Looking up in Paris

I guess we all take pictures that could be good, if only…
This shot of Paris lampposts is such a capture. For starters, I couldn’t get it “straight” in the camera and the sky was very shallow and undefined. Not blue, not grey, not cloudy… nothing actually, empty, as if someone had put a backdrop behind the lamps (see below for the original photo)

Maybe a texture could do the trick, cause I really like the lampposts. Photographed a million times probably… ah well… to a million and one then.
Kim Klassen’s Texture Tuesday assignment of last week to use at least one layer of her “minus 43” seemed like a good occasion to try it on this Paris picture.
I normally like using light and pastel-ish textures, this one is rather “strong” for me (check it out in Kim’s café ), but it was worth giving it a try and I rather like the result.

IMG_1246-bewerkt-bewerkt-1

This is what I did to it.
– straightening and some minor exposure adjustment in Lightroom before bringing it into Photoshop
– as I wanted a bit more “color” to the colorless background, I added Kim’s “Now” texture and lowered the opacity to 56%, blend mode: multiply
– softened the details of the texture with the Gausian Blur filter.
– then added a layer of KK’s “Minus 43” – also multiply – with lowered opacity 86%
– added a soft light ocre fill layer at 50% opacity
–  a gradient layer to lower the greenish hue at the bottom, but not take it away totally

That was it. The texture brought out some nice detail in the lamps itself and certainly added some color and structure to the background. 

The original picture looks like this:

IMG_1246-1 

 

Paris, here I come

No, not Hilton… just, well, Paris…, you know, the city… in France… Europe…

Today, 14/08 – 9.30 am we step on the Thalys and head for 4 days in the light city.
It’s so close to home, only 2 1/2 hours by train, and we’ve only been there once, an incentive trip a lifetime ago. You sure know those trips… 1 hour here, get back in time there.  We spent 1 hour at Montmartre and a who-ooole evening at the Lido…??!! On top of that, it was on July 14th and the whole city was filled with snipers, from the sewers to the rooftops, to protect the president during the parade.

Now it is said that in August, Paris is half asleep.  Its inhabitants leave on holiday, a lot of shops could be closed, which is a good thing for a shopaholic like me.
But, it also means there are no construction workers in the street making noise with all kinds of machines, there’s less traffic… everything gets calmer.
Paris s’endort…

Me and my husband plan to visit the classic things.  One just has to smile back at the Mona Lisa at least once in a lifetime, right?
Visit the Louvre with its glass pyramid-entrance (as seen in The Da Vinci Code) and Les Tuileries (our hotel is situated right in front of this magnificent garden).

But everything has a backside, and for me that’s packing… a “packside”… No matter how exciting the trip, I just hate that and I always carry too much.  I read Susannah Conway’s packing story and totally recognized it.
Carry too much, not wearing half of it, ever. Clothes for rainy weather, dry weather, cold weather, freezing weather, windy weather… no matter where I go…  I’d even invent weather types if I could.
I take medicine with me for diseases no-one will probably ever catch, and then there’s shoes…
Last year I took 18 pairs of shoes with me to the Provence, bought 3 pair over there and wore 5, max!

Normally we travel by car, now we catch the train and I definitely plan to travel light, which put me in the dilemma: do I take a dslr with me, or not? I know that, however good the i-Phone cam is, and the quality of my Canon G12 has never let me down yet, I would regret not having taken the big one… so, it’s packed!  So far for traveling light….
I hope to bring some nice images with me, which brings me to the next problem I have with holidays: processing photos…  The pictures from our trip to the isle of Texel (Holland) this June are still waiting patiently on my hard drive…
Time, time… where does it go?  Sometimes I think that the world started turning much quicker but nobody checked it so far……….

See you in a few days or here on Instagram… that is, if technique and wifi won’t let me down this time….

Au revoir!