Pastel-ish

By now everybody visiting my blog now and then – for which I thank you all, I’m so grateful for that – knows that I follow some of Kim Klassen’s classes.  She is a constant source of inspiration.
For the moment Kim is all into a series called Downton Abbey.
I had to look it up because over here, in Belgium, we don’t know this series… yet.  I guess it will come soon.
It obviously is that good that it inspires Kim to make a texture series around it.

This week’s mission: use at least one of her new, Downton Abbey inspired textures.
I dove into my archives where a lot of pictures lie waiting to do something with them.
The one I used for this Texture Tuesday, dates from summer 2012, and the quote that accompanies it might do with a little explanation.  If only because it’s in Dutch ;-)

Our former queen, Fabiola (still alive), wrote a fairy tale book when she was still a young girl and not yet a queen.
12 Very beautiful tales that I liked to read and listen to when I was a little girl.  The book is called “The 12 wonderful Fairy Tales of Queen Fabiola” (free translation; the original title: “De twaalf wonderbaarlijke Sprookjes van Koningin Fabiola”).  One of them, about Indian Waterlilies, is depicted at the fairy tale garden, Efteling, in Holland.

The book also has wonderful illustrations and my mom’s favorite is a drawing of a young girl’s portrait.
When I was a kid we swapped friends books (we called them Poesies and they actually were Facebook avant la lettre) and every time I started a new one, my mom was always the first to draw something in it.
Her favorite quote to accompany such a drawing was: “Jeugd droomt het leven schoon” and it also appeared in Fabiola’s book.
I thought it looked nice on this picture.  A free translation of this quote: “Youth dreams life in a beautiful way”….

img 0979-jeugd droomt

How it was made?

  • a little tweaking of levels in LR, then brought into PS
  • added 3 layers of Kim’s Downton Abbey texture, Isobel.  2 x at 100% soft light blend mode, 1 x at 37% multiply
  • the three layers were treated with a little gaussian blur, to remove the brush structure a bit.

What I particularly like about the use of this beautiful, kind of rainbow colored texture, is that it gives the image’s background such a soft pastel coating.

I hope you like it too, and that it does justice to the series.

Marl1een.

Colour Key

Beyond Layers – day 14 – 31/05/12

A new assignment: revert a picture to b/w and bring a little colour back into it, a phenomenon in photography often referred to as: Colour Key.

To be honest, most of the time I’m not quite fond of that technique.  I often  find it  exagerated, without adding any real value.  But sometimes it works.  And for me it works when it’s done in a subtle way, or when the coloured element is so striking that it benefits from the coloured touch.  One red umbrella in a crowd of greyness f.i., giving extra meaning to the grey, rainy day and emphasizing the positive point that can be found almost everywhere.  But, I didn’t have an image with a red umbrella… don’t even have a red umbrella :-)

So, I went for the subtle approach and chose this picture of a wild daisy put in a small grey vase on a white table cloth against a white linen background.  The original image is almost b/w in itself except for the daisy.  I converted it to b/w with Nik sw, gave it a bronze tone and added some grain.  In a layer mask I removed the b/w from the flower itself, a tiny bit from the stem in such a way that it fades to black, and from the fallen petals.  I applied some rather significant vignetting too.

My watermark brush already existed, I just had to stamp that on.  When I was taking the picture a couple of days ago, that little child’s rhyme “he loves me, he loves me not”  already came to my mind.  So, when Kim spoke about the brush-thing, I thought it would fit the occasion, plus, the picture had some nice blanc space where the text could go.  I typed, made a brush of it as explained, so now I have it for ever and a day and, that was that.

Hope you like it!

Light, the source of life.

The picture below has come a long way.  Another version of it is called “bulb fiction” and can be found in my Fotoblur portfolio (click to see).

The “light” for the idea came out of the blue one night when I couldn’t sleep.  The bulb actually is a small vase in which I planted by means of tweezers 3 bulbs of these grapes (muscari).  I felt like a surgeon performing an operation.  Such a precision job that was easier said than done :-))  Back then, when looking at it on my monitor, I thought it would be nice if the roots could grow through the glass.  With the aid of PS I managed to create that impression, but I never really liked the result – guess I’m not good enough with PS to do it in a natural way.  But well, sometimes I’m kind of stubborn and I wanted to push the idea through.

When Kim launched the theme for this tuesday (22/05/12): “Light”, the picture came back to my mind.  And I gave one of the first series I took of the planted bulbs a second chance, the grapes were a lot smaller than in the one called Bulb Fiction, the difference in shots was only 1 day.  They grew enormously in that mini greenhouse in such a small period of time !!  And of course, they were close to the light…..;-)

So, here’s my interpretation of the theme “light” – being the source where life starts, and without it, mostly ends….

Light, the source of life.

Hope you like it

Processed with Kim Klassen’s texture Canvasback – 2 x (1x multiplied, 1x soft light, both at 100%)