Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.

In Camera Texture

One thing I am growing more fond of is layering textures on photographs. But despite the appearance, that is NOT what today's blog post image is.  In fact, except for the conversion to a cyanotype tinted black and white image and the edge treatment, this image was made totally 'in-camera', which is why I couldn't resist taking the photo. And I should add that despite the fact that I took the photo right after the recent big snowstorm (well, it was big on the coast, but being about 400 miles inland we only got about 5 inches of the white stuff) it was not snowing at the time the shutter was clicked!


"Snow"    © Howard Grill


So how did the image get this textured appearance? As I was going on my post-snowstorm photo-walk, I took a stroll through a nearby college campus.  As I walked by the library, I noticed that the front facade of the building was covered with a dark brown granite or granite-like polished stone that had large 'flecks' of other colors in it.  If you stood at a specific angle to the stone you could, because of the way the sun was hitting it, see a strong reflection of a university hall, lampost, and a snow covered stone wall that was behind it. I thought it looked pretty cool!

After taking the photo through Lightroom to make basic adjustments it was brought into Silver Efex Pro to convert it to black an white and apply the vintage edge. Then , in Photoshop, I used a curves adjustment layer to increase the contrast a bit and I applied the slightest amount of Gaussian Blur to try to decrease the harsh edges of the 'flecks'. Then I toned the image a blue color to fit the cold subject.

I thought the final image had an interesting 'dreamy' appearance such that you know what it the subject is, but with a sense that you aren't quite sure if it is 'real' or how it was made.