Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Creating Minimal Abstract Style With iPhoneography and Photoshop or Elements for Instagram and Digital Scrapbooking

Sun over Cape Town
Edited with iPhone apps Filterstorm and Laminar

Edited with Photoshop Elements

I enjoy editing photos and taking part in a daily challenge on Instagram for @applifam moderated by @jvdt. It’s a great opportunity to practice editing techniques with various apps. The photos @jvdt provides for the challenges are copyright free, which allows me to use the edited photo on my scrapbook pages as well (always giving credit to the original source).

I created the original edit for Instagram using the two apps Filterstorm (or Filterstorm Pro) and Laminar. They are both layer-based apps with a wide range of editing tools. My edit with these apps can be seen above and also on my Instagram account.

This post will concentrate on recreating similar effects with Photoshop or Photoshop Elements taking into account the differences between the lower resolution of Instagram images and the higher resolution of Photoshop images.

Here is the original photo provided by @jvdt at Instagram shot in Cape Town South Africa. I wanted to create a minimal abstract look with the horizontal lines of the cityscape. 

1.  Place background paper. I chose a neutral paper with soft texture from ArtPlay Palette AutumnHaze by Anna Aspnes Designs.

2.  Place original photo.

3. Mask Photo by carefully erasing areas outside the horizon of the cityscape

4. Adjust Brightness/Contrast 

5. Adjust Color/Curves for high contrast

6. Adjust Hue/Saturation for color and increased contrast

7. Adjust Hue/Saturation for B/W Layer by moving Saturation slider to the far left.

8. Adjust Curves for B/W for increased contrast.

9.  Move Color Layer 6 above B/W Layer 8 and Change both Layers to Darken Mode.

10. Create Adjustment Mask layers for Color and B/W layers and erase portions of each as desired. I erased the color from the buildings and the black and white from the trees and the lower part of the photo.

11. Complete page by adding a transfer from ArtPlay Palette SunFun at 90%, Skribble Sun art from ArtPlay Palette SunFun and a glow from WarmGlows No.1 (overlay mode) all from Anna Aspnes Designs. The title font is Bombshell Pro.

Note: In the layers palette below you can see I have placed the SunFun transfer layer above the background paper layer. It could also have been placed directly below the last two adjustment mask layers since the visibility of the layers below is turned off. I just placed it above the background paper layer so you can see the progression of layers.