A Rose by Any Other Name…

I provide feedback and instruction on a one-on-one basis with my Photo Coach idea.  Students are given an assignment and then submit images for feedback.  We alternate who picks the assignment each month and we both photograph and provide feedback.  This way, I hope that students develop the ability to critique their own work and others’ work, and I get to learn from my students.  Anyway, the theme for January with one student was to record time in a creative way.  I had purchased a dozen roses from the grocery store after Christmas and let them sit for weeks.  I think they become more beautiful as they age and decay.  When I started pulling a few out to photograph, I was struck by how much whimsy and character could be read into the twisted leaves and drooping heads!

The fun part is to run the images through Nik Efex for creative mood and colour.  The black and white images are either the infrared film filter or a conversion to B&W in Silver Efex.  To get the old fashioned, nostalgic yellow colour, the color stylizer filter in Nik Efex was used.  There is no doubt that the Nik Efex plug in lets you get fairly creative with minimal work!


~ by Samantha on February 4, 2011.

5 Responses to “A Rose by Any Other Name…”

  1. Sam: Your images are really terrific, and I agree with you that is is too much fun to play around with any of the Nik software. I am also an e-book junkie and have bought most of hose you and Darwin have made. There is no end to learning and experimenting with this stuff!

    I do have a semi-related question. Do you have an action, or a how-to on how you made your frame? I know this might sound silly, but I always have trouble with making the frame with the inner white part.

    Many thanks!

  2. Hi Frank,

    I don’t have an action, although I could sit down and automate most of what I do to make the frame. But here is what I do in Photoshop: first, I resize my image to fit my blog. Next, I sharpen the image using the tonal contrast filter in Nik Efex (works great!). Then I select the entire image, add a 1 px white border to the image and deselect the image. Next I add more ‘canvas’ or space to the image for the frame – just increase the canvas size by 5 or 10%. I select the type tool, type my name, and flatten everything. I convert to sRGB and save as a jpeg. That’s it!

    I think pretty much all of this is capable of being turned into an action except maybe the Nik Efex part…I’ll have to try it. I’m not the most efficient person in Photoshop, but I get things done.

  3. One addition to those Photoshop instructions: make sure that your background is set to black when you expand the canvas, or that you choose black from the Canvas extension color drop-down in the dialog box.

    And I like these photos very much. I often find aging flowers more interesting to photograph than fresh ones, but my results usually just look depressing rather than interesting.

  4. Thanks for the info. I now know how to make a frame. A giant leap forward!!

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