Tuesday, September 8, 2009


This weekend while working in the yard I decided to aim my camera at all the textures I could find. I snapped pictures of the Spanish moss hanging in the trees, the inside of our rusty wheelbarrow and the metal roof of our shed. I continued on through the yard and into the house and even took some pictures of the different textures found in our bathroom. I have added all 20 textures that are on the left and I compiled them to a zip file you can download by clicking here.

Now you may be wondering what is the big deal about textures and how can you use them. The simplest way I know to explain using textures in editing your photographs is that texture adds that extra oomph your picture may have been lacking. Sometimes the texture is so subtle you may not notice that it is even there but you do notice when it isn't.

Here is the SOOC picture we are starting with, Barbie at the beach.

After I make all the initial adjustments that I want this is what we now see:

I added a layer mask of the Spanish moss texture :

And then I adjusted the opacity of the moss and masked off Barbie's skin so it would not take on the moss effect.

The effect is subtle but it adds a nice texture to the bland background.


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Beach Barbie


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Post Production

While I am working on a tutorial about White Balance (by request of Buttercup), I thought I would take a few minutes and give my views on a subject near and dear to many: Post Production.

If you are new to photography and are navigating the many web sites out there you will come across the term PP a lot. PP is simply post production and that just means what you do with the picture once you have downloaded (or scanned) it into your computer.

You may also come across the acronym SOOC which stands for Straight Out Of the Camera, meaning no editing at all has been done to the picture you are viewing. I like SOOC best to be honest.

My aim in photographing someone or thing is to make it as lifelife as possible; I want to capture what I am seeing in reality on paper or in this case: in pixels. Do I use a little PP here and there? Of course. For the most part though my aim is to correct something I did incorrectly when I pressed the shutter release button: sharpen, lighten, straighten etc.

The above picture though has been through some PP. Just a touch. I blurred the first layer and added a super sharp layer on top of that. I then added a cloud texture layer and border. I am not quite sure what to think of the outcome. I'll let you decide for yourselves, as here is the original:

Camera: Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
Shutter Speed: 1/125 seconds
Aperture: f/7.1
ISO: 400
Focal Length: 18 mm
Flash: None
Return: None
Metering: Patterned


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tonight's Moon

Monday, July 6, 2009

Fireworks 2009

There is a bit of a blur and some hot spots but I rather like the way this one turned out.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

VIew from Coachman Park

Shutter Speed: 1/250 seconds
Aperture: f/6.3
ISO: 400
Focal Length: 135 mm
Flash: None
Return: None
Metering: Patterned


Friday, July 3, 2009

Big Bear, California

While my back is healing I have not been able to shoot. Here is a shot I took with my old Olympus. I stood inside a hollowed out redwood tree that had been struck by lightning.