articles on

Harmful Nature Case Study

Harmful Nature Case Study

There's no limit to our imagination and with the right tools and drive we can translate our most creative ideas into beautiful artwork. For this week's case study we feature a project titled 'Harmful Nature' from our friends over at Lightfarm Studios. We featured this image for the wallpaper of the week and on this post we've decided to give you a little sneak peek behind the scenes, enjoy. Harmful Nature is the new promo video from Lightfarm Studios. Conceptually the image brings a dark and tragic metaphor about the impossible love with the classic tale of the Diver and the Mermaid. Along one month we used the latest 3D technology in cloth simulation on this piece where everything was modelled, from the ship wreck to the corals. The model was shot in a diving pool for the best realistic results as possible to seamlessly blend photography and 3D. From the underwater shooting session to post production we blended all of our knowledge in 3D and post production into a piece that is as real as dark, always aiming at breaking our own limits as artists. Video Harmful Nature - Making of from Lightfarm Studios on Vimeo. For more information visit http://www.lightfarmbrasil.com/

Photography Post-production: Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials

Photography Post-production: Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials

People treat photo post production differently, some think it’s a must, others consider it as something weird, and unnecessary. Actually postproduction is some sort of digital where enthusiasts or professional can show their vision of an event/landscape/people, giving it some unique, breathtaking or sometimes unnatural look. Looks like some people do not accept the quality of photos they’ve taken with their costly cameras. So let’s see when people became so obsessed with photo editing techniques. When the first camera was invented people had to sit still in front it for hours on end. Those were pinhole cameras, actually, today they are also in use. In those cases when someone wants to create a hyper-long exposure. On this image you can see 6 months exposure, amazing right. You may wonder “How did they do it?” It’s pretty simple, all you need is a box, duct tape, photographic paper and a lot of patience. The photo was created using a pinhole effect, you can read more on wiki. As for film cameras there were lots of ways to add cool effects on a developed film. One of the most popular - it drip some bleach on it, it will leave some nice patterns. Dipping the film in the bleach will also make the photo look really unique. Scratching the film will also work, but you have to do it after it was developed. This method is even easier, because you can see the image and scratch something over it. Color/gradient/neutral filters also helped to make some creative shoots, as well as double/triple exposure shots, develop film in some strange solutions like coffee! What will you need? Nescafe Classic; Baking soda; Filtered water, heated to 70’; Couple of thermometers; A pan for a bain-marie. Proportions: 600ml of water, 10 full spoons of coffee (15gr); 1 full spoon of soda, time of development 50 minutes. The temperature in the tank should be around 44 degrees. Time passed photo cameras became more and more advanced until in 1984 there was released a Lomo LCA. Two friends from Vienna came to Saint Petersburg where they bought this camera. They enjoyed the photos so much that made an exposition which was really popular there. The manufacturers branded LCA as a female camera, due to its compact size and light weight, but it turned out that their product gave birth to a new trend in photography that lasts till now and seems to be out there for quite a long time. All other cameras of the same age did not differ much with the picture they made, but LCA’s lens produced a fascinating effect that made shadowy vignettes, eye-popping colors and saturation. Lomography was a huge step in photo pre- and post-processing using the same visual principles Instagram is insanely popular among people all over the world. Now let’s see what we can do with our digital photos using Lightroom and Photoshop. Lets start from Lightroom. A Quick Make-Your-Photo-Better Setting in Lightroom In this tutorial you will learn how to have Lightroom automatically apply those settings to your photos so that you're not left doing it manually each time. Smoothing Skin in Lightroom Want to learn how to use soft brush tool to smooth skin in Lightroom this tutorial was created specifically for you. Complete Portrait Retouching This is A-Z photo retouching tutorial. Creating Popular Matte Look in Lightroom This one of those tricks that are achieved with a single step by result in a great look. All you need is to bend the tone curve in Lightroom. How-to: Make Your Digital Images Look Like Film Key points: Don’t overwork the image Neutral color temperature is the goal Low contrast, low black point: subtle contrast is best Don’t use actions or textures Expose to the right (overexpose) for the original RAW image Unblock and lengthen the tonal range by increasing brightness slider Correct lens distortion with the correct lens profile That Movie Look Every movie has it’s own color scheme some are yellowish, others are greenish, bluish etc. In this tutorial you will learn how to make a grainy blue-green color treatment, as well as you will find out how to crop the image to a 2.39:1 cinematic aspect ratio, and then to 4:3 using Photoshop. Rice Field Sunrise Simple post processing in Photoshop and Lightroom. "The 300" Look I think that 300 was the best movie released in 2006. If you are willing to experiment with that sepia-like effect check out this tutorial. Enhancing a Black-and-White Wedding Photo with Lightroom Want to find out how to convert a color wedding photo into a black-and-white? In this tut you will learn how to convert from color to black and white, bring out details, soften skin tone, and add a vignette. Here is a review of most useful features Lightroom provides. How to Save Hours of Time Editing by Syncing RAW Files Reveal Hidden Detail in Skies With Lightroom’s Graduated Filter Comparing to Photoshop Lightroom has one powerful tool called Graduated Filter with it’s help you can highlight some parts of your photo, best for sky and landscapes, since it add much volume to your shots. How to Make Your Photos Stand out AND Save Time - In this tutorial you will learn how to use effectively native Lightroom presets. Portrait Editing: Simple Tricks to Add a Touch of Class to Your People Pictures Most effective portrait editing techniques are described in this tutorial. Are you good at “shooting faces”? Welcome on board. Creating Selective Contrast in Photoshop In this video you will learn how to create the selective contrast effect in Photoshop. Lets say “NO” to oversaturation!:) That’s it. If you’re fond of photography or you’re a master of post processing you’re free to give your critics in the comments below, or just share links to the tuts you’ve been using recently. About Alex Bulat’ Sometimes I feel like there are not enough furry covers for sun-beds, on the upper deck of my yacht, but then suddenly I wake up and have to do some blogging. Luckily, I know where to get things you need...Psst, looking for a some website designs for inspiration? Click here to check them out. Or just say hello on Google+.

Abduzeedo 2013 Symbol Case Study

Abduzeedo 2013 Symbol Case Study

Personal projects are the best way for a designer to learn because it's much easier to try different things. It's just about making decisions and building them. With Abduzeedo we try to keep it as personal as possible, at least when it comes to changes. We redesign it at least once a year, not only the overall site design but the brand identity. Things have been a bit busy however and it's been over two years since the last time we designed a symbol for the site. With that in mind, here's a start on the 2013 symbol for Abduzeedo. This post we will show you the idea behind the new symbol. It's still a work in progress but we'd love to know what you think about the symbol and the creative process behind it. Old symbol The old symbol was created in 2009 and used for 2 years. The idea was basically a triangle with references to the letter A of Abduzeedo. References The first goal for the new symbol was that it had some similarities with the old one. The idea of a triangle and the letter A were the guide points. This time however, I wanted to make it super simple, no colors, just black and white and no effects. Triangle Letter A Simple Space theme Star trek Here are some images that inspired me. Sketches Starting out with some basic sketches trying to get a simple "A" based on the references. The main inspiration comes from the Star Trek logo and of course the old symbol. Digital Sketches After a few sketches I went to Illustrator to translate the idea into something digital. Below you can see the basic construction of the symbol. Final After a few iterations I got to a symbol that I really like. I was really indecisive about the shape I would use to frame the logo. In the end I went with the circle because it's more flexible for the applications I have in mind. There are still some optical adjustments and adapting the typography to the new logo, however you can see some examples of the final symbol below. So that's pretty much it. Now I will work on some stickers but before that I'd love to hear your opinion about the new symbol. Do you have any feedback or suggestions? Share your thoughts with us and you may be the lucky recipient of a sticker or poster :)

Colorful Bokeh Effect in Pixelmator

A few days ago the guys behind Pixelmator released the new version of their really cool app, and if you check out the Pixelmator site you will notice that they are using my Bokeh image. I'm very happy :) not just because of that but, also because I had the chance to test Tempo very early and it's good to be part of the testing team. Anyway, this tutorial is the original Bokeh effect I created, the one I use for my twitter background and the inspiration to the Photoshop version. You will see that this effect can easily be done in Pixelmator, actually much easier than in any other tool. Step 1 Open Pixelmator and create a new document, I used 1920x1200 pixels. Fill the background layer with Black. Step 2 Add a new layer and go to Quartz Composer>Generator>Defocus. Play with the settings, you can adjust size, blur, density, colors and even use hexagons. The best thing is the Blur because that will simply avoid the use of other filters. For this first layer use a big size and very blurry. I used 0.50 for the Size and 0.30 for the Blur. After that duplicate the layer and change the Blending to Color Dodge. Step 3 Add another layer and simply repeat the previous step, this time however, create much smaller circles. Also change the Primary Color to white and for the Blur use 0.01. The Blendings of this layer will be Screen. Step 4 Again, add another layer on top of the others and repeat again the Defocus filter. For this we will create the medium size circles. I used 0.36 for the Size and 0.04 for the Blur. Also the Primary Color is white and the density is 0.50. The Blending for this layer is Screen as well. Tip: The Defocus filter is a Random so probably you won't have the same result in terms of positions. Step 5 Duplicate the medium size bokeh layer and just change the Blending to Color Dodge. Step 6 Duplicate the Small size bokeh layer and move it up to the other layers. Then just change the Blending to Color Dodge as well. The color dodge will create a very nice light effect and add some depth to the layers. Step 7 Select the Gradient Tool (G) and choose the default rainbow gradient preset. Then create another layer on top of the others and fill it with the gradient. Use the image below for reference. After that just change the Blending to Overlay. Conclusion The Defocus filter in Pixelmator is really easy to use and the result that you can get just repeating the process changing some values and playing with blendings is really cool. That's why I like and recommend this app, you can create nice effects pretty quickly and with a gorgeous interface. As I said in the other tutorials you will be impressed by how fast some filters are compared with Photoshop. It's definitely worth downloading and testing it. Click on the image for Full Preview Download the Pixelmator File Click here to download the Pixelmator file used for this tutorial

Learning the new Adobe CS4 Apps with Lynda

Last week Adobe started shipping the new version of their CS suite of applications. The Adobe CS4 family comes with a redesigned interface and a ton of new features. To get up to speed with all of the new features Lynda.com has created the CS4 University. I had a chance to access the CS4 University, and found that you'll have everything you need to upgrade your skills for the new Adobe Apps. There are videos lessons such as: New Features, Getting Started, and Essential Training for Photoshop, Illustrator, Fireworks, After Effects, InDesign, Flash, Soundbooth, Premiere, Contribute, and Encore. “We are excited to offer in-box training from lynda.com and have worked closely on the development of their CS4U video training to help our designers and developers discover new possibilities and unleash their creative potential”. Thomas DeMeo, Director of Product Management Adobe Creative Suite ABOUT CS4 University: CS4 University is comprised of very diverse, specialized course titles that cover virtually every aspect of the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product family. Some of these courses are very advanced, while others include special applications for people working more at the consumer level. All of these courses are designed to help lynda.com’s Online Training Library® subscribers get the most out of the new Adobe software. Included within these courses are three new series: The “New Features” series focuses on what has changed since Adobe Creative Suite 3 software was released. The “Getting Started” series is designed to get Creative Suite 4 users up and running quickly. The “Essential Training” series supplies the ground-up fundamentals needed to master each application in Creative Suite 4 Lynda Weinman, co-founder of lynda.com, said: “As the software landscape continually evolves, a lynda.com Online Training Library subscription remains the most comprehensive and efficient way for designers, instructors, students, and hobbyists to keep their skill sets up to date.” “Packed with hundreds of new, innovative features—the Creative Suite 4 product line advances the creative process across print, Web, mobile, interactive, film and video production,” said Chad Siegel, group product manager for Creative Suites at Adobe. “lynda.com shows our customers just how to incorporate these innovations within their daily creative workflows with their new training offerings for CS4.” After a few days taking the Lynda Courses, I have to say, they are really good. I’m taking the After Effects and Cinema 4D courses, and I’m pretty happy with my evolution on those apps. I highly recommend that you check their courses out. They have both subscription plans and DVDs; but the access to their online library is definitely worth it.