the making of an image...

black & white image of trees in the fog
I thought I’d shed a little light on how this image of trees in the fog was made. Part of the process of creating an image can be as simple as recognizing when to take the picture. It was foggy and quite overcast the day I took this. I came home from running errands and quick grabbed my camera. Fog is one of those things that can disappear rather quickly. (Or it can sock you in for days—one never knows!)

This tree happens to border a farm. The fog and how I processed this image disguises that. The fog did the heavy lifting here. It’s wonderful for simplifying what would normally be a busy background. Fog helps the photographer capture dreamy landscapes, or contemplative portraits.

Kaikoura, New Zealand foggy beach

man and dog sitting on a dock looking across a foggy lake

Back to the original image of this post. Because there was already so little color in the landscape, I chose to do a monochrome image. (Again, either shooting in or converting to black and white can be another way to simplify an image. Note that I said “can”, which doesn’t mean “always”.

Now let the fun begin with this image. There are several layers to this image. One is the original, that is clear and in focus. That same image was duplicated and blurred a bit in Photoshop Elements. Those images were combined. Then I added a texture layer as well. Of course “texture” isn’t in the physical sense, but visually. Texture layers are typically no more than another image (or two or three) that looks like it is has texture.  The easiest way to show you is to have you take a peek at Leslie’s French Kiss Textures. I have purchased many of her textures that she creates. You can even get some freebies to whet your creative appetite. The tree image used the texture image called Dirt. I tried to find the texture on her website for you, but she might have discontinued it, as I couldn’t find it.

To be able to create layered images, I believe Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements are the only two programs that can do that. Perfect Layers 2 by OnOne is a stand alone software that can give you the ability to create layered images, but I don’t believe it has all the image editing capabilities of the Adobe products, Lightroom, or Aperture. (Of course there are many more image editors out there.) I have never used it; I only know it exists. It would be worth looking into if you don’t own either of the Photoshop programs.

For a future post, I’ll take some screen shots as I’m editing a photo. That will really give you a behind the scenes peek into what I create.