Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Playing in Photoshop Elements

While I've been incommunicado here, I have been immersing myself in the photo-editing program, Photoshop Elements 8.  Tending to prefer to spend my time floating merrily along in the right hemisphere of my brain, it is quite a jolt to have to almost totally dwell in the left hemisphere to understand technical  'whys' and 'wherefores'.  A few million (billion) cells that had been lazily drifting along had a rude awakening and a lot of exercise.  The complaints were constant and raucous, however both hemispheres survived and so did the body that houses them - barely!

The first image below is of a painting I did a few months back with mainly palette knife.  I was not pleased with the result and after taking a photograph of it, parked it away with all my other disappointments.  :0)
I decided to use some of this less than stellar material as the basis for some digital artwork in PSE.

 
Poor photo of palette knife painting.


Above is the painting after applying a variety of textures and filters from Photoshop Elements to it.  I quite like it now!

Above is the same painting edited again in PSE using textures and filters, but with the addition of a photograph of leafless trees from our property.  (I will get rid of that black border at the bottom.)

As you can see, for the moment I am more interested in creating digital abstract art than in creating vintage, dreamy or grunge effects on photographs.  The problem is the possibilities are without limit, especially when one can marry paintings and photographs to produce scrumptious effects.  The above pieces are from my first 'play periods' with PSE.  I will show you some even better (I think) work soon. 



29 comments:

  1. Oh! I like it! I've been wanting to try my hand at digital collage for the longest time, but I'm paralyzed at the idea of having to learn PE...

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  2. Amazing, Bonnie, how your PSE work converted the painting. The first rendition is simply stunning. You really made these complementary colors work against one another, and the textural enhancements are superb. I look forward to seeing more -- and you are right, digital workshops offer unlimited possibilities for play and creativity.

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  3. Oh you ARE having fun, Bonnie! i'm sure it must feel good to be able to immerse yourself in this new medium and put some other things on the back burner.
    I quite like what you did with the painting as per the second photo.

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  4. As much as I admire the grunge and vintage-y looks, I admire that you are staying true to you right now- these speak so much to me right now. I see power, and vibrancy, and strength. I am leaning towards purchasing elements too and I am more excited now that I see you work.

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  5. Jazz: I felt paralyzed too - and quite incompetent for a while - but little by little one learning builds on another. If I can do it, you certainly can!

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  6. George: I just love the textures too. There are many sites out there where great digital artists offer free textures to use in PS - or you can have fun creating your own! Thanks George.

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  7. Deborah: Thank you. Yes, it feels like something that could just take over ... I will have to be strict with myself!

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  8. Vicky: Oh, I hope I did not leave the impression that I don't like vintage and grunge photo edits ... I DO ... just not into it for the moment, but we'll see what tomorrow brings!

    It's a very reasonable price and full of so many options ... if you live in the states, you get on-line support too - which we don't get here in Canada. I would highly recommend it to you Vicky.

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  9. Interesting blend of painting and photography! I do like the painting better after the manipulation.

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  10. Oh I needed this today! I have PSE 8 and have been hesitant about playing since I was so accustomed to my "older" PSE 6. Now I need to have a talk with my left brain and tell her Bonnie said we'll all survive, grumbles and all. And the results are worth it! Love what you're doing with those vibrant colors and textures.

    Nice to see you again!

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  11. Sarah: It does look a WHOLE LOT better, doesn't it!

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  12. Gwynnie: Your comment made me realize that I typed PSE 7 instead of PSE 8! If you already are familiar with PSE 6, you know the basics and should have no problem at all. I was starting from zero and had quite a struggle for a while.

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  13. welcome back bonnie! i have missed you...smiles. i almost felt bad for the smart comments about really staying away...smiles. love that pic...those textures you added are so cool...like rusted and liquid metal...

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  14. Fun stuff. I have Photoshop CS4 and enjoy playing around with photos which I think would be good if only... If only it was sharper, in focus, better colour etc. That's when it's fun to make it abstract. You're doing a great job with yours. Keep on having fun!

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  15. I had some issues w/ learning photoshop, too. I'm old school & sooooo much prefer the antiquated techniques of dodging/burning/overlapping negatives & so forth. Learning photoshop felt a whole lot like trying to do math... and you know us creative types... our brains struggle with all that technical stuff. I can do the basics, but the rest, for now I'll leave that to others such as yourself! Glad you're having fun with it, though!

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  16. I like the effect of the painting in the second photo. Really looks enhanced and on fire.

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  17. Wonderful fun! You are a genius- I have tried to figure things out on my own but can not make sense of the book that tells me how to make sense. so I just basic edit photos, bleah!

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  18. Looks wonderful..To learn photoshop is on top of my to do list but my brain cells are quite happy with the summer mode :))

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  19. So now we know that you are having fun as well as testing the synapses...

    happy days

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  20. I love the effects you have managed to achieve during your experimentation. The colours and textures are bold and strong and the compositions are exciting and happy! I hope to be immersed in media fun by next summer. Thank you for the inspiration!

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  21. Love the textures you are adding!! Very cool
    PSE is so addictive! Enjoy!
    Hugs
    SueAnn

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  22. Brian: You are so sweet! Love that description - 'liquid metal'.

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  23. Hilary: Thanks for the encouragement. AND the inspiration from your great pics.

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  24. becky: Thanx! I am having fun.

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  25. Linda Sue: Well ... hardly a genius, but the encouragement is much appreciated. Believe me, if I can do it, you can. I took an on-line course called 'Digital Magic' which really immersed me in it - and guess what - after the course, I could understand the book!

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  26. Delwyn: Unfortunately, some of the synapses failed the test! :-)

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  27. linda: Thanks for the comment. I will be following your blog for your insights, poetry - and soon mixed media artistic creations! Can't wait.

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  28. Slommler: Yes - addictive. Are there any self-help groups for PS addiction?

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