Adding a Little “LOVE”

Susanne, a regular blog reader and fellow photographer, asked for information on how to apply textures to photos. I am MOST happy to share because I learned from Heather, of One Shot Beyond Photography, and Jen, of Jen Rinaldi Photography, who were kind enough to share with me!

When I add texture to images, I feel like I am adding a little “LOVE.” BAM! Adding texture frequently will give a piece a unique flavor or personality; personality that sets an image apart from the expected. And, being honest, sometimes texture will save a “ho hum” image by adding new life. I will, however, be quick to add that texture use is NOT for every piece.

As is the case with most art, opinions can vary greatly regarding the use of texture — some in favor, others strongly opposed. However, I find opinions can vary regarding use of Photoshop editing, certain processing techniques, choice of depth of field, film or digital, Canon or Nikon…..well, you get the idea. Ultimately, the artist must make the decision for the presentation of an image.

A little before and after example:

BAM! A little “LOVE” added……

Visit here for more examples of pieces to which I’ve added texture during the creative process. And, please visit Heather and Jen’s blogs for examples of texture added to portraits. Just look for their texture categories and you will see TONS of examples filled with great work!

Directions for using textures may be found here. (Easy! If I can learn, anyone can learn!)

Free textures are EVERYWHERE — flickr, Texture King, etc. Simply do a Google search for free textures for photos and you will find more than you need!

The most difficult part of this texture ‘thing’ is making up one’s mind regarding which texture to use on which image. Usually I know rather quickly what works and what doesn’t. However, sometimes I spend a lot of time on an image — only to scrap it in the end because I’m not satisfied.

Also, I compare applying texture to watercolors. If you have ever painted with watercolors you know how quickly the colors can get “muddied.” The same is true with applying texture. Often, less is more.

Another challenge with adding textures is remembering your resources for the free textures to insure proper credit being given to the person creating the original texture layer. I attempt to keep textures sorted in folders with the artists’ names for reference and I try to properly credit my resources.

It’s fun to shoot your own textures! One day I shot the kitchen floor tile, a multicolored candle, the clouds in the sky, the concrete driveway, the pebble patio….you get the idea! The cemetery is a wonderful place to shoot textures. You can look for crumbled brick, weathered stone, moss, tree bark……….

So, add a little “LOVE” to your photos! I can’t wait to see your creations.

Texture credit: Flickr users ArtByChrysti, Liek

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8 Responses to Adding a Little “LOVE”

  1. susanne49 says:

    Oh, wow…Sue! First of all: THANK you for the effort you made to explain this “texture thing”. It sounds easy, it looks wonderful – and now I have a new challenging project 🙂

    Thanks for sharing and for all the links. I cannot promise you to bring a texture photo tomorrow already…. but one day in the future for sure. 🙂

  2. Julie McLeod says:

    Sue, your texture work is always so well conceived and creative . I don’t use textures very often, but my favorite source is Ghostbones. Here’s the link in case you haven’t been there before:

  3. Marcie says:

    Love your use of textures. Thank-you for explaining so clearly. You’ve inspired me to play and have a little fun!!!!

  4. JRP says:

    Sue – I must say I love what you did here! You’re fantastic at texturing!
    I would have never thought to do what you did here. Very impressive!
    I love that you made a gallery to contain them all – great idea!

  5. suehenryphotography says:

    Julie, yes….I agree that Ghostbones is a great source for textures and have used his textures before. I probably should list some of my favorite “Flickr” resources.

    Jen…you and Heather got me started with all of this. Thank you! Who would have ever thought that I would have taken to this technique so much.

  6. Anita Bower says:

    Your post inspired me to try textures, which I’d been intending to do. It wasn’t hard to do, but, I haven’t found a combination of texture and main image that I like. Thanks for the links!! Your textured images are great!

  7. Mike Palmer says:

    Textures can easily be overdone since the look is so easy to pull off – I think you have a great eye for matching texture to shot to opacity level – I really like the feel of this one Sue

  8. NANNE says:

    I like your site, all the photo’s ar beautifull!
    Very nice and I invite you to visit my site too!
    Nice to meet you.

    Nanne from Friesland

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