The lighthouse was shot some time ago on vacation. Taking some clouds that were over San Jose last spring, I applied a perspective transformation and enhanced the color to give them more depth and to match the saturation of the lighthouse grass. I added the bird to the foreground but it lacked blur the birds in the videos had so I made a copy on another layer and applied a motion blur and placed it directly below the clean bird layer.
Ok, I have to admit, post to this site are few and far between these days. I am back in class and don’t really have time for my regular projects. So here is something I stumbled upon this morning tanks to a Google+ Photoshop CS5 stream post by Adrian Ellis about Photoshop Hidden Gems.
Pixel Bender is what got my attention. It is a Photoshop plugin that uses your computers GPU to process the image allowing accelerated rendering. Check out Bryan O’Neil Hughes video here that shows it off. Cool stuff!
That said, while trying to manipulate the photo above I observed 3 things. The first was rendering was lightning fast even with an 18mp image. The second was that while changing settings, my video went blank and I had to reboot and start over. The third was when I tried switching to CPU mode and I got tired of waiting for it to finish and canceled and went back to GPU rendering. After trying this out and seeing the difference in processing speed, it shows the future of Photoshop is GPU rendering.
The assignments this week was to make use of Quick Masks, Pasting into selections and replacing backgrounds. I would say the most difficult thing about making selections is areas of soft focus with low contrast backgrounds. The colors look nearly the same up close, only when you view the whole picture does the separation become more clear. The bee composite is from two photographs from the garden this last summer. The sign composite is made up of a winter shot of Sentinel Bridge in Yosemite last February, 2011 and the fall leaves new Yosemite Village in November 2010.
These trains can be found in the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn Michigan right alongside the F150 Truck plant. It contains all types of modern machinery.
To get this photo ready for processing the first thing I needed to do was a lens correction. The lack of pre-loaded lens data for Olympus in ACR and Lightroom is just another reason I had to leave the four/thirds platform. So a little time was needed to correct using the sliders and my eyes.
Next I used a duplicate of the green channel as a base for a mask for the passenger car behind the locomotive as well as the truck bed and barrel in the immediate foreground. I then used these masks on three separate Hue/Saturation Adjustment layers. The passenger car was originally a drab yellow while the truck and barrel were a distracting bright yellow.
These two were left behind during post processing as needing more than just a few slider adjustments in Lightroom and have languished in storage until now. After looking at each one for a while things took shape in my head about how to present each photo.
Half Dome from Tunnel View was taken in poor weather this last February (for more form that trip click here). The snow was coming down hard and in the end I was left with very little contrast. I came back to this shot and just took my time darkening areas to bring out the detail I wanted to make the shot convincing.
Golden Gate Bridge on the other hand has very high detail. Taken from a tripod in low wind on a clear evening, I was able to capture details like the streetlights above the road surface. Unfortunately, the color image was uninspiring with a cargo ship and a bit too much in the cloud department. Going to high contrast and painting in the area below the bridge and taking out some of the clouds gave this shot a real focal point and a new lease on life.