A few years ago I gave a presentation at the Sandhills Photo Club in North Carolina. They treated me like royalty and we had a great time. Lots of laughter, lots of good photographers, lots of photo exploring. I found a magnolia seed pod and some other things on that trip that wouldn't fit in my suitcase, so I mailed them home.
As I was unpacking boxes in the studio this morning, I came across the box. Oh, boy! Cool stuff! I set the magnolia pod on the studio table, glanced down, and loved how it looked. So simple. Just sitting on the table. I got out the iPhone, selected the Camera Awesome app, opted for the Lone Star effect, and here's the result.
In the first photo you can see "Ramses," my oh-so-Georgia-O'Keeffe ram skull, who doesn't have a home quite yet (he looked especially handsome on the fireplace in Palm Springs), books, boxes, and a tripod/camera in the back.
But look at how cool the pod looks there on the table. I did take some overviews, but I particularly liked this close-up.
And people wonder why it's taking me so long to unpack? Well, sometimes you just have to stop and have a bit of fun while you work.
Technical stuff: Although I used the iPhone and some apps to make these photographs, the Lone Star effect can create a lot of contrast, washing out lighter-colored areas. I brought both photos into Photoshop and created a duplicate mask, used the "Multiply" blending mode to darken the entire photo, inverted the mask, and then used a brush to let some of the darker "Multiply" areas come through, specifically on the ram skull and horns. I should have cleaned things up on the table before taking the photos, but these were snapshots, nothing more.
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