Photo Storify

Photos, Stories and Scrapbooking

Category: Photography (Page 1 of 13)

Peonies

Every Memorial Day my Sarah Bernhart Peonies bloom. This year I grabbed my camera and walked out to capture the blooms in the early morning light. Then this afternoon, I went out again to cut some for a bouquet. I love these flowers. I will cut the new blooms each day while I have them, but I wish that they lasted longer than a week. They are spectacular blooms. So when those buds start appearing, I’m out in the yard practicing with my camera, an art medium that I’ve been neglecting recently.

Place Photograph and Template Layers
  • Create a new 24×12 inch document in Photoshop
  • Select a focal photo and size it to fit one side.
  • Drag the layers of template 4 from FotoInspired Template Pack 2J.
  • Reduce the size of all layers to 85%.
Place Paper
  • Place solid paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Rougir on the left side just above the large photo.
  • Add another copy of the paper but flip it so that the flowers are on the left.
  • Add a layer mask to the second copy of the paper.
  • Use an AnnaBlendz Artsy brush to mask out all but the flowers of that paper layer.
  • Add a Color Overlay from the FX panel at the bottom of the layers panel. Select a darker pink from the photo and change the blend mode to Color.
Clip Photographs to Small Masks
  • Clip photos to small masks.
  • Add Adjustment Layers as needed.

Note: I adjusted the white balance on the photos that I shot on my deck in the afternoon light. I clipped Levels Adjustment Layers on Soft Light blend mode to most of the photos.

Add Artsy Transfers
  • Place the layers of Transfer 1 from Artsy Transfers Rougir above the paper layers but under the double frame at the bottom of the template. Delete two transfer layers and dark splatters and art stroke. Adjust position.
  • Place the the layers of Transfer 3 below the masks on the left side of the template. Position and delete layers as desired.

Note: I added a Color Overlay to a stain in Transfer 1 and a transfer in Transfer 3 to coordinate with my photos.

Add a Button
  • Add a button and thread for dimension.
  • Give the button a shadow.

I had wonderful light as it rose above the roofs when I went out with my camera about six o’clock in the morning. There wasn’t even much wind, something we don’t get often in a prairie state like Nebraska. By the afternoon, the wind was blowing again, but I found a protected area with good indirect light on my deck. I placed a piece of white board on the table and used with my small macro lens to capture different arrangements of the blooms that I had cut before putting them in a vase to bring inside.

The hardest part of this page was deciding which photos best told the story about photographing my peonies. Looking through my photographs in Lightroom, I can see some changes that I need to make for better photographs next time. Unfortunately, as I look out the window, my poor peonies are bent to the ground with all the rain and wind we’ve had over the last two days. I could bring some in to photograph, but the time to capture them outdoors is over for this year.

I encourage you to play with your camera and some flowers both outside and indoors. Then create a page using one of Anna’s FotoInspired Templates. I will add this page to the other pages that I’ve created for a book with my flower photography.

Roses

Artsy Paper #1 from ArtPlay Palette Narcissus by Anna Aspnes is a stunning piece of art without any photos. I can only hope that the roses I bought yesterday specifically for this paper do it justice.

I created this page with an Artsy Paper, photos of three different roses and a tag. Below are the steps.

Place Artsy Paper
Extract Roses
  • Place photos of three different roses above Artsy Paper #1
  • Using the Quick Selection Tool, find the edges of each rose.
  • Click the Select and Mask tab at the top of the screen.
  • Adjust the Smooth, Feather and Shift Edge levers.
  • Select Output to Layer Mask.
  • Repeat process for each rose.
  • Resize and arrange as desired.
Custom Drop Shadows
  • From the Styles Panel select a shadow for each rose. 
  • Click the FX symbol on the right of the photo layer and choose Create Layer option to place the drop shadow on a separate layer.
  • Press Command+V to access the Warp Tool. Drag the shadow a little to create more variability on your shadow layer.
  • Repeat for each photo layer.
  • To each photo layer clip a Hue and Saturation Layer. Select the Sepia Preset from the drop down menu. Change the opacity to 30% on Normal blend mode.
Add Tag and Quote
  • Place the .psd file of the tag included in ArtPlay Palette Narcissus.
  • Drag another copy of Artsy Paper #1 and reduce the size so that it just covers the tag. Clip it to the tag.
  • Add a Layer Mask to the paper layer. With a small hard round brush reveal the threads and staples.
  • Duplicate the layer. Change the blend mode to Linear Burn and invert the Layer Mask by pressing Command+I to darken the staples.
  • Add a quote if desired.

Extractions add dimension to layouts.  I encourage you to practice with the Quick Selection Tool as an alternative to using the Pen Tool for extractions.

Poetry

There is still snow here, piles of snow, so much that I haven’t seen the lawn in weeks. Thus I found the color in Anna’s new ArtPlay Palette Melic very appealing as I long for spring and the tulips that will bloom in April. Below I explain my process for creating this page.

First, place solid paper 3 on a new blank 12×12 inch document.

Extract three tulip blooms with the Quick Selection Tool, arrange and give each a shadow.

Note: I adjusted the color a little by applying a Hue and Saturation Adjustment to each bloom.

Place transfer 3 and transfer 1 from ArtPlay Palette Melic above the paper. Change the blend mode of both transfers to Linear Burn. Attach a layer mask to transfer 1 to hide parts of the transfer.

Stamp brush 7 and 4 from ArtPlay Palette Melic in a red orange on Normal blend mode on new blank layers just above the transfers. Tilt as needed to create the effect of stems extending from blooms.

Arrange three of the stitching .png files from MultiMedia Melic No. 1 below the blooms as well as a splatter and piece of lace. Roughly align the stitching with the brush lines

Drag one .psd leaf file from ArtPlay Palette Melic and place above the stitching. Adjust the position of the shadow included with the leaves. Place a second leaf file, rotate and reduce its size.

Finish the page with beaded word art from Melic WordART Mix No. 1 and a thread from ArtPlay Mini Palette Breeze. On the left, place a button and splatter from MultiMedia Melic No. 1.

That’s it, so simple!

A Quiet Place

The Pope-Baldwin Estates at the Tallac Historic Site in South Lake Tahoe offer a glimpse into the luxurious lifestyle of wealthy society people who summered at Lake Tahoe at the turn of the 20th Century. After years of neglect, the estate buildings were beginning to deteriorate and restoration work was started in the early 1980s when the government purchased the property. The dock in this photo replaced the original boat dock and pier.

I began this layout working with just the photo. I duplicated the original three times. I gave the second copy a watercolor effect in Topaz Studio. Above that I placed a copy of the original photo on Soft Light blend mode at 100%.

To each copy I attached an inverted layer mask. I brought back the photo with an AnnaBlendz Artsy Brush as well as brush 11 and 13 from ArtPlay Palette Milieu.

Next, I placed artsy paper 5 from ArtPlay Palette Milieu below the photo layers. Above the photo layers, I placed another copy of paper 5 and changed the blend mode to Linear Burn at 75% opacity. Above the boats on the right, I placed transfer 2 from ArtPlay Palette Milieu. Finally, I created a composite of the original photo layers.

I then grouped my original photo layers and turned off that group. Using just my composite, I reduced it’s size to about 90% and clipped it to mask 3 from FotoBlendz Overlays No. 14.

I duplicated my composite and clipped it to mask 2 from Coastline FotoBlendz No. 1. I reduced the size of mask 1 from FotoBlendz Overlays No. 14 vertically to 60% and increased the horizontal size to 115%. I duplicated my composite one more time and clipped it to mask 1.

Note: Above the composite copies clipped to masks, I added two adjustment layers: one on Screen blend mode at 30% and another on Soft Light at 100%.

Just above solid paper 2 from ArtPlay Palette Milieu, I placed transfer 5. Above the transfer I added an adjustment layer on Soft Light at 100%. I also adjusted the color of the rounded area on the left with a Hue and Saturation layer and an inverted mask so that the changes would only affect that part.

To embellish my page, I placed all the layers of file 2 from MultiMedia Milieu No. 1. I turned off the grass frame and its shadow. Instead, I placed the branch from MultiMedia Branches No. 10 and its shadow as well as the thread. I adjusted the color of the branch with a color overlay.

With word art from WordART Mix Milieu No. 1 and brush 6 and some splatter brushes stamped on new blank layers, my page was finished.

Blooming Marvelous

I am finally experiencing some California sunshine. It’s mostly been a cold and rainy week so I haven’t been out with my camera as much as I would have liked. My sister and I did stop at Roger’s Gardens yesterday; I’m helping her learn how to use her camera, especially how to blur the background in her photos. I captured some beautiful blue hydrangeas, a favorite flower of mine.

I began this page by placing a photo on a new blank 12×12 document in Photoshop. I duplicated the photo twice. The bottom layer is the original on Normal blend mode at 100%. The second layer I took into Topaz Studio and gave it a sketchy look. I changed the blend mode to Hard Light at 100%. The top photo layer I also took into Topaz Studio and gave it a graphic look and changed the blend mode to Normal at 40%. I linked all the layers.

Next, I placed fotoblendz 1 from Sirenic FotoBlendz No. 1 on my page. I clipped the three photo layers to the fotoblendz mask.

I turned on solid paper 3 from ArtPlay Palette Sirenic.

Note: I had already decided that I was going to use this paper from the ArtPlay Palette.

Just above the paper but below the photo layers, I placed transfer 2 from ArtPlay Palette Sirenic on Normal blend mode at 100% opacity. Above the photo layers, I placed the same transfer, rotated it and changed the blend mode to Multiply at 100%. I added a layer mask to hide part of the transfer. I also placed the gold paint from ArtPlay Palette Sirenic.

Finally, I stamped a brush from ArtPlay Palette Sirenic on the left, placed the layers of file 2 from MultiMedia Sirenic No. 1 on the right and added the word art file from Love WordART Mix No. 2.

It’s a simple page, but a good reminder of some of the beauty I saw during my week in California. Now I’ve got to get back to helping my sister organize her photos.

Fifty Years Later

It seems like yesterday, not fifty years ago, that we honeymooned in San Francisco. We didn’t stay at the same hotel, the American Motor Lodge, but instead chose Hotel Zoe Fisherman’s Wharf this time, with its ultra modern decor. I hoped we would be able to replicate some of the photos from 1968 on this trip as we remembered our honeymoon.

We searched for the Fisherman’s Wharf sign and finally found a man who recognized it in copy of the photo where I sat. He told us it had been removed a long time ago. Even though we couldn’t access the balcony at the top of Ghiradelli Square, we found the sign at the top of the building. We posed on Pier 39, a tourist trap or a Pokemon player’s dream, depending on your perspective.

For the focal photo, I used frame set 3 from UrbanThreadz FotoBlendz Frames No. 2 in order to tie the two pages together. The photo I clipped to the mask is actually a blended composite so that I could have the entire heart behind us.

I chose the frames, threads and text box from template 10 in Travel Album No. 2 to accommodate the photos I wanted to include on my page. I reduced the size to 85%, before clipping my photos to the masks and adding adjustment layers.

Note: Because I am reducing the size of frames, masks and shadows from different templates, I am deleting the frames and giving each mask a stroke style of 20px so that all frames are consistent throughout my book.

I placed transfer 3 from ArtPlay Palete Riant just above the paper as well as layers from files 3 and 4 of Artsy Transfers Riant.

Note: I added a Hue and Saturation Layer to adjust the color of two layers.

Finally, I tucked a button from ArtPlay MiniPalette Blithe under the threads above the frames.

I want to thank my friend Adryane and her husband for helping us replicate some old photos for this page. It was Adryane’s idea to capture some shots holding our wedding photo. What a wonderful day searching for landmarks and remembering!

After a Snowstorm

After a snowstorm earlier this month, a couple out walking their dogs graciously gave me permission to capture them from behind as they walked down a path near my home. I got three shots with my iPhone before they disappeared from view.

There are two steps to creating this page. First, I worked with just the photo in Photoshop following the steps outlined in a post on Anna’s blog, Create an Artsy Sketch Effect, by team member Ulna-May. While I didn’t change the image size as stated in the post, I followed the other instructions, changing opacity and blend modes on two layers. For example, my color layer is on blend mode Pin Light at 100%. I created a composite of all the photo layers.

Next, I moved the sketch composite and original photo on to solid paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Inkling. I linked the two layers and resized them to fit the 12×12 layout. I duplicated the original photo and gave it a watercolor effect in Topaz Studio. I then used brush 2 from AnnaBlendz Artsy No. 3 on an inverted mask attached to sketch composite to bring back in the photo. I changed the blend mode to Linear Burn. I duplicated the mask and attached it to the watercolor copy, changing the blend mode to Overlay at 100%. Finally, I roughly extracted the couple and used the same brush on the mask to lighten them just a little.

With the photo layers finished, I placed transfer 4 from the artplay palette, reduced the size to 85% and adjusted the exposure with a levels adjustment layer on Overlay at 40%. Just below the man and woman I placed copies of the silver paint included in ArtPlay Palette Inkling. I also placed art stroke 3, erasing the right side.

To finish my page, I placed the psd layers of file 2 from MultiMedia Winter No. 3. I substituted a button from the artplay palette for the blue one included in the file. I added a title from Inkling WordArt Mix No. 1.

Capturing this photo took only a minute, but provided a wonderful afternoon for playing with Anna’s new release.

South Lake Tahoe

We used to rent bicycles for the 3.8 mile ride from Camp Richardson to Spring Creek, the place where we turned around for the ride back. From the bike trail we’d take the road into the Tallic Estates. We walked the paths on the estate this year. We sat on a bench near the boat house where we had sat previously and we battled for a virtual creature, a Rhydon, at one of the Pokemon gyms on the grounds. There were no Pokemon gyms five years ago although I did have an iPhone by then. Below are the details for creating this page.

On the left, I placed layers from Artsy Layered Template No. 283. On the right side, I placed the frames and text boxes from template 7 of Project Template Album No. 3.

I then placed .jpeg mask 3 from Coolth FotoBlendz No. 1 on the left and mask 1 on the right. I clipped a photo to each mask, adjusted the masks to accommodate my photos and extracted us on a separate layers. I gave the extraction layers a shadow.

Next, I clipped additional photos to the small frames and added adjustment layers to the photos.

On the left, I combined layers from the artsy template with five of the layers from transfer 3 of Artsy Transfers Coolth below the masked photo and frames. On the right, I placed six layers from transfer 3 below the lower two frames and 7 layers from transfer 2 below the masked photo.

Note: I adjusted the color of one layer with a Color Overlay to accommodate the colors in my photos.

To finish the page, I placed three copies of the watercolor flower from ArtPlay Palette Coolth, rotating and resizing for variation. I also repeated a button from the ArtPlay palette. I tacked down the button on the left with thread 11 from ButtonThreadz No. 2. The threads on the right were included with the frames in the template.

Note: My title is in the same position as suggested by the template.

While the small photo on the right, taken in 1999, is the earliest photo that I could find at Pope Estates, we began exploring South Lake Tahoe much earlier. It’s been our favorite place to vacation over the years.

Santa’s Coming Soon

Friday afternoon, I spontaneously decided to drive to Lauritzen Gardens to capture the annual poinsettia display and maybe avoid the crowds. While the massive tree created from red poinsettias was still in the center of the room, there are always variations on how the staff displays the smaller Christmas trees, other varieties of poinsettias and the model trains running throughout. It was a great way to spend a few hours on a Friday afternoon.

It’s easy for me to capture the decorated trees and poinsettias. They don’t move. The little trains are another matter. I keep practicing. Notice the nice blur on the side of the caboose and behind the train. The focus is on Santa and the sign on the back of the caboose.

Camera settings: 55mm, 1/250 sec at f/4.0, ISO 1600.

While I don’t like the photo’s composition, I selected this photo for my layout because of the train’s angle and the amount of track showing on the right of the photo.

First, I placed solid paper 5 from ArtPlay Palette Mistletoe on a new 12×12 document. Next, I sized and placed my photo before extracting the caboose with Santa and the track across the bottom of the layout.

Second, I placed the psd layers of file 3 from Evergreen Fotoblendz No. 2 and clipped linked copies of the same train photo to the layers.

Note: I deleted two of the mistletoe layers.

Next, I added silver paint 1 from ArtPlay Palette Mistletoe below the extraction along the top of the train. Above the extraction layer, I added a copy of the solid paper with an inverted layer mask. I brought back in just the silver edge on the left with a hard round brush. Above and below the paper, I placed two copies of silver paint 2. The top copy is on normal at 50% and the bottom copy 100% on normal with a color overlay.

To finish my page, I placed the psd file of branch 3 from MultiMedia Branches No. 12 along the top of the train. I added a title.

Note: I darkened the berries a little with a Hue and Saturation layer and masked out one white splatter.

I’d like to return to the gardens to practice capturing Santa clearly in focus with his caboose on the left. It’s not enough for a photographer to get the focal point clear, the composition also has to be good. That’s my goal!!

As Simple as 1, 2, 3

Thanksgiving will be a little different for us this year, but I am so thankful for the constancy of fifty years with this man no matter what happens in life. This is one of the simplest layouts I’ve done and it came together so quickly. I love when that happens.

First, I opened .psd file of the frame included in ArtPlay Palette Epiphany and placed it toward the left above solid paper 1. I clipped photo to mask of frame and added an adjustment layer.

Note: ArtPlay Palette Epiphany will be released Friday.Second, I placed overlay 2, copper paint and transfer 3 below the framed photo.Third, I added a word art from Gratitude WordART Mix No 1 and journaling.Life gets hectic as the holidays approach. I’m very grateful for a few minutes to enjoy a little simple art play.

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