Welcome to EarlK Design!

The EarlK Design blog consists mainly of entries that show how to do things using Adobe Photoshop that I hope you will find helpful and give your creative mind more tools to work with.

I use Adobe Photoshop CS6, and sometimes Adobe Illustrator CS5, Lightroom 5, and Corel Painter X. However, I believe that much of what I show can be done using Photoshop Elements.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen January 31, 2012

Another wonderful challenge from Kim Klassen. This week's challenge is:

Tuesday, January 31st TT Theme is:
I would love to see what you all do with the latest freebie... 'simplicity'......  
Your image must contain atleast one layer of the 'simplicity' texture. That's it...that's all.

If you aren't a member of the Texture Lovin' List, you really need to sign up to enjoy Kim's generosity of free textures and have fun with these challenges.
Here is my entry for this week. This is the original photo.

After using one layer of kk_simplicity and a few other things, this is what I ended up with for my final image.

I am sorry, but this has been a busy week for me and I have not had the time to show you how I got from there to here. Please accept my apology.

Enjoy what you are doing with your life.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen January 24, 2012

Here is my entry for this week's Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen. If you like textures and you are not already a member of Texture Lovin' List, click on this link to go to Kim's Cafe and sign in and you will receive free textures from Kim.

Here is Kim's theme for this week.

Tuesday, January 24th's TT Theme is:
How 'bout another prompt....a word...  a starting point.....
Are you ready? the word is 'story'..... (I have 'story' on the brain....we are talking about our stories over at Beyond Layers....
I think this will be a fantastic prompt for TT. Lots of possiblities.
The image must be 'themed' around the word 'story'...and contain at least one layer of any of my textures.

There is a story behind the photograph. But, let me show you what I have done.

Layer 0.  I opened a new document that was 11 x 8.5-inch Landscape, 300 ppi, RGB, white background. I usually start a new layout with the size I want and 300 ppi, RGB, white background. I won't show this layer as it is just a white layer.
Layer 1.  My granddaughter took this photo using her iPhone. She then sent it to me as an email. Instant photography and it was already on my computer within a few moments! That is me in the background. I brought this image in as my Layer 1. I resized it to fit my layout using Free Transform.

Layer 2.  I Placed Kim Klassen's kk_storm Texture for this layer. Here is how kk_storm looks at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

Then I changed the Layer Blend Mode to Lighten and Opacity 75%.

Now, I did not want the texture over the caterpillar, so I clicked on the Add layer mask Button at the bottom of the Layers Panel to add a white layer mask, which shows all. Then, using a round, soft brush with black color, I painted over the caterpillar area of the layer mask to hide the texture from the caterpillar.

Layer 3.  I did not like all the gray color of the texture. But, I wanted some of it to show. Using the Eye Dropper Tool, I sampled some of the yellow-green color from the image. This made that color my Foreground Color. I then clicked the button to Create new Adjustment Layer and selected Hue/Saturation. In the Hue/Saturation dialog, I clicked on Colorize to select it. Since I had the yellow-green color in my Foreground Color, that is the color that was used to colorize the image. I clipped this layer to Layer 2, the image with the layer mask so that it was affecting only Layer 2. The color was now showing only outside the caterpillar.

But, now it was too green for me. So, I changed the Layer Blend Mode to Overlay and left Opacity 100%. This gave me what I wanted.

Layer 4.  It was now time to put in the title. I used Papyrus font in white, Normal, 100% Opacity. I put this much of the title on its own layer.

Layer 5. I wanted the type to be larger and placed where I wanted it, so the remainder of the title went on its own layer.

I did not like the dot over the i. So i added a layer mask by clicking the Add Layer Mask Button. Then I used a hard round black brush to paint, on the mask, over the i's dot to hide the dot.

Layer 6.  I could have been finished at the point. But, I wanted to add a distressed border around the image. To do this, I made Layer 6 a composite layer of all the visible layers below it. With Layer 5 being the active layer, I used the keyboard shortcut, Command / Control - Option / Alt - Shift - E, to create the composite layer above Layer 5. The composite layer becomes Layer 6. Then I turned off the visibility of all the layers below this one except of the Layer 0, Background layer. I then used the Rectangular Marquee Tool to make a selection about 3/8-inch in from all the edges. Then, using Refine Edge in the Option Bar I created this distressed edge. You can see how to do this in my previous blog entry (Click to go there). One nice thing about this method is that each one is different as it depends on the image you are using.

Layer 7 and Layer 8.  These are my signature and date layers. White, Normal Mode, 100% Opacity. And this is my final result. I really like the fine texture that is in Kim's kk_storm texture.

Here is how my Layers Panel looks at the end.

Instead of telling you my story behind the photo, I want you to make up your own story to go along with my image. How is that for a twist?

I hope you enjoyed my tour through the process I went down to get the final result.

Live life to the fullest.


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Beyond Layers with Kim Klassen January 19, 2012

Just Enough

Kim's thought was ... Just Enough ...

Today's Challenge:

I encourage you to be simplistic with your composition... this can be any subject. Try using simple objects from your home... or perhaps even a photo of you, just your hand, your hair, your eyes..... maybe your hand holding a simple object.. You get the idea... Keep it simple... Did I mention simple?
If you are setting up a still, think.... less is more.... allow for some lovely negative space in the shot .....
I took a photo of a ceramic mug that I had made with a Ty Beanie Baby Hedgehog next to it. I used my Canon EOS 40D, Canon EF 50mm f/1.4. The shot was made using incandescent lighting, spot focus, f/1.4, 1/1250 sec, ISO 400. I used a backdrop of a batik fabric that I have. I left the creases in the fabric. The set up is on a drafting table that is in a horizontal position. I used a copy paper carton to hold the fabric up in the back.

Here is what I did with my photo in Photoshop CS5.

Layer 0.  I opened a new document that was 8.5 x 11-inch, portrait, 300 ppi, RGB, white background. I won't show his since it is just a white background layer.

Layer 1.  I brought in the photo and using Free Transform I sized the photo to my layout page.

Layer 2.  Then I brought in Kim Klassen's texture kk_awaken. I used the Free Transform to size the texture to fit my layout. Here is what kk_awaken looks like at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

I changed the Mode to Soft Light and kept the Opacity 100%. It lightens up the whole image.

Layer 3.  I want to darken the edges of the layout. I will do this by using a layer filled with 50% gray and set to Soft Light Blend Mode. I created a new layer, Layer 3. I used Shift - Delete / Backspace to open the Fill dialog. 

I selected 50% Gray, Normal Mode, Opacity 100%, and left Preserve Transparency unchecked. This is what it looks like at this point.

Then I set the Layer Blend Mode to Soft Light.

It looks just the same as it did before.

With this 50% gray Soft Light layer being selected as the active layer, I selected the Burn Tool.

In the Option Bar I selected a fairly large round soft brush, used Midtones Range, an Exposure of 55%, and checked Protect Tones.

Then I clicked in the upper left corner, held down the shift key, click in the upper right corner, still holding down the shift key, clicked in the lower right corner, shift key is till down, clicked in the lower left corner, and shift still down, clicked in the upper cleft corner where I began doing this. I now have a darker border all around the image. I did this twice to get the result I wanted. Here it is.

I could have stopped here and been happy with this. But, I thought that I would like a distressed border around the layout.

The method I am going to use to create the distressed edge requires that you have Photoshop CS5, I least I think you do, I am not sure what is in Elements. It requires that you have the new Refine Edge when using the Rectangular Marquee Tool.

Layer 4.  While Layer 3 is the active layer, I used Command / Control - Option / Alt - Shift - E to create a composite of all the visible layers. This composite layer becomes Layer 4. The image looks just like it did previously. I turned off the visibility of the layers below, except for the Layer 0 background.  Using the Rectangular MarqueeTool, I placed a selection that was about 3/8-inch in from all the outside edges.

Then, in the Option Bar, I clicked on the Refine Edge button to open up the Refine Edge dialog. Feather is set to 0 px, Style Normal.

In the View Mode drop down menu, I selected On White.

In Edge Detection, I checked Smart Radius, and set the Radius to 60 px. You can play around with the sliders in the Adjust Edge area, but I left them all at 0. In Output To I selected Layer Mask. This uses a layer mask and keeps all my pixels untouched. I clicked OK.

This is what I now have.

Layers 5 and 6.  These are my signature layer and date layer.

And, I now have my competed layout.

This is what my Layers Panel looks like at the end.

Just this one texture was just enough to turn this image into something that was better with less.

I hope you enjoyed my tour.

Enjoy life!


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen January 17, 2012

Join me in another Kim Klassen Texture Tuesday on this day of 17 January 2012. Kim's guidance for this week was:

Tuesday, January 17th's TT Theme is:

How 'bout a prompt....a word...  a starting point.....
Are you ready? the word is 'open'..... take it and roll...don't overthink... this should inspire so many possiblities.... I just know you all will ROCK this...
The image must be 'themed' around the word open...and contain at least one layer of any of my textures.

A few days ago, a friend of mine sent me an email containing some images that had been sent to her. I do not know the original source of the images. She knew that I would be interested in them. And, I was. The images were of the Lockheed Aircraft Burbank, California, plant. They showed the original appearance of the factory before World War II began for the United States and how it looked after it was camouflaged to look like a rural housing subdivision from the air.

The Lockheed P-38 Lightning aircraft was being made in this plant. I was a young boy and I used to ride my bicycle about 20 miles to go watch the P-38's take off and land at the plant. Airplanes were not too common of a sight at this time in the age of the airplane. People would still come out of their house to look and see the plane if they heard one overhead. At least I did. The P-38 was and still is one of my favorite airplanes.

I thought that this was a perfect topic for the word "OPEN." Open in plain sight and hidden in the open.

Here is my final layout.

And, here is how I got there.

Layer 0.  This is the Background layer. I opened a new 11 x 8.5-inch Landscape document, 300 ppi, RGB, and White background color. I won't show this since just white layer.

Layer 1.  This is one of my EarlK Design textures that I made while taking Kim's Art of Texture class last October 2011 to December 2011. What a fantastic class! I used it at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity. 

Layer 2.  This is another of my EarlK Design textures. I made it using Starbuck's coffee. Here is my texture at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

Then I changed the Mode to Hue and 60% Opacity.

Layer 3. Now I brought in Kim's texture kk_confidence. Here it is at Normal 100%.

And, with the Mode changed to Linear Light with Opacity 50%.

To me this looked like a good color and appearance for the dry, brownish hills around the Burbank, California, area in the summer time.

Layer 4. Then I decided that I wanted a stroke outline around my layout. I added a new layer above Layer 3. With the Rectangular Marquee Tool I made a selection that was about 1/4-inch in from all the edges of the layout.

Then I filled the selected area with the Foreground Color. I used the keyboard shortcut, Option / Alt - Delete/ Backspace, to do this. It does not matter what color you use. 

Then I deselected the selection. I want to have a special kind of stroke. I won't go through the steps here. You can see how to do it in Episode 11 of Other Days with Earl, here on this blog by clicking H E R E. And, I now have the stroke that I want. It is a thin black, then a wider dark color sampled from the layout, then a wide light color sampled from the layout, and then another thin black. I put the stroke on the inside of the selection.

However, I do not want the blue color on the inside of the stroke. I want the inside to be transparent. I changed the Fill, not the Opacity, to 0%. And, I did change the Opacity to 80%. For, this result.

Layer 5.  On this layer, I want to put the mat for the two photos that I want to use in the layout. I will use the Rectangular Marquee Tool to make the mat. I made the first rectangle in the upper left of the layout. Then, with the Rectangular Marquee Tool selected, I held down the Shift Key. The cursor gets a little + sign next to it. This indicates that you can add another selection to the first to get a combined selection. So, while holding down Shift, I added another selection that overlapped the first at its lower right corner. And I get this selection.

I filled the selection with White color. Use whatever method you like. I used a keyboard shortcut. I hit D to set my Foreground/Background colors to Black/White. Then I used Command / Control - Delete / Backspace to fill the selection with the Background Color.

Then I deselected the selection and added a Drop Shadow for the mat.

Layer 6. For this layer, using the Rectangular Marquee Tool, I made a selection that was the size I wanted the image to be over the white mat. I filled the selection with Foreground Color (Option / Alt - Delete / Backspace), black in my case. This will be the clipping mask for the photo that I will bring in above this layer.

Layers 7 and 8.  For Layer 7, I brought in my first photo and clipped it to the mask on Layer 6. I created an Adjustment Layer, Layer 8, of Hue/Saturation and Colorized the photo to make it a sepia tone photo.

Layers 9, 10 and 11. I did the same thing for the second photo. 

Layer 12.  I obtained an image of a P-38 Lightening aircraft from the internet. Then using the Pen and Ink Sketch method I show in Episode 10 of Other days with Earl, I created this rendition of the aircraft for my layout.

Layer 13.  Actually there are 5 layers within this Group. They are my text layers. Each part of the text is on its own layer. I used the Papyrus font with black color. 

Layer 14.  I want something a little different for the outer edges of the layout. I used Kim's kk_februarymagicedges. Here it is at Normal mode and 100% Opacity.

But, look at what happens when you set the blend mode to Screen and I changed the Opacity to 70%. 

Here is what my Layers Panel looks like at the end.

And, I am very pleased with my final result.

And, that is how the whole Lockheed Burbank plant was hidden right out in the open.

I hope you enjoyed my nostalgic trip down memory lane with me. 

Enjoy life!