Merced Camera Club, Getting The Picture
Getting The Picture

This is a monthly (or so) feature of our site, in which Merced Camera Club members provide their thoughts
about the creation of some of our favorite images.

April, 2011

"Sunflower" -- Andy Tolsma

How its done:

Suppose you go to a wedding and receive a wedding favor of sunflower seeds from the happy couple. Soak them for a few hours and plant them, and they grow, tall, real tall, and huge, up to the rooftop. As they grow, you take pictures all along the way and eventually get a wonderful shot of a large bloom, backlit by a bright sun. It is a beautiful shot.

You score an 8 at camera club. The judge does not like the white background. Fuddy duddy! Now, what do you do?

Then suppose Bob Dayton points you to a website with some attractive flower shots, a mixture of color and black and white in each image. He asks if you know how to do that. You say, I think so. And go to work.

First, you make a slim-Jim out of the picture cutting off the petals at the top and bottom. Then you cut the image exactly in half vertically, copy the right side and reverse paste it on the left side. Now you have the same half on both sides. It makes for an interesting pattern in the center.

Next, you copy the petals on the left side and place them in a new layer, change to black and white, move it to where you like it on the right side, stretch them out a bit, play with the opacity to please your taste. Do the same with petals on the right side, reverse pasting on the left, place them, stretch, and change the opacity of the layer.

Wow! Its a winner! 10. How sweet it is. Applause! Affirmation! Medals! Yahooo!

I think thats how I did it.

The Birdie

Getting The Picture Archives


"Patriotism," Tom Frazier


"Baby Blue Eyes," Robert Dayton


"Stark Existence," Jim Cunningham


"The Old Barn" -Carlene Cunningham


"Dance" -Sam Shaw


"Snow Geese Flight Pattern" -Lloyd Bever


"Wildflower Trail" -Floyd Hopper

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