Sunday, July 22, 2007

Lilypad for Rima

Here is my version of Rima's workshop assignment number 1, "Lilypad."

The Photoshop steps I took were:
1. Opened the Lilypad image, selected all, and copy. Left that image opened.
2. Opened a new image, pasted the image as a new layer, reduced the layer opacity to 25%, just so I could barely see it.
3. Opened a new layer, then going to back and forth, using the original image as a pallet, I dipped my dipper into it for colors, and painted on top of the nearly transparent layer. One of the things I was pleased to discover during this assignment -- and I suspect Rima had hoped we would stretch ourselves to learn new things -- was the ability to change the paint brush option from Normal to Behind which worked great for me because I started with the center of the flower and built outward.
4. After "painting" in the detailed elements, it was time to figure out how to do the water. (I think I work backwards, don't you?) I used a really big brush, one that had feathered edges, and set the opacity to about 40 and kept re-painting around my details, allowing for there to be lighter and darker areas in the water. A happy accident in painting the water was I found that touching the edges of the painted details gave them some quasi-shadows.
5. Lastly, I merged all my layers, selected all, copied, then pasted into the same image. Then I set that latest layer's opacity to 50% and pointilized it. (I tried pointilizing the original "painting" first, but it was too harsh, much too Photoshop-Effecty.)

And then I called it done. Because as you probably know, once you get started playing in Photoshop it's hard to know when to quit!

If I had anything to share in my bag of "tricks," it would be changing the opacity setting on layers. This helped me:
  • "Trace" my "painting" over the original image.
  • Subdue the effects of artistic filters.
Three cheers for Rima for giving us this fun assignment! I learned something new in doing my "homework." I bet you did too.


Bobbie said...

what a beautiful "painting", Debi. I love the colors which are much subdued to the original. Thank you for sharing and I agree, it is very hard to know when you are done!

Frances said...

I need some new words to describe my admiration for artwork. This one has the look of a non-digital painted piece. Lovely and cool. I really want to have another try - I miss my old graphics programs now -

Rima said...

I don't know what happened to my comment earlier - but truly I had to scrape my jaw off the floor when I clicked on your blog. Oh, my! what a lovely, beautiful and beautifully made artwork. And I've learned a couple or 5 new things in the process - amazingly light touch there, Debi, and thanks for the pointillize tip, always had huge trouble with that one and had given up on it. WOW! beautiful work!

Rima said...

I also wanted to say - I had tried this "painting" over technique only last week, but I hadn't considered copying in a faint layer as the basis first. This is such a brilliant idea, and it's given me an idea for another technique post.

I am so excited by all the stuff that's going back and forth between all of us - it's like an artist retreat without leaving our homes. Like fireworks almost. I haven't been this inspired to do and try new things in ages.

Rima said...

One more (sorry!)
I was showing the "wall" to my girls this morning, and they made polite noises of appreciation (that's pretty, that's nice) until we got to yours... and they both went: "Oh, wooowww... this one's beautiful! it's so pretty, it looks like there are stars shining everywhere". So there, out of the mouths of babes... They also like Frances's Slick Lily.

Neda said...

Rima's girls are right: I saw a gorgeous nocturne and they saw stars. Debi, it never ceases to amaze me how thorough and dedicated you are.There is always a zen-serenity in your art. How wonderful!