Mixing it up

Sometimes I have images that in themselves are pretty straightforward but always look as though something is missing. Looking through my files I came across this image of part of the Roman arena in Verona Italy that I had taken on holiday.




Final Image

The subject was interesting enough however there was nothing distinct about it that would make it stand out (ref the original image). I then stripped all the background from it, darkened the remains to resemble a night scene and changed the structure of the stonework to give a very grainy effect. Behind the image I added the moon with a blue tint and lined up the two, in all I was quite pleased with the final effect, open to comment.

The second image was treated similarly using another part of the same arena stonework, in this case the arches once cut out gave a window effect so I added the sunset taken at Verona that evening behind the arches and gave a hue to the stonework to match.



These are just examples of what can be achieved with a little effort so never delete shots just because they don’t look interesting, just mix it up a little.

Camera Canon EOS  550D with EFs 18-135 IS lens. More images  can be found in this sites galleries as well as high definition versions available through my online shops.


Digital Manipulation 2

Following on from ‘Digital Manipulation 1’ which looked into a simple replace the background effect there are times when the original subject becomes the basis for a totally different image. Some time ago when I was in England I visited the ancient stone circle of Stonehenge. It’s about 5000 years old and no-one is certain about its original purpose though the site is impressive and (unfortunately for photographers) very popular which means lots of tourists, which of course means lots of people getting into the shots. A little patience (and timing) and this can be reduced to a manageable few which a photo editing tool can soon remove. A little editing work and I was left with a basic shot of a pile of stones, not the mysterious symbol of antiquity that springs to mind, fine if you want to show it in the “this is what I saw in England’ album but not for the creative file.

I do like to play around with phot editing tools though and decided to use this to create the atmosphere I wanted.


Stonehenge original

Stonehenge in England

Stonehenge after processing

To start I cut out the sky and replaced it with one that was dark and broody, removed all colour and then colourised to a dark deep blue to turn it all into a night image, removed the rear stones onto a separate layer and added a burst of light into a layer in the center of the stone circle. The advantage of the separate layers enables individual adjustment without affecting the other parts of the image, added highlights to the stones catching the light and to the clouds above. A bit more adjustment in contrast here and there and I ended up with a result that is totally different to the starting point and created the mood I was after, something that could never have been achieved in a straight photo. OK I admit that this was not something that I achieved in 10 minutes and I made numerous layer versions to achieve the effect I was after but it demonstrates what can be achieved if you set your mind to it, as a bonus it was fun.

Further digitally manipulated images can be found in this sites gallery ‘Digital Enhancement’, as well as high resolution versions available through my online shop, please enjoy.

Rome, the Dream

Rome, I dreamt of going there for a long time, even when I lived in England and it was only a short flight away, every year there always seemed to be somewhere else I had to go. When you have a young family life’s like that.  Now I live in Australia, the family’s grown up and all I had to do was go. The dream became reality in 2011, armed with my trusty Canon EOS 550D and a couple of lenses I was determined to record every living moment of it, from the small hotel we booked into to the splendour of the preserved ruins seen from the Palatine hill, Rome truly is a wonderful city.

The Coliseum of Ancient Rome

The Coliseum of Ancient Rome

The views attached are of The Coliseum (a must see although if you are intending to visit the old city ( Palatine) next to it then I suggest that you go there first, the queues are much shorter and the ticket also gives entrance to the Coliseum afterwards so you can bypass the long queues and just enter). The Vatican City, just for the splendour whether you are catholic or not and the Saint Angelo Bridge leading to the castle which is in itself interesting enough but there is also a café on the top where you can sit in a gun embrasure with coffee and enjoy some great views of the city.

Vatican City

Vatican City

Add to this the numerous piazza’s with their beautiful fountains, restaurants, cafes, markets and wonderful buildings like the Pantheon, 2000 years old and still in use today, the very ornate cathedrals and older churches. The list is endless, every road I walked seemed to lead to something new to see and record.

Sitting in a small café one lunchtime enjoying pizza and a local beer (what else) gave time to reflect and enjoy the moment, 8 days was definitely not long enough for me, and will I go back, well I can dream can’t I.

Saint Angelo Bridge Rome

Saint Angelo Bridge Rome

Further pictures of Rome can be found in this sites gallery ‘Images outside Australia’, as well as available through my online shop, please enjoy.