While this just looks like a photograph, although a cool, dramatic one, there is actually some artistic work going on here. While my human uses filters like crazy when she is doing digital art, sometimes she has to dip in and do something manually, and this was one of those times. Here is the original photograph:
My human was trying to get a contrasty, late afternoon shot, but it wasn’t quite working. I was too dark.
But when she lightened the photo, the busy, messy background popped out too. She tried masking me and the highlights and darkening the rest of the photo, but with my fur, it was pretty much impossible to do it and make the edges seamless. So she used a tool she rarely needs anymore, but used all the time back in the “old days”: the Dodge and Burn tool. When she was shooting film and developing photographs in the darkroom, she did this all time. She would cover up parts of the image as she exposed the photo paper if she wanted to keep them lighter (that is dodging), or expose certain other parts for longer (usually by cupping her hands over the rest of the photo paper) to make them darker (that is burning). When she was first using Photoshop Elements over a decade ago, it had tools to do this digitally. Eventually she learned Photoshop techniques to adjust exposures that made dodging and burning by hand unnecessary… except sometimes, like with this photo.
With a big-sized “brush” tool, my human started “burning” in the background manually to make it darker.
Then, the closer she got to me, she began reducing the brush size, and was very careful around my ears and whiskers. She wondered if she should black out the window in the background, but figured that without all the other distracting elements, it worked all right because it was clearly the source of light.
So as you can see, there was a lot more going on with this photo than you might think!
You can see more from this week’s Caturday Art participants here!
Kitties Blue says
Your mommy is so talented, Sparkle. Our daddy still has his darkroom in the basement, but he hasn’t shot film in years. Mom is a crappy photographer. If you ever see a decent photo on our blog, you can bet our dad took it. Purrs and paw-pats, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo
Sparkle! My Mommy so much liked this post! Thanks yous!
Nellie (and especially Mommy)
Amelia Hughes says
Beautiful photo Sparkle! And this is a great tutorial to show people the amount of time, effort, and skill that goes into editing photographs (we have a lot of cats that eye roll at the amount of time I spend at the computer in our house)….
Timmy Tomcat says
You look great in that photo Sparkle
Dad will pay attention
Kjelle Bus aka Charlie Rascal says
Your mom sure did a grreat work on that one !
love it Sparkle,your mum does a good job,xx Speedy
Spitty the Kitty says
Boy, I wish YOUR Human was fixing up MY pictures. No wonder you kitties look so fantastic all the time!
Cathy Keisha says
What a great effect. TW uses the dodge and burn but she has no idea what masking is.
Very dramatic and beautiful. Love how you did that and that you showed us the progressions…cool.
The Island Cats says
That’s a very cool pic, Sparkle. Your human did good.
Sue Brandes says
Just beautiful Sparkle. She did a lovely job.
Toby & Leia says
Your Mom did a pawsome job. We really like this.
Jobi and Fisher says
Really amazing. The end result is great, and learning what you did to get there was…mind boggling. I have to admit I didn’t really understand it but I am happy for you that you know exactly what you are doing! I really like that little bit of window you left in, too.
Your human put a lot of work into your photo and the end result is very artistic.
Madi and Mom says
Sparkle it is official you look gorgeous in any lighting!!
Hugs madi your bfff
Andrea and the Celestial Kitties says
That is very artistic! And informative!
Mark's Mews says
Where ever ya are is a great picture, Sparkle!
🙄 love your images choices 🙂 clever mum Sparkle
Caren Gittleman says
that is catabulous! You know on http://www.ribbet.com they have the “burning” tools too 😎
Layla Morgan Wilde (Cat Wisdom 101) says
Thank Cod, things are easier these days and filters are such fun!
Wow, your mom is very talented. That’s a great picture.
Famous SpokesGoat Pricilla says
Your human is very skilled with photoshop. My publicist can barely take a photo
Glogirly and Katie says
We always love hearing tips and tricks with Photoshop!
Sometimes the old fashioned doge & burn is purr-fect!
Whatever you said – it worked out well 😀
Georgia and Julie says
Sparkle, we agree that you are worth the effort of making the shot purrfect 😉
Your Mom did good. We like the effect.
Purrs Georgia and Julie,
and Angels Tiger and Tillie
Sparkle, your Mom really does work hard on your pictures. That was so interesting about how she got that photo to come out. And the picture turned out terrific. Take care.
Sometimes, Cats Herd You says
How fun to see a little of the process that got to the art!
Most impressive work from you human to capture you in all your glory.
It is a strikingly beautiful picture, Sparkle. Your human is very talented. But to be honest we couldn’t take our eyes off of you in any of them.
Jasmine, Joey, Eddie & Rosie
That is a fantastic photo Sparkle and you are always a first class work of art sweet one!
Katie Bella says
One of HER sons, not mine. sigh.
Katie Bella says
Mom said one of my sons is a master at it. Her…absolutely NOTHING! 😛
Marty the Manx says
Your mom is very talented and artistic! My mom says tell your mom ‘thanks a lot’ for explaining how she created your wonderful picture. You look beautiful.
The Kitties of Purring Pines says
Cool work! Your mommy is very talented!
Thanks for describing how your human created it. Very informative!
Athena and Marie
Your mommy is very talented :), but then you’d be cute in any Photoshop setting :)> Kisses to your mom.
Hannah and Lucy says
Your Mom is very clever Sparkle and very patient.
Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx