Saturday, February 08, 2014

Follow up to Bones ... more cool photography on a budget.

The weather was again cold.  -8 with winds type of cold.  It actually got up to 11 degrees yesterday but I had no desire to go tromping through the snow in the blinding sunlight.

Towards evening I decided to try another Bone & Light experiment.

Here is the lamplit version:

Of course the light shows up with a yellow cast and the velvet reflects light.  I don't mind the texture in the velvet, but decided to get rid of it and the yellow cast.

I turned this into black and white using Topaz B&W Effects.  Then I went back and brushed out the velvet and light spots by simply adding a layer and using a pure black round brush.
I thought it would be faster than using the burn tool.
I was wrong.
The blacks did not match and I had to go back more than once to get this the way I wanted.
So much for short cuts, right?

The skull was off center a bit so I added a canvas portion to the right and to the bottom. 

You can get rid of the yellow cast from the lamp and get a floating skull.

Next I decided to keep the lamp on and use an LED flashlight to light up the dark side of the skull.

That was interesting!  Now I had a yellow cast and a blue cast from the flashlight!  Plus the mess from the textured velvet.

And then edited:

Well, that was cool!

What IF I turn out the lights and just use the flashlight?

Well that didn't work so well.  But the camera was set on a 30 second exposure and I kept moving the flashlight to try and expose the skulls.  It turned out overexposed.  
But, what if I can tone it down and get rid of the colors?

Not too bad.  
But I can see I didn't use a lot of sense placing the skulls.  I also left some of the velvet in.  
Not sure if I like that either.  I can always brush it out.  But I was able to sort of fix the shot.  However I am unhappy with the placement of the items.

So this will have to be a re-do.

Lastly, I thought I'd not highlight the whole skull and just experiment a bit.

Here is what I got with 'light painting' the deer skull.

and then this:

I like this last shot as it doesn't highlight the whole skull, but I think the left side of the skull is more complete and I should try a side shot with this method.

Items used for this.
Camera with long exposure capabilities.
Old chair.
Black material, in this case velvet, but muslin may work better.
Bendable desk lamp.
LED cheap flashlight.
Living room.

Shot with a light on in the other room so I could see what I was doing.

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