Photography Photoshop CC Topaz

That Painterly Look…

Easterly - San Francisco - 2013

While I enjoy crystal clear sharp images for most of my photographs, I’ve also developed a taste for a more painterly look for some of my images.

This painterly look is something that can be applied in Photoshop – using either the new Oil Paint filter in Photoshop CC or using the Topaz Simplify 4 plugin. They’re different – and the results are different but both can yield very pleasing results.

There’s something that my brain likes about removing sharp details – and simplifying an image – and that’s what these painterly effects do. Instead of crisp details, those details fall away and just the major elements remain. The effect can be quite subtle – such as in the image above – or more dramatic – such as in the image below. For me, photography encompasses a wide range of techniques – and that painterly look is one I sometimes enjoy in my images.

Both of these images were shot earlier today along San Francisco’s Embarcadero using a Fujifilm X-E1. Doug Kaye and I once again enjoyed exploring one of our favorite San Francisco neighborhoods – along with a late lunch at our favorite: Slanted Door!

Waiting - San Francisco - 2013

Golden Gate Photography Photoshop San Francisco/California

The Golden Gate – Working on Older Photos

Last night, for a bit of relaxation (!), I took a browse through some of my older, unprocessed images – among the over 15,000 of them in my Lightroom library.

I came across several images that I ended up taking into Photoshop CS6 and applying some new techniques I’ve been learning – mostly from Ben Willmore’s excellent Photoshop for Photographers course on CreativeLive – but from some others as well.

My favorite from last night’s editing session was the image below of San Francisco’s Golden Gate – which I shot on February 24, 2008 using my Canon EOS 40D Digital SLR. I really liked the composition/angle of the shot – and the moody overcast skies.

I worked in Photoshop to enhance the details in the bridge itself – and then added a subtle painterly effect (using Photoshop CS6’s Oil Paint filter) to the ocean itself. The tighter crop helps keep my eye in the frame – with there being lots of fun stuff to look at! Hope you also enjoy it – be sure to click on the image itself to see a larger version!

Stormy Gate