Friday, July 22, 2016

The Photoshop Challenge


It appears we skipped the month of June. But, in our defense, June is a busy month! There's graduations, and open houses, and weddings, and too much to do! To be honest, the month just flew by and when it was over we kind of looked at each other like "June? It's over? It's seriously July already?" One AWESOME thing we learned from skipping a month was just how many of you truly do read this blog, and really do anticipate seeing the new challenges! That blew us away, and made us both so excited to continue doing these challenges! Thank you for reaching out and asking "so where the heck is the new challenge?!" We promise to get our act together!


That said, the last challenge was the Nature Challenge. And the winning photographer chosen by your votes was... drumroll please....


The stunning model, Hannah, acting like a total wind/stormy/bohemian nature goddess. 


As always, we draw the name of a voter at random and that voter wins a prize! 
This month's lucky winner is JENNIFER ZIELINSKI!
 Congratulations Jennifer and thanks for voting!
And no, you didn't win a chicken dinner.

This is what will be coming to Jennifer...wonderful handmade goatsmilk soaps from Kid Acres Soap Shoppe:

Smells so good, and makes your skin as soft as a baby's lil' tush!

The New Challenge

The theme this time around is The Photoshop Challenge. 
There really weren't any rules to this challenge. Basically we were to plan a themed image, photograph it, and then drastically enhance it in Photoshop to bring it to life!

This is a Blind Challenge Ya'll

Meaning, just as before, we aren't telling you which photographer shot which image!
We want you to vote for the ART, not the photographer.
So, read each little blurb, look at the images, and choose your favorite!



Summertime brings the only insect that I truly think is pretty cool---fireflies. 
They're so's kind of a fun Michigan kid summer thing to go out and capture them in a jar for a little while. And by the way, since Amazon has EVERYTHING, you can now buy your own firefly-in-a-jar, and let the real bugs keep their freedom. 
It's like childhood in a jar! 
We didn't have Amazon when I was a kid. Had to go out and catch them ourselves. Anyhoo, fireflies are what sparked (pun!) my idea for my image. I needed children...which, between the two of us, we have plenty to choose from. And instead of them capturing a firefly, how cool would it be to capture a fairy?! 
When I was little, we had these old, old story books--a fairy tale treasury--on our bookshelves that had wonderful stories and beautiful illustrations. 
I'd spend hours reading those.

This image is as inspired by those books as it is by this carefree (albeit very warm) summer.

Sarah's very lovely niece played the part of the fairy.
Gorgeous girl!
These two little cuties are Melissa's kiddos.
The images of the models were combined with a separate image of the jar.
True experts at being photography subjects.
 All were shot against a blue chromakey background, which ended up being such a very pretty color that I decided to keep it.
Photoshop has "brushes" that you can collect and stamp onto an image, and I was able to find a moon, some branches, fairy wings, and little glowy itty bitty fireflies (lightning bugs?).


Detail view of the fairy...she's too beautiful to not see up close:



 My first thought was to do something creepy, but every concept I came up with was too "halloween-ish". Somehow my mind drifted to Edgar Allan Poe and at first I was going to do something based on the Telltale Heart. That morphed into the Telltale Heart, Raven wings.... basically just a bunch of "Poe" stuff. I thought it would be cool to incorporate a hand drawn anatomically correct heart, and well lookie here.... my model is an artist and already had drawn one! It was meant to be! 
Seriously, how awesome is this? Can you believe she drew this?!?
I was still undecided about some parts of my final image during the shoot and was kind of winging it (psshh I NEVER do that ha ha) until my model mentioned a poem called Annabel Lee. I looked it up, and it was EXACTLY the inspiration I needed! I based the final look of my image off that poem. I styled my model, did her hair and makeup, and photographed her holding a little wooden box. I then superimposed her heart drawing into the box, added ravens exploding out of her hair, cracked her face (as she was my little broken porcelain doll), and added gears into her head because why not? I also did some other things like enlarging her eyes to help with the porcelain doll look, and specific image toning.


I turned this.... 

....into this!

For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
Of my darling -- my darling -- my life and my bride,
In her sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.

If you want to read the whole poem, go here.

Voting has ended!
Thank you for your votes--you all are great!
Stay tuned to hear the results
(and also to find out who is the lucky voter)