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Posts Tagged ‘Affinity Photo’

I’m bouncing from project to project again, doing some work work and some practice work. I’ve also started about half a dozen posts but nothing feels right, because none of them said what I was really thinking, which is that today I am the Queen of Meh.

This is not to say that things are not a-ok, I’d just prefer to be making more progress.

Mood: pretty groovy, thanks for asking.

Fine, let’s roll with it.

I did nothing amazing today but do things I did. The project I had the most fun with was practicing photo compositing. Here’s a chimera that is not very good but I like anyway: Behold, the Winged Buffabear!

Original photos by Steven Cordes and Mathew Schwartz on Unsplash,
daguerreotype overlay from Spoon Graphics

* * *

I think I’ll try to follow this advice by Christine Carter, and my own, and aim low:

The 1-minute secret to forming a new habit

Here’s why we need to be willing to be bad: being good requires that our effort and our motivation be in proportion to each other. The harder something is for us to do, the more motivation we need to do that thing. And you might have noticed, but motivation isn’t something that we can always muster on command….

The goal, remember, is repetition, not high achievement. So let yourself be mediocre at whatever you’re trying to do, but be mediocre every day. 

— Christine Carter

That I can do!

* * *

Look at all those minutes!
Photo by Alexander Schimmeck on Unsplash

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If you are familiar with Harry Potter then you know what a patronus is. (If not, check out this explainer.) I like the books and the concept, but also the imagery. So I decided to see if I could work out how to do the glowing-semi-translucent-super-cool-flying-animal effect in Affinity Photo.

I used a modified version of this Photoshop tutorial, and while the instructions don’t exactly translate to Affinity it was close enough to get me in the ballpark.

And of course now all I can see are the bits I’d like to change,* but isn’t that always the way? Next time!

* * *

* Seriously, those wings are way too small. It’s so weird that a mythical Greek creature swapped into a magical wizarding world refuses to obey the laws of physics.

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I’m having fun crossing things off my list, like juicing my backyard grapes and mowing. I also spent some time with a compositing tutorial, and made this image as a reminder that the world is often deeper and more astonishing than meets the eye.

Photos by Kamil Lehmann and Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

Plus, whales are cool.

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Today, more adventures with photo composites. A few simple experiments to learn where all the tools are and how to use them:

And then a more complicated example:

She who seeds the stars. Based on this tutorial. The detailed selections were the hardest part, so that’s what I’ll work on next.

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My ancestors continue to get younger, it seems. My mother found a portrait of herself as a baby and sent it my way. I like both general and family history, plus I was happy to have another chance to practice my photo restoration skills:

So cute!

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One of my favorite reads is the terrific* Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews.  

Here’s the first book:

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels, #1) by Ilona Andrews

This husband and wife team also have a number of other great books, all starring kick-ass women willing to go to any lengths to save what needs saving.

The writing is excellent, the plots fresh and unpredictable in the best ways, and the characters, even the bad ones, are complex and well-drawn. (The authors are particularly adept at helping readers understand, and at times forgive, even the darkest characters.)

What’s not to love?

* * *

So when I decided it was time to learn how to make a vintage-style travel postcard, I thought of Atlanta. Not the vibrant city it is now, but as Kate sees it after magic returns to the world, complete with mysterious denizens, vampire Casinos, witch jungles, shapeshifter Keeps, ruins and one lone high rise. 

Welcome to Atlanta.

* * *

Original photos by Shashidhar SMorica PhamHidayat AbisenaMichael DenningCory GazailleToa HeftibaAustrian National Library & Christopher Alvarenga on Unsplash

* * *

* Feel free to disagree with me, I don’t mind. Just know that I am right;)

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Editor’s Note: That isn’t a typo in the title. Well, it was a typo when I named the original file, but it was funny and my brain is mostly off at this point so I kept it.

I tried a new photo-to-oil-paint method today. The technique is straightforward, if time-consuming, but I can tell I’m not an actual painter. The arm and face are a little weird but my eyes have gone wonky and I’ve started thinking seriously about adult beverages, so this is what we’re going with today!

With apologies to whoever made the fine costume I blurred out, I give you “Portrait of a Mandalorian Primcess.”

She looks anything but prim.
Original Photo by Alexander Jawfox on Unsplash

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I’m feeling a lot better today, less exhausted ouchies and more “It’s cool, I’m good.” No naps today, no wishing I had a sling for my mostly incapacitated arm, just chilling and learning things.

Like using words to generate color palettes. Let’s see what we can do with that, shall we?

PhotoChrome

Using the Unsplash photo database, this site retrieves images related to your search term, combines them into a single image, then extracts a color palette. One nice thing is that you can deselect some of the component images, darken or brighten the palette, or zoom in to highlight just some of the colors in an image. I do find that the results tend to be a little muddy (“summer” is a lot duller grey and brown than I expected) but the tweaking helps.

* * *

Then what? I decided to learn how to color grade an image. Essentially, grading is a technique that lets you take the palette from one visual and apply it to another, often changing the tone and emotion of the image. A photo can go from warm summer afternoon to dark and stormy without a lot of fuss.

There are a lot of ways to do this but here’s a handy tutorial explaining the process in Affinity:

Steal the Color Grading from Any Image with Affinity Photo!

PhotoChrome has a link to download the composite image but it didn’t work for me. Instead, I used the “copy HEX” option for the color palette, then copied the darkest, lightest and middle colors into the Affinity photo Gradient Map / RGB Hex Sliders window.

What’s the color of cool? In my version of this exercise, this:

#4b5c74, #656778, #767482, #718694, #80949d

Here’s what that looks like when transferred onto an image.

Original Photo by Jenny Marvin on Unsplash
Cool

Then I had to try a couple of others for fun.

Ireland
Mars

It’s probably no surprise that I’m liking Mars best.

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It’s a holiday weekend, bookended by Canada Day and the Fourth of July. As a dual citizen, I feel obligated to celebrate as much as possible, which means I am trying to work as little as possible. Today, that means learning something fun. Like perspective bending, with sheep.

* * *

Original photo by Hasan Almasi on Unsplash

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I’m not quite done with my grandmother’s portrait, apparently. One of the things I did over the weekend was to start learning colorization, and now Grandma has a pretty pink dress:)

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