I was out in the woods of Francis King Park the other day looking for inspiration. I found a few good images, but I wanted more. I started thinking about something a good friend used to say. “what do you want your image to say?” I started looking for a statement, something with a bigger story than just a pretty scene. I came across this big stump. I guess a storm recently brought the tree down. I was thinking of things like how this big giant fell, and how the stump still has majesty. I took a shot, moved a bit to the side, then decided to remove some dead branches cluttering the scene. A few tweaks later I got a decent shot.
But capturing the shot is just the first step. Post processing can bring an image to life. I wanted to emphasize the big stump, so I darkened the background slightly. I also did some burning, dodging and selective sharpening to create contours and shape to various areas. The trick is to change the image enough that it emphasizes what you want to say, yet it doesn’t look manipulated.
Of course, as an artist, I see a number of things I would like to do differently, but that is what makes being an artist so much fun…..