"Sometimes imagination is no more than randomness applied." —Piet Francke

― Artistic Expression CritiqueIndustrial study #2

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RBorud
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Industrial study #2

Post by RBorud » Fri Nov 24, 2017 6:10 pm

Hi All
Here I am showing another of a sightly new direction in my thinking. I was prodded by minneve to go this way (thanks) . Looking at what are thought to be everyday things to disregard. Treat them with feeling and as much beauty as can be managed. This can also be a place to get silly as well. (I hope I have erred to the tasteful)!! Please enjoy. RBorud
Sorry I still have trouble getting the combinations right uploading, I will get there however glacially!! RBorud
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Duck
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Post by Duck » Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:03 pm

I will assume you are using an action to create this watercolor effect. I have a few of these in my arsenal I occasionally like to play with but, as with any action (or preset), there is no one size fits all. They often require some tweaking of the layers to nudge it into shape. Specially since some of the colors and textures are applied randomly without regard to the content of the image. That's just the nature of an action. Here are three tips I've learned that may help with future endeavors.

  1. Prep your image before applying the action - Some actions tend to destroy detail while others exaggerate them. After a while you learn how your actions behave. Take preemptive steps to remove, minimize or enhance areas that may present a problem. For example; an oil painting action tends to destroy fine detail. If there is an element in the image (i.e. a pole, tree, fence post, trashcan, etc.) that is distracting you can use content aware to remove the item without concern to how cleanly you do it since the action destroys any fine detail. After the action is run you get a cleaner "oil Painting" without that pole, trashcan or other annoyance. Another example would be to really work the image with dodging and burning so once the effect is applied you get a stronger composition. You can do the same thing with blurring a background, for instance. Since the effect will destroy fine detail you don't have to be real careful around edges, for example.
  2. Expand your image borders - Often these pre made actions concentrate the majority of the effect into the center of the image, leaving the edges lacking. By expanding the image outward and then cropping back in you can get a better distribution of the effect throughout the image. Vignettes can also be applied to help focus the viewer's attention into the image, but that's a personal choice. Just remember that vignettes are predominantly seen in a lot of traditional "sketch" type artworks.
  3. Modify your layers - If the action is well made, most of the effect layers applied will be non destructive. That should allow you to dig into the inner workings of the action to modify colors, textures and other effects. If you are unfamiliar or new to an effect, use the hide/unhide icon to toggle visibility in order to identify what that particular layer does. For example; you don't like the color blue used in this action and would rather have something a little muted, you can browse through the layers until you find that blue effect (could be easy to spot) and change the color. Or if a texture is placed in a wrong area, toggle visibility until you see that texture disappear. Once that layer is identified you can then alter the texture as needed.

    Some effects will use a combine layers in the process leaving certain areas of the image un editable (destructive editing). This is still adjustable but requires a little more investigation. You'll need to identify the point in the action that applies a certain layer effect (let's suppose an 'apply color' layer) that get's implemented in a 'merge layers' command later. If you check the little checkbox at that point in the action it will pause the action and wait for your input before continuing. In this example, if you don't like the blue color applied, find that spot in the action, have it pause allowing you to select a different color, and the action will continue with your new color selection.

Hopefully you understand these tips. I find they allow me to expand beyond the basic action in order to inject some randomness into my work.
"If you didn't learn something new today, you wasted a day."
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Post by RBorud » Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:26 pm

Thank you Duck. Your information is indeed very good and useful. However in this case operations and application have been exactly as I wanted, and quite controlled. I certainly agree with the safety of using nondestructive means. However in this case I totally destroyed the file while satisfying my creative eye, It is my mental eye I must satisfy. What I trashed is a copy. I use the brush's and things mainly in the editing program, much as I would when I do a canvas with palette and paint. Sometimes use actions or plug in for certain effects, and will do these on a separate file and them cut and paste back into my main work. Probably quite madd but it works for me. Thanks so much for looking and commenting. RBorud

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Post by minniev » Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:32 pm

RBorud wrote:Hi All
Here I am showing another of a sightly new direction in my thinking. I was prodded by minneve to go this way (thanks) . Looking at what are thought to be everyday things to disregard. Treat them with feeling and as much beauty as can be managed. This can also be a place to get silly as well. (I hope I have erred to the tasteful)!! Please enjoy. RBorud
Sorry I still have trouble getting the combinations right uploading, I will get there however glacially!! RBorud

I love your creations! One element that appeals to me about them is the way you include explicit detail that almost looks like a delicate pencil drawing, while other areas have that watercolor wash look, yet all of the elements blend together. The fact that you apply this intricate artistic process to photographs of buildings which are generally considered eyesores (including their various accoutrements like transformers and chain link fencing) makes this series even more intriguing.

Even though you use PSP, which I know nothing about (Photoshop user here), I would love to watch you work on one of these, to see how your work flow proceeds. Thank you for sharing this!
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by St3v3M » Sun Dec 03, 2017 6:53 pm

RBorud wrote:... Looking at what are thought to be everyday things to disregard. Treat them with feeling and as much beauty as can be managed. This can also be a place to get silly as well. ...

I love your work but the above even more! Thank you for adding your inspiration here! S-
"Take photographs, leave footprints, steal hearts"

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Post by St3v3M » Sun Dec 03, 2017 6:54 pm

RBorud wrote:... Probably quite madd but it works for me. ...

The rallying cry of great artists! S-
"Take photographs, leave footprints, steal hearts"

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Post by Charles Haacker » Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:18 pm

I just simply love it. Simply. Yes, I would hang it on a wall. (OK)
Friends call me Chuck. :photo: This link takes you to my Flickr albums. Please click on any album to scroll through it.
(I prefer to present pictures in albums because I can put them in specific order.)

All the great photographers use cameras! No, really. :|

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