Friday, August 27, 2010

More on Photo Impressions

It has been while since I wrote about of my photo impression technique.  I have been experimenting with a range of the little tweaks available mosaic creator software, that I use.  Specifically I am looking for ways to bring the method more closely aligned to how a painter would approach the same picture.  I'm also trying to avoid the viewers first reaction being "Oh, that’s just been PhotoShopped”.
IMGP4904-1 This is photo of Thai, a fellow student at the Victorian Artist Society. The photo is definitely not great in a normal portrait sense, her face is cut off, eyes not look at you etc. but I like the composition and her concentration on her painting task.  So here is a little walk through of some important steps I follow when I create a Photo Impression.

Importance of Colour

If I can get the colour balance and harmonies right, I knowManually selecting colours I will have moved much closer to seeing the image through an artist's eye, rather than a camera lens. An artist (and often me) may refer to a colour  wheel and look for harmonic and complementary colours. Reducing the palette of colours, to just these colours and many of which the image and creates interest for the viewer.  At Colour choosen by Palette Generatorthis traditional approach is not the only way, there are now many on- line colour scheme pickers, for web sites, such as paint and just fun. Here are I have used fd  flickr toy’s fractalspalette generator.  You just select from your flickr or facebook photostream or upload a photo and it generates an harmonious colour scheme based on a dominant colours in the photo.  I can then select the library of sub images for my tiles in these colours. Picasa’a experimental search for … colour, has been very useful here, but this still a very manual process. For this photo impression I am using especially created sub tiles that are computer generated mathematical shapes, fractals, generated using the Apophysis programme.

Mark Making

The other area, where I can get the photo impressions to resemble an artist's work, using in the mark making.  Here it is the texture within the tiles and shape of the tiles themselves that can be harnessed to reflect the personal dabs and strokes of an artist. This is where a lot of artistic style and individuality lies. Those marks can make any work interesting and accessible, or just messy and confusing. I haven't found anything yet to best choCell Quality Dialogue in Mosaic Creatorose the tile textures and shapes, that is still a very personal decision. However there are some nice tools in mosaic creator to let your marks best fit the original image.  These are found under the cell filling tab, moving the cell recognition quality slider to the left (best quality) significantly slows the mosaic building process from minutes to possibly a hours, but it does force a more extensive search for an appropriate tile. One had matches the distribution  of terms in the source cell. I also find reducing local duplicity (a measure of how many times a tile is duplicated) Cell Shape Tab in Mosaic Creatorhelp your eye flow over the image.  Making it less likely computer generated mosaic. The selection of tile/cell shape also has a big  affect on the surface texture of the resulting image.  I find I always need to experiment with a range of shapes before I am happy with the final photo impression.
The Finished Photo Mosaic
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