Spring Flowers; After-Before Friday

Cherry Bloosoms in Spain

Cherry Bloosoms in Spain 

The Cherry trees were starting to bloom while we were in Spain, I couldn’t resist taking several images of the tiny buds and flowers. Now that I am back in Canada, home of the ice and snow it is nice to have these images to look at. I know that sometime in May I will have another opportunity to photography the lovely spring flowers!

It is friday and time for an after-before blog post. This is where I describe a little of my editing process. Some image on the blog have very little work done, others have way to much work, it all depends on the photo and what I want the final image to look like.

Here is the image that I started with……

spring blooms before

spring blooms before 

I edited the photo in Photoshop; the first step was to crop and remove the distracting branches in the bottom of the frame. Next I applied a Florabella Action called Soft Color Pop. Florabella has some great actions, templates and textures, I don’t use them a lot, but always fun to play a little. The action I used had a reduce red layer, and I masked the flowers to keep the nice pink color. I liked what the action did for the flowers, but it really washed out the nice blue sky.

Rather than mask the action to bring back the sky I thought I would add a textured layer, something that would add the blue with a painted quality.  I have a folder of textures I have collected over the years, from the internet artists like Kim Klassen, as well as painted papers, cement and stone walls, fabric, scrapbooking paper, I have photographed myself. The textured I decided to use was a soft blue painted paper. The edges of the blue paper is a little darker and has a little more texture than the center of the frame, this worked perfectly for the flowers. I sent the blend mode to darken, and the opacity at 80%.

There you have it, my custom-made spring flowers. I would love to hear from you if you have questions or comments regarding my process or photography. You can find more of my work on Instagram, or we can connect on Behance  If you would like to see more after-before images head on over to Stacy Fischer’s Virtual Venturing blog

Tulips in Black and White

Tulips

Tulips 

we have been busy getting our lives organized here in Calgary, I am not sure where the time goes, but my routine for photography, blogging, exercise, and reading seems to have gone right out the door!

I hope you enjoy the tulips, I am hoping to start back into photographing at least one still life a week! I think that should be feasible?!

Drop a line, let me know what you think of the tulips. Share the post with your friends if you like it, and you can find me on instagram if that is where you like to hang out to look at pretty pictures!

After-Before Roses

Roses_after; copyright jmeyersforem 2015

Roses_after; copyright jmeyersforem 2015

It’s Friday, and that means another After-Before Friday Blog Post, I am becoming a regular contributor to Stacy’s After-Before Friday Forum, were photographers share they photographs and their working process. For some, or at least me, it is an opportunity to read and learn some new Photoshop or Lightroom skills. The photographers who submit to Stacy’s forum range in skill level from novice to those with advanced skills. The one thing I have learned is  there is more than one way to process an image, and personal style is more likely to affect the final results as software! Each photographer has a unique way of looking at the photos and deciding the final outcome and I never fail to learn something, mostly keep it simple!

I have been taking an on-line still-life course with Kim Klassen, she has provided the inspiration for this weeks post. The florist down the street had these beautiful roses for sale! Kim’s Friday blog is Friday Finds, it is all about the week and what she has found this week. I am going to give a shout out to her this week as well, as I have found her on-line course very inspiration, and I have used one of her Lightroom presets on the image. But let me start from the beginning. Above, the image I ended with, below, the image I started with…..

Roses_before; copyright jmeyersforeman 2014

Roses_before; copyright jmeyersforeman 2014

The work on this image was done in Lightroom, I love that, because I can go back through my history panel for details, it makes learning, and writing this blog post so much easier! First I cropped, that is pretty obvious. In the Basic Develop module I went to my auto button. I like to do this, sometimes Lightroom is right, and there is little to do after that.

For this image I also moved the Highlight slider to -24, then added a preset from Kim-Klassen called kk_truegrit.  This preset does affect the exposure, contrast, whites and blacks as well as clarity. Presets are a good way to establish a style or a particular look if you want a cohesive look for a group of photos, and to automate your workflow.

Next I moved down to the Lens Correction Module to enable lens profile and remove chromatic aberrations, added a little post-crop vignette, and I was satisfied with the outcome.

Stacy’s After-Before Friday Forum has links to several great photographers and you can read more “how it was done” type posts, and Stacy usually has a video showing her workflow, if this interests you. I always learn a something from the contributors.

If still-life, textures and presets is something you want to learn more about head on over to Kim Klassen’s Cafe.

My Friday find: beautiful roses, and learning about presets and how to use them in Lightroom. I hope your week has been a good one, and you get to spend time being inspired this weekend.

Share your thoughts with us, in the comments box below,

remember to share with your friends if you think they might be interested

Poppy in Black and White

Poppy in Black and White; copyright jmeyersforeman

Poppy in Black and White; copyright jmeyersforeman

One of my favourite flowers, the poppy, so many colours, blowing and dancing delicately in the breeze. Then when the flower is gone the seed pod is always interesting.

 

There isn’t much to be said about a pretty flower photo, so I thought I would show you what I started with……..

IMG_0706

When I was travelling I limited the lens I carried and without a macro lens I was unable to fill the frame the way I wanted to. I knew that I would be doing some cropping in Photoshop. After the framing and cropping I then used Nik Silver Effects Pro 2 to create the black and white.

Screenshot 2014-09-26 07.38.38

If  you are new to Photoshop or Lightroom, Nik Software is a “plug-in”  or for lack of a better term a program we can use inside these two editing programs to develop the image and create “quick” result.  I say quick, because if you have used the software before and have a vision for what you want then  the results can be quick, if however you are unsure of what might be best then there are so many variables both in presets and the changes that can be made to those presets. There are so many variables that I have been known to play with and loose an hour or more on one image!  The adjustments I made are not featured in the screen shot, I recreated this image for the blog as an afterthought!

 

Queen Anne’s Lace in the rain

Queen Anne's Lace soaked from the rain; copyright jmeyersforeman

Queen Anne’s Lace soaked from the rain; copyright jmeyersforeman

Visiting family in Saskatchewan this week and it’s cold and rainy. It could be worse, watching the news and Facebook I have learned that it snowed in Calgary! We know that the snow and rain won’t last, well at least we live in hope!

Queen Anne’s Lace like everything else was drenched from the rain, but I love the way the tiny raindrops hang off the slender leaves and run along the stem.  I created this image in black and white, simplifying the image to textures, and to bring out the raindrops that rest so gently on the stems.

Leanne Cole published Monochrome Madness each week, and I have submitted this image for week 28 to be published Wednesday, if I haven’t left it too late, in the meantime check out Monochrome Madness week 27 for some amazing monochrome images.  Check out the latest submission for Monochrome Madness week 28. 

to view the flower gallery visit my website, purchase of prints and or licensing is also available.

Lotus Flower

lotus flower; copyright jmeyersforeman

lotus flower; copyright jmeyersforeman 

Busy visiting friends and family in Ontario and going to spend a couple of days at the cottage! I hope you are having a great week.

 

Caen Market

IMG_5471

 

 

 

 

Just a few images from the Caen Market, full of the most amazing food, fresh vegetables, flowers, seafood, cheeses and breads. Held every Saturday Morning, rain or shine. it had rained earlier in the morning, and everyone was carrying umbrella’s as well as their baskets.

It was wonderful to walk around, smelling and tasting all the fresh bread, crepes, cheeses, and of course the strawberries.

One of the great things about the trip we have been on is all the different Markets we have visited.Each one very unique from the last. This one outdoors, the vendor’s truck full of goods parked behind their stall.

IMG_5462 IMG_5460 IMG_5459 IMG_5458 IMG_5456 IMG_5455 IMG_5454 IMG_5449

Caen France, garden market; copyright jmeyersforeman

IMG_5469IMG_5474

 

Rushing by the Sunflowers and the French Countryside

rushing by the sunflowers and the French countryside

rushing by the sunflowers and the French countryside 

We took a four hour train ride from Bordeaux to Nantes, long train rides are usually good for getting a little work done but I find I often get distracted, watching the French countryside rush by.  I have commented several times on Spain’s train system, it was pleasure to travel with them I was convinced that they could not be outdone. Well the French might not have outdone the Spanish rail service, but it is just as easy, just as comfortable, just as easy to recommend.

During our four hour ride we watched the cities, towns and farmland roll by. I think this is as close as I will get to the sunflower fields this year! Robin has a great photo of a sunflower on his blog this week, he wanted to alert the photographers in his area that the bright beautiful flower is in bloom.

This image and others are available in my photoshelter gallery. I invite you to check them out. I have had the gallery, but just now finding some time to develop the site a little further.

 

Fuchsia Flowers: Llanes Spain

Double exposure; Fuchsia Flowers:  copyright jmeyersforeman

Double exposure; Fuchsia Flowers: copyright jmeyersforeman 

We were wondering the streets of LLanes Spain, a little seaside town along the north coast in the province of Asturias. The northern route of the Camino to Santiago de Compostela runs through the town, and each day we would see several pilgrims as they passed through town. Llanes is a resort town, and a wide range of accommodation is available as well as restaurants and cafe’s serving daily menu.

There are remnants of 800 year old city walls, unfortunately the tower is now closed, there is a small harbour and along the port you can see the Cubos de la Memoria, however the main attraction is the beaches, within walking distance of the centre of town. It was on the walk home, late one afternoon that I found this large, rather overgrown fuchsia shrub, with the beautiful red and magenta flowers starting to bloom.

Not satisfied with the photos I was getting of the flowers I tried zooming several exposures to get the streaks of light. After merging the two images together I was able to achieve the affect I was looking for, that of the flowers gently blowing in the breeze. Intentional camera movement has been around for as long as I remember it, but digital cameras and the use of photoshop have given me the tools to better achieve the pre-visualized results.

We have moved onto Leon Spain, and we are enjoying our wedding anniversary amidst one of the many great festivals of Leon. We should have photos soon.

Field of Poppies and Sunshine

field of poppies and sunshine

field of poppies and sunshine

The Poppies are lining the roads and ditches, here in Spain, blowing gently in the breeze, and providing beautiful bright colour that contrasts with the grass.

I used a couple of different steps in Photoshop first to emphasize the green and “hairy” stems of the poppy, another to keep the warm sunshine that was filtered through the grass, and yet another to enhance both the colour and delicate nature of the poppies that were gently dancing with the breeze.