I am late as usual photographing my theme of the week, ok theme of last week, Togetherness/Love for the Patch. Rather than get to obvious I wanted this one to be more appealing at an emotional level, which to any artist suggests colour and specifically pink or red, That's easy enough, but I also know that texture can have a big connection physically for a lot of viewing. An interesting texture often enlists a longer viewing. It was the subject matter that I was a bit slow to decide on, especial after most of my initial ideas, such as of shadow silhouettes, hands, wedding rings and heart shaped bokeh etc where already used and well applied. Then I though of the lovers knot, which occurs in slightly different forms across many cultures, essentially it is a simple continuous looping interconnecting knot. Sometimes the knot is based on an infinity loop, sometimes it is two strange looped together.
It was easy to make a simple one with an old shoe lace and my wife helped out with my camera in shutter delay mode and on a tripod and a single overhead light. We held the lovers knot. It wasn’t hard to get the basic composition I was after. A little tweak on clarity and a slight vignette in lightroom and things were looking up. However the only red background I could find was the back of some pastel sketch, boringly matte and flat no exciting texture here, albeit with some unwanted smudges of pastel. I had hoped to find a rich red lace to go with it (ok that would require extra time and the dead-line was now!) I remembered I have had great fun with texture in corel painter and corel paint, so I looked out a very old plug-in for paint called alchemy which allows you to use a brush of your own design and then control how this samples and paints an image. I quickly made up a small brush (above left, its like a photoshop mask, black lets nothing though, white everything and greys between adjust the opacity accordingly) that used the word Love for the highlights, then I set the controls to vary the colour, size and angle of the brush depending on the hue and tone of the original photo (see detail above right). The brush they repeatedly samples the photo and the overlapping strokes create a new image. The results was definitely close to what I was after. So with a few tweaks of the alchemy settings to include some extra variation of the colour saturation, which helped enhance he texture in the background and voilà