Day’s End

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This group of cottonwood trees is something I just can’t resist shooting any time I pass it on my way to Albuquerque. I decided to add a hint of a campfire to thescene by moving a spot of light from the setting sun, using TouchRetouch’s clone stamp and painting over it a little using the healing tool and the dodge and burn tool in Snapseed.

THE LIFE OF A PHOTOGRAPH

Here's a photo I took with my iPhone 6 Plus, recently, in the San Juan Market in Mexico City. I'm happy with it. However, I couldn't help wondering how ot might work as a black and white:

Hmmm, I like this one, too. But I decided to return to the full color version. Then I thought, what if it had “bokeh” (selective focus), forcing the foreground to appear more important by playing down the background:

I decided to push the bokeh more aggressively…

But felt that maybe that was too extreme. I decided to go back and tinker with the colors:

Oh, yeah, I like that; but how about more of the same?

Garish? Maybe. I do like it, though. I tried adding some bokeh to this version:

OK, that's my favorite. Not realistic, true. Overdone. Obvious, even. An abstraction, really. But then, so is the black and white version. It's not natural, either. Truth is, though, this bright, powerful version feels more like being there, to me. More like the emotional impact of being there. Both have their audience. Frankly, I'm in the audience for both.

I'm still happy with the original, too, really. It's already miles ahead of anything I was ever able to do before digital photography came along.

Now, I don't much like using the ready made filters in the apps I work with, even though some, not all, of them are quite beautiful and effective. I prefer to play around with various adjustments, sometimes delicately, sometimes pushing them beyond reason. I don't keep track of my methods, because I don't want my work to become formulaic. I approach each image based on its content, and manipulate it accordingly.

Apps used, PhotoForge2, Leonardo, Snapseed.

Next, we'll take a part of this image and get really wild with it. Stay tuned…

Hasta Mañana