You can use this technique on a lot of different photographs with beautiful results. I’ve posted before, but worth repeating. Start your new year off right with fun and creativity!
1. Choose an image that has symmetry for best results and a defined center.
2. Crop the image to a square format, ie. 6”x6”
3. Make a copy of the Background Layer by selecting it and clicking Ctrl/Cmd J.
4. On duplicate layer – Filter > Distort > Polar Coordinates > Polar to Rectangular
5. On duplicate Layer > Edit > Transform > Rotate 180 degrees
6. On duplicate Layer >Filter > Distort > Polar Coordinates > Rectangular to Polar
7. On Layers palette, click the dropdown and select Flatten Layers.
I love using gold lettering around the holidays. If you are familiar with Photoshop layers, give this a try. Otherwise it might be more difficult, but you can do it!!
I used the font Blacksword for this card, but use whatever you want. The effect will be more pronounced on thicker font styles.
Type your words using the Text tool. Photoshop will make its own layer for the text.
Double click on the T in the text layer and choose a warm orange color. You can change this later.
Now click on the Text layer outside the “T” box to get Layer Styles. Click on Bevel and Emboss. Be sure to click on that option to get all the adjustments.
Depth – 225
Gloss Contour – use 2nd option on the 2nd row – Ring Contour
And there you go!
The original image (below) was very busy and the light was backward of what I wanted. In simple steps, this is what I did.
- Cropped image.
- I used the Content Aware Fill tool in Photoshop to remove the pipe on upper right. There were other little spots to fix with this tool and the Clone tool.
- Added a 50% gray layer and low opacity dark brush (8%) to darken the foreground.
- Used the 50% gray layer with low opacity white brush (8%) to lighten the water. You could also achieve Steps #3 and 4 with the Radial Filter in Lightroom.. thanks to Tony Sweet for sharing that tool in his recent ebook. I do most of my work in Photoshop but this is a super option and easy to use.
- Finally took the image into Topaz Impression and used Impressionistic by Erin Applebee Photography.
This is actually a tiny waterfall in a beautiful woodsy area.
With so many special lenses and techniques along with unlimited software possibilities available, I can have fun all day with just one image. Here is what I did to create the ones below.
I bought a couple of bunches of flowers at Trader Joe’s for $3.99 a bunch. I placed the vase on white foamcore and used a neutral wall as the background. I did use studio lights for faster shooting and greater depth of field, but you don’t have to. Each caption states the software effect I used.
Amazing Watercolour – SmartPhotoEditor
SmartPhotoEditor – White Border
Topaz Impression – Oil by Jim LaSala
Belle Fleur Textures – Puss in Boots
SmartPhotoEditor “Vintage Polaroid”
SmartPhotoEditor “Dreamy Beach”
I have been creating flower composites. I take one flower selected in Photoshop (made easier if you photograph it against white which I did not on these two!)… and then layering many copies of it. Take each copy and resize, rotate, etc… until you like the composition.
You can totally cover the canvas with the image as in the Iris below, or leave space and add a background. I added lilypads blurred behind the waterlilies but ended up changing the color of them so unrecognizable now as lilypads.
With SmartPhotoEditor I can then take it way further. Just printed this one of a purple iris on canvas from MasterColor Labs in Greensboro, NC. SmartPhotoEditor can work as a standalone program or as a plugin for Photoshop.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
SmartPhotoEditor is a contributor based program with over 7,000 effects, constantly being expanded by new designers. It is currently $29.99 and you can get a 10% discount by using code LL1914. I do not receive any compensation except for the feedback that you are having a blast!
I have been using SmartPhotoEditor for about a month now. This software can be used as a standalone for $29.99 or a Photoshop plugin for a higher fee. The program is built on special effects from normal processing features to vignettes and textures to really far out stuff. It also has watercolor, oils and other painterly options. It has about 7,000 effects and contributors add to this all the time.
The interface offers category breakdowns that help find what you are looking for and the ability to save any effect as a favorite so you don’t have to look for it each time. You can also create your own effects in the Effects Editor for others to use.
As a digital photo artist I am really excited with this software and encourage you to use the 30 day free trial. (cannot save images until you buy the program)
For greeting cards the vignettes are amazing.. leaving nice white edges that help with printers that leave 1/4″ edge.
Go have some fun!!!
(except for the iris image all were from a recent trip to Charleston, SC)