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

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.

 

Red Poppy and Raindrops

Red Poppy

Red Poppy and Raindrops 

It rained enough today to pull on the poncho’s, a soft gentle rain that is good for the ground and the flowers. I needed to get down in the grass along the side of the road, to get close enough to the poppy I wanted to show the raindrops, and then wait for that perfect moment when she was standing still to get this shot.

I love seeing the beautiful red poppies blowing in the breeze beside the road.

The timing for our walk through Spain, and the Via la Plata has been perfect for spring flowers.

Hopefully we have more sunshine and less rain tomorrow.

Walking through wine country along the Via la Plata, Spain

new vineyards in Extremadura Spain, along the Via la Plata

new vineyards in Extremadura Spain, along the Via la Plata

We had another day of walking while a harsh cold wind blew in our face! But the country side is beautiful.

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Happy First Day of Spring, from the Via la Plata, Spain

El Castilllo de las Torres, El Real de la Jara

El Castillo de las Torres, El Real de la Jara, Spain

it is the first day of spring, and I must say that Spring in Spain has been wonderful. Most days when we are walking temperatures start about 13 – 15 C and be mid day when we are done around  23 – 25 C. Yesterday we did get a sprinkle of rain, but most days are clear or there is only a light cloud cover. Did I mention it is nice?

It is hard to document the sounds that we hear. At times there has been roosters crowing to walk us up, is sounds pleasant, and I guess it is, but at 4 am not quite so nice! At least some of the goats, sheep, and cows are wearing bells, so we can hear them clang in the distance. The occasional farm dog barks as we go by. Most of the roads are quiet, the occasional car, or tractor, although we have had times where we had to walk on or near the highway, and we had to listen to the cars swish by us at great speed, this was a little unnerving. Most of the time we are walking in the beautiful quiet country side, listening to song of the birds.  A wonderful way to spend a spring day.

 

Happy Friday; beautiful pink tulips to start the weekend off with.

spring pink tulips

spring pink tulips

“The only way to find the limits of the possible is by going beyond them to the impossible.”
-Arthur C. Clark
Arthur C. Clark wanted to inspire us; don’t set goals for what you think you can achieve, set goals for the impossible, dream big.
I picked up the quote on the Truly Twisted Marketing blog. I just recently started reading recently.
We are kicking off the weekend, and we will have two days to do what we want to do, what blissfully wonderful things are you going to be doing? Not sure, take a few moments, gaze at the beautiful pink tulips and dream.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend.
 

Red Poppy; beautiful and delicate

Red Poppy

Red Poppy

with spring finally here I can hardly wait for the flowers to bloom. I am working through some old files, and finding some flower images to satisfy my needs for flowers! I love the red poppy. They are delicate, the color is rich, and they seem to dance with the slightest breeze.

What is your favourite flower?

Bleeding Heart Flower

Bleeding Heart Flower

Bleeding Heart Flower; Lamprocapnos Specitabilis

One of my favourite spring flowers.

Lily at the Bloedel Conservatory, Queen Elizabeth Park, Vancouver BC

lily at the Bloedel Conservatory, Vancouver BC

lily at the Bloedel Conservatory, Vancouver BC

Now for something completely different. I have been publishing a lot of different portraits lately. People I have met and worked with, so I thought it was time to mix it up a little.  Flowers are always so beautiful that I can’t help but take pictures of them.  Especially when visiting a conservatory as lovely as the Bloedel Conservatory in Vancouver BC.

It is april in Calgary, and I have heard that spring bulbs are starting to appear in people’s gardens, not in mine, and we are going to have snow today, with colder than normal temperatures predicted for the rest of the week.  I do miss the flowers.

For this image I used Nik Silver Effects Pro to creat a black and white layer then reduced the opacity to allow a small amount of the color to come through. Since the flower in the original image was a bright red, it came through with a little color while the rest remain dark.

Bridge over spring waters, Cochrane ranch, Cochrane Alberta,