Thursday, March 15, 2012

le grand mouche – the big fly!

A strong dry wind has been blowing through our area for so long, even the palm trees have been wind burnt on their north sides, and our natural beaches have lost much of their lovely dune tops and are now smeared all over the place!
Taking a good camera into such sandblasted conditions, is at best foolhardy, but I’ve always been a bit foolish and just put it under my coat when not in use!
Here I am, cowering from the wind, bending over the camera, trying not to get sun flair on the lens, all very hit and miss.
The great thing about the sun on the sand is its huge natural light reflection, so back at home in Raw mode, I was able to knock back the blown-out head sun halo, and pull up the light recovery 100%, thus giving a kind of flash fill-in effect.
If you mouse-over the image, you’ll see the base image after i’ve already done this, or you’d just see a dark silhouette effect.

I then duplicated the image and used the Photoshop filters to add first a slight watercolor effect, a slight poster edges effect and finish with a paint daub effect, to give the image its graphic quality. I’ve also been playing with my new Intuos 5 touch graphic tablet, and with it I painted the eyes brighter, giving the whole picture a kind-of strange illustrative German expressionistic feel.
The finished beach – blow fly image fully earns my French nick-name; le Grand Mouche or the Big Fly!

Texture packs used were Summer Painterly and Tex Box 1

Dawn Grunge – Overlay @ 68 %
Touchstone – Overlay @ 100% brushed from head area
Necropolis – soft light @ 100% desaturated and brushed from head area
Raw linen – Soft light @ 100%brushed from head area

Finishing with a slight overall color desaturation to knock back the red wind burned skin tones and bright blue sky.

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