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Today’s image is a simple graphic shot of the side of a building at the Railyard in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I couldn’t resist trying to capture the wonderful contrast of the very rusty and partially rusty sections of the corrugated walls of this building with the clean white downpipe. The actual overhead door can just be seen in the shadow at the very bottom of the shot. I did not include the door as it was the least interesting part of the building, although I loved the scrolled title on the cover of the mechanism which lifts up the door.
Once the RAW image had been suitably adjusted in Lightroom, I straightened it using Free Transform in Photoshop to removed the typical distortion of a wide angle lens making the building appear to be falling backwards. The straightened image was then processed in OnOne Software’s Perfect Effects 7. I first applied a preset called Just Enough Darkness which was masked to only apply to the fully rusty areas with the overall effect reduced to 50%. The wonderful Perfect Brush made masking these areas a very easy task. I next added a second preset, Monday Warm, to the exact same areas by copying the mask. The opacity for this preset was also reduced to 50%.
With the rusty area now looking good, I turned my attention to the sign. All that was needed here was to select the Tone Enhancer and limit this to Red only. I simply increased the saturation of the Red to +28. As the effect was limited to the Red only, no mask was needed – simple!
Lastly, I turned my attention to the whitish drainpipe. In the original file this was beginning to show a little weathering like the rest of the building but by applying the High Key preset, the blotchiness of the original down pipe just disappeared. I decided that a little weathering would be better than none at all, so I reduced the opacity of this preset to 70%.
Thanks to the Perfect Brush and the ease with which very accurate masking can be achieved this image took less than 15 minutes to create, most of which was spent experimenting with the different presets to come up with the look I was after. Below is the original file. You can see how these subtle changes have made such a difference to the image.
For anyone interested in trying Perfect Effects 7 they have a free trial download. If you like the product and would like to purchase it please use the code MSIMAGES for a 15% discount.
| January 16, 2013
Nice use of Free Transform, Mark. I find it very helpful as well. Your whole process is a great example of how to correctly use technology. Beautiful job!
| January 17, 2013
Really nice job of post-processing, Mark. That door has been in place for quite some time to show that amount of rust on what is usually galvanized metal. Well done.