There’s no denying it. Photoshop is probably my most favourite acquisition at the minute. I, like a lot of people used to fear the word ‘Photoshop’. I blame Microsoft – we’re so used to the MS interface that when we’re shown something different we’re instantly intimidated by it.
And when I heard about the term ‘layers’? What?? You use layers in the winter months to keep warm, right? You describe yourself as having many ‘layers’ so that you come across as all mysterious and intriguing to the opposite sex, yes? But ‘layers’ in a software programme? I was outta there, pronto.
Until YouTube, that is. There are some amazing tutorials that can basically tell you everything you need to know when it comes to image editing. It truly is a fantastic resource and I for one would have been lost without it where my studies are concerned. It has helped me get to grips with Google SketchUp, AutoCAD, Maxwell Render, Photoshop and GIMP. That’s pretty awesome. Round of applause for YouTube!
Anyway, I digress.
The following photos have been enhanced to varying degrees via Photoshop in an attempt to make them more visually striking. Some are a little more dramatic than others but I’m sure you’ll agree that the difference is pretty impressive.
Blue Lightning TV is my ‘go to’ when it comes to interesting Photoshop effects. This dude is so easy to follow and he takes it nice ‘n’ slow. I’m sure some of you have experienced those tutorials where you can barely keep up; you know the ones, you have to keep replaying the same segment over and over again because you can’t actually SEE the cursor because the guy is whizzing through each screen. Or he’s talking so fast that you actually lean closer to the screen to try and pick up that ONE WORD that’s pivotal to the entire tutorial! The same dudes always have comments from angry viewers with the words ’SLOW DOWN’ posted on their videos!! Funny.
It can be as simple as adjusting the contrast, brightness and layers settings:
Or teasing out those colours and adding a soft Gaussian Blur to an image to help create a soft and slightly whimsical feel:
My personal favourite is the ‘Duo Tone’ function, where you desaturate the image and add numerous coloured filters to completely transform its visual appeal. A little like this:
These are very easy effects to achieve. All you need is 20 mins, a cuppa and a little bit of determination. Go forth and worship at the altar of Photoshop!
Oh, and these are all photographs that I have taken in and around my ‘hood’, Belfast.