28 May 2006

Just Another Brick in the Wall?


  • Not enough contrast (the image looks grey).
  • Although trees are nice, this one looks ugly in the middle of the picture.



1. Create a new layer.

2. Use the Clone stamp tool (soft round) on this new layer to remove the tree, with Sample All Layers selected.

3. Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Levels.

4. Crop the image with the Crop tool. (I think I should have cropped it a little bit more, but I was afraid of getting carried away - I often do.)

20 May 2006





1. Crop the image with the Crop tool.
2. Create a new Adjustment layer (Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Brightness/Contrast)
3. Settings for the Brightness/Contrast layer:
  • Brightness: -9
  • Contrast: +100
4. Create a new text layer with the Text tool, by typing the text directly on the image (Font: Staccato 222BT).

P.S. This picture is, again, from Sagrada Familia, like so many of my pictures. If you are interested in the building but cannot visit it for some reason, take a virtual 3D tour here. The site is in Spanish, but you can start the tour by clicking "Acceder a la visita" - and you can choose between Spanish, Catalan and English before starting the tour.

14 May 2006

Nice Links

I've added some nice links to the sidebar. They include some very nice photo blogs, so, do have a look at these blogs:
ca = in Catalan
en = in English
es = in Spanish
fi = in Finnish

Stitching Two Pictures Together

Sometimes, when I’m photographing something that doesn’t really fit into one picture, I take two and then stitch these two images together in Photoshop. This is what I did when I visited La Ciutat de Les Arts i Les Ciencias in Valencia a couple of years ago.

Original 1 (with double canvas size; see steps 2 and 3 below):

Original 2 (with double canvas size):

First version, after stitching:



  1. Open one of the original pictures in Photoshop.
  2. Double the size of the canvas: Image > Canvas Size: Width: 200%
  3. Use the arrows in the Canvas Size window to define to which direction you want the canvas to expand. In this case I chose right, so I clicked the middle-left arrow. ("Original 1" above is the result.)
  4. Open the other picture and drag it to the canvas of the first picture.
    Photoshop automatically creates a new layer for the picture when you drop it to the canvas.
  5. Use the Move tool to set the two layers side by side correctly.
    (It's a good idea to use the Zoom tool, to make sure that you set the layers correctly.)
  6. If there are differences in the lighting conditions (i.e., one side of this new image is darker than the other), create new adjustment layers for levels and/or contrast (Layer > New Adjustment Layer) for the “problematic” layer only. (Place the adjustment layer between the two layers, right above the part of the image you want to adjust. This way the layer right above the adjustment layer will not be affected.)

As you can probably see, after stitching the image I did some clone stamping as well. You might also need to use the Clone stamp tool to make the two images merge together more seamlessly.

Some day I will probably use the Clone stamp tool even more on this image, to get rid of the elements you can see in the upper right, upper left and lower left corners of the image. - They didn't annoy me before, but they do now.

EDIT: I had some technical problems publishing the images in this post. If you cannot view this post correctly, please, shout in the comment box!

07 May 2006

Hi, My Name is Kafkakoski, I’m Addicted to Clone-Stamping

These ducks were having fun at the Ciutadella park in Barcelona, and I like the way the female duck is clapping her hands... er... I mean, wings.

But who threw that paper to the pool?! And I don’t like the lid, either, so I removed them with the Clone Stamp tool. I also used the Crop tool to crop the image, just a little bit.

04 May 2006

Details Count

Today I was playing with a picture I shot at Sagrada Familia a couple of weeks ago. (Hey, I do shoot other buildings, too... Occasionally!)

Original image with no adjustments
I think the original was OK; all it needed was two adjustment layers: Levels and Contrast.

However, I started zooming the picture in, to see the details better (Sagrada Familia is full of interesting details!), and I liked the statue of Christ; the expression on his face, the way his wrists are crossed... And I thought this detail would deserve a little bit more attention.

So, I did the following:

  • Selected Christ and a part of his background with the Rectangular Marquee tool
  • Copied the selection (Ctrl-c or Edit > Copy)
  • Pasted it on a new layer (Ctrl-v or Edit > Paste); Photoshop creates the new layer automatically when you paste something on the image
  • Made the Christ (or the new layer) bigger by using the Move tool (If you click the Move tool, press Shift and move your pointer on top of one of the squares in the corners of the selection, you can easily resize the image by dragging the corner with Shift pressed. - If you cannot see any squares in the corners of the layer, check that ”Show Transform Controls” is selected for the Move tool.)

It didn’t really look as nice as I had hoped, so I continued editing, and here’s a quick list of the changes I made to the new layer:

  • Layer > Layer Style > Drop Shadow
    Blend Mode: Multiply
    Opacity: 30%
    Angle 125 degrees, Use Global Light selected
    Distance: 73 px
    Spread: 36 px
    Size: 10 px
    (If these amounts surprise you, the values are so high because the original image was approx. 2600 x 3500 px. More than 120 cm high!)
  • Layer > Layer Style > Bevel and Emboss
    Style: Inner Bevel
    Technique: Smooth
    Depth: 100%
    Direction: Up
    Size: 84 px
    Soften: 0 px
    (I left the rest of the settings the way they were by default.)

I think the result was OK, but I wanted it to look a little bit like a postcard, so I:

  • Created a new Text layer by clicking on the image with the Horizontal Type tool
  • Chose a font I like (Viner Hand ITC) and typed: ”Sagrada Familia”
  • Chose a text color very close to white (R-G-B: 246-241-241) with the Color Picker (For quick access to the Color Picker, click the foreground color on the toolbar with your text selected, or the text color icon in tool options; right below the menu bar.)
  • Added a drop shadow for the text: Layer > Layer Style > Drop Shadow
    Blend Mode: Multiply
    Opacity: 75 %
    Angle: 125 degrees, Use Global Light selected (to make sure that the shadow has the same direction as the layer with Christ)
    Distance: 24 px
    Spread: 10 px
    Size: 5 px
Final image