Up in the air

Some time ago, I published a post with some photos from the wind turbine in the north of Munich. I had of course taken more photos while I was there, but I didn’t think much of them, so I didn’t post them anywhere.

In the meanwhile, I was looking at some pictures of tall buildings in 500px and I was thinking that they all look exactly the same. They are all B&W. A lot of them have some color toning on top. All of them have black sky. All of them have blurred moving clouds. The building obviously differs in each of them, but it doesn’t seem to make a difference. The look is the same in all of them. I like them; it appears that many other people like them as well.

So I had the idea of processing a couple of wind turbine photos to obtain the same look. I chose two photos of the turbine looking straight up, one taken with a wide angle lens and one taken with a zoom lens. I can say it right now, the original photos weren’t in my opinion anything special, but that’s exactly why I chose them, I wanted to see how much they could be improved.

Wind turbine, Munich, Notis Stamos.

That’s much more like it.

This is the first wide angle shot. I have converted it to B&W, added a dark blue toning layer on it, darkened the sky and added artificial blurry clouds. Doing that is actually very easy, I just painted some random areas of a new layer with the white brush and I then applied some motion blur on it. Some additional tinkering in Photoshop gave me that shiny look on the turbine and voila! I have to admit, I like this one much more than the original. The tone and the clouds really transform the photo from unremarkable to a photo worth seeing.

The second photo was much easier to process. I kept everything from the first one (even the clouds, as I was too bored to change them) and just replaced the photo layer (and corresponding layer masks) with the other photo. Within 5 mins the second photo was ready:

Wind turbine, Notis Stamos, Munich

Looks like a plane propeller.

This makes a point for all the architecture photos out there as well. Half of the work is the post processing. Of course angles and lines play a role, but all in all anything relatively tall photographed from the ground looking up can serve, as long as there are moving clouds (real or drawn) on top of it against a black sky.

So this is my tip for the day. I hope you like the photos; have fun drawing clouds and creating your own architectural wonder photos!

 

© 2014 Epameinondas Stamos

 

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