The After and Before forum is organised by Stacy Fischer, it is a place where amateurs as well as seasoned photographers explain the wow and how about their photo and editing decision.You can read more here about how to take part.
For Women’s day two weeks ago I bought my wife an Orchid and now it has flowered it is begging to be photographed. For this picture I wanted to have the orchid on a plain background with no distractions. I also wanted to colourize the flower. Although the yellow is bright and bold I wanted something slightly different.
The first thing I did was open the picture in Photoshop and used the quick selection tool to select the flower. The quick selection tool is good for selecting large areas that have similar tones.
Since selection tools are not perfect I used refine edge to clean up the edges a bit.
I created a new layer and filled with white and set it as the background. The selection from the previous step I turned into a mask. I am now left with a single orchid set against a white background.
All the steps from now could have been continued in Photoshop. Instead I went back to Lightroom converted the image to monochrome and inverted the curves. Inverting the curves involves moving the black point up to the top and the white point down to the bottom, creating a negative image. All basic adjustment sliders are inverted, white is not black and shadows are now highlights for example. I made some basic adjustments just to balance out the image.
To add colour I applied a split tone with a warm yellow in the shadows and a cyan in the highlights.
Since the image is Black and White and inverted adjusting the tint and colour balance can have a huge impact. I played around until I got a tone I liked.
This was the final the image I sent to Stacy but over the next few days I kept looking at the picture and was not entirely happy with the image. The split toning felt off, so I decided to head back to the image and tweak it.
This is the final image with some tweaking. Although the colours in the split toning are a bit more muted it works better in my opinion than having a blue glow in the whites. I like that the flower is isolated against the background, bringing more focus to the flower itself.
What do you think of the picture, is there anything you would have done differently? Let me know in the comments below.
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