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, April 24, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen April 24, 2012

What fun! Here is another Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen. Kim's Challenge details are:

Let's talk next week's TT theme. (April 24th)

How 'bout a WaterColour eDition?

Your image must contain at least one layer of Oh my or Let Go.

As I have mentioned previously, I recently got a Lensbaby Composer Pro lens for my Canon EOS 40D. It is a lot of fun to use. I used one of my images that was taken with the Double Optic lens. This gives a sharp focus in the middle and decreasing focus as you out out from the sharp focus area. The lens tilts, so you can put the sharp focus area almost anywhere in the image area. For the image I used here, I used an aperture of F/4, 1/160 sec, ISO 200. I tilted the Lensbaby to the left so that the area of sharp focus was to the left side of the image and became more out of focus and distorted as you went to the right.

Layer 1.  I opened my image in a new document. This is the image as shot by the camera. I did not crop the image. To better see the effects of the Lensbaby, it is usually better not to crop the image as the effect increases toward the edges of the image. My camera gives me an image that is approximately 12 x 9-inch at 300 ppi. Here is my image.

Layer 2.  Layer 2 is a duplicate of Layer 1. It is at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity. It looks just the same as Layer 1, so I won't show it.

Layer 3. For this layer, I brought in Kim's texture kk_ohMy. This what it looks like at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity. The texture is originally 12 x 12-inch, so I used the Free Transform ( Command / Control - T ) to change it to my 11 x 8.5-inch layout.

I changed the layer blending mode to Soft Light with Opacity 100%.

This brightened up the image and added in a little of the texture.

Layer 4.  I duplicated Layer 3. I changed the Layer Blend Mode to Multiply and reduced the Opacity to 50%. This darkened the image and added in more texture. However, there was too much texture over the sharp in focus lilac blossom. I added a layer mask to the layer and then painted with a black soft brush on the mask over the blossom area from which I wanted to remove the texture.

Layer 5.  For this layer, I made a brush from the texture kk_ohMy. I made it a light texturing brush. Then I sampled a lilac color from the image and gently added in the color on this layer mainly around the edges of the image. I changed the layer Blend Mode to Linear Dodge at 50% Opacity. This gave me what I was looking for for the image.

Layers 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10.  These layers are the text and my signature stamp and date. The words for the title are the last dialog in the movie, The Tourist. I really enjoyed the movie. Of all the good lines within the movie, these are my favorite. And, I think they are fitting for an image created with the Lensbaby lens. You either like the distortion away from the sweet spot of sharp focus, or you don't like it. All the years I have been taking photographs, I have been trying to have my image in focus. Now, with the Lensbaby, I am on purpose trying to create images that are not in focus, in a special way. I am beginning to like the Lensbaby results since my mind is now thinking of art not just a reproduction of the scene. It is fun!

Layer 11.  I was almost finished, but then I thought that the edges could be a little darker so as to bring the eye into the image. I added this new layer and filled it with 50% gray and chained the blend mode to Soft Light at 100% Opacity. I then made sure my Foreground Color was black. I selected a soft round brush and set the brush opacity to 30%. Then I clicked on the top left corner of the image, held the shift key down, click on the top right corner, still keeping the shift key down, Clicked on the bottom right corner, clicked on the bottom left corner, and then on the top left corner. This burned in the edge of the image slightly. I was now happy with my result.

This is how my Layers Panel looks at the end.

I hope you liked my tour of how I used Kim's kk_ohMy texture and my lilac image that was shot with the Lensbaby lens.

Enjoy your life to the fullest.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Beyond Layers with Kim Klassen -----April 19, 2012

On Day 27, 18 April 2012, Kim Klassen gave us the following challenge:

Today's Challenge
Pick one image and process it 3 different ways. Get creative...play...experiment.... let it flow. And ENJOY the process. 

Also, she gave us three textures that we could use if we wished. And, Kim showed us a video of three tips and tricks that she using on her photos. 

I used an image of a box of soft pastels for my one image to process in three different ways. I am not going to show all the steps for the three ways. I'll just ell you what I did.

So you could see all the images at at the same time, I put the original and the three processed ones on the same layout.

The upper left is the original image Straight Out Of Camera (SOOC).

For the upper right image, I changed it to Black and White. I applied the texture kk_abstract, with Soft Light mode. Then added a Levels adjustment layer to the texture and increased the midtone  levels a little to make a little between just soft light and multiply.  Brought the color back to one of the pastels.

For the lower left image, I brought in Kim's texture kk_coolgrunge at Soft Light and 50% Opacity. Then I added a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer and decreased the saturation in the reds and greens. Then I brought back the color in one of the pastels.

For the lower right image, I brought in Kim's kk_framed texture at soft light and 100% Opacity. Then I converted the image to black and white using a Gradient Map. Then I added a layer with Noise and then blurred the Noise a little. This makes it look a little like grain in pictures taken on film.

The background of the layout is Kim's texture kk_abstract at Normal and 100% Opacity. I then added a large version of my flower that I made to overlay her texture. And I added in three smaller flowers also.

That is what I did.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen April 17, 2012

This entry for Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen is dual purpose for me. In addition for the Tuesday challenge I am using this for my entry in Kim's Beyond Layers. In Day 25 of Beyond Layers, Kim gave us her watercolor texture kk_iAm and wanted us to post our use on her site. So for this Texture Tuesday I will use kk-iAm since we have a Free and Easy challenge. Here is what Kim gave us:

I'm thinking free & easy..... sound good?
Next week, your image must contain at least one layer of any of my textures. That's it......

So, This is what I did.

I took some pictures with my new Lensbaby lens (see earlier blog entry). The lilac in my front yard is just starting to bloom. I used one of these shots for my image. Notice how the image is sharp in the center and gradually blurs as you go out to edges.

Layer 1.  I opened a new document that is 11 x 8.5-inch landscape, 300 ppi, RGB, white background. I won't show this since just a plain white layer.

Layer 2.  Will be created later.

Layer 3.  Will be created later.

Layer 4.  Will be created later.

Layer 5.  I brought in my photo. I transformed the image to fit my layout page and placed it where I wanted it. I have the photo placed so that the borders on the left, right, and top are about the same size, and the bottom border is wider. This has it placed so it doesn't look like it is falling off the page. It would look that way if all borders were same size.

Layer 6.  For this layer, I used Kim's texture kk_iAm. It is beautiful watercolor texture. Kim gave us this texture in Day 25 of Beyond Layers. This is what it looks like at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

I changed the layer blend mode to Soft Light and 100% Opacity.

This gives the image some gentle shadings over the leaves and brightens the image.

Layer 7.  I duplicated Layer 6 and changed the layer blend mode to Multiply and reduced the Opacity to 60%.

This added more shading texture to the leaves and darkened the entire image to give more the appearance of how the flowers really looked outside. It was a cloudy day and rather dark in the shade where the plant is located. I was very happy with this result for the image. But, the layout needed more that a white border around the image. 

Now for Layer 4.  I made Layer 5 my active layer. I held down the Command / Control key and clicked on the Thumbnail of Layer 5 to put a selection around the image.

Then I made a new layer below Layer 5 by holding down the Command / Control key and clicking on the Create a new Layer button at the bottom of the Layers Panel. This puts a new layer below the active layer. This new layer is My Layer 4. I then filled the selection area on Layer 4 with a lilac color that I had sampled from the lilac blossoms in the original photo. You can't see it yet since it is below the image. This becomes the mat for the photo.

Back to Layer 5. I made Layer 5 the active layer. I used Free Transform ( Command / Control - T ) to resize the image to a slightly smaller size so that I could see the mat under the photo.

Back to Layer 4.  I used Free Transform to resize the Mat so that it had equal borders top, left and right, and a larger bottom border.

Now for Layer 2. I made a new layer above Layer 1. I filled this layer with one of the lighter lilac colors I had sampled from the image.

Now for Layer 3.  This lilac color was too intense for me, so I added a Hue / Saturation Layer. I reduced the saturation to -40.

Now the color is better, it no longer is right in my face. But, it it very flat. So, I went to Filter / Texture / Texturizer

This opened the Texturizer Panel.

In the upper right, in the Texture drop down box, I loaded in one of my own textures. You will not have it. Texturizer comes with Sandstone, Canvas, Burlap and Brick textures. However, by clicking on the little menu icon next to the drop down box you can load your own texture. I Scaled mine at 150% and set Relief to 10. I also checked Invert. With Invert, my texture looks like it is coming up off the page. If I had left it unchecked, the texture would look like it was embossed into the page.

I now have a nice texture for this background for the photo. And, this is my final layout for this page using Kim's kk_iAm texture.

Now I wanted to see how the image would respond to one of my digitally created watercolor textures. 

I started with the same image on the same page layout. 

I created my own watercolor texture using Photoshop CS5 and a watercolor brush that I had created. This is my texture at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

I clipped the texture to the image and changed the Blend Mode to Vivid Light at 60% Opacity.

I liked this very much. So I sampled a couple of the orangish-brown colors from with in leaves to use for the mat and the background color. I created the mat and background color as I showed above. I also added a drop shadow and bevel and emboss to the mat.

Again I thought the background color was a little intense so I add in a Hue / Saturation adjustment layer and decreased the saturation.

So, this is how it looks with my digitally created texture. I am happy.

Thank you for seeing what I did with my lilac bush image. I hope you enjoyed the tour.

Live life fully and enjoy what you do.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen April 10, 2012

Another Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen. These are so much fun. If you aren't already doing them, you can join us in the fun by going to Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen and joining in with us.

For this week Kim's instructions were:

Your image must contain at least one layer of 'little things'.

Layer 1.  I started by using a photo that I took with my Canon PowerShot S90. A couple of days ago, I was fortunate to have taken this photo of a little thing sitting on the leaf of the lilac in my front yard. So I used it for my Layer 1.

Layer 2.  For this layer, I duplicated Layer 1 and then inverted the image. You can also use the keyboard shortcut,  Command/ Control - I .

And, I get this with the colors inverted. 

This is beautiful just as is, but I haven't used the texture yet. 

Layer 3.  I brought in Kim's texture kk_littlethings. This is how it looks at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

Then I changed the Layer Blend Mode to Hue and kept Opacity 100%.

Again, this is beautiful and I could stop here. But...

Layer 4.  For this layer I sampled two colors from this image to be my Foreground / Background colors. Then using one of my watercolor brushes that I made, I made this watercolor for this layer. If you want to know how to make your own watercolor brushes, go to Mark S Johnson's workbench on how to do it. This is what my watercolor looks like at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

Then I changed the Blend Mode to Color Dodge at 100% Opacity. 

I really like this. 

Layer 5.  I used the font Trajan Pro regular for the title. I used a blue color and added a lighter color of the same blue for a stroke.

Layers 6 and 7.  I added in my signature and the date.

And, this is it.

At least I thought it was. My mind wasn't through with it yet.

Layer 8.  I made a composite of all the visible layers, Command / Control - Option / Alt - Shift - E. This layer looks just like what we are seeing in Layer 7, but it is all on one layer. Since it looks just the same, I won't show it.

Layer 9.  My mind was thinking -- I used an Invert before in this layout, what do we get if I Invert again. I duplicated Layer 8 and inverted, Command / Control - I .

Oh my! Too many great images to choose from. I will select the previous one for my final image. But you can pick your favorite from them, too.

This is what my LayersPanel looks like at the end.

I hope you enjoyed this Texture Tuesday.

Enjoy your life to the fullest.


Sunday, April 8, 2012

My new Lensbaby

I just got the Lensbaby Composer Pro Lens. Wow! What an interesting way to take pictures. I am taking the Lensbaby Magic class taught by Kathleen Clemons at PPSOP (The Picture Perfect School of Photography). Our first assignment is to take some shots using the Double Glass lens with the sharp focus in the center of the image. We are to use the f/4 aperture. I thought I would share with you what I did.

I took numerous photos yesterday. I used this one to play around with to make something artsy. I am using Photoshop CS5 for my creation. This is what I did.

Layer 1.  I opened my image as this layer. This is the image SOOC (Straight Out Of Camera). Nothing has been done to it. The Lensbaby gave me sharp focus in the center of the image and then increasing out of focus as you go out from the center. You can change the aperture by using different aperture disks for the lens. I used the f/4 aperture disk. My Canon EOS 40D was set to Aperture Priority. I used ISO 200. Shutter Speed was 1/1250 sec. 

Layer 2.  I duplicated Layer 1 for this layer. That way I always have the original in the file if I goof somewhere along the way. So Layer 2 looks just the same as Layer 1.    

Layer 3.  I wanted to turn the image into a black and white image and then bring back some of the color to the sharp focus area in the center. I clicked on the Add Adjustment Layer button at the bottom of the Layers Panel and opened the Channel Mixer Panel. All I did was select Monochrome by checking the check box for Monochrome.

And this gave me this black and white image.

Now I want to put some of the color back into the central sharp focus area of the image. I added a layer mask to this layer. Then I selected a soft round brush and painted with black on the image where I wanted the color to show (make sure the mask is selected). This is what Layer 3 looks like now.

Layer 4.  For this layer, I brought in Kim Klassen's kk_grunged texture. This is what the texture looks like at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

Then I set the Blend Mode to Soft Light and kept Opacity 100%.

But, I did not like the striped dark lines on the middle left edge. So I went back to the Normal Mode. Made a selection around the area I wanted to change with the Lasso Tool.

The I used the Content Aware Fill on the selection. It did a great job of removing the black stripes that I did not want on the texture.

Now I changed the Blending Mode to Soft Light and still kept Opacity 100%.

Layer 5.  I duplicated Layer 4 and changed the Blending Mode to Multiply and reduced the Opacity to 30%.

And, this is my final image. I like the way the texture in the out of focus edges adds the dark grungy border and a warm color to that black and white area.

This is my first step into using the Lensbaby. It should be an interesting journey learning how to use it with positive artistic imagery.

Hope you enjoyed this episode into what I am doing at this point along my path.