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Posts tagged “Topaz Impression

St. Giles Cathedral Entranceway

Image of St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, Scotland
This image of St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, Scotland is of the West Doorway and contains many interesting carvings that were done by John Rhind in 1884. I am still trying to figure out who the sculptures are of – they represent historical people of Scotland – the middle guy is named Alexander, maybe the king who erected the first church at this location in 1120. Also the Gargoyle surprised me as he was rather prominent in the image (they are used as waterspouts and protect the church from evil spirits). I still wonder who all the people are that are just carved faces in the wall. The workflow is basically the same one used in the my Adding a Creating Painting Effect Fun Photoshop Blog. Lucis Pro was used to sharpen it up a bit. Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression’s Abstract Settings Blake Rudis set to 63% layer opacity. A white layer with many parts painted out in a mask. A frame was added with a Pattern Adjustment Layer clipped to give the soft pink tones. Some clean up, a little dodging and burning, and Nik Viveza 2 to finish off. Would love to get back to Scotland and see who all these carvings are. ….. Digital Lady Syd

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Let’s Hear It for the Mighty Fern!

Image of a Resurrection Fern growing on an Oak Tree
Took this image at the Harry P. Leu Gardens in Orlando, Florida, recently. These are Resurrection Ferns living in the bark of an Oak Tree. The bark was so detailed and colorful and competing with the ferns that both Lucis Pro (see my Digital Lady Syd Reviews Lucis Pro 6.0.9 (Now Affordable!) blog and Topaz ((see sidebar for website link)) Impression) were used to get a more pleasing effect. There were several adjustments layers used and lots of masking done to get the detail back into the leaves. Also used a Red Channel Curves Adjustment Layer to help blend total image. (See my How to Use a Red Channel to Create a Nice Blended Image Effect blog.) I really liked the darker colors in the bark – these filters embraced the color without overtaking the image with detail. These plants were so pretty in the sunlight……Digital Lady Syd


Feeling Peachy

Image of a Peach Colored Hibiscus
Just felt like playing with one of my beautiful peach colored hibiscus blooms that are growing on my back porch. In Lightroom’s Basic Panel, just pressed Auto and reduced the Exposure slider a little (usually the Auto button tends to over-expose the image), added some Clarity, and used the Adjustment Brush to paint in some of the flower focal point details using the Clarity and Sharpness sliders. In Photoshop, Topaz Impression’s Watercolor IV preset was applied with no changes to the image. A layer mask was added and using Grut’s Natural Media Knit Pin brush, small lines were painted to bring the original color from underneath – looks like a light outline in places. Really liked this effect and it is easy to do. On a New Layer above, Grut’s Charcoal Dale Haze brush set to 35 pixels was used to blend away areas that were drawing attention from the focal point, mainly the bud and some of the edges had bright colors in them. Check out Grut.com brushes – each week he offers a free brush to try out and that is how I got the two used here. Nik Viveza 2 (now free) was used to add a slight vignette on the outside edges and to add a little more detail to the focal point. These flowers are so beautiful!…..Digital Lady Syd


Swimming in Circles

Image of fancy fish in a Hawaiian pool
Lots of fun playing with this image of some Hawaiian fancy fish (koi) that was not that great – wanted to see what I could do with it since it had an abstract feel to begin with. In Lightroom, used the Basic Auto button, then backed off the Highlights to -12. Painted with the Adjustment Brush set to Clarity (60), Dehaze (45), and Sharpness (71) on the fish to bring them out just a little. Got to watch the Dehaze brush setting as it can overcook the results if too much is used. Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Glow Graphic Sketch II preset was applied and the layer was set to Overlay blend mode at 77%. On a duplicate layer (CTRL+J) applied Topaz Impression’s Cezanne I preset with changes to the Orange Hue and Saturation sliders. Created a New Layer and set to Overlay – used a black brush set to 12% brush opacity and burned in parts of the image where areas are blending too much together. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) used Topaz Texture Effects’s Burning Effect preset. Changed the border to create the pretty oval effect. Finally applied Nik Viveza 2 (now free) to draw attention to the two middle fish. I thought it turned out to be an interesting effect…..Digital Lady Syd


Taking a Break!

Image of a Malayan Tiger at the Jacksonville Zoo
Just another of my tiger pictures from the Jacksonville Zoo. This guy so looked so relaxed. This time used On1 (see sidebar for website link) Effects 10 and the following filters:  Tone Enhancer, Color Enhance, Sunshine, and HDR Look.  This made a huge difference in the color and contrast! I am still experimenting with the updated and more stable plug-in. On a stamped (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) layer, Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression was opened and used my SJ Building preset on it. Then I used the Spot Healing brush to remove the chain effect behind him but leave a little bit of effect. I really liked the results. (See my How to Use the Spot Healing Brush – Really Improved Now! blog.) A little Nik Viveva 2 (remember it is free now) and that was about it. Need to get back to the zoo and take some more pics of these beautiful animals!…..Digital Lady Syd


Taking a Cat Nap!

Image of a Sumatran Tiger taking a snooze
This was one of my favorite images when I went to the Jacksonville Zoo a while back. This guy just reminds me of any cat taking a little snooze during the day, but keeping one eye slightly opened just to make sure he doesn’t miss anything! And those paws! Anyway, not sure it is the best image, but loved it anyway. Not much was done in PS – Jai Johnson‘s DT-Emerald texture was applied first and set to 64% layer opacity and the cat was lightly brushed out on a layer mask. A Hue/Saturation Adjustment Layer was used to reduce the Saturation to -39 and Lightness to -8 so it was not so green. Then opened Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression set to Rembrandt II preset with a few settings adjusted which gives it the dreamy look. Used a layer mask to bring detail back to the tiger . This was a lot of fun to do!…..Digital Lady Syd


Reflection of Blue Trees

Image of part of the the Asian Bamboo Gardens at Jacksonville Zoo
This is what I consider is a rather unusual image of tree trunks and branches painted blue on several trees at the Jacksonville Zoo’s Asian Bamboo Gardens. There was a lot of bamboo around, but not in this reflection shot. This image took a while for me to figure out what I wanted to do with it as I really wanted to give that beautiful reflection justice in the image. Did basic adjustments in Lightroom, then in Photoshop added Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Clarity’s Sunny Day Blue Sky preset. Next the Spot Healing brush was used to clean up a lot of little bits of stuff floating in the water. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) the Topaz Black and White Effects plug-in was opened. What made this different is that the Transparency was set to 0.89 so almost 50% of the image in color through the black and white setting. In the Creative Effects section, Simplify as is and Diffusion set to a fairly high setting of 0.97. In PS a layer mask was added and the effects were painted out gently over the reflection which was soft and diffused already. On another stamped layer Topaz Impression’s Palette Knife II preset was added with no texture. In a layer mask, once again the reflection was painted out so it applied only to the top portion of the image. On a New Layer the Mixer brush was used to blend some of the harsh edges in the top part of the image – this evened out the colors a little. On yet another stamped layer, Nik Viveza 2 was used to draw the eye to the blue tree area. Two textures were added on top – one of mine that is a lot of light yellows painted in Painter and was set to Multiply at 70% layer opacity and one of Jai Johnson, Soulful Sea Breeze, set to Set to Multiply at 70% layer opacity. On top texture a layer mask was added and the top area was painted out so a vignette feel was created at the top. That was it. Just a lot of experimenting!…..Digital Lady Syd


Just Being a Little Abstract

Abstract painting of a golf course
This image shows a local golf course view seen when playing. I had some fun with a couple of Topaz (Stroke: Brush Type 04, Brush Size 0.91, Paint Volume 0.42, Paint Opacity 0.87, Stroke Rotation 0, Stroke Color Variation 0, Stroke Width 0.33, Stroke Length 0.89, Spill 0.23, Smudge 0.26, and Coverage 1.00; Color: Overall Hue 0.15, St -0.20, and Lightness 0.06; Red Sat 0.47 and Lightness 0.14; Orange Sat 0.60 and Lightness -0.42; Yellow Sat -0.33 and Lightness 0.13; Green Sat 0.20 and Lightness -0.32; and Blue Sat 0.36; Lighting: Brightness -0.04, Contrast 0.39, and Light Direction x0.33 and y0.06; and Texture: Strength 0.78, Size 0.30, Canvas IV, Background Type Solid, and Background #d38967 (soft melon color).)
see sidebar for website link) Labs newer plug-ins. The initial layer was duplicated and Topaz Impression was added using my SJ WC like effect on bldgs preset. This preset is sort of crazy but gives some wonderful results at time. (Settings for preset: On a New Layer, some clean up was done where the paint went that did not look good. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) Nik Analog Efex Pro 2 was applied using just the Basic Adjustments 5 control points were added to adjust the Detail in different parts of the image. Also Film Type Warm (Row 2 Col 2) was added to the stack. Now the image was brightened up quite a bit. Last step using Topaz ReStyle’s Warm Tones Contrasted preset. That was it. I just liked the rather abstract feel that Impression gave to the image……Digital Lady Syd


Desolate Roller Coaster

Image of the loading area of the Daytona Beach roller coaster
I really enjoyed doing this image – lots of structure and texture in this coaster image. Just Basic slider adjustments in Lightroom before opening up in Photoshop and duplicating the layer. Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Simplify was opened and the BuzSim preset was applied with a couple of changes (Simplify Size 0.76, Feature Boost 1, and Structure 2.38). This caused lots of webbing up in the track that really looked good – usually don’t but it made this picture more interesting. This layer was duplicated and Topaz Impression was added. I created a new preset to get this effect called SJ Illustrative Painting Effect (SJ Illustrative Painting Effect preset – Settings: Brush Type 01, Brush Size 0.70, Paint Volume 0.42, Paint Opacity 0.72, Stroke Rotation 0, Stroke Color Variation 0, Stroke Width -0.65, Stroke Length 0.20, Spill 0.48, Smudge 0 and Coverate 1.00; Color only – Red Sat 0.38 and Lightness 0.10; Orange Sat 0.75, Yellow Sat 0.68, Aqua Hue -0.15, Sat -0.47, and Litness -0.60; and Blue Hue 0.10, Sat -0.34, and Lightness 0.41; Lighting 0.25, Contrast 0.04, Vignette 0.18, Vignette Transition 0.34, Vignette Center x: 0.32 and y: -0.03; and Light Direction x: 0.59 and y: -0.01; and Texture Metal Sheet Strength 0.60, Size 0, Background Type solid white, and Background white.) A layer mask was added to remove some of the paint in areas that did not look quite right using a low opacity and flow black brush. The last step was to use Nik Viveza 2 to emphasize the focal point where the loading area is. That was it – just liked the sort of grungy painterly look that resulted. Lots of fun here!…..Digital Lady Syd


Underwater Fantasy

Underwater image with fish
This image took a lot longer than I expected to complete – but still a lot of fun to do. I had the image of some coral in a case at a SeaWorld Orlando store and wanted to use it in an underwater adventure image. It turned out totally different from what I expected but that still is a lot of fun to just see what happens!

Basically the coral was cut from the image using Topaz (see sidebar for website link) ReMask 5. It did a fair job and a lot of touch up of the layer mask had to be done once back in Photoshop due to the complexity and similar background color to the coral in the image. My next step was to add a couple PixelSquid fish into the image (see my How To Use the PixelSquid Add-On in Photoshop blog). One of my spiral textures was used for the background and the layer was taken into Topaz Impression where the Turner Sunset II preset was applied. The fish and coral layers were grouped, duplicated and top group merged to create a single layer. This layer was then taken into Topaz Impression and Edward Hopper II preset was applied to it. Some bubbles were added using using the Glitter Brush created in my Some Christmas Cheer and Resources blog was used to add some softening effect around the coral, and on some separate layers, Fay Sirkis’s Bubble Wrap Highlights Mixer brush was used to add in the more obvious bubbles. Next the eyes were sharpened using the Exposure Adjustment Layers. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E), Topaz Lens Effects was opened and the Reflector filter brightening the left side of the image and the Graduated Neutral Density Filter to darken the bottom part of the image was applied. Last step used Nik Viveza 2 to direct focus to the main fish. Whew! Hope you have a wonderful holiday!…..Digital Lady Syd


Viera Wetlands

Image of Viera Wetlands
This image was taken at the beautiful Richard Grissom Memorial Wetlands (also known as the Viera Wetlands) in Brevard County, Florida. In Lightroom very little was done except to apply Trey Ratcliff’s  free preset called Venice Canalman that came December 2015 preset package (scroll down) he gave away with his newsletter  – I have used this preset a couple of times and really like it. The focus point could be adjusted by going to the Radial Shift that he used in the preset, and moving it a little right to include the birds.

In Photoshop Jai Johnson’s free Flying Birds png was added as a layer on top. Since the birds looked flat in the image, a Pattern Fill Adjustment Layer was clipped to the image (ALT+click between the layers) – tried several and ended up using a gold and reddish watercolor pattern, which matched the tones of the LR preset that was applied. This pattern can be dragged around in the image to make the birds look just right and the adjustment layer was set to 62% layer opacity. An Outer Glow Layer Style (double click on layer to open) was set to Normal Blend Mode, white color, Opacity of 34%, Noise 13%, Spread 8% and Size 144 Px – this softened the birds so they blended into the sky just right and the layer was set to 68% layer opacity. The last step was to apply Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression’s Seurat Afternoon III without any changes to the whole image. His pointillism strokes added a really interesting effect to this image. Impression is really a fantastic plug-in that can add such a beautiful effect to an image as in this case…..Digital Lady Syd


The Lemonade Cart

Image of a painted Lemonade Cart
I have been wanting to use this image of a Lemonade Cart taken a couple years ago at the Annual Turkey Run in Daytona Beach, Florida, but it was too hard to select all the “stuff” around it. That was until Topaz (see sidebar for website link) ReMask 4/5 was released. This time, it took a little effort, but overall it came out pretty fast. Once I had the cart on its own layer, it was opened in Topaz Impression and the Renoir II preset was selected with no changes. This blended the cart nicely into my Corel Painter background. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E), the layer was opened in Topaz ReStyle and the Native Dancer preset was once again applied (see my How to Use a Topaz ReStyle Trick for Improving Your Image blog.) Several layers of painting with both regular and mixer brushes were used to make sure it did not look like a “canned” painting – I am very sensitive to this so I always try to add some of my own strokes if I use Impression. The bird is from Midnightstouch Egret brushes – these are great for that little extra touch – just be sure to paint them some to blend them into the image……Digital Lady Syd


Flagler Beach in the Fall

Image of Sea Oats at Flagler Beach
Flagler Beach, Florida, is so beautiful all the time (see blog links below for more Flagler Beach images), but this week the waves and water were really impressive. There is a bit of a fall feel in the air. These Sea Oats are everywhere along the edge of the beach. They are important for preventing beach erosion during hurricanes. I did a lot of adjustment to this image – Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Glow and Topaz Impression before painting on top. One of my Corel Painter textures was added and Photoshop’s Lighting Effects Filter were also used. It took a long time to get this the way I wanted it to look, but overall this is how I see Flagler Beach……Digital Lady Syd

Digital Lady Syd’s Related Blogs:
How to Add a Little Retro to Your Shots
Trying Out Some New Techniques!
Using Pattern Overlay Layer Style to Get a Retro Feel


Old Comfort Point

Image of Old Comfort Point cc 1900 painted
Loved the original Pubic Domain postcard image (cc 1900) of Old Comfort Point which is now part of Hampton, Virginia, and shown in the link. There is a huge amount of history connected with this place. To process this image, one of my warm colored smooth Painter textures was placed above the original image and set to Hard Light blend mode. In its Layer Style, the Blend If This Layer white tab was split (ALT+drag) and set to 228/255 and Underlying black tab split to 0/123 which gives a nice texture effect. A Hue/Saturation Adjustment Layer was placed on top and these Master slider settings were used: Hue -26, Saturation -71, and Lightness -29. A stamped layer was placed top (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) and Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression was opened. I created a preset to give a nice painterly result based on the Abstract Settings by Blake Rudis preset (changes made: Type 04, Brush Size 0.65, Stroke Color Variation 0.10, and Stroke Length 0.22). Created two New Layers and painted in some color and clouds in the sky using Kyle’s Real Watercolor Big Wash brush. Created another stamped layer on top and applied Photoshop’s Halftone Pattern Filter (Size 2, Contrast 50 and Pattern Type Dot), which was set to Color Burn blend mode and 14% layer opacity. A New Layer was set to Overlay blend mode and painted with a black brush set to 12% brush opacity to burn in a little to emphasize the tower in foreground. The layer was then reduced to 61% layer opacity. The last steps was just adjusting the color in the image as the yellow and green colors were over-whelming the image. Used Selective Color and Color Balance Adjustment Layers to do the color correction. It did take a lot of steps, but it was really fun to do. Try taking some of these images that are now Pubic Domain and see what you can do with them……Digital Lady Syd


Seashells on the Beach

Image of seashells on beach
These shells were actually inside the base of a lamp – just did a close up phone image. By adding one of my Corel Painter textures and painting back in the shells in a layer mask, the busy original background could be replaced. Now for a change up – Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression’s Oil Painting 1 preset was applied. Next on a New Layer, some image clean up and painting was done. Last step was applying on a stamped layer (CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+E) Topaz Restyle’s Soft Sienna Veil preset with a few adjustments in the color sliders. This was the final result and I loved the colors in it whole image……Digital Lady Syd


The East Clouds in a Sunset

Image of the back side of a sunset
Just a quick phone pix I took from the penthouse at the La Playa Resort in Daytona Beach, Florida. This was taken facing east over the Atlantic Ocean while the sun was setting on the west behind the Intracoastal Waterway. Not much done here – just Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression applied using the Watercolor IV preset with a little color adjustment, some Mixer brush clean up, and a Selective Color Adjustment Layer to reduce the overwhelming blue effect in the image. Loved how the sunset plays off the ocean clouds!…..Digital Lady Syd


Abstract Wetlands

Abstract image of the Viera Wetlands

Felt like doing something a little different with a rather ordinary image. This was another shot from the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands in Brevard County, Florida (also known as the Viera Wetlands). This image was first Merged to HDR in Adobe Camera Raw 9.0 – thought I would put it through its paces and it worked really well. I have a lot of HDR programs, but it is so nice to have all the ACR tools available to clean up the result.

Once the HDR file was created in ACR, the image was opened as a Smart Object in Photoshop CC2015 to add a few filter effects. Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Glow was using my Inter Web Variation preset set to Hard Light blend mode.  (Here are the settings: Primary Glow Type Dark, Glow Strength 1.00, Effect Sharpness 0.12, Electify 1.00, Simplify Details 0.06, Edge Color 0, Detail Strength 1.00, Detail Size 0.42, Brightness 0.16, Contrast 0.18, Saturation 0.08, Line Rotation 0, and Glow Spread 0; Secondary Glow Glow Type Light, Glow Strength 0, Effect Sharpness 0.54, Electrify 0.11, Simplify Details 0, Brightness 0, and Contrast 0; Color Overall Saturation to 0.62, Red Sat to 0.44, Yellow Sat to 1.00 Yellow Lightness -0.36, Green Sat 1.00 and Lightness -0.51, Aqua Lightness -0.36, Purple Sat 1.00, and Magenta Sat 1.00 and Lightness 0.50. Set to Screen blend mode at 66% Strength; and no Finishing Touches.) On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E), Topaz Impression’s Turner Storms II was added. It was turned into a Smart Object and Photoshop’s Camera Raw filter was opened – used Photoshop Cafe’s PS Cafe-euro model preset with some Basic adjustments and color changes. I really liked the fantasy feel I was getting. Some clean up on a New Layer was done. On another New Layer Kyle’s Real Watercolor Spatter Mixed brush was used on the foreground, a gradient overlay layer style added, and then a Guassian Blur filter set to 2.0 radius was applied to this layer. The last step was using Nik Viveza 2 to draw attention to the focal point. I really liked the results of this image….Digital Lady Syd


Soaring Spoonbill

Painted image of a Roseate Spoonbill flying
Still enjoying the bird images I took at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Rookery this Spring. The original image was captured with a totally light blue sky behind this Roseate Spoonbill. This made it easy to add a texture underneath the image (my painted texture created in Corel Painter called Seashore) and changing the blend mode of the bird layer to Multiply. Topaz (see sidebar for settings) Clarity and DeNoise 5 were applied to cleanup the the bird layer. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E), Topaz Glow’s Room Glow Blake Rudis preset was applied (check out Integrating Topaz Glow into Your Workflow for info on this). Next on a New Layer Fay Sirkis’s (from KelbyOne) Precious Oil Diamond Mixer was used to clean up the feathers and beak a little. Topaz Impression Watercolor II preset with no spill was applied. Nik Viveza 2 was used to bring out the color of the bird just perfectly and a Curves Adjustment Layer was used as a last step for overall contrast. I love my bird pix!…..Digital Lady Syd


Cattle Egret Looking for Love

Image of Cattle Egret
Loved this beautiful Cattle Egret who was checking out a group of egret ladies (they are more colorful during this time of year) at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm. Jai Johnson’s free texture called antiquebrownlight-canvas was used on this image. Lots of painting, Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Lens Effect and Topaz Impression were used to get this final image. I really love the mystical result……Digital Lady Syd


Where Are My Eyes?

Image of a tribal character at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm
This image was taken at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm website link. I don’t know anything about it, just that it greets you when entering the attraction. Very little was done to this image. In Lightroom Trey Radcliff’s Dramatically Clean Chipmunk preset was applied. In Photoshop Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Impression’s Turner Storm II preset was applied. A white layer mask was added in PS and a little bit of the lighter areas were painted back in the face to draw some focus to it. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) that was converted into a Smart Object, Nik Color Efex Pro 4 was opened. The Graduated Neutral Density filter selected (Upper Tonality -25%, Lower Tonality 7%, Blend 27%, Vertical Shift 43%, Rotation to adjust the light 158 degrees, and Highlights 1/4 of the way to right). In the same Smart Object Nik Viveza 2 was applied. A Focal Point was added to the eyes and nose area (Brightness 33%, Contrast 40%, Saturation 38% and Structure 58%). Two Curves Adjustment Layers were added – one a darken curve to separate the head from the busy leaf background, and one to add contrast to the face since an S-shape curve was used. Both layer masks were turned to black (CTRL+I inside the mask) and just localized areas were painted back with a soft white brush at 17% brush opacity. Last step involved adding a New Layer and actually painting in some color where it was needed using a very low opacity brush (12%) and sampling in the image to match areas. That was it. Lots of fun to do!…..Digital Lady Syd


Bear Checking You Out!

Image of bearskin face
This image is of the bearskin that is usually at the Native American Festival in Ormond Beach, Florida, this year. In Lightroom Seim’s (see sidebar for website link) Magic Harsh Sun Fixer preset was used. In Photoshop on a duplicate layer, Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Detail was applied to overall sharpen. Topaz Impression was applied using Oil Painting by Jim Salas (light direction was changed to fit image and Texture Strength slider set to 0 since textures were added to image outside of plug-in). A couple of Flypaper Textures were applied. Then I really cropped image in to get a close up of the face. The final step involved adding my favorite filter Nik Viveza 2. Control points were placed on the nose to enhance the color and sharpen it a little to draw the eye to that part of the image. This was originally a great big image that I could not get a look I liked so the crop really made the image…..Digital Lady Syd


Beautiful Maize

Image of Drying Corn from the Native American Festival
Loved this hanging batch of colorful corn or maize taken at the recent Native American Festival in Ormond Beach, Florida. In Lightroom Seim’s (see sidebar for website link) Workflow DreamScape preset was applied. Next Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Detail 3 was applied using just my basic Little Medium Large Detail preset (Medium Details 0.38, Large Details 0.16, and Contrast 0.30) where a black layer mask was added and just the corn was painted back. The background needed to remain soft. On several layers above a lot of clean up was done as the background was full of distractions. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E), my Topaz Impression Abstraction preset was applied (Stroke Type 12, Brush Size 1.00, Paint Opacity 0.38, Stroke Rotation 0, Stroke Color Variation 0, Stroke Width 0.85, Stroke Length -0.50, Spill 0.72, Smudge 0, and Coverage 1.00; Color Overall Hue 0.14, Sat 0.23, and Lightness 0.06; Red Lightness 0.14, Yellow Sat -0.11, and Green Lightness -0.36; Lighting Brightness 0.13, Contrast -0.23, and Vignette 0, Light direction X 0.34 and Y 0.05; and Texture Strength 0.19, Size -0.43, and Canvas I, Background type white solid and Background White). This layer was duplicated and taken back into Impression where the Ethereal Background by Blake Rudis preset was applied. A white layer mask was added and just the corn was painted out where I did not want the blurred effect to occur. This layer was set to Linear Burn at 53% layer opacity. On a new Stamped Layer, Nik Viveza 2 was applied to further enhance the focal point. It is so much fun to use the different filters to get different effects…..Digital Lady Syd

Digital Lady Syd Related Blogs:
How to Get the Most Out of Your “Not-So-Great” Images – contains link for Topaz Impression’s Ethereal Background by Blake Rudis


A Tuscan Blossom

Image of a Yellow Hibiscus Blossom with a touch of a Tuscan Feel
Just loved how this little Yellow Wing Hibiscus blossom image turned out. Did very little to the original image other than apply 2 Lil’ Owls (see sidebar for website link) Spring Whispers 4 preset and sharpening of the shadow stamen. On a duplicate layer of the background, Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Clarity was applied using John Barclay’s Basic Settings preset (see My Glowing Porch Flowers blog for settings). Next went into OnOne’s (see sidebar for website link) Perfect Effects 9 and applied the PE4 Vintage preset. I believe that OnOne gave it away with an earlier version, probably Perfect Effects 4. Next Topaz Impression was opened and the new preset created from Blake Rudis’s blog called Ethereal Background was applied next (see Blake Rudis video called Atmospheric Backgrounds with Topaz Impression). A New Layer and some clean up was done, especially a little Mixer Brush painting on some of the edges to smooth. Painted Textures Creamsicle texture was applied (not sure this texture is still available) set to Linear Burn blend mode at 73% opacity. A Hue/Sat Adjustment Layer was clipped to the layer and the Saturation set to -56 so there was not a lot of color added to the image, just texture. A Curves Adjustment Layer was added to add back some contrast and the last step was Nik Viveza with a control point on the focal point, or for me the stamen shadow. It was fun to experiment with my arsenal of filters!…..Digital Lady Syd


More Holiday Cheer!

Image of my Christmas Tree
Just another Merry Christmas Card – hope all are enjoying the season. I was just adding different filters to layers to see what happens and this is what I got! Hum….. Anyway, this is what I did. Topaz (see sidebar for website link) Clarity was used to sharpen up the original tree ornament image. On a duplicate layer above, Topaz Glow’s Fur & Feather I preset was applied. Next Topaz Impression’s Abstract I preset was applied and I adjusted a couple sliders. In Photoshop the layer was set to Soft Light. Then the layer was duplicated and set to Normal blend mode at 77% layer opacity. A layer mask was added and some of the ornaments was painted back. I painted the text in Painter and placed it in as a layer with an Inner Glow  layer style. On a stamped layer (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E) was created and taken into Smart Photo Editor. (Photo-art at a click 050; Changed Master fade to left just a little; Hue -0.298; and 2nd Hue 0.369. When brought into PS, it turned the color scheme very different but workable. Used Selective Color Adjustment Layers to get the color tweaked to where I wanted it.) The last step involved adding Nik’s Viveza 2 and adding focus on the ornaments. Just a lot of fun……Digital Lady Syd