06 December, 2013

Time of Crows - smoothen a texture & a freebie

Hello,
time for a new tip regarding the use of textures. Sometimes I produce textures that are rather very grungy, which is fine, but there is always the danger that these overpower a picture quite easily.
In cases that I want to use them but want to avoid them to get too dominant I simply rotate them and use lower opacities while processing.
Before I get to a step by step discription, here is the image I did texturize:


Time of Crows


Texturizing the picture

One of the textures I wanted use on this picture has a really very strong grunge look: 

 
Peeling Paint





Whenever I like the general features of a texture, but think it's too strong I use it on several layers and low opacities and rotate it in 90° steps to make the existing structure/texture smoother. This has been better than using a blur tool, because I still have the texture's structure to work with.

You can download the texture here:

Crumpled Paint texture download


Photoshop Layers 




As you can see I ended up using two textures several times. The first one Never Ending Tale I chose, because I liked the colours. I found out that to use only the Multiply mode at a high setting overpowered a lot of the fine twig structures. I could keep them the way they were by using Darken and then Multiply - this way I didn't have to do a elaborate selection.
I was able to reduce the strong and powerful texture of the Crumpled Paint texture by rotating it twice clockwise and by using Overlay at 10% insted of 30% once.
Adding a bit more subtle texture and brightening the picture was achieved with the last lighter texture as well as with the curves layer.

That's all.

Please have a look at my textures & overlays available here:


Thank you for reading and  have a nice weekend!

Dirk





14 November, 2013

Making of - STILLNESS & use of curves to colorize a picture

Hello,

here I am with  another making of. I used an old foggy landscape to test some textures from the new texture pack to get an idea of their usefullness. I hope I can show how one can use a variety of textures while keeping the essential mood of a picture or even enhancing it.

As usual the before/after:


   

 I wanted to keep the moody hazy feeling of this shot, so I needed subtle textures.


Layers in PS




I chose 4 textures from the new Autumn Haze Pack, that were subtle enough, so that they won't overpower the overall impression of the image. Rose Mist was perfect, because it enhanced the grass red tones and made them glow. I think it is always worth while to seek out elements in a texture, that correspond with elements of the picture you work on.
I liked Never Ending Tale's subtle structure  and the two other textures I selected added great orange/yellow tones.
Although I took 4 textures and opted for more or  less strong opacity settings they in the end didn't dominate the photo. 

Still, I Thought adding more light to the foreground by applying a gradient (from white to transparent) with a setting of 60% Overlay which further enhaced the red tones and brought back the darker reds.

Tinting the dark tones

I wanted to add some blue hues in the dark areas of the picture. I know that there are several ways to do this. I opted for a curves layer - in this case the blue channel.


The only thing I did was dragging the end of the blue straight line a bit upwards - this way one only the dark hues turn bluish. BTW if you drag the upper end of the line a bit down you tint the lights yellow. This wasn't necessary because I was satisfied with the warm yellow tones that the textures added

Thanks for reading!!


Be creative,
Dirk




08 November, 2013

New texture pack - AUTUMN HAZE

Hello,
 I' have just released a new pack of fine art textures that I have developed over the past couple of weeks. The tones were inspired by the various autumn moods.
I already used these textures on some of my recent pics and hope they will be perfect for your photos as well.


Autumn Haze Pack

You get 30 High-Res textures for 25,90€ here:

Autumn Haze Pack

Examples:

Ghost Hike

Exit Color

afloat

drawn curtains

useless

With these new pack finished I can turn back to do some tuts. I am planning some cool formulas that should especially appeal to texture beginners.

Thanks,
Dirk

18 September, 2013

Making OF: A Color Dream

Hi there,
I have been very busy working for clients over the past weeks, sadly I couldn't manage to write a new post because of that. But the job qualifies for a series of posts, but it is too early to say anything about it.
;-)

Today I wanted to demonstrate how you can colourize a picture with the use of (in this case) only three textures and of course with the aid of Photoshop.

Before/After view:

There is a lot of playing around involved if one tries to get a colourful picture with the help of textures. First you need suitable textures, primarily of strong colours that fit your subject and your taste and vision. With the picture in question I first made a selection of textures I liked and whose colours and textures/structures hopefully go well together.

I thought that because of the rather white foggy parts of the picture it would be easier to colorize the image.

I all depends on the blend modes one chooses.

I wanted to have a strong contrasting green against the red autumn leaves. So I chose Pea Soup from the Spring Release pack. With the layer at 100% Multiply the whole white of the fog turned green. To get rid of the green on the leaves I used a layer mask and erased what was too much.

The red parts in the treetops and the stronger red tones of the leaves I achieved with the 2nd texture Pale Rose. To  achieve the red tones I played around with the blend modes. I usually start with a opacity of 50% when trying them out.
In this case "Linear Light" worked best. I wanted to keep the green tones in the middle, so I erased most of the middle part, again by applying a layer mask.

The third texture only slightly changed the red  and yellow tones and wasn't really necessary, but I liked it better than without.




Hopefully you are encouraged to try something similar with one of your photos.

I only concentrated on the colour part of this picture. As you can see the layers reveal a lot more work...

Thanks for reading -

Best wishes,
Dirk

Visit my textures here: TEXTURE PACKS

06 August, 2013

Making of - the silence of the birds

Hello, has it really been over a month since my last post!?
I had the pleasur to visit some friends in Italy and I also had a lot to do, so there wasn't any time to squeeze in a blog post....

Anyway, today I wanted to give you another making of an image I processed a few days ago.

Let me start with a before/after picture:




Processing in Lightroom

I think it s best to show the unprocessed raw file to  give you an idea what I did in Lightroom.


I updated my old version 3.6. of Lightroom to the new 5.0 and I must say it really was worth the money. First I updated this older file to the new process version 2012 which gives you much finer means to process your raw-file.  I then copied the settings of a similar picture that I had processed before, inserted them and made a few colour and light adjustments.
To set the colour mood I used the toning tool, I used a yellow-green for the lights and an almost violet tone for the shadows.
Tthe new radial filter is really useful to enhance parts of a pixture. I used it in the region above the bench to enhance the light.
I then exported a .tiff-file and loaded it into PS to further process the picture.


Processing in Photoshop

I had to get rid of the two branches on the upper left side, so I eliminated them using the clone stamp and the content aware fill tool.



I used three textures in this picture. Framed Nothing helped to enhance the fog atmosphere. It was especially good to lessen the contrast of the the trunks in the brighter parts of the picture.
Rose Water  brought a very nice tone on the leaves and added a fine painterly structure to the fog.
Fairytale Light enhanced the coloours further, but added too much texture to the picture, so I decided to blur the texture to keep the colour, its setting were Soft Light at 68%.

I couldn't resist to birds to one of the branches using a bird brush. ;-)

After some minor color corrections I was satisfied with the result.

You'll find the used textures here: Spring Release Pack

Thanks for reading!

26 June, 2013

Summer Promotion & Free texture Wednesday IX

Hello all - 

I'd like to start the summer with a discount on all of my texture packs.

Get a  15% discount with every purchase - you only have to type in the coupon code:

summer low


at the check out!








*minimum purchase to benefit from the discount is 5 € ! Promotion expires on July 31, 2013!


Free Texture:
I must admit, that I havn't applied this one on any of my photos as yet - will try it soon...


Dark Blush

Thanks!
Dirk

20 June, 2013

Creating a texture - Part III

Hello,
today I have another suggestion for you concerning the creation of textures.
Lately I enjoy combining different textures I shot and trying to make something unique and new.

This is what I created:

bed of roses

the Start

I'd like to show you the main principle of my technique that I applied here:

1. take a texture with a fine structure
texture one

2. take a texture with a  rather grungy structure

texture two
 3. something that you wouldn't normally associate with a texture

In this case I chose a picture of some pastel colored roses. I cut them out and placed them on one of the layers in Photoshop. I copied them over and over and arranged and positioned them until I liked the result. Here is what I started with:

roses


Combining the pictures in Photoshop

As always its the easiest to show you the PS-layers:


I simply stopped after these four layers, because more wasn't neede to show the main principle.

Normally I go on adding layers of different textures, use PS-filters on some of the layers, add a layer mask and erase parts of layers and so on.

This is a very simple, but effective approach and I hope it gives you a good idea how of the texture creation workflow.

Other posts concerning the creation of a texture:

The making of a texture and using it 1

From fountain to texture - making of a texture 2


Thanks for your attention!
Dirk

My texture packs on SALE



14 June, 2013

Workflow - Vanishing World

Hello all -
today another insight into my workflow regarding foggy landscapes. The picture I chose dates back a few years and was taken on a very misty November morning.  I will show you how I

1. processed this in Lightroom
2. treated it in Photoshop

Before+after: Please move mouse over this picture!

Vanishing World
   


Lightroom

OK, this morning I came across this picture. Apart from being rather dull and overexposed  at first glance, I thought that it had some potential, that I wanted to bring to shine...




There isn't really much to see and it was clear from the start, that I had to later crop it, meaning to change into a square format.
Regardless, I started working on the uncropped picture.
Most of the time I use presets in Lightroom  - either the ones I developed myself over time or I use some of the various free ones, that you can find on the internet.
If I like the tones I then start manipulating the contrast, sharpness and all other features that need correcting in my opinion. I also cropped the image in Lightroom and exported the file to Photoshop.

List with sites where you can find LR presets: The-growing-list-of-free-lightroom-presets

Photoshop

I liked the tones and the enhanced contrast on the fence's poles, but felt something was missing in depth and light direction. This picture was also a welcome opportunity to check, whether my new Summer Haze Pack textures work with this low contrast conditions.

I chose a few textures that were similar in tone and began playing around. That means trying out different blending modes at different opacity settings.  

Layers Vanishing World

As you can see, I used three textures.
Because the picture still felt flat I used a layer mask on the Moss Garden - texture layer to change the light & brightness. Thus I was able to direct the viewers attention to the fence and the grass on the ground.
The Stone brushed - texture helped to recover/ enhance the foggy atmosphere of the picture.

Though there were a lot of crows flying around ,there unfortunaetly wasn't one around when I shot this, so I used a brush to add the one you see in this picture.

Finally I corrected the contrast and added a blue hue using curves.
I also intensified the gras' yellow with he Selective Colors tool.
That's all!

If you like working with textures my different packs might be of interest to you:

Texture Packs 


Have a nice weekend!!
Thanks for stopping by!

Dirk



27 May, 2013

New Summer Haze texture pack & freebie

Hello,

last week I finished a new texture pack, that you'll find here on my homepage:


It consists of 27 high resolution files from soft grunge to heavy grunge. You can get these 27 textures for only  23,90 €.

I kept the colours relatively neutral compared to the last pack, so you'll find they are suitable for a wide range of photos.


Summer Haze Textures


One of the textures, that didn't make it into the pack is
Starless Universe

You can download it for free from my G+ album of free textures:

Starless Universe

DOWNLOAD


I used this texture on my lates picture, a lush forest scenery, and it made the green tones even more intensive:

Spring Rain Walk



Hope you have a nice week & thanks for reading!

23 May, 2013

Making of DESOLATION & new textures


Hi friends,
as you might have guessed because of my prolonged absence from my blog, I have been very busy and couldn't find the time for a new post. Today I am returning to announce a new pack of textures, that I have been playing around with for the last couple of weeks. I hope I becomes as well received as the last one and you'll be able to create beautiful pictures.



It consists of 27 high resolution textures and you can get it for € 23.90 / app. 30 US$





As mentioned before I processed various photos with some of these textures and today I'll give you a step by step account of one of my latest creations:

Desolation


I used four textures of the new package to make it look that gritty. 




and




I took this photo some years back on a hike through the High Fens on a rainy and foggy November day. The weather, the withered grass and the dead trees were quite spooky. 
It also appeared like some lost & forgotten place where things decay, so the peeling paint texture came to mind and I started working on the photo.

As always here's a screen shot of the layers:



You can guess the evolution of the final result by checking the layers I added from bottom to top.

Tip: If you want to have the structure of a certain texture more dominant just double it and use different blending modes. In this case the stone brushes texture wasn't strong enough, so I first tried to use multiply at 100 %, but it got too dark. But combining a "Multiply"layer with a "Soft light" or "Overlay" layer  did the trick.

Thanks for reading.

Dirk


30 April, 2013

Color Krazy + Freebie

Hello,

last week I have finished a soon to be released sequel to my Spring Texture Pack. You already saw some pictures, that I processed with these, if you know my work from Flickr, 500px, Facebook Page or Google+.

But bef0re I release these there is an update of 10 textures to the Build Your Own Texture Pack.

Last Saturday we had a cold and rainy day, so I browsed through my pics and came across some colourful abstract, that I had completly forgotten about.

I found the colours so appealing, that I started playing around with this file and created 10 very colourful textures that I added to my

Build Your Own Texture Pack.

Here they are:

10 colors textures
Get this 10 colorful textures for only € 9,90 ! 
Dimensions are 4000 x 4000 pixel.



I did a quick processing using wo of the textures on a foggy forest scene:

Spektrum



So it is also time for a free colourful texture, you can download it from my Flickr account here:

COLOR FREEBIE

Color Freebie

Hope you like this one and are inspired to use it!!

Dirk

15 April, 2013

From Fountain to Texture: Making of a texture II

Hello all,

I thought it is about time to give another insight into my texture creating process.
But let me start with a picture that I used this texture on:


Wild Coast La Palma


 Creating Misty Fountain Texture

It is one texture from the Spring Release Pack

It is based on  a shaky long exposure shot of a fountain I took a few years back. It wasn't really anything special:



I really liked the texture of the water and the colours and when I came across it recently, I decided to give it a try and started creating a texture.

First i had to ge rid of the dark parts of the construction, so I loaded the picture into Photoshop and began replacing these parts using the clone stamp and other tools until I got this:


Next thing was to do something about the colours and trying to get a more balanced structure. I decided to duplicate the layer and rotate it by 180°. With a opacity of 50% I got this:


Now I wanted to try to get a more uniform coloring. I thought using a colour gradient overlay might be the right choice. I chose something from yellow to brown and played around with different angles and types of settings and got this:


I made the top part of the texture lighter by adding a white gradient and took two different textures that I used to further refine the texture and the light. A dark photo of slate stone helped to add a vertical structure.


Although I liked the outcome, I thought a texture based on a fountain ought to have a colour that reminds people of actual water. I added a Selective Colour layer and began manipulating the colours - less red and yellow and mor cyan and blue. The colours now were to my liking. I made the whole thing a bit lighter and tweaked the blue a and yellow a bit and got my final texture:

Misty Fountain


This is what the actual layers in Photoshop look like:





I also used the texture on the following pictures, but I also used other textures from my various packs...




10% Promotion

I am prolonging my texture promotion until April 30, 2013!!
If you enter the couupon code

AprilFun

at the check out you'll get 10% discount on all purchases!!!

My Texture Packs for sale


Hope you found this interesting & thanks for reading!

Dirk

28 March, 2013

bad dream - freebie & easter egg promotion

Hello all,
it is time for an easter tret. I my case this means a texture freebie.
I admit it is a quite grungy give away but works well on dark scenes.
As I was in the mood for some eerie dark work I applied it on this picture:

Bad Dream


The texture is more or less b&w so it works quite well as an overlay. I often use these with blending modes such as Lighten, Screen or even Normal.
In fact I used the Lighten blending mode on this picture to add structures and some fake shadows to the darker areas.


Please click on the texture to download or on this link:


Dark Promise
Aus Free textures
This texture is part of my pack of Medium Sized Textures that you can purchase over on my homepage now for a

20 % discount* if your enter the coupon code : EASTEREGG

This offer is valid thru April 16, 2013


*Discount code also works on all other texture packs, except on single texture downloads

Be creative and have a wonderful holiday!!!

Dirk

21 March, 2013

Making of - Contis - Plage on a cloudy Day

Hi all,
following yesterday's post I once again wanted to give you a step by step account on the processing of a picture.

This time it's

"Contis-Plage" on a Cloudy Day"
Contis - Plage on a cloudy day


1. Processing in Lightroom 

I took the pictures that I used with my old Canon Ixus 70, so I had to deal with jpg-files, which limited my processing in Lightroom. Fortunately I took these shots with the intention of merging them together in Photoshop to get a bigger pic in the end.
 
Even though it wasn't a typical sunny day  I wanted to retain the holiday feeling and thought soft almost pastel tones might be the correct way to go.

SOOC - Version

The sharpness in this was quite good and there was no noise to speak of, so I didn't have to do any sharpening and only a bit of noise reduction after the processing.
Over all the pictures were much too dark andto bring up the darker middle tones. Additionally I used a gradient filter for the sky to darken the clouds a bit and to get more depth. I also pushed the yellow luminance and added a partial toning - dark blue for the dark tones a light yellow tone for the lights. After a lot of trying this and that I finally was satisfied with the colours and light:

Lightroom processing


2. Creating the Vertorama / horizontal panorama

I exported these two pictures and loaded them into Photoshop. As my standpoint was when I took these was the same and I had almost half of the pictures overlapping I didn't expect any problems stitching these two pictures together. All I had to do was to go to PS Photomerge - tool and let the automatic merge the pictures. I made a square crop of the merging result and began to texturize the picture.

3. Adding textures

The further processing's focus now lay on pushing the light a little bit more with the help of textures as well as adding a sublte colour contrast.

I prepared a screen shot of the PS layers for you to show what I did:

Layers


 As you can see I chose three textures
- the first is one with a very fine structure and a neutral tone. The blending mode "Soft Light" helped to enhance the overall brightness while adding a subtle texture to the darker tones in the picture, especially on the dark clouds.
- the second almost white one pushed the light to its limits reducing the contrast, but that is something one can regain later with the help of curves or levels.
- the third one I took because of the gradient from silvery to dark blue. Overlay at 66% gave the clouds a wonderful dark blue tone and added some more texture while keeping the yellow / brighter tones.

As pointed out before I used a curves layer to work on the contrast until I was satisfied.

4. Colour Correction

I wanted to have  a subtle, but almost perfect colour contrast. I sometimes check the colours in my picture with the help of a colour wheel to see whether I can tweak them to a perfect harmony. I discovered the following side that I find very helpful:

colorschemedesigner.com

You can copy the colour code in Photoshop and see which colours go with it. Its quite helpful and sometimes a great inspiration.

There wasn't much to correct on the colors, I only took a bit of red out of the yellow to achieve the suggested harmony of the color wheel.



Hopefully this making of was helpful and please check out my textures if you like.

Thanks!