Flower Artistry

The world of reality has its limits; the world of imagination is boundless.  ~Jen-Jacques Rousseau

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Creating One of A Kind

I can spend days messing with my flowers to create artistic, one of a kind, renditions.  In my last post I talked about making dreamy blooms.  Here, I expand  a bit and touch on  textures, composition and processing.  Flower artistry is so much fun and the possibilities are abundant.  For the pink dahlia above I used Fractalius Software in Embo mode to add definition.  I used the opacity slider to make the application very mild.  I then added a texture that had lines in it to add increased interest.  I get a lot of free textures from  Shadow House Creations.  Finally, I processed in Nik Color Effex Pro, first in “procontrast” to get my color just right and then in “refelctor effex” for added pop.

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Composition

Composition alone is one of the most important steps in creating an elegant flower image.  I’ve learned to really take my time and decide carefully what will be my focal point.  If you just point and shoot at a flower it may turn out pretty but it will often be more of a snapshot than a fine art image.  I often  like to put the center of the flower in one of the corners allowing the petals to flow out into the rest of the image.  I don’t always have the center of the bud in focus as the focal point though.   In the image above, I allowed the center of the flower to be blurred and instead let the tips of the petals take center stage.  To me, this composition has elegance and mystery.

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Texture Choice and Nik Software

For the last image, I first applied a texture that had vertical lines in it to maximize the vertical flow and to mimic lines inherent in the flower and leaves.  It’s important to take time to find the right texture for your image.  Try a lot of different ones to get a feel for the possibilities and the effects they create.  My go- to blending modes in the layers panel of Photoshop are multipjy, overlay and soft light.  I then moved into Nik Color Effex Pro and used both the pro-contrast and the vignette blur applications.  A tip for the pro-contrast app; move all sliders to the left first.   Then, move the “correct color cast” slider to adjust the color.  This alone can make a huge difference in removing any unwanted casts from your image.  Next, play with the “dynamic contrast” slider to see if you like the effect it gives your image.  It will often add clarity and definition.  Lastly, adjust the “correct contrast” slider to taste. Beware, a little goes a long way in Nik Software and it is easy to over do which makes things look over done and heavy.  I suggest playing with all of the applications in Nik Color Effex Pro and become familiar with some of the possibilities.  I do get stuck in ruts and tend to use my favorites over and over so from time to time I go on experimental rampages and come up with new favorites…it’s a lot of fun and gets the creative juices flowing! Working with textures and various software applications can feel overwhelming at fist so my advice is to just dive in and experiment…there are no mistakes…only possibilities!  Keep an open mind and think out side of the box….you may surprise yourself!

I hope you enjoyed these tips and feel inspired to experiment!  ~Susan

This entry was posted in Susan's Blog.

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