Search Results for: LAB inversion

Low Geostationary and Decaying Orbits around the Clematis Inversion

I spent a few days doodling and noodling with flowers, first on the light box for transparency and then with LAB inversions in Photoshop, and Low Geostationary and Decaying Orbits around the Clematis (shown here as an inversion) is one of the images I came up with!

Low Geostationary and Decaying Orbits around the Clematis Inversion © Harold Davis

Low Geostationary and Decaying Orbits around the Clematis Inversion © Harold Davis

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Inversions (and lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my!)

From the humble Echinacea photographed for its delicate petals, the miracle of LAB channel inversions and adjustments leads straight to the drug-crazed and colorful versions you see here (just as they used to think soft drugs led to harder ones). Poppies will put them to sleep, and their little dog too! Even though the Echinacea is a simple, calming herb, and it is certainly no relative of Morpheus or his fearsome descendants.

Echinacia Inversion © Harold Davis

Echinacea Inversion © Harold Davis

I plan to print these images as a quadtych. In other words, four images, with the original Echinacea and the three shown here.

Inversion in Blue © Harold Davis

Inversion in Blue © Harold Davis

What a great word “quadtych” is! Almost as nice as “quidditch.” I often create sequences using the creative power of LAB, and these seem like a natural for printing quadtychs—and even pentaptychs and hexaptychs!

Inversion on white © Harold Davis

Inversion on white © Harold Davis

Posted in Photograms, Photoshop Techniques

LAB Color Adjustments

I’m often asked what I mean by LAB color adjustments, so I thought I’d show a simple set. These adjustments are based on a likely suspect, the succulent from my front porch I shot in September. The image is shown in its original version in the linked story (check out the color version) and at the bottom here. The LAB color adjustments I used are shown in the caption of each version. Incidentally, these adjustments are pretty thoroughly explained in The Photoshop Darkroom; you can also download the Photoshop action I wrote to generate this set of adjustments.

Succulent-LAB-All Channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB-All Channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB-L-channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB-L-channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent - LAB A-channel equalization-inverted © Harold Davis

Succulent – LAB A-channel equalization-inverted © Harold Davis

Succulent - LAB A-channel equalization © Harold Davis

Succulent – LAB A-channel equalization © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB-B-channel equalization © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB-B-channel equalization © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB A-channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent-LAB A-channel inversion © Harold Davis

Succulent, original version  © Harold Davis

Succulent, original version © Harold Davis

Posted in Photoshop Techniques

Creative Use of LAB Color Recording Now Available

Creative Use of LAB Color Webinar Recording

01-title-LAB

Understanding the creative use of LAB color in Photoshop unlocks a vast treasure trove of under-utilized and under-explored possibilities. Truly one of the secrets of spectacular color in Photoshop, if you know how to work creatively with LAB color you will far ahead of the game in terms of getting the results you want from Photoshop.

This webinar explains the structure of LAB color, and demonstrates inversions and LAB equalizations for both image optimization and creative fun. You will learn how to combine Blending Modes with LAB equalizations for an unlimited and powerful palette.

This is information you will learn nowhere else. With access to the recording you can replay selected portions of the webinar recording as many times as you’d like.

Harold says, “When I discovered LAB color, and how to use what has been called ‘the most powerful color space,’ I knew I was on to one of the great secrets of Photoshop.”

The Creative Use of LAB Color with Harold Davis webinar covers:

  • Understanding LAB Color
  • LAB Color in Photoshop
  • LAB Channel Inversions
  • LAB Channel Equalizations
  • Downloading, installing and using Harold’s free LAB color action
  • Combining adjustments with blending modes
  • Creative LAB in a workflow
  • Examples and case studies

Here’s a comment from one viewer of the webinar: “Totally exciting creative process, Harold! I am looking forward to bringing these techniques into my own work.”

Click here to register for access to this webinar recording.

Posted in Workshops

Creative Use of LAB Color Webinar

Please consider joining Harold Davis for this exciting, new live webinar offering that will help you unlock the creative potential of floral imagery (and more)!

01-title-LAB

Saturday, July 26, 2014 at 3PM PTCreative Use of LAB Color (the cost is only $29.95, and includes unlimited access to the post-session recording)

Understanding the creative use of LAB color in Photoshop unlocks a vast treasure trove of under-utilized and under-explored possibilities.

This webinar explains the structure of LAB color, and demonstrates inversions and LAB equalizations for both image optimization and creative fun.

You will learn how to combine Blending Modes with LAB equalizations for an unlimited and powerful palette.

 The Creative Use of LAB Color with Harold Davis webinar covers:

  • Understanding LAB Color
  • LAB Color in Photoshop
  • LAB Channel Inversions
  • LAB Channel Equalizations
  • Combining adjustments with blending modes
  • Creative LAB in a workflow
  • Examples and case studies

Learn how LAB is structured in Photoshop, and how to use the incredible toolkit that LAB unleashes to add a world of practical and creative effects to your imagery.

Each live webinar session has ample time for questions and is limited to twenty participants, so seating is very limited. The $29.95 fee includes unlimited access to the recording of the session.

Photoshop layers throwing you for a curve? You may also be interested in our upcoming (Saturday, August 16, 2014) live session, Photoshop Layers 101with Harold Davis. Demystify Photoshop for once and for all.

Check out our webinar recordings ($19.95 each for unlimited access):

Click here for more info about Harold Davis webinar recordings.

Posted in Workshops

New Photoshop Webinar Recordings Available

Want to be able to get the nuts and bolts of a subject and play it again as often as you’d like? Access to the following webinar recordings is available. Each webinar is approximately one hour with video and audio. Listen as many times as you’d like, and play back specific portions as often as you wish. The cost is only $19.95 each.


Click here for unlimited access to the Painting in Transparency Using a High-Key Layer Stack Webinar Recording (about 75 minutes, the cost is $19.95)

01-titleAre you intrigued by transparent flower photos? Ever wanted to know how to make them? Well, here’s your chance!

With photography on a light box, once you photograph a bracketed high-key exposure sequence, then the the next step is to assemble a layer stack.

As you build your layer stack, successively darker layers are masked and painted in to create the illusion of transparency. The results surprise and delight!

Digital artist and master photographer Harold Davis states, “My transparent botanical art has been greatly acclaimed and emulated. Flowers can create the most beautiful compositions. Photographers who are interested in photographing flowers should give this technique a try. Certainly, one of the most sensitive parts of the process is painting in the high-key layer stack.”

Here’s a comment from a viewer of this webinar: “I had read all I could about painting in transparency but only with your layer-by-layer demonstration did it all come together.”

Click here for more information about this webinar recording.


Click here for unlimited access to the Using Backgrounds and Textures Webinar recording (about 65 minutes, the cost is $19.95)

01-title

Have you ever wanted to turn your photos into fine art design pieces? With a little bit of Photoshop know-how, a few inexpensive tools, and the techniques explained in this webinar, it’s easy to create unique art imagery, guided by your vision and creativity.

Placing a photo on a background creates an image that looks like a botanical illustration. Adding a texture to a photo is can be used for an impressionistic and/or painterly effect.

Digital artist and master photographer Harold Davis states, “The two primary techniques that I use to turn straightforward photos into art are to add a photo to a background, and to add a texture to photos. These two techniques have a very visual different impact, and can be particularly effective with my botanical art.”

It’s easy to add a whole set of techniques to your creative use of Photoshop! Watch Harold as he explains the entire process of using backgrounds and textures, then shows how to use them in the actual context of his own work.

Here are some comments from viewers of this webinar:

  • “I have been using textures for a while, but watching this webinar filled in some gaps for me. Great information.”
  • “Up all night and enthused about textures after watching your video. Great info about layer masking. Thanks!”
  • “You hit the mark for me, Harold! Filled in all the gaps. Thank you!”

Click here for more information about this webinar recording


Click here for unlimited access to the Selective Sharpening with LAB Color with Harold Davis webinar recording (about 60 minutes, the cost is $19.95).

Selective SharpeningHave you ever over-sharpened an image? (We all have!) Have you ever wanted to to sharpen just one thing in a photo, not the entire image?

If you answer “Yes!” to either of these questions, then this webinar recording is for you!

This webinar recording shows how to use the properties of LAB color to selectively sharpen images for aesthetic effect, and teaches you a technique that should be in the toolkit of every photographer who uses Photoshop.

Master photographer and bestselling author Harold Davis says, “I use selective sharpening with LAB color to enhance almost all of my photos.” Sharpening with LAB is one of the true secrets of the masters.

Here are some comments from viewers of this webinar:

  • “Very informative. All my questions were answered.”
  • “It was great to see actual examples and Harold using this technique with his own imagery!”

Click here for more information about this webinar recording.


Current Live Harold Davis Webinar Offerings 

01-title-LAB

Understanding the creative use of LAB color in Photoshop unlocks a vast treasure trove of under-utilized and under-explored possibilities.

This webinar explains the structure of LAB color, and demonstrates inversions and LAB equalizations for both image optimization and creative fun. You will learn how to combine Blending Modes with LAB equalizations for an unlimited and powerful palette.

 

 

Each live webinar session has ample time for questions and is limited to twenty participants, so seating is very limited. The $29.95 fee includes unlimited access to the recording of the session.


 

01-title-layers101August 16, 2014: Photoshop Layers 101 (World premier offering)

The ability to work with layers and layer masks in Photoshop is what unlocks the power of Photoshop, and separates it from more mundane image editors. Yet many people find working with layers (and the tools related to layers) daunting, both conceptually and practically.

This webinar aims to get you over this learning hump gently. It is intended for serious photographers—for example, those working in Lightroom—who want to take their work to the next level in Photoshop. We will go slowly, work through many examples, and reserve ample time for questions

Each live webinar session has ample time for questions and is limited to twenty participants, so seating is very limited. The $29.95 fee includes unlimited access to the recording of the session.


craftsy

Please consider my interactive, online Photographing Flowers course (with Craftsy).

Class description: Learn how to use exposure, focus and creative techniques for spectacular floral photos. Join top photographer and bestselling author Harold Davis to explore the many facets of successful macro photography, starting with expert tips on composition. Delve into extension tubes and filters for an affordable way to master extreme close-ups, and navigate challenging lighting with ISO, aperture and shutter speed. Cultivate your artistic vision using selective focus, unexpected angles and depth of field to create imaginative, Impressionist-inspired shots. Plus, learn how to execute an indoor shoot and present your photos in a strikingly unique portfolio.

Posted in Photography

Broken Arrow and Creating LAB Patterns

Wandering the pedestrian walk on new San Francisco Bay Bridge span in the waning days of the year, I shot this directional arrow, intended to guide foot and bike traffic, straight down and broken up by strong shadows from the railing.

Broken Arrow © Harold Davis

Broken Arrow © Harold Davis

Before I converted Broken Arrow to black and white, of course, it was color (shown below). (The monochrome version is still an RGB color file technically speaking—but that’s another story!)

Broken Arrow - color © Harold Davis

Broken Arrow – color © Harold Davis

It’s astoundingly easy to use Photoshop adjustments in LAB color and blending modes to create intricate patterns out of something like the color version of Broken Arrow. Here’s one example:

LAB Cross Pattern #1 © Harold Davis

LAB Cross Pattern #1 © Harold Davis

To get to the pattern from the color photo,  in Photoshop I duplicated the image, and converted the duplicate to LAB color mode. I next used Image > Adjust > Invert to invert the LAB color values within the file, and then converted the entire image back to RGB, with results shown below:

LAB Inversion (all channels) © Harold Davis

LAB Inversion (all channels) © Harold Davis

Next, I made another duplicate of the original image file, converted it to LAB, selected the L channel only, and inverted the L channel. I flipped the image horizontally, with results shown below:

L-Channel Inversion (Flipped) © Harold Davis

L-Channel Inversion (Flipped) © Harold Davis

The last big step is to align the two LAB inversions as layers in one image, and set the Blending Mode to Difference (by the way, they have to be back in RGB, or the Difference mode isn’t available).

There are many possible variations on this technique of course, depending on what channels you invert, how you flip the image, and what blending modes you use. Here’s another variation from the same original image:

LAB Cross Pattern #2 © Harold Davis

LAB Cross Pattern #2 © Harold Davis

To learn more about the LAB color techniques for creative image making I have pioneered, check out The Way of the Digital Photographer  (pages 156-163) and The Photoshop Darkroom (pages 148-201). If this really intrigues you, you may want to consider my Mastering Creative Photoshop workshop (January 25-26, one last minute spot available, more space in the second session, May 31 – June 1, 2014).

Posted in Abstractions, Monochrome, Photoshop Techniques Tagged , , , , |

Monochromatic Inversion

An inversion, in noun form, is a reversal. In verb form, applying an inversion is inverting, or even “to invert.” In Photoshop, you can invert an entire image, or a single channel.

Inverting means reversing the color values that the adjustment is applied to. The effect this has depends upon the working color space, and tends to have the most dramatic and useful results in the LAB color space where the channels are based upon a color-opponent model.

The implications of a applying a Photoshop inversion adjustment are perhaps seen most easily in a monochromatic image. Notionally, all the information in the image is either black or white—all though this isn’t really the case, as I’ll get to in a moment. Therefore, when I invert the image black becomes white, and white becomes black.

For example, take this Dandelion etched in white on a black background:

Dandelion Superior

Applying a monochromatic inversion gives me a Dandelion in grey tones on a white background:

Dandelion 3

Stepping back for a second, in modern digital practice monochrome—black and white—seldom really means dropping all the color information. (In a brief message from the sponsors of this blog, check out my book Creative Black & White: Digital Photography Tips & Techniques for a more thorough treatment of this issue.)

So if black isn’t black and white isn’t white, how can you expect to get the clarity of results shown in the Dandelion example? The simple answer is to convert the image to LAB, and only invert the Lightness (L) channel. This applies the adjustment only to monochromatic information and completely ignores color values. If you like what you get, consider dropping the other channels entirely!

Don’t forget to convert back to RGB or CMYK when you are done. LAB is a theoretical model, meaning it can’t be output in the real world.

Interested in digital black and white? Then my October 14-16, 2011 workshop at the Center for Photographic Art in Carmel, California may be for you. Here’s more information about the workshop, and a registration link.

Posted in Bemusements, Flowers, Monochrome, Photoshop Techniques

Using LAB Color Adjustments

Fireworks (Papaver)

Fireworks (Papaver), photo by Harold Davis. View this image larger. Read the original story featuring this image.

My column Using LAB Color Adjustments (in my Creativity in the Photoshop Darkroom series) has been published on Photo.net. Here’s a brief description of the article:

And you thought you had mastered everything there is to know in Photoshop. Harold Davis reveals yet again another complex topic in Photoshop and breaks it down into simple easy-to-learn steps. This new Photoshop Tutorial will revisit the conceptual underpinnings of LAB in Photoshop that were explained in an earlier tutorial. You’ll learn how to do simple color swaps, LAB color adjustments paired with channel blending modes for an infinite palette of spectacular color variations, and how to do inversions and equalizations using LAB color.

Link to Using LAB Color Adjustments, and to my Photoshop Credo.

Enjoy!

Posted in Photography, Photoshop Techniques, Writing

Dahlia. Just Dahlia. Dahlia, darling!

Here are three version of a light box image of a white dahlia from my cutting garden, photographed back in June. The simple monochromatic conversion is shown on top. Next, you’ll see an L-channel LAB inversion of the black & white light box version. The color version of my image is shown at the bottom.

White Dahlia Inversion © Harold Davis

White Dahlia Inversion © Harold Davis

White Dahlia © Harold Davis

White Dahlia © Harold Davis

Brookside-Snowball Dahlia © Harold Davis

Brookside-Snowball Dahlia © Harold Davis

Related story: Dahlia Solos.

Posted in Flowers, Photography

Starfish Mandala

I spent much of yesterday creating this Starfish Mandala designed on my light box (the LAB inversion is shown above on black, and the “straight” light box version below). Yesterday also included photography the mandala. Because petals dry out and curl quickly, this usually needs to be done expediently.

Today I processed the image.

Stay tuned for an upcoming webinar about how I make mandalas on the light box. Click here for our schedule of upcoming webinars.

Starfish Mandala Inversion © Harold Davis

Starfish Mandala Inversion © Harold Davis

Starfish Mandala © Harold Davis

Starfish Mandala © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography

Webinar Noir on Saturday

Please consider joining us this Saturday, September 19, 2020 at 11am PT for our very special and distinctly somewhat offbeat webinar noir.

Noir is black, or dark. So “noir” can refer to a style that employs blackness of attitude and affect, black and white imagery, and/or a specific look—classically that of 1940s Hollywood, with Dames, Private Eyes, Fedoras, and more. Noir imagery, as in our webinar, is usually, mostly, but not always, monochromatic.

In this webinar, Harold will take a deep dive into noir as a style, and how noir can be used to create contemporary photos. Along the way, you can expect readings from Dashiell Hammett and Thomas Pynchon, and even a guest appearance from a Maltese falcon.

In the second half of the webinar, Harold will use examples from his own work to demonstrate implementing noir in specific Photoshop case studies.

Click here for registration and here for more info. Please also keep in mind Printing, Proofing, and all about Paper (a benefit for the Equal Justice Initiative) on Thursday, September 24. 

Click here for our upcoming webinar list.

Alone © Harold Davis

What: Noir | Stylish Black & White

When: Saturday, September 19, 2020 at 11am PT. Duration between one and two hours, including Q&A

Where: On your computer or mobile device from anywhere via Zoom. Zoom authenticated registration and a tuition payment of $29.95 are required for enrollment. Seating is limited. The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_SraMSnHCTnS2dTol-JlzIA

Details: Noir evokes black and white films of the 1940s with “dames”, private eyes in fedoras, low-key lighting, and harsh shadows. More generally, a sense of “noir” has come to mean a range of stylish black and white techniques.

This webinar noire will look at a range of monochromatic techniques, from the subtle to the wonderfully crude and edgy. Low-key imagery, working with harsh shadows, the Blossfeldt effect, and LAB inversions will be covered. The webinar will conclude with suggestions for incorporating more noire in your own work.

There will be ample time for Q&A.

Tuition: The tuition for this webinar is $29.95, and requires prior registration. Seating (on a first come, first served basis) is limited. You must register via Zoom to be enrolled in this webinar! The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_SraMSnHCTnS2dTol-JlzIA

Approaching the Brandenburg Gate © Harold Davis

About Harold Davis: Harold Davis is a bestselling author of many books, including Creative Garden Photography and Creative Black & White Second Edition, both from Rocky Nook. He is the developer of a unique technique for photographing flowers for transparency, a Moab Master, and a Zeiss Ambassador. He is an internationally known photographer and a sought-after workshop leader. His website is www.digitalfieldguide.com.

Posted in Photography, Workshops

Noir: Stylish Black and White

What: Noir | Stylish Black & White

When: Saturday, September 19, 2020 at 11am PT. Duration between one and two hours, including Q&A

Where: On your computer or mobile device from anywhere via Zoom. Zoom authenticated registration and a tuition payment of $29.95 are required for enrollment. Seating is limited. The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_SraMSnHCTnS2dTol-JlzIA

Details: Noir evokes black and white films of the 1940s with “dames”, private eyes in fedoras, low-key lighting, and harsh shadows. More generally, a sense of “noir” has come to mean a range of stylish black and white techniques.

This webinar noire will look at a range of monochromatic techniques, from the subtle to the wonderfully crude and edgy. Low-key imagery, working with harsh shadows, the Blossfeldt effect, and LAB inversions will be covered. The webinar will conclude with suggestions for incorporating more noire in your own work.

There will be ample time for Q&A.

Tuition: The tuition for this webinar is $29.95, and requires prior registration. Seating (on a first come, first served basis) is limited. You must register via Zoom to be enrolled in this webinar! The registration link is https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_SraMSnHCTnS2dTol-JlzIA

Noir City Dreams © Harold Davis

About Harold Davis: Harold Davis is a bestselling author of many books, including Creative Garden Photography and Creative Black & White Second Edition, both from Rocky Nook. He is the developer of a unique technique for photographing flowers for transparency, a Moab Master, and a Zeiss Ambassador. He is an internationally known photographer and a sought-after workshop leader. His website is www.digitalfieldguide.com.

Chorus of One © Harold Davis

Photographing Flowers for Transparency | Part 4: Advanced Topics in Post-Production

Harold Davis is proud to present a live webinar! Stay healthy, be creative, make art, and be mighty!

What: Photographing Flowers for Transparency | Part 4: Advanced Topics in Post-Production

When:  Thursday May 7, 2020 at 10AM PT

Where: On your computer or mobile device from anywhere via Zoom.

Tuition and Registration:  Tuition is $19.95 and advance registration is required. Click here to register. Seats are limited.

Description: You have your floral light box image on a white background. What then? Using the images photographed and shown in Photographing Flowers for Transparency (Processing a High-Key Layer Stack) and processed in Photographing Flowers for Transparency (Processing a High-Key Layer Stack), Harold demonstrates an array of powerful production techniques. Topics covered include spot retouching, retouching via composition, painting-in color, Photoshop blending modes, homeopathic use of filters, basic use of backgrounds and textures, and basic concepts in LAB inversion.

Spring Forest © Harold Davis

Spring Forest © Harold Davis

About Harold Davis: Harold Davis is a bestselling author of many books, including Creative Garden Photography from Rocky Nook, which can now be pre-ordered. He is the developer of a unique technique for photographing flowers for transparency, a Moab Master, and a Zeiss Ambassador. He is an internationally known photographer and a sought-after workshop leader. His website is www.digitalfieldguide.com.

Beginner’s Mind

Rollback © Harold Davis

Rollback © Harold Davis

Shoshin is a word from Zen Buddhism that is often translated as “beginner’s mind.” Beginner’s Mind means having an attitude of openness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject or working as an artist, even when working at an advanced level, just as a beginner would in the best case analysis with a capable and flexible guide.

In the context of my own practice, and the way I teach students to approach their own art and photography, I take Beginner’s Mind to mean to approach my art with humbleness, playfulness, and experimentation—and to be prepared to happily fail.

I am now engaged in playing with a new body of work that involves my photography of flowers for transparency, LAB inversions, photography of pure light though colored liquid in glass bottles, and post-production. 

Over on my Instagram Feed, I was asked about the image shown at the top of this story: “I love this and I am so confused. Please explain how?”

That’s okay, I’m confused too about how I got here, and where this ride is going to take me next.

I didn’t want to be rude, but I didn’t want to explain the technical side of this work yet (if I ever am ready to do so). I replied, “Thanks for your interest! This is a new set of techniques I have started playing with, and I am not ready to share the ‘how’ yet. In the meantime, enjoy the magic….xxxooo.”

So, yes, please enjoy the magic.

Related story: Tacked to a Virtual Wall.

Scrolling Around © Harold Davis

Scrolling Around © Harold Davis

Climbing the Columns © Harold DavisClimbing the Columns © Harold Davis

Climbing the Columns © Harold Davis

Posted in Photography