Part of our task for this assignment was to perform a series of 5 image exercises. These were really fun for me to play around with. I already do a bit of photo editing just for product photos for my sewing business, so I have some experience with this, but I did learn some new things, especially in regards to resizing images.
The first task for our image exercises was to take a photo of our self, transfer it to a computer, crop it and shrink the size to one suitable for a webpage. The photo on the top left is my original photo. I took the photo in my kitchen nook, which allows for a lot of natural light. I found It difficult to hold my DSLR while taking a photo, but my iPhone front camera does not take very clear photos. I ended up using a 2 second delay on the DSLR so I could hold it without having to push the shutter release. I wanted a fairly straight on image so tried to hold the camera just slightly above eye level. The top right photo is my cropped photo. I tried to use the rule of thirds to give it an interesting look.
The second task for our image exercises was to take an outdoor photo, resize the image and adjust the contrast so it is suitable for a website background. I am a currently on maternity leave, home with my 3 year old and 5 month old boys. Because of this, it would be a lot of work for me to head out to a nice location to shoot outdoor photos. We just moved into a brand new neighbourhood so there is not much to see around us, but construction. I took my boys out for a walk on one of the rare nice days in January and looked for something to shoot. I ended up shooting some snow, sky, a fake rock in the playground, but settled on this landscape shot. I adjusted the contrast and brightness on one so dark coloured text would work over top of it, and I adjusted the contrast on the other so light coloured text would work.
Power Point Title Slide
Our third task was to choose a public domain image and adapt it to fit a standard powerpoint slide. I keep thinking my final project will be something to do with sewing, so I thought I'd do a little sewing slide for this exercise. I found this outdoor sewing machine shot here. To make it fit a PowerPoint slide I cropped it using a 4:3 aspect ratio and then had to look up the pixel dimensions of a slide (1024 x 768 pixels if you are wondering), and then adjusted the image size. I already thought the contrast and brightness of the photo was good, I just darkened it slightly so it would blend into the background a bit. I then found a plain grey background image here, and did an overlay changing the opacity so that I could put text over top and have it stand out a bit more. I learned the overlay trick working with some Google Slides templates. Then I placed a white font over top of the grey overlay.
For this exercise I wasn't sure what to take a picture of. I knew I wanted something with very little detail, since the image size was going to be reduced so much. I initially took a photo of a flower plant I have, but I thought it wouldn't translate well once I reduced the image size, so I took a picture of a coffee cup I had decorated. In the 'icon' sized image, the province ("O" in "HOME") isn't very obvious, and just kind of looks like a weird rectangle... but I suppose that's what Saskatchewan's shape is.
The last image exercise was to use any photo we wanted and pretend we were submitting it into a photo contest. Well what is more beautiful to a mother than her kids? I chose this super cute photo of my boys laying on the floor together. I cropped it to bring more focus to their faces (and crop out my toddler's Star Wars shirt graphic) keeping my older son in the top third and left third of the image and my youngest in the centre). I rotated it just a touch to make the blanket striped go up and down perpendicular to the bottom of the picture. I switched it to greyscale creating a more peaceful look, lightened it up a bit to try to reduce the shadows. The image was to stay as a large image size to be printed, but since this was taken with my phone and cropped heavily, the image size is not as big as it could be, but I love it. I actually ended up printing a version of this (a little less cropped) as an 8 x 10.
Our assignment for the Digital Images module was to choose a task and create a series of instructions for that task, similar to assignment 1, but this time we were to add digital images to accompany the text. I really enjoyed working on this task because one of the things I do in my spare time is make PDF sewing patterns and tutorials, so I knew I could do something like that. For most of the photos in my usual tutorials I just do basic rotating and cropping (not colour or contrast adjustments). I struggled a bit with the extra adjustments I needed to do for this assignment. Making the photos look uniform was tricky for me since I was editing them one at a time and couldn't really compare them all at once. Usually when I make a pattern tutorial I use a solid coloured fabric or a very subtle print so the picture are more clear. I didn't do that with this tutorial and really regretted it. I also thought the white background would be easier to colour adjust and I think that was another mistake. I usually get pattern testers to read through my instructions and try out the pattern to see if there is anything that needs adjusting or clarification, but for this assignment it will be my studio group giving me feedback. I am really looking forward to getting some constructive criticism from some people who are not pattern testers. Here's my first draft: