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, September 24, 2013

Collage Obsession . . 22 September 2013 . . County Fair

The first Los Angeles County Fair was held on October 17, 1922. It ran for five days through October 21, 1922, in a former beet field in Pomona, California. Admission was 50 cents, and about 50,000 people attended. The L.A. County Fair turned 90 years old in 2012.  It began in a beet and barley field in 1922. And now, the 487-acre Fair greets around 1.5 million a year.

My father and mother went to the opening fair. Of course, I was not yet born, so I wasn't with them. The only photo that I have of their visit to the fair is the photo of the four pigs. The photo was in rather poor condition and required quite a bit of restoration work on my part to get it this good. And why did they only put a picture of pigs in the photo album?

The other two black & white images are from the early years of the Fair. The color photo for the background is from the current year Fair. The frame in which I placed the collage is from a framed photo that my mother brought from Finland when she came to the United States in 1914.

That's all for now.

Please go to Collage Obsession to see the other entries. You too can join in the fun.

Live life fully.


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Collage Obsession 15 September 2013 Cinderella

I am just getting this one in under the wire.

When I think of Cinderella, I think of two versions that I really like. The first was the 1950 American animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney. And the second is the 1957 TV broadcast of Cinderella with Julie Andrews playing the lead role. Cinderella is the only Rodgers and Hammerstein musical written for television. It was originally broadcast live on CBS on March 31, 1957.

I started my collage by opening a new 12 x 12-inch, 300 ppi, RGB, and a white background document. Above the background layer I brought in the image of the pumpkin carriage with the mouse horses at the entrance. I filled the page with the image. Notice what layers have the visibility on to see where I am in the layers panel.

Then, I brought in for the next layer the photo of Julie Andrews. Here she is in Normal Mode.

What I did next was to double click on the layer in the panel to open the Layer Style dialog. In the Blending Options, in the Blend if section at the bottom, I adjusted the sliders to give me just the blending I wanted. I adjusted both the This Layer and Underlying Layer sliders. You can split the slider into two parts by holding down the Option / Alt key while clicking and dragging half of the slider. This will help give you smoother blending. You can see the adjustments I used.

These adjustments gave me the following merging of the images.

Next I brought in another photo of Julie.

All I really wanted was the image of her head and to place it in the upper right area of the layout. I used the Lasso Tool and selected the region around her head and then in the Refine Edge I gave it a feather so that the rest of the image faded out. I put this on its own layer. Moved it to the upper right and turned off the visibility of the original photo.

I then used the Blend if again to blend it into the image just as I wanted.

These adjustments give me the following.

Next I brought in the image of Cinderella. I resized her and placed her on the stairs. I set the layer blending mode to Lighter Color at 100% Opacity.

I duplicated this layer and set its blend mode to Saturation with 100% Opacity. This gave the stairs a brighter coloring.

The last thing I did was to add the text for a little of the "Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo" (also called "The Magic Song"). This is a novelty song introduced in the movie.

And this gave me this result.

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I did this.

Sorry it was so late in posting to Collage Obsession.

Please visit Collage Obsession to see the other layouts for Cinderella.

That's all for now.

Live life fully.


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Collage Obsession and Texture Tuesday . . . September 11, 2013

For this entry, I will use the same beginning image and complete the entry for Collage Obsession and then continue with a texture for Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen.

For Collage Obsession this week, Kaylene gave us the following challenge:

Renaissance Woman

This week the challenge is "Renaissance Woman", it can be a woman from the Renaissance Period or maybe a modern Renaissance woman.

I wondered what to do for this challenge. After thinking about Renaissance Woman for a while, the most famous one I could think of at this time was Mona. So she was my starting point.  

Her proportions didn't fit into a 12 x 12-inch layout. So I made her 12-inches tall and fit her onto a  12 x 12 background. Then, using the Rectangular Marquee Tool, I made a selection of a thin piece of the right image edge to the edge of the background. 

Next I went to Edit > Fill to open the Fill dialog. I selected Content-Aware and made sure Preserve Transparency was not checked. And, clicked OK.

This filled in the edge for me. I wasn't too concerned about the exact image that was filled in. all I really wanted was to have mostly the same type of coloring that was there. But, you can see it gave a rather nice fill.

Then I did the same thing to the left side of the image. And now I have Mona filling out my 12 x 12-inch layout quite nicely.

Actually, at this point I copied Mona to a new 12 x 12-inch document that had a white background. By the way, I am working on a 300 ppi document.

From now on, pay attention to which layers have the visibility on to see where I am in the Layers Panel. Also, I have used groups, but I have opened the groups so you can see the layers. If you can't use groups, just use all the layers without grouping them.

Then I Googled Renaissance Woman for the Renaissance time period. I used several images. I selected the ones I used because they all had dark backgrounds. And this would make it easier to blend into Mona's background. I generally used a layer blend mode of Lighten. Then with layer masks I removed the edges that were still showing a little. So far I have this.

All the woman except for the two in upper corners are from the Renaissance. The two in the upper corners are current day Renaissance Woman.

Next I added in the text.

Next I wanted to add in a vignette to darken the edges a little so as to lead the eye into the image. I made a new layer at the top of the stack. With the Rectangular Marquee Tool, with the Feather set at 250 px, I started near the upper left corner and grew a square (holding Shift down) toward the bottom right corner. This gives the the feathered selection on the inside of the rectangle.

But I want the outside of the rectangle. So I used Shift - Command / Control - I to select the inverse. Now the outside of the rectangle is selected.

I next opened a Curves Adjustment Layer and moved the curve downward to darken the selected area. This gave me a nice subtle vignette.

I deselected the selection and closed the Curves panel and I now have this.

And that is my entry for Collage Obsession for this week. Here it is.

Be sure to go to Collage Obsession to see the other entries for this week.

For Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen we have another Free & Easy theme.

I thought that I would continue working on this image for Texture Tuesday. I brought in Kim's kk_1402 texture. Here it is at Normal Mode and 100% Opacity.

I added a layer mask to the texture layer. I then held doen the Option / Alt key and clicked on the Mask, not the image thumbnail. This opened the mask so I could work on it.

I used one of Nancie Rowe Janitz's overlays. Using a levels and a curves adjustment layers, I made the overlay more contrasty. Then I pasted it into the mask.

Next I clicked on the texture thumbnail. And the texture was being applied through the mask. And I set the layer blend mode to Color Burn at 100% Opacity.

And this brightened up the image a little giving it a little more snap. And here it is.

I was happy with this result.

Be sure to go to Texture Tuesday with Kim Klassen to see all the lovely entries.

That's all for now.

Live life fully.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Collage Obsession Challenge . . . 3 September 2013

Tiffany gave us the following:

This week our topic is friends/friendship. 

Recently, I have been doing some layouts using childhood photos of my sister. So, for this challenge, I did another such layout.

Here is my result.

That's all for now.

Live life fully.