Archive for March 2010

Coloring the past

March 28, 2010

You’ve all seen them in the Hallmark stores.  The cutesy black and white photograph cards with the little kids all dressed in grown up clothes doing some quirky adorable pose.  Well, I wanted to learn to do that.  It seems simple enough, and well it is.  You can take literally any color photograph into Adobe photoshop.  One step here, another there and all of a sudden you have a black and white photo with splashes of color. I realize that I just over simplified the whole process but this isn’t about giving you a photoshop lesson.  I just wanted to show you how much fun it can be.  The first photo I retouched was of my youngest daughter and her friend at the water’s edge of Carolina Beach in North Carolina.  The sky was slightly overcast and the water was vibrant at all.

This particular photograph of actress Elisabeth Shue was scanned many years ago from , I think, US Magazine.  I felt that the picture would be better served if you focused more on the colors of the flag than the actress herself.

 

 

This photograph was more of a chance since I saw the artistic value of a touching scene and wanted to quickly capture it. Unfortunately, those cars were in the frame and I decided to turn it into a black and white photo with contrasting opposite colors on both of the girls.  Subjects are of my youngest daughter and of my neighbor’s youngest daughter.

 

 

This last photograph was taken at the 2009 Airpower of Goldsboro Airshow.  It featured the Navy’s Blue Angels demo team and vast assorted other aircraft.  One of the features was a reenactment of the Japanese attack of Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7th 1941.  Using old AT-6 Texans heavily modified to look like Zeros, Kates, and Vals, they put on an impressive show.  I was able to be right next to the tarmac as they warmed their engines and taxiid out to the runway.  It was an impressive sight.  Although, I took countless photos of this event, I chose to turn two photos into black and white with a splash of color.  The first is of a Japanese “Zero”.  Although you can’t tell, to give it more of an old time feeling, I photoshopped some elements of “modernism” out of the scenery.

This last photograph doesn’t even begin to tell you how giddy with excitement I was.  This is a Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress medium bomber.  It is NOT the original Memphis Belle.  However, it was used in the motion picture,”Memphis Belle”.  What makes this the most exciting thing about all of the airshows I have ever attended, was the fact that I got to go inside it.  This was a piece of history and I was so beside myself I couldn’t stop grinning and taking pictures.  The top ball turret, side guns, radio ops station, cockpit, tailgun and to walk though and feel how this was actually a small aircraft. Wow.

Anyway, that’s just a few of the photographs that I have turned into black and whites.  I hope that you’ve enjoyed it.  Semper Fi!

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Sunrise at OBX

March 21, 2010

I love the ocean…I love the beach. There is nothing more beautiful and serene than watching a sunrise or sunset over the ocean.  I went on vacation to the Outer Banks, NC this past summer.  I stayed near the house in Rondanthe, NC that was featured in a movie.  As part of my artistic side venturing out, I decided that I would get up one morning and “film” the sunrise.  Using my Kodak 5 Mp digital camera and my newly acquired camera tripod, I got up at 5 am and trudged out onto the beach.  Being the old sentimental guy that I am, I brought my Sony PSP and Purdue U. throw blanket out there too to play some tunes. 

I set the camera and tripod up facing the most likely direction the sun would pierce the sky and at 0530 hours I started to click one frame, every 5 minutes until way past 0630 hrs.  Interestingly enough, there are still people that go onto the beach at 0600 to walk and jog, even on a cold summer morning.

Back home, I took all of the photos that I had taken from that sequence and sized them down in Photoshop.  This was done in anticipation of a better upload time and rendering time for later. I then took the sequence of pictures into Adobe AfterEffects and also edited and uploaded a clip from the hit single,”Warmth of the Sun” by the Beach Boys.  The only difficulty was getting each picture to appear long enough to give the scene a flowing feel.   Rendering the final video took no time at all and this is the final product of my stop motion animated sunrise over the Outer Banks.

Cloning My Ghost Again

March 19, 2010

Here are more cloning images I did in     2009.  In the picture to the left I tried to have an “interactive”argument of showing “who” had a bigger muscle and where. I did realize my mistake of “bicep” me looking at “leg” me at the wrong angle, but how do you really correct that?

This was my attempt at “adding” more of me into a framed shot. The biggest difficulty I have faced when “posing” these shots is the lack of depth and space afforded by my stage. Since this is done in my living room, there is only so much of it that I can show that is not cluttered or “busy” with furniture or hanging framed pictures. Yes I “photoshopped” my tummy to give myself a less fat look but hey, who wouldn’t if you know how. I do also realize that the look of one of my clones and the angle makes it look a little “happy” but that was TOTALLY unintentional. I was going for the look of “look at that idiot” but it just didn’t happen.

This cloning happened during the NFL playoffs and I was attempting at a roleplaying shot. I used my AFL Carolina Cobras jersey I won at an auction and my old high school practice jersey to pull this off. Right off the bat, I had problems due to the framing of the stage and the placement of the center’s hand is off. Although everything is to scale, it would “appear” that my center’s rear is way too big and in the Qb’s face



Cloning My Ghost

March 13, 2010

Sometimes when you see my artwork(print stuff), you’ll notice that it is a bit dated. Is it a fault of my own? Sure, I haven’t had a “real” art class since high school, and even then it was my sophmore year in ’89.  I did have art classes at the School of Communication Arts, however I don’t think drawing a nude model constitutes enhancing of my art skill. Anyway, not to get off on a sidebar and this first ever blog is not about that, I wanted to show you a new photoshop skill I learned last year and have been trying to improve on since. Ghosting or cloning ; the art of creating several images of one’s self in the same photograph. I was looking up tutorials on photoshop and I stumbled upon this and thought that it would be cool to try.

The first attempt: I was watching a Carolina football game and they were losing at that point so during halftime I put my digital camera on my daughter’s Playskool table and shot this. I tried to use an interactive style shot but the main problem was that I was wearing the same outfit. I just felt that I didn’t get the whole effect of what I was going for in this shot. It did take me 1/2 hour to take and edit this photo though.

The 2nd Attempt: This time I definitly made sure to make it look like I was wearing different clothes (except I saw later that I didn’t change shorts) Same set up on the table as before. I just could not figure out a good pose.

3rd Attempt: One of my better attempts at double cloning with interaction was this playstation bit. I made sure that I had completely different clothes on and used a prop. I don’t remember entirely but I think my wifey asked why all those clothes were in a pile in the living room when she got home.

 4th Attempt: This time I wanted to try and up the ante and do some overlapping, this was a little difficult for me since you had to get the depth right or it wouldn’t work. I did a few other double clonings but by far these four examples turned out the best.

 

SEMPER FI!