Tanks and tricks

It was a busy week this week call members with a least three different events going on. Monday was the visit to the United Kingdom Defence Academy Shrivenham‘s photoclub, Thursday editing night and Myk running a photographic walk that was open to all comers including club members. I managed to attend two of the three which in my defence is not bad going [there is a song about that] .


Shrivenham was a cracking evening, with free reign of all the vehicle and Artillery halls and Rich and Kev reciprocated with a light painting session. Everyone enjoyed it immensely and look forward to a return visit. I think the MOD are about to indent for some LED lighting and given the engineering bias of the establishment I can but wonder what variations they may come up with. Hopefully we can host a session for them as well. The armoured vehicles were nearly all runners . I am glad to report that the temptation of the big red button , as Dr. Who put it, was resisted and no vehicles were started as was the traversing of turrets which apparently sets off the sprinkler system and the fire alarm. It was very, very tempting. Our hosts were very gracious and we thank them for it and thanks Rich and Kev for the Reflex contribution to the evening. A big thank you to everyone who made this one possible, I have my name down for the next one. Yes I do.


Thursday’s session was about editing the photographs from the trick photography night. Based around Photoshop and Elements mainly Jerry and Myk took us through Layers and how to make the final images. Basically this can be done by any programme that can handle layers and there were a couple of Gimp users there as well (myself included) and with a bit if adaption we managed to get something workable. Again a very enjoyable evening and the club extends its thanks to those who made it possible and not forgetting Mark S sterling work on the projector.


For those who couldn’t make it the really isn’t very complicated to master. Essentially two shots of the same scene one with background one with detail such as the books backdrop we had up in the hall and someone holding real books up in front in the alternate shot. Starting with the plain background shot and copy and pasting the detail shot over the top, use off the eraser tool takes the unwanted detail away and integrated both images. Similar things can be done with a plain background shot, such as the surfing and levitation shots using the magic wand took to quickly isolate the larger unwanted areas and pasting the results onto a suitable background shot. This summary, maybe, makes it sound more complicated than it is, so let me break it down through the magic of You Tube.

I included a section on Levitation Photography in the blog that covered the practical night. The finished article involves using layers. This is applicable to any editing programme that allows you to manipulate layers. Essentially what we are doing with layers is controlling the degree of transparency between layers that are produced as a single image. That image will be made up of two, or more, potentially a lot, lot more, but let’s not complicate matters, images or, more logically, parts of images. Relatively straight forward and really the most powerful part of an editing programme, they can be found in Photoshop Elements, CS, Gimp, to name but three programmes.


And finally, best wishes to Maurice on his retirement from work!


This Week Round 4 of the Competition – lets hope the judge turns up this time!