Going soft

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #237: Bringing Softness

It’s fun bringing something new to a photograph. The software I use is Corel PaintShop Pro Ultimate 2023. I just hammered through these doing something different to my usual techniques to soften images. I alter a photo changing lightness, shadows, or mid-range tones, sometimes adding more black or white as well as saturation. Mostly then I use vignette as the first stop in softening an image.

This photo I used a function in the software – Soft Focus, which I haven’t used before.
I changed the amount of soft focus and edge hardness. Then set the Halo amount, size and visibility I bore you with meaningless numbers.
From a harsh morning sun through grass seeds to this.

A bee on a Zinnia. I seem to have quite a number of similar photos. Just using vignette and dark settings
Dark/Light
into the negative numbers
Blur making sure the subject bee wasn’t out of focus
Diffuse Glow on low as well
Feather Edge just encroaching on the petal

The opposite with the Australian Painted Lady Butterfly. The original photo had the grass as well as the butterfly in focus. Firstly, I bought up the black and colour as it was a bit washed out.
I decided to try something new again. Selective Focus. It is in parallel band and can be moved in any direction.
First I ran the focus following the butterflies body and to the tip of the wings. Left and right hand sides now blurred.
Then did the same going horizontal, blurring the top and bottom of the photo.
Adding a vignette in a vague heart shape.

A very old street in Adelaide, Victorian terraces and a blue stone building which were a staple for stone buildings in the late 1800’s. A bright sunny day photo. I like the result of this photo. This was the first photo I played with and was just doing all sorts of things, deciding I didn’t like it and undid the changes.
Therefore no idea how I did this one, sorry

Well there you go. This is something I don’t usually do and I know why…..it’s exhausting! Hope it gave some insight into the process to get a desired result

Walking Squares #10 – Butterflies, Flowers and a Surprise

Becky’s #WalkingSquares

Another walk at my place. This time I went into the bush beyond the fallen tree from the other days walk. I intended to get down to the waterhole but I had a few distractions on the way down. Hard to walk past some weeds and not pull them out. Plus I moved small branches and logs off the track in case I can get the mower along there one day soon.

I made it to around 800 meters and the clouds began to build so I decided to head for home. By the time I was on the last stretch home, the sun came out.

This is a long hike as well so I might need you to walk with love. A bit of a reggae tune to get you going

Down the back steps and the last of the Lilli Pilli flowers is hanging on

Walking about you have to careful of Brown Bandicoot scrapes dug overnight. They are looking for insects and worms that live in the soil. Could easily twist an ankle and that would ruin a walk.

Past “The Big Dam” Which is a huge failure. I was surprised that there was still a lot of water. The underground spring that connects to the dams water may have blocked. That spring runs under the dam and further down the gully, the water from the dam flows on the surface. When it is full it would hold 7million million litres of water

I guess that is why there are Dragonflies about

The once sparse tufts of Kangaroo Grass, a native grass to my area, are in more places and those clumps are seeding well

Lots of trees have gum nuts so the seed bank in the soil is growing

The bush is recovering nicely. Still lots of dead trees around so have to watch where I walk. Since I was down this way there has been a few tree falls as well as large branches that have dropped from on high

Large areas of Yellow Buttons too. All of the following flowers are about 10mm in diameter and some smaller

I was getting some photos of the small Rough Guinea flower when I was photo-bombed by a Blue-banded Bee

A Hairy Guinea Flower with a couple of fruit pods

I don’t know the name of this tiny yellow flower

The occasional Dandelion was about

All the butterflies in this gallery have wingspans from 19mm to 25mm. A Line-blue of some sort. The blue on the body is noticeable

A different Line-blue Butterfly to show the blue front of his body

A Ringlet with “eyes” on the wings. Makes them big and fierce to potential predators

The wonderfully named Greenish Darter

Not too sure about this one. Just a tiny pink flower growing all by itself

A Grass Trigger Plant flowers in clusters like these

Now for the surprise Yes this was a very pleasant surprise for me. I have only ever seen one Purple Fringe Lily on my place ever and that was after the fire.

So when I came across this one I was so happy. Then I looked and saw a few more nearby.

As I walked up the hill, I just went nuts…there were some plants that had two flowers and look at the seed pods as well.

And then I saw it. A plant with three flowers. I have never seen one with more than one flower, here or elsewhere.

Back home and the Agapanthus are fully open

Blur in the background

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Bokeh

A Crimson Rosella in the garden this morning. The blues and greens work well with the subject don’t you think?

Using the subject as well as bokeh

Not quite right, A bit too much blur

Bokeh even works well in black & white

or in colour for contrast

Just being arty-farty with bokeh. Using the blur effect with water drops. First in black and white…..

……then in colour

It’s in the sky and in the garden

Sunday Stills Monthly Colour Challenge: #Amethyst

I wasn’t sure where to go with this challenge but the sky and flowers won out