Overexpose on Purpose

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I enjoy overexposing some images on purpose.  You get a light, airy look.  Keep in mind the scene should be on the light side to begin with. A dark room overexposed would not be pretty!  f/9 @ 1/100 for slight blur

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Overexposed shots work very well when adding textures and other effects.  With a Multiply blend mode you will knock out the white and leave your subject clean. In this one I cropped and also added a radial blur.  With the image light to begin with, the effect doesn’t get overly dark.

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Landscapes on an overcast day can benefit from overexposing too.

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White subjects against a blue sky and clouds are nice too.

Securing a Fall Leaf

This is a fast and easy technique.  You love fall leaves, right?  Well they tend to blow around. I found this leaf upside down on a picnic table and tried to hold it to catch the sun backlighting it… then tried to stick it between the two boards which didn’t work very well.  So, I found pine needles to secure the base.. and then hid them so only the backlit leaf and its shadow showed.

Winter Flower Photos

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This time of year can be challenging for those of us who love lush gardens and lots of beautiful color. I decided to see what I could do with my Lensbaby Velvet 56 on my Canon 5D Mark II indoors.

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The flowers are artificial held by a plamp. The softness was created by wrapping light pink tulle around the lens leaving just the very middle clear.  ISO 200 f/8 @ .6 seconds.  I set the 2 second timer and then swooshed a colorful scarf behind the flowers while the shutter was open. (otherwise it was a plain neutral wall)  I used one Alien Bees light with softbox as my light, but did not trigger the flash.

After bringing into Photoshop, I added a French Kiss texture called Tea Bag.  I made the texture black and white and used a Soft Light blend mode. Then I reduced the effect on the flowers by using a layer mask and painting light grey to reduce some of the effect.

I found the frame in a Google Images search.

Texture Tip

Belle Fleur Textures has beautiful collections of textures but also a couple of very nice tutorials. She offers a great way of reducing the texture on your main subject but still leaving the color tint so the image goes together nicely.  Check it out!

Go to http://www.bellefleurtextures.com/ and click on FREE Tutorials – The Blur Method. Check out all Cheryl’s textures too… love the Fairy Garden collection!

Soft Oval for Greeting Cards

Oval 2I started with the flower image… added a layer in Photoshop and drew an oval with a 200px feather since it was the original large file. When working with smaller files, you may want to reduce the feather size.  I had to double click the Background flower layer to make it free for edits.. it then became Layer 0.  Ctrl/Cmd -Shift – I to invert. Then Ctrl/Cmd X to cut the pixels outside the oval.  I dragged the texture layer on top of the image and Ctrl/Cmd T to position the layer how I wanted it. The original texture had some “crinkles” that I pulled outside of the image boundaries. Then I tried different blend modes and liked Multiply the best.Oval 1