Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Something A Little Different

I very seldom change a photo very much prior to posting. Of course I do crop them quite often to show the primary subject and maybe do a minor bit of adjustment to the lighting and such if needed. I stay away from anything more than that with the exception of some of the photo's of fish and turtles underwater. Those often have to be adjusted a bit more to remove the glare and reflection of the water or there would be nothing to show.

Recently, however, I was playing around with some photo's checking out a few of the added features available in the new Picasa3 software. Of course they are modest compared to what one could do with a full-blown image editing program, but they can produce some interesting effects for playing around with. Picasa3 includes some new editing features such as a modest retouch capability and features related to working with collages.

Mostly I was using them with flower photo's I had just downloaded and I think some of the results were interesting so I decided to share them on the blog.


The collage feature was interesting also. Here's a very simple one, but of course you can make them much more complex with multiple photo's and a variety of orientations.

Actually I didn't do as much editing on this next photo, but I particularly liked it so I thought I would include it also. I think it looks more like a painting than a photo.

If you have access to one of these programs (and there are many that are free, by the way) you should try them out. You don't have to be an editing expert by any means, but you may find a feature that can turn a photograph from a dud to a keeper.

14 comments:

  1. Nice photos Baker. I am trying to experiment with Photo Shop Elements, but then I go back to a more simple one. I guess you can read books and take classes..Not something I really want to do right now..

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  2. Fabulous photos here and elsewhere on your blog.

    Thanks for passing by my place and leaving a comment.

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  3. Michelle - Thanks - I know how you feel. I have used some of the more extensive image editors for certain purposes where layering and other features are useful, but I find that most of what I need is available in the simple ones. And if you are not going to really use the big ones a lot the learning curve is tough and super time consuming for the ultimate results.

    Floyd - thanks a lot

    calumcarr - Thanks for dropping by and the kind comments. Hope to see you again soon.


    Baker

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  4. Two years ago I bought myself a fancy-pants digital camera for my fortieth birthday. I've only ever cropped photos, as I thought further editing would be "cheating". But as I love your work and have only the highest regard for you, I believe that I'll be looking into the Picassa program.

    A friend of mine who loves to manipulate his photos, told me about another free program, called "The Gimp". it sounds rather creepy, but he's had some fantastic results.

    Cheers, Dano.

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  5. Absolutely gorgeous! I love what you've done to these. The last one is truly stunning :)

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  6. Dano - Thank you so much for the kind comments.

    I know exactly what you mean about the 'cheating'. I felt very much the same way myself. After some time, however, I began to realize that, just like the camera, photo editing software is just a tool. I think it really depends on why and how it is used. If the purpose of the photo is to show one's technical proficiency with the camera, then avoid the photo editing. If the purpose is to produce the best image for your own enjoyment or to share with others, then use the tools available. Basically to me it's just important not to try to pass the photo off as something it is not.

    As you may be aware, Picasa3 is primarily a photo organizing program, but it does have some modest editing features. I just happen to use that one because it works well for my purposes (and it is free, lol.) There are other comparable programs as well as many free on-line editing services which you can use if you just want to play around with a few photo's. I may use some of those on occasion if they are better for some feature on a specific photo than Picas3 is. (i.e., red-eye removal on animal photo's, etc.)

    I'm familiar with GIMP also and I use it from time to time for certain features. I understand it is rich in features, but I have barely scratched the surface. I've found in general that the learning curve for the extensive image editing programs and time required to do the work are more than I personally want to go through for the little amount of editing I would do. For now the simple edits cover 98%+ of what I need.

    I say go try some editing and just enjoy it.

    Baker

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  7. sandy c - Thanks so much for visit and comments. I really like the last one also. I found the uncluttered simplicity of the image compelling.

    Baker

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  8. Way cool Baker! I like the effects.
    I know you've stopped by my blog a few times(thanks by the way) so you know I like to mess around with Photoshop. These are simple but quite stunning!

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  9. Thanks ladykli. I always appreciate your visits and comments. I've noticed you like to play around a bit with Photoshop. I've seen that you have a lot of fun with it.

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  10. These photos are stunning, did they have a plain background when you started or did you change the background? I love the simplicity of them.

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  11. starnitesky - Thanks very much for the kind words.

    The first two are obviously the same photo. It was taken against a light blue sky with some indistinct clouds in the distance. (You can still see them a bit on the first one.) It was getting late in the day so the light was fading but you could still see it filtering through the petals.

    The last one was upward against a light blue sky also but a bit earlier in the day so there was more light. For the most part I just played with the colors on these by removing selected colors if I recall correctly.

    The one in the collage was different. It was surrounded by other plants and flowers of different colors. But once again it was late in the day and these were in the shadows also so much of the background was much darker. I think I mostly darkened the whole photo and then had to do a little work with the retouch to remove some of the background image.

    Baker

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  12. These are beautiful. It is so much fun having a play around with photos, and seeing what you can come up with. I recently discovered pikipimp, to dress up photos with accesories like beards and fake mouths- much to my family's chagrin!

    Thanks for commenting on my puppy mill post. It was the first ever comment on a non-PH post on my blog, and I was excited to see it:)

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  13. Thanks forever foster.

    I'll check out that pikipimp. I saw another site that sounds very similar just a few days ago, but I haven't had a chance to really check it out. It's fun to play around with those for sure.

    I really like PH. I try to make the themes fit to what I would normally post on the blog anyway, and since the blog has a relatively narrow scope it can be quite a challenge at times.

    One unfortunate thing is that many of the visitors are so busy trying to maximize their visits or making return visits to their commenters that they don't have time to actually check out other posts on the blogs. I found myself in that cycle at times and I finally realized that I should bookmark those blogs that looked interesting and come back for a more leisurely visit later.

    I've found some very interesting blogs through PH and many of my regular visitors originally came from there. I'm really happy about those who have decided to drop by occasionally for those non-PH posts. Plus, I get to keep up with some interesting blogs and get to know the bloggers a bit.

    Baker

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Thanks for stopping by to visit our little pond. We would love to see you again real soon.