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Behind the veil

Behind the veil

The unclear is often more exciting then the clear.

“I would rather live in a world where my life is surrounded by mystery than live in a world so small that my mind could comprehend it.” – Harry Emerson Fosdick

The photo subject was a group of small vines resembling a section of woven wire fence. Throw in a few bright green, yellow and reddish/orange leaves along with backlighting — nice, but not visually exciting.

How to give something slightly mundane more appeal?

I started with two versions of this image. One with a slight left to right motion blur and the other a still shot. With each image in its own Photoshop layer, the motion blur image on top, I did some slight image alignment and then selected a “darken” blending mode. A little contrast and tonal adjustment in NIK Color Efex Pro gave this result.

To me, it’s like viewing the original scene through a very sheer silk veil — implying a sense of mystery and greater appeal.

21 Comments on Behind the veil

  1. Hi Earl,

    I really like this photo, and how the wire fence frames the subjects. I like the color and mood of the shot, and pleasing blur of the background. Very nice.


    • Hey Alan, what appears to be wire fence is actually vine. That’s what initially attracted me to this scene but upon reviewing the image later I felt it was missing something and so I proceeded with this post-processing. I’m glad you like it. Have a good weekend.

  2. You’re special processing has paid off handsomely. A very attractive image is the result. Well done.

  3. It worked beautifully Earl. Your post-processing is subtle but striking. Nice.

  4. I like this very much, Earl. The motion blur is very subtle but gives it a nice, almost mysterious, effect.

    • Ken, yes, the blend of the motion blur with the still image gave sharp edges but still a subtle blur effect. Glad you like it.

  5. Striking and rich with that smoky taste of mystery. The colors are beautiful and that veil seems to intensify the lighting. I keep coming back to lose myself in this.

    This is a joy, having the opportunity to see the results of your playing with the Photoshop tools. Aren’t layering and adjustment layers the cat’s pajamas? I am especially grateful for Smart Objects. Layers and masks have always been great tools, but the Smart Objects makes those tools more fun than ever.

    • Anita, I like that, “smoky taste of mystery.” I’m glad you like it. Yes, I find Photoshop to be a wonderful tool. I enjoy making photos but there’s also times I enjoy taking an image into Photoshop and letting my creativity run free. Thanks!

  6. This is a wonderful example of how Photoshop can help in making incredible art. This result is stunning. Great image.

    • David, thank-you! It’s easy to go overboard with Photoshop and much harder to stop short of that. I’m glad you like my efforts in this case.

  7. The soft blurring in the background is great!

  8. This is great – a wonderful example of how photoshop can make a picture shine and express your vision, without being heavy-handed and obvious.

    • JP, I appreciate it. As I commented to David above, “It’s easy to go overboard with Photoshop but often much harder to stop short of that.”

  9. I enjoy the colors in this image, causes the spark of excitement to rise within me. Another one of those images where the imagination was at play in both shooting and processing. You are playing with software I do not have and getting some wonderful results.

    • Monte, software is like cameras…having it and getting good results can be two separate things. I’ve had this software for some time but something’s clicking for me at the moment which hasn’t clicked prior…it may well be related to my attitude of “finding the fun” again this year. :-)


  10. This is pretty cool Earl, and does have some of the mystery that is fitting for the quote. I wouldn’t know there was a fence in this until you pointed it out. It is a very pleasing abstract. You might be pushing your luck with that Photoshop cop though.

    • Hey, thanks Mark! There’s not a fence, I made reference to one because of the way the vines were arranged. I think I’ll take my chance with that Photoshop Cop. ;-)

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