Week One & Two. One Four Challenge (February).

The One Four Challenge has kicked off for 2016! Though it is the middle of February, this is my Week One (and Two) since I decided to make my challenge post on Sundays (and I am behind the power curve).

The challenge itself is a bit different this year as well. For details, just click here so you can read it directly from Robyn.

For the first week, I will stick with a traditional edit post. The photo I selected is from December 2015 and at the Barbados Zoo. My boyfriend and I visited the zoo and immediately noticed, there were tons of turtles, or tortoises. I am not sure really as I am not that knowledgeable on these creatures. I think tortoises have the bigger and bumpier shells though. If so, than tortoises were a plenty.

Anyway, after walking about and dodging a sudden downpour, I started noticed this creature coming at me….slowly. He had such an intimidating stance it cracked me up. So I got down low to photograph him. I didn’t want to lay on the ground since it was all wet, so I just put my camera on the ground to get a different perspective and kept shooting different shots.

Needless to say, most of those shots had a crooked framing. Here is the untouched, raw original.

Origina

You can clearly see his attitude, and the creepy drip of rain water under his chin. You can also see the uneven ground, which is makes me feel like he was stomping towards me, and he kind of was. However, the tilting ground is distracting.

Before adjusting that element though, I started with the basic photo qualities first. If you look at the screen shot below, you can see how I changed different elements.

Week 1 Edits

Nothing amazing here. Just some tweaks to coloring for warmness, to shadows for brightening and to highlights for darkening.

Now, I wanted to fix the tilted view. If you try to do this while in raw, and it is possible, it will only allow you to crop within the picture. While this makes sense, it is also restricting. If you are not sure what I mean, let me explain. Look at the screen shot below. It is the preview of a crop in Photoshop CS5.

Cropping to straighten

To get the angle I wanted, I either needed to crop in tight to the foreboding creature (to stay within the confines of the picture) or to crop out further, past the picture itself. Again, while in Raw, you cannot go past the picture itself. Photoshop will let you go where you want. With that said, it will only give you want you asked for. In this case, I went past the picture itself. Therefore, my result is blank space. (See the upper right corner of the screen shot below.)

Crop leaves empty space

While doing this can be useful for many layout options, in this case, it’s blank space I have to fill. This can be done fairly easy with the clone stamp tool. All you need to do is clone the portions of the photo below the blank space. This of course is much easier when the area consists of things like leaves, grass, sand and the like. In this case, I just cloned the leaves of the tress in the distance that came out with a nice bokeh. The bokeh’s randomness lends to easy cloning. The key to cloning is being random, at least in this case. You don’t want the line where you had nothing to be obvious. Therefore you have to blend the existing with the new, like it was all there to begin with.

 

Week1

Looking at the shot above, can you tell I created the upper right corner? How about on the left? Did you notice I cloned the trees over the man’s pant leg that was showing? If not, than I did well.

If you like learning editing techniques, make sure you check out other bloggers. There are some amazing photographers and editors out there. Just sure onefour2016 and OneFourChallenge on the reader.

And since I am a bit behind, here is my Week Two.

For this one, all I did was take Week One’s picture and lower the saturation 60 percent and raise the contrast 100 percent. I was trying to get a more ominous look.

Week2

Did it work? Were you scared?

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5 thoughts on “Week One & Two. One Four Challenge (February).

  1. Michelle, this is such a great photo. I’ve been pondering on it for a few days!! You are so right when you say, you can see his attitude. Watch out 😃😃
    I really like the way you walked us through your thought and editing process and I do like your results – both of them!!
    I must say from my screen, I loved that tilted ground (I definitely see your point) – it does give it an off kilter feel with him coming at you!!
    I wondered… What if: you leave the foreground and do a wide/cinematic crop with the top of the image touching his shell?? This might add to the foreboding feel perhaps? Just food for thought 😃 Looking forward to your next choices of this great fellow!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I have about 30 more turtle photos too. None as intimidating as this one, but maybe I will show them, or at least the ones of this specific guy, at week Four. That way you can see the different angles and his approach.
      Yes, I was torn between liking the tilt and it being distracting.
      I like the idea of a wide/cinematic crop! Hhhmmmmm. Choices choices choices.

      Liked by 1 person

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