Digital Darkroom time. Take a few similar shots and image them to different colors and genres. That’s what happens when the mind becomes creative.
A lake set in black and white. Black and white images are always popular. Why? They’re almost monochromatic. Simple. Plain. Black and white photos have a retro feeling. They have a vintage feeling. They’re artsy.
But a black and white photo can also be gloomy or gothic. It all depends on the way it’s produced or imaged. From the original photograph, the imager conjectures a feeling for the viewer.
The next process would add a bit of color to your black and white photos. This adds a bit of interest to the picture. Just a hint of color, enough that the viewer “sees” some hues blended into the photo. Other effects added to this black and white photo are light streaks, making the sun stream across the trees and lake.
Sometimes when you look at a photograph, you see a certain color pop out at you. Pick up on that color. Make it the focal point of your photo. “Hidden Among The Trees” has tones of a color that I saw in the lake originally and felt was natural to lake properties. I also brought out the glow of the sun shining on the lake.
Let’s saturate with more color. Add one highlight to pop the photo and draw the viewer’s eye to a direction in the scene. Let’s take them to a place where they can reflect in their mind. Let your viewers imagine what they want in your photographs. Let your creativity soar into their minds.
Darken the edges and sharpen the picture. Tools such as vignetting add mystery to a photo. Vignetting can add depth to a portrait. It gives pictures an old-time feel. As does using sepia.
Heavy saturation. Really heavy saturation. Deep, deep colors. Making a photo surrealistic or abstract. Now this is a genre that makes the viewer sit back and reflect!
Take on a whole new focus with the color of your choice. Like pink? Overlay the photo with this hue.
Use vignetting in a portion of the shot.
Change your theme. Use shading to change the thoughts of your photo.
Don’t like pink? Heading towards the violet family? Make your photo warm or cold with qualities of different hues of the same color family. Look at color charts to see the different variations of colors.
We know the basic colors that we adjust on a photo are red, blue and green. You either make a photo warm or cool. But the human eye can visualize about 10 million colors. That is a mind-boggling number. And it’s just a laboratory statistic. It’s certainly not the amount of crayons in a crayon box.
Adjust your photos for what is pleasing to you. Because that’s what is important. You should be pleased with your work before you put your stamp on it. Your signature is reflective of your creativity. You are telling the world what you see. Be proud of what you have created. Stand behind it. But only if you have truly worked and labored in the process of the Digital Darkroom.
Focus on the sunset over the lake. Look into the picture. Sit back and let your eyes wander. Don’t focus on any one point of a photo immediately. Let the photograph grab you. Because there is something in that photograph that will arrest your attention.
When you work with imaging, you have room to be creative. It takes time, yes, but your results are worth the work and patience that you put into your photos. The next photo evokes a feeling of spaciousness of the lake yet a feeling of closeness of the ripples.
Sometimes you can take a photograph and just simply play with it. Turn it into something that blends into a color that you want. A color that has nothing to do with the original picture.
Blue skies over a lake, yes. Maybe blue waters. But turquoise? A tad unrealistic, but pretty. That’s the basic truth of “Crickets”. Some would call it “pretty” because of its colors. Does it make the picture any less significant? Not really. It’s still a photograph of a lake. The work on it is decent. To some, it’s “pretty”. I took “Crickets” and turned it into a surrealistic art form for the last picture of “Digital Darkroom”. I call it “Eye Over The Lake”.
Same photograph as “Crickets”. I re-imaged it. What I saw as I manipulated the photo was a face instead of a lake. A smiling face. But then again, I see different things when I look at photographs.
All of my photographs in today’s posts are hand-manipulated. This means that I took each photo and worked on it with a separate process to reach the final photograph. I did not use a software program that automatically takes photographs and changes them instantly. Those types of programs are available on the market. They are easy to use with the click of your mouse. But they kill spontaneity and creativity. Your mind isn’t expanded and explored. You aren’t doing the imaging. The software is doing it for you.
Social networking and popular programs for working on photographs for smartphones have made sharing your photographs easy. These same programs have also taken away the beauty of creativity. They’ve taken away the art of photography. These programs are misdirecting some people that have talent and could use their own creative thinking. They are an easy way out with the click of a mouse. Good for the masses, I guess. But all of those photographs from those programs look alike. They all have the same feel to them.
That’s the point of The Digital Darkroom. Creativity. Exploration. Time. Patience. Learning. Growth. It’s worth all of these when you can sit back and look at your collection of photographs and know that you have hand-worked them. In time, you grow and become proficient and skilled. But most importantly, you can be proud to know that you have done the work yourself.
Changing colors, hues, genres, drawing out the best in a photograph. Because you have worked with each photograph, sometimes scrapping it and starting anew. But you took that photograph and brought out the best in it from within your own mind. With each painstaking click you make on your photo, you are heading towards your own work of art that you can call your own. And that’s when you can put your watermark on it with pride.