over what you want copied.

Note: I blended out a head or arm on some screenshots by adding inverted layer mask to a second screenshot that I clipping to the original.

To simplify my process, I placed template 17 on the left and template 18 on the right. Both are from Project Template Album No. 3. I deleted the numbers and rotated and adjusted the position of a couple of frames and masks. I also cut and pasted the threads to accommodate the changes I made on the template.

Next I clipped a focal photo to each fotoblendz mask as well as some stains and hipster plumes. I recolored some plumes and stains a blue to work with the color of my grandson’s shirt.

Note: there are copies of a screen shot labeled Floor Mask in the layers panel. I used those to mask out everything but a part of the floor I needed to be visible above the part I didn’t want.

I then clipped photos or video clips to the smaller framed masks. On one photo on the right, I added an extraction of my granddaughter above the frame and masked out parts of the white frame and shadow below.

To fill in the gutter for a page that will be part of a lay flat book, I placed a sketch of a photo of Kate dropping her letter for Santa into the mail slot. Because the photo only shows the top of her, I stamped brush 1 from Christmas Trees No. 2 in a green. I also added brushes from ArtsyPaint No. 6 and ArtsyPaint No. 8 below the frames in red. There are also two textures from PaperTextures No. 4 below the frames.

For dimension, I added a png version of MultiMedia Holiday No 2, file 2, as well as two more red buttons from the psd version, a pine from ArtPlay Palette Pine, a Santa from ArtPlay Palette Shabby Christmas and another from ArtPlay Palette Christmas Nostalgia.

On the upper left side, I dragged the layers of psd file 1 from MultiMedia Holiday No 2. I placed the title below the dimensional layers but above the stain, art stroke and splatter. I moved the greenery and resized the bow to accommodate placing my title inside the wreath.

Side by side, I really can’t tell any difference in the quality of the photos from the video and those with my camera. There is a little difference in the color balance, but I may be able to increase the saturation on my raw photos to decrease that. You can see it only in my grandson’s blue shirt. So I’m encouraged to use more clips from iPhone videos on future layouts.

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An Afternoon with Santa

It’s been a little hectic here, but we found time to visit Santa this afternoon at Mulhall’s Nursery. I’ll post a layout with these soon. Upon arriving, Corbin and Kate wrote letters to Santa and dropped them into his special mailbox. They hid among the Christmas trees after seeing Santa’s reindeer. Note: It’s very difficult to capture two active kids running among hanging trees.

After waiting as patiently as possible in line, Corbin and Kate listened intently while Santa discussed what they had written in their letters and asked whether they had been good all year before suggesting that they pose for a photo.

Kate was delighted that Santa helped her climb up on his knee when she asked for an individual photo.

So Corbin decided he’d get an individual photo too. My son, to whom I had given my iPhone, captured a video of Corbin giving Santa a hug; a high five just didn’t seem to be enough. Kate of course quickly approached to give Santa her own hug. I’ll have to figure out a way to get the stills of just those moments from the video.

There were some cute displays for additional photos at the nursery.

For the next two shots, I used the portrait mode on my new iPhone. I’m still learning how to use the camera app.

Before leaving we spent time playing in the miniature garden.

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What a wonderful afternoon at the nursery. I’ll go back to capture some of the beautiful Poinsettias on another afternoon.

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