Sunday, January 31, 2010


I've been offline for the last few days while my computer was upgraded. The upgrade (basically a new computer) was done by my son and it didn't go as smoothly as expected -the two hours he quoted me turned into almost two days. The house has never looked tidier!!
Now that I'm up and running again I've been spending a lot of time reloading my programmes and discovering that some things don't work any more, the main one being Outlook Express which I've used as my email programme forever. It's great having a much faster computer though, processing Raw files which used to take what seemed like forever to save in Camera Raw are now done in moments and now I can open photoshop and Bridge at the same time without the whole system coming to a standstill.
Anyway I processed this quickly last evening when I was looking for something relatively easy to work on. Forget-me-nots from this past spring. It started off as a fairly subtle treatment but then I decided to pile on the grunge :-)

Backdrop @ Soft Light 100%
Peach Blush @ Overlay 62 %
Archival canvas @ multiply 100%
Grosgrain @ Normal 22%
Archival canvas @ hard light 24 % with a little of the texture removed from the focus flowers.
Copy of background @ Soft light 74%
Pompeii Stucco @ Hard light 100% with it's colour cooled a little with a hue saturation layer.
Pompeii Stucco @ multiply 47%
Holmes @ Overlay 81 % with its colour desaturated slightly

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Saturday, January 30, 2010

white barn II

Goodness, how time flies on the net!
Last week we received an email asking for fuller recipes of our early images from way back, at the time of last summer's launch. It came as a surprise to me as I couldn't remember our early blogs being so minimal! Thus, to rectify at least one post, here is a full recipe!
The first copy of the shot was treated to give a Painterly effect..

It's amazing how the alchemy of a water texture can bring things to life.
This water texture is from my flickr free water textures, here:
This first texture is blurred and brushed from the barn.

Water ~ Opacity ~ Multiply @ 32%
Water ~ (Sky only) ~ Opacity ~ Lighter Color 65%
Elysium ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 26%
Leaky Garret ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 53%
Leaky Garret ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 53%
Necropolis ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 37%
Necropolis ~ Opacity ~ Color @ 71%
Necropolis (Field only) ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 100%
Leaky Garret (sky only) ~ Opacity ~ Soft light @ 31%
See a finished version on Flickr

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Friday, January 29, 2010

Flypaper TEX BOX 1

A pack of 25 large, high resolution, unique textures for only$35 USD for download or $45 USD for CD (post included). These textures are professional quality and suitable for commercial as well as personal use.
All our textures can be used in  any editing programme that supports the use of  layers,  Photoshop, Photoshop Elements,  Gimp etc 

For downloads please click on the Add to Cart icon. A download link will be sent to you after you've made your payment.
Buy Tex Box One
Add to Cart

(please note: the file is around 200mb and depending on your connection speed, the download can take anything from 5 minutes to a couple of  hours.

Flypapers Combo Offer 
Buy Tex Box One and Two 
For only $65
Add to Cart

Those on very slow connections may prefer to purchase the pack on CD, please get in touch for details.

Here is a list of the 25 textures included;
White shagreen, Dangerous Liaisons, Caramel Soft,
Aqua Sparkles, Apple blush, Uranium paper
Tarte Tatin, Shagreen Bone, Raw Linen
Pompeii stucco, Phosphorescence, Orient Express
Nostradamus, Nora Batty, Necropolis
Leaky Garret, lamp white, Herculaneum Pumice
Grosgrain, Grande Tour, Elysium
Dove Grey, Bruised Saffron, Apple Crumble
Antique Liaisons.

License agreement

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


It's strange how you can work on an image for hours and not get it looking quite right so you give up and do something else (or in my case go to bed) and then the next day open it and add some different textures and within moments you have something that works. Thankfully this is what happened here as I had a busy day ahead of me preparing for a son's birthday.
The cake is made, I just have to ice it now....just wish I'd read the recipe a bit more closely so it will be interesting to see what it tastes like :-)

Anyway, here's the recipe for this flower which unlike a cake recipe you don't have to follow to the letter :-)
Peach Blush @ Hard Light 64 %
Colosseum Sienna @ multiply 57 &
Apple Blush @ Colour Burn 38 %

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

jetty shadows

After a bit of an Epiphany the other day about my last blog posting,
I decided to work on a cleaned up idealized version.
Purists might blanch, (and probably shouldn't be here anyway!) but I've merged two images together and removed the cluttering couple!
The council bin has also gone by simply cloning out, and thankfully the little guy was being held back by the tiny dog and thus was in a few shots, so I was able to use him and the original background with the 'Michelin Tyre' looking lady which I liked!

I referred to the recipe from before (thanks self!) but then thought,
Why Not? Can I add just one more without the whole thing sinking like an over-rich chocolate soufflé ? - Judge for yourselves!
Its Caramel soft, which I'd first desaturated, as the colors were already rich enough.
Here is the full revised recipe:

Orient Express ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 53%
Colosseum Sienna (desaturated) ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 43%
Raw Linen ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 100%
Caramel soft (desaturated) ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 43%
Base image (color ramped up in curves) ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 31%

Sunday, January 24, 2010


I don't think any photographer could have resisted this strangely shaped tree  spotted growing on a river bank one evening. It's actually a tree being smothered by a vine or creeper of some description and although you can't really tell from the photo stands at least 4 metres tall. Such vine covered trees are common in many areas and when the vine has completely encased the tree, as it has in this case, you can imagine huge mythical animals or ents!

This had very similar processing to another photo I took at the same time in the same area
Starting from the bottom of the "stack" here are the layers.
Lost Void @ overlay 87%
Lost Void (rotated 180°) @ Multiply 47%
Labyrinth softened with a guassian blur of around 7 @ Linear light 100% (this darkened the edges  of the the image beautifully)
Holmes @ Hard Light 39%
Peach Blush @ Hard Light 32%
Peach Blush @ Overlay 23 %
A solid colour layer in warm tone @soft light 46 % (this was to bring some warmth back into the image)
Copy of background @ Soft light 100%
Copy of background @ multipy 25 %

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Saturday, January 23, 2010

sea walkers

We're lucky in this far western tip of the French Côte d'Azur area,
with our crisp clear skies, making these wonderfully dramatic shadows.
The downside is the very dry North Westerly windchill from the surrounding mountains.
This wind is called the Tramontane - meaning north wind which also keeps the winter clouds at bay, so its not all bad!
Indeed its just what made this coastline popular with the 18th and 19th century aristocratic British travelers, as the clean dry air was prescribed as the perfect antidote for tuberculosis, then known as consumption.

On our local Jetty at Valras Plage we have this wonderful classically built look-out, and I've been meaning to use it for ages.
Shot from the hip, this image is more or less straight from the camera.
Processed simply with these flypaper textures, from the first listed used to the last final top copy of the base image,
to bring back the contrasts.

Orient Express ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 53%
Colosseum Sienna (desaturated) ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 43%
Raw Linen ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 100%
Base image (with color ramped up) ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 31%

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Friday, January 22, 2010


More lavender, this time with the beautiful pink blooms of New Dawn rose in the background. New Dawn is a particularly vigorous rose which is smothered in soft pink flowers when it's in full bloom.

This leant itself to soft processing so I tried out a new combo of textures this time.
Ordinance Map @ Soft light 68 %
Rainbow Trout @ hard light 63 % (both this layer and the previous one had a tiny amount of texture removed from the focus flowers)
I finished with some colour layers.
Pink @ soft light 23 %
aqua @ overlay 11 %
Lemon @ overlay 24 %
These three colour overlays were selected (after much experimentation) because they complimented my photo, a different photo and I'd probably have used different colours and opacities.

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Life on the edge

Back on a misty autumnal day I visited this Roman excavation site,
I've written about it before in Pines in the Mist
This image is from the top of that hill overlooking the famous l'oppidum d'Enserune, a UNESCO protected medieval cartwheel farm system, here, totally obscured by the sea mist. See Here
And that's Martine with the brood!

I loved the way that the westerly wind has shaped these umbrella pines into distorted bonsai likeness!
Processing is simple, but there is an addition of a lovely stone texture, I'm giving this away free on my Flickr site, Here
But remember its just to incorporate into your images and not to be repackaged or claimed as your own!:-)

Apple Blush ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 66%
Caramel Soft ~ Opacity ~ Hard Light @ 22%
Base image ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 13%
Raw Linen ~ Opacity ~ color Burn @ 19%
Free Stone texture ~ Opacity ~ Hard Light @ 60%
Base image ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 35%

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My favourite things....

Just looking at this photo conjurers up the smell of lavender for me.
I have a huge lavender bush growing beside the path up to our gate, another grown from a cutting I filched from somewhere. It's nice to be able to walk past it an rub your hands over it release the scent, watching out for bees of course :-) The problem is it's a little too big for where it's planted and and when it rains, especially when it's in bloom you tend to get wet walking past it, so I've got a "protection order" on it to prevent other family members from giving it a haircut.

Anyway..the processing.
To start with I cloned out a bit of background I didn't like (you don't see that here though).
To start with I tweaked the tone and contrast using a colour curves layer and a hue and saturation layer.

Then it was texture time and I used
Holmes @ Hard light 44 %
Backdrop @ Hard light 27 % (with a tiny amount of texture removed from over the flowers).
I finished with a dark blue colour in fact 0e2333 at Exclusion 21 % but this didn't make a great deal of difference to finished image.

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Sunday, January 17, 2010

winter wheat treescape

Another AutopanoPro merge of two portrait formatted landscapes.
I've left the base showing where I had a missing bit to clone in.
Shot as the sun was setting behind riverbank trees.
The first copies of the shot were treated to give a Painterly effect..
Then treated with the following textures:

Apple Blush ~ opacity ~ Soft Light @ 47 %
Caramel soft (desaturated) ~ Hard Light @ 47%
Elysium ~ opacity ~ Color Burn @ 12 %
Raw Linen ~ opacity ~ Soft Light @ 47 %
Colosseum Sienna ~ opacity ~ Overlay @ 29 %
A final color tweak, to enhance the colors with curves.

Its always hard to know when to stop processing.
I expect many will find this picture too bright, but as I've said before,
I'm not here to hold back, I tend to go to the max,
always pushing at the boundaries is the only way to learn! :-)

See my recent photoshop Interview here:
Link: Site

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Saturday, January 16, 2010

the winter group

The other day on our freezing beach.
Shot with my 75-300mm zoom lens, this scene was captured from a great distance of a neighboring beach.
Because its from a distance the people look much closer together than they were!
Not shown on my base image are a line of fishing rods and a fisherman sat in front, already cloned out!
I also removed the mid picture-line of distant hills with the patch tool.
If you notice the filters used you'll see they are all Soft light, ideal for building up grunge.
A final colour tweak removed some yellow tones and added a cooler blue tone.

Apple Blush ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 42%
Caramel Soft ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 100%
Raw Linen ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 54%
Leaky Garret ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 82%
Lime Plaster (flipped upside down) ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 100%
Lost Void ~ Opacity ~ Soft Light @ 100%

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Friday, January 15, 2010


Another day, another daisy:-)  These little flowers grow like weeds here, in cracks in the path for example. I forgive them their weedy tendencies and especially love the way that each plant has flowers of several different colours.

This was processed quickly and easily with two textures from Pack 2

Peach Blush @ Overlay 100%
Peach Blush @ Overlay 64 % with the texture from the flower removed to taste
Ming @ Multiply 16% this layer added depth and a little colour.

And that is it! Easy!!

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Soft dune days

One of those soft yet mild overcast days in August when the low sea clouds come in over the land from the Mediterranean.
In France we call it the 'Marine' pronounced Maran it brings damp dark weather that can last for up to two weeks in winter!
Luckily in summer it's short lived, tending to blow away in a few days.
Before I textured this image I used the Painterly effect.

Raw Linen ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 48%
Antique Liaisons ~ Opacity ~ Overlay @ 52%
Unpublished Silk texture ~ Opacity ~ Hard Light @ 42%

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


This wonderful tree sits in the middle of farmland high in the South Otago hills.  From the first time I saw it 3 or so years ago I loved it and now I try and stop each time we go past. My aim is to take a photo from the paddock itself (this was taken from the road) but there is a very steep scrub covered bank between the road and the fence.

I had intended to process this in the same way as my recent Cow photo but the texture opacities and blending modes I used there, didn't work very well  on this photo so I had to do some adjustments to get the "look" you see above.

It was processed with
Basalt @ Soft Light 72%
Algae @ Soft Light 97 %
Algae @  Multiply 29%
Peach Blush @ Overlay 45 %
Peach Blush @ Soft Light 33 %
Tarte Tatin (from texbox 1) @ Soft Light 100%
Lavender Skies @ multiply 41 %

Then it was a matter of tweaking the tone and contrast.
I used a hue saturation layer to tone down the overall green cast, a curves layer to adjust the contrast and tweak the tone a little more. All these extra adjustments are really a matter of taste so it pays to experiment.

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Monday, January 11, 2010

Cypress hill

Seen from the motorway to the black mountains the other day.
This large, handsome, lollipop or feather duster shaped Cypress tree -
begged to have its portrait taken!
After a quick detour, I shot it with two overlapping exposures, camera on its side in portrait mode, two join-able shots. As I could never get as much sky with a normal landscape format, also its easier to focus in portrait with a big sky above.
Back at home, a quick join-up was done with Autopanopro.

Leaden Hall - Opacity - Hard Light @ 63%
Lime plaster - Opacity - Overlay 20%
Lost Void - Opacity - Overlay 53%
Ordinance Map - Opacity - Color Burn 59%
Copy of image overlaid with - Opacity - Soft light on top @ 49% -
The sky and the skirt softly brushed off.
A final colour tweak to warm and make the sky slightly green toned.

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Saturday, January 9, 2010


This is the tiny flower of Herb Robert or Geranium robertianum, it grows like a weed in my garden but thankfully it doesn't have much in the way of roots so is easy to pull out. When crushed it has a very pungent smell; the books say like foxes but never having smelled or seen a fox I wouldn't know;  and like many of the geranium family has it's seeds in capsules which "explode" to disperse the seed widely.
It's herbal properties have been known for centuries and recently it's been used as a herb for cancer prevention or treatment as it's apparently a very good immune enhancer. Read more about this special and useful herb here.

This macro looked okay prior to textures, in fact I was tempted to leave it as it was but I thought I'd try and give the image more of a botanical illustration type effect so I processed it in the following way.

Backdrop @ Multiply 61%
Archival Canvas @ Multiply 73% warmed by using a hue saturation adjustment
Peach Blush @ Hard light 55 %
Copy of background @ overlay 38% (to add some detail back into the image)
I finished with a colour curve adjustment for a final tweak of tone and contrast.

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart

Friday, January 8, 2010

Homeward bound

A freezing walk on our local French beach with friends and their dogs over the weekend, produced this simple image. The glow of the cold mid-winter sun warmed by applying several flypaper textures and this time, no colour tweaks!
I'm typing this whilst looking out over gently falling snow flakes,
Europe and this, our northern Mediterranean coastline is now in a Siberian icebox!

Necropolis (blurred) Opacity - Soft Light @ 46%
Raw Linen - Opacity - Overlay @ 73%
Colosseum Sienna - Opacity - Soft Light @ 16%
Ordinance map (brushed off sky) Opacity - Vivid Light @ 7%
Caramel Soft - Opacity - Soft Light @ 54%
Muscatel - Opacity - Soft Light @ 62%

Combo Pack Offer
Only $65 for Both texture Packs!

Add to Cart