Thursday, January 26, 2012

My First Try of an Abstract

As many of you know, I love Bonnie's Photo Art Friday challenge. What I particularly like about it is that Bonnie's ideas really challenge me and often enough get me out of my comfort zone. One of those is to create an abstract, using three of our photos and at least one of her textures. Oh boy!!! That was way out of my comfort zone - and it shows.

These were my three photos:




I "merged" them into one image just like Bonnie told us in her tutorial, and then selected a filter "cutout". After that I added Bonnie's texture "abstract scratches" in blending mode "difference" at 75%; then added her texture "Monet's music texture" in blending mode "vivid light" at 67%; some levels and saturation adjustment and I felt I was done. I really didn't know what else to do.


Do I like it? Not really...

Perhaps I did chose photos that don't work very well for this project (probably). I wish I knew how to blend the edges of the photos more, so that the photos merge better. I don't like that you can still see the rectangle shape. I have no idea whether and how that is possible. Perhaps someone can tell me?

.

20 comments:

Maria Ontiveros said...

Well, I'd say it's interesting!
I have trouble creating abstracts in my mixed media work.
Rinda

Terrie said...

Here are some suggestions for next week's art: to blend the edges of photos I use a big soft eraser brush at about 50% power so it leaves a very soft edge and blends between the 2 pictures better; when choosing three pics to blend, it helps to have at least one be large, simple shapes like a leaf closeup or tree bark closeup or similar because it serves more as a background and doesn't compete with a busier image; another idea to try is to change the scale dramatically or just use part of an image so for example you might crop out the window and just keep the flowers on the left then enlarge that to fill the same space as the cemetery, then crop the tree and take just the top branches and use them as "grass" in the lower right of the cemetery image. You don't necessarily have to use all of each image. Or, try shrinking the tree and run it in multiples across the bottom of your master image.

Hope some of these suggestions give you a starting point for your next experiment - if I can help more, just ask.... I love playing with this whole idea and some are just more successful than others but sometimes you've put too much energy into it to scrap it and start totally over.....that's okay, it's a process! :)

kareninkenai said...

Carola - I agree with Terrie in part - you have a very lovely image actually - and, the straight lines don't bother me at all. It may be a little bit "monotone" in shading - you have lovely color, but it is all one shade with not a lot of light and dark. (maybe, as I said it is all a matter of perception). I learned because of mistakes early on in erasing (for me) and then not being able to duplicate, to use a layering or masking technique with a soft edge brush to shade out or soften what I want along with the percentage of the layer (normal, multiply, soft light, etc.). I love cemetery sculpture and art. Always fun to work with. I scrap quite a few of mine and usually am not really happy sometimes, too. Your technique will come with trial and error. I've been in a couple of collaboratives - not with photography - but with beading where we all began with the same "ingredients" and "wow" did we all come up with something different. That is the fun. I sure like your coloring. Keep on a trying until you get with "you" like. Hugs from Alaska. Karen

Ida said...

I think you did a fine job with your 1st Abstract piece. It was my 1st time as well. I know so little about layering/blending etc...and more or less just played around with photo's until I got something that I thought worked well together. What I like about your piece is that it reminds me of an old oil painting but in an abstract sort of way.

Kaylene said...

I like what you have done, but Terrie's advice is something to consider, Well done

Chantal said...

this is just the beginning, keep working on the skills

seabluelee said...

Carola, congratulations on leaving your comfort zone and trying something so new and different for you! I've never tried anything like this, but may I say that I really like each of the three photos you started with? A fairy-tale cottage, an old cemetery, a lone tree in the mist...three of my favorite things!

Jeanne said...

I think it turned out nice, and also enjoyed reading some of Terrie's helpful comments. This is not an easy process, and nothing like anything I have ever done before.

Bonnie said...

It may turn out that while this is not a piece you like, it may be the one the brings you a lot of learning and insights. Terrie's suggestions are so good, I hope everyone gets to read them.

My suggestion would be that finishing with Vivid Light is washing out the final image...but you may have had your reasons for that.

Chalk it up to learning and don't get discouraged. There are just some combos of photos and textures that don't work. Sometimes we need to choose uncomplicated photos without too much black in them.

I love what Terrie says about getting to the point that we have invested so much energy in it we don't want to give up on it. That said, in frustration I have scrapped many that just don't work.

Hope it is a bit of a consolation that with your honesty and openness you will be providing a lot of learning for us all!

La Vie Quotidienne said...

This is so impressive...I have no idea how you even began to do this. I persume it was using Photoshop ~ all I can say is WOW!

Carola Bartz said...

Wow!!! Thank you all for wonderful tips and advise. It is very helpful and I deeply appreciate that you took the time to leave such detailed and long comments. This is a great community! I will not give up on creating abstracts, it's way too interesting. I will try a few more and see where it will go. Thank you again, you're amazing!

Deborah said...

I think it is great, particularly for your first try!

Sherri B. said...

I think you did an awesome job - I truly love the color palette you ended up with!

Meegan, Blue Moon Mama said...

Excellent first try and I'll be trying Terri's advice next time I get the urge to play with an abstract theme.

Suzanne Carter said...

Hi Carola, I really like your final image but I have learned heaps from the questions you asked so thanks so much. I am only learning too and sometimes it all feels a bit overwhelming in a good way!
I didnt even post an abstract, so well done!
Blessings Suzanne

DebC said...

I loved the colors in this.
And it was great to read all the comments,
especially ones with some instructions and hints on techniques.

My only contribution is to maybe use one of Bonnie's geometric textures;
there are a couple at the top of her free page
and some others in the purchase section.
Then maybe the lines between the photos would be irrelevant.

Margaret said...

Who would have thought that the business of the three would work, but it did!

honey said...

i don't experiment with textures and PS like you do, but i love that you do! i learn so much from what you share.

Ginnie said...

You're in a whole new ballpark for me, Carola, so this is when I just sit in the grandstands and watch...and clap. :)

Marcie said...

Very cool!! Love the end result. What a clever and creative idea!