Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Light Unleashed (Light Painting), Bohinj Jezero

Via Flickr:
This is one of my favourite light paintings from the series I shot in Slovenia this summer. Unfortunately it was also one in which my Bermuda shorts made an unwanted appearance, thanks to a mix of spilt light from the flashlight and, well, my not having planned properly and worn something darker.

I finally corrected that in Photoshop last night, having tried and failed for a few weeks. You can see the SOOC version in the comments below. It's mostly as you see above, but with a nasty red smudge if clothing right behind the flashlight painting. I always shoot a "blank plate" of a scene I'm light painting, in case I need to correct anything away from the painting itself. Actually correcting detail behind the painting is very difficult, as the haze from the light changes the tone, contrast and brightness of the background in that area.

For this one, I found that the fix worked best by adding a 60% opaque section of the blank plate, erasing the areas that blocked the original in camera lines, then adding a 5% layer of manually brushed in turquoise, selected with the pipette tool from the hazy area on the original light painting. I also pulled the reds down in the "hue" menu. It's not perfect, but it's much better to my eye than the distracting red splotch in the original.

The lines are drawn with a flashlight covered with a white baby sock. The starbursts are just flashes of the torch without the sock, aiming about 45 degrees from the lens to avoid the kind of flare that overwhelms everything else.

I drew it like some kind of summoned magic, but you might equally interpret it as some poor girl being dragged into the lake by a team of bioluminescent starfish.

Hopefully everyone is having a fantastic week.