Mar 252010

Tuesday morning was overcast and I was able to see these Argentine Cactus blooms mid-morning. They are night blooming thus if it had been a bright sunny morning, the blossoms would have wilted.. in fact, many were all ready “gone.”

I realize that this is a bit of a distortion on mini assignment #3…

The double photos below were done in Adobe Photoshop Elements (which I already own and should be happy with) and Lightroom 2. I’m driving myself crazy evaluating applications.

Photo Above: Processed in PSE — with levels adjusted & high pass overlay for petal details.  Sponge used to saturate bee and the pink part of the flower.

Photo Below:  Processed in Adobe Lightroom 2.  Used Preset:  Tone Curve – Strong Contrast.  Used brush to bring out bee in flower, but not all that successful.  Actually tried about 1000 things since I don’t know what I’m doing and am just evaluating this copy.  But this is what I settled on.

Below: This is my photo of “gone blossoms.” I really didn’t do anything to this photo.

  13 Responses to “MINI ASSIGNMENT #3: Overcast”

  1. So many cool programs so little time! I especially love the barrel cactus or whatever the third shot is in its fading flower beauty. You have such extreme light there, do you use any filters? (polarizer or neutral density for example)

    • I don’t use any filters… my camera is not a DSLR. BUT, I’m looking through my camera options and I see that I have a “neutral” under “my colors” options on the camera. I have not experimented with any of these. Seems I should!

  2. I have a cactus that has that extra little yellow ‘fireworks’ in the center, too, but it isn’t this generous with the layers of petals in different colors. I stand in awe of anything that looks so unwelcoming that can send out such a unworldly beautiful blossom. Keep up your testing of the software…isn’t it fun?

    • Esther, it is fun to test these different apps! I wish I had the money to buy them all!

      Today I decided on one. I just purchased Aperture 3 as I like the way you can brush in and still adjust the brushed in area after you are done. Also, it is better integrated with iPhoto & the Mac in general. Lightroom is interesting but I think I have more control with Aperture — and Aperture is $100 less. It also looks like some of the interesting add-ons will work with Aperture, though not all of them, obviously not the ones designed to work with Adobe specifically – but maybe I’ll get smart enough to make the Aperture preset do these extra things.

      Also, I’ve decided to stay with PSE 6 and not upgrade to 8 as I really can’t find any new features that I’m not already using. It seems that the PSE 8 is mostly about its Bridge and how it organizes… which Aperture will do. And includes more capabilities for video, which I don’t care about.

      Oh, another thing I like about Aperture is that it lets me compare photos to one and other.

      And finally, we are getting an iPad and thus another reason to buy Aperture.

      The one thing that I may be missing… and I don’t know enough about the subject… is the HDR effect.

  3. Love these cactus blossoms. I like the photo in low light as it allows more color to come through in my opinion. Great shot and processing!

  4. Flowering cacti are so beautiful and you captured the colors and beauty.

  5. i can’t wait for my cacti to start blooming..they make such great photos. i like the photo showing the spent ones best…there is a lot of texture and natural coloring to it :)

  6. I’m nodding along with your experimenting in Lightroom. Just downloaded the beta for version 3 and it’s completely foreign to me. Your images are lovely. I like the prickly pear blossoms in image #3.

  7. Julie, I tend to agree with you… I have one more experiment. I just realized that I’m behind on my PSE release! So I downloaded a trial version of PSE and have 30 days to play with it! It does seem to have some interesting features… and claims to be better integrated with iPhoto.

  8. First the overcast light is lovely, very soft and even. Second, distort the mini-assignments all you like! They are are there to help you explore.

    I have to say between the first two pics, I prefer the second one just because the contrast seems better.

  9. Now this is an interesting flower I haven’t seen before. Great pictures!

  10. I’m looking a bit Cack ‘T Eyed at your bottom BLOSSOM LOL

  11. All are beautiful, but how I love that last image…so unique and cheery at the same time!

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