]The boots were made for walking (in the rain) and we took a load of photos with textures in abundance!
The walk from the stone circles at Stanton Drew to Pensford and back challenged our map reading skills and sense of direction, but having gone through a hedge backwards, we rediscovered the path, and were rewarded with a host of opportunities to use the cameras. We found lone trees and textures in abundance- all a bit too late for most of us for past challenges, but we had time for a chat and some fun before we all got drenched on the return to the start.

Next week we hope to be led on a leisurely and shorter stroll around the Timsbury area by Graham. Jill will post details in the e mail together with contact details if the weather is poor or you change your mind, and details of the Thursday Zoom. We shall have two more challenges before August , and our last Zoom meet before the break will be 30th July. Hopefully the weather will be kind to us!

So…. Feedback on the TEXTURES CHALLENGE:

[b]Jenny says:
This use of two blended photos was new to the majority of us and produced some very varied results. Clearly the use of carefully selected textures can enhance or detract from the main image and for me, the rule of less is more became the vogue. The ones I submitted were simple blends using a selected effect and then opacity without using a subsequent layer to remove or reduce the texture from selected areas. However, I did later learn the workflow for this from Geoff Noad to whom I shall be eternally grateful !!

Strapped for time this week so feedback brief of necessity-sorry.

[i]Jane R: I like them all but especially 1 and 2 with the carefully chosen colours behind the yellow flower which is well done. I am never sure about borders but in this case I think again well chosen.
Bill: All three give intriguing effects that are very “painterly” each in a different way. I think 1 is most subtle whilst the other two a bit overpowering the original But great efforrts and nice textures.
Graham: Again I think the textures dominate the lovely flowers and need the opacity reduced a bit I love the idea of the burnt cheese. My favourite again is the sublest one with the cheese background Try making the texture b and w and reducing the effect and maybe taking the texture off some areas Would love to see it again.
Geoff: masterly images that I cannot choose between I love the sharp focus on the stamen in all of them and the subtly different treatments really give me food for thought . Favourite? By very small margin: 1.
Janice:Your three are a good example of the diversity of response. It is a very clever main image as a social statement, and then the overlays are really well chosen in their own right. I know you were not sure but my favourite is actually 2 because of the very strong composition with all those lines. I am like you, not sure what it is saying, but I like it ,and especially the blue.
Pamela’s interpretation using double exposures was interesting. I like the one with the wood in the sky best. Not sure what it reminds me of but there is something in my memory it touches. The Kilver Court is intriguing and I do like the second image used there . I am surprised you cannot do the Texture thing in LR I suppose most people use a combination of it and photoshop to do it. Geoff might help you .
Suzanne: I like the chosen picture from the walk . Like Tony I thought the water one did look like drops on the lens. I like both the others- the cloth gives the feel of it being a painting on canvas but I find the wood one more interesting and want to have a play with it maybe in b and w?
[i]Jill:I think the power of the use of texture for backgrounds is well illustrated her. I love them all – the subject is really great and the treatments with textures re colour and intensity are fantastic.
Tony : of the 3 I like the paving slab best as the others need toning down and “thinning out” As you say – a learning curve and again I recommend you speak to Geoff. It might be good to get him to lead a short sharp session at some point. Your images taken in this field are really good for experimenting on !

Pamela says:

: Jenny. I like the three pictures with different treatments.
The B&W could be an illustration in many books I’ve read. My eye is
drawn to the white sky though. I like the effect created by painterly
texture but I think my favourite is Spooky because it is both spooky
and it stands out, and in this one I like the bit of blue sky. I think
it works very well.
Jane R. I like them all, but especially number
three. It would do well on my wall. The colours are appealing, it’s
balanced, subtle, strong but also fragile.
Geoff. I need to go to
Specsavers or I need the three photos side by side to make it easier
for me. I keep squinting at the screen to see how they vary. The
composition is so creative but I think I like the texture in number 1
Graham. The colours are strong but I do like them. They remind me
of a flat I once shared in London that I tried to jazz up using
wrapping paper (it didn’t work).I think my favourite is D. burnt to a
crisp; I like the way the yellow centre of the flower matches the
Suzanne. I think your composition work well because your
angles are right (as usual!). I can’t choose between wood and stone,
and weaving the fabric. They both look like paintings but if forced, I
would opt for wood and stone because the textures stand out more.
Three interesting pictures but text 1 is an outright winner in my book.
I really like the effect you have created in the sky and on the grass.
Text 2 is effective and Text 3 is interesting but the orange/brown
texture doesn’t work for me.
Janice. More thought provoking pictures,
same message but different levels of intensity. No 1 is the most
forceful and commanding, almost a sense of malice. No 3 is giving a
sense of perhaps there is hope. The blue softens the image but the
restrictions are there, and no 2 is almost we’re there, just be
patient. Well that’s how I see it! Put them in your social history
Jill. I love both but I think the child’s colouring is so
perfect that the colour version is my favourite. What eyes and how well
caught. The background is excellent.
Tony. I think I should come and
meet this tree. It’s very accommodating. Three versions and even though
version with brick is ‘dense’ it reminds me of a children’s book cover
but I can’t remember the book! I think with the three because they are
strong I would chop some of the foreground.

Janice says:
I hope you don’t mind but rather
than comment on each photo I’m mostly going to say which is my
favourite of your three and why.

Jenny, I do like your mono image which
is atmospheric but of the three my favourite is Spooky Texture. Good
vibrant colours and I can’t explain why but it has a sci-fi feel to it.
Something looks like it’s being projected on the stonework, spooky
indeed .
Pamela, your mono image made me think of the story Sleeping
Beauty and the overgrown forest. However, my favourite is Exp 1 which
has an old masters painting feel about it. The texture really suits
the subject, especially the sky.
Jane R, I really like your 1st image.
The pattern of the texture completely compliments the subject. Lovely
colours too.
Geoff, I liked all three of your choosen textures and the
subject flower with its stunning colours. I’m with Jenny and Pamela
here liking Texture1 the most. Very subtle, it blends in so
Graham, my favourite is Oil on Water. The shapes almost mimic
the petals and I do like the colour palette.
Suzanne, great composition
in your original image. The subtle but effective use of textures makes
it hard to choose a favourite but for me Wood & Stone really suits the
Bill, a wonderful landscape of a place I love to visit. Text
1 is easily my favourite, it blends very nicely.
Jill, an adorable
expression, well captured. All backgrounds work very well but the
colour image really stands out for me.
Tony, I like how you capture
movement in the foreground of this image. Tree with Paving Slab adds
an interesting border but still retains this movement which makes it my
preferred texture.

SUZANNE SAYS :: Adding a texture layer to a photograph
is not something I have heaps of experience of so I will comment on
what the finished, enhanced photograph said to me and not the technical
side of photography.

GRAHAM: DALHIA –OIL ON WATER is my favourite as
the shapes in your texture layer compliment the petals in your flower.
I think the flower would seem bolder if the opacity on the texture
layer was reduced a tad. It’s a personal choice and hard to get
correct first time. Has Iris improved at cooking cheese on toast. A
fun picture.
TONY: TREE WITH WOOD AND RUST is my favourite of yours
because it hasn’t got a heavy border like the other two. The lines in
your texture layer (horizontal) seem to compliment the lines in your
picture too. It’s difficult to know how much to reduce the opacity of a
texture layer, it’s all about trial and error and personal preference.
This picture also seems to have stronger colours but, that maybe is
just me!
BILL: TEXT 1 just beats TEXT 2 because it’s more subtle and I
like the lines in the grass, however TEXT 2 effect shows off the
water well but too heavy in sky. (Split textures maybe!) As for 3,
well in this instance, I think the wool looks at its best on the Sheep!
Great picture though.
PAMELA: 1: I love this effect as the whole
image seems to have an old masterly feel to it. You have done well
with the technique you have to use. 2: This is interesting too. Have
you the opportunity to reduce the opacity of your second image before
you place it under your top picture? Likewise for the lavender
layer-but in reverse. You put a lot of thought into these pictures
Pamela and did well to achieve these effects. Geoff said Photoshop
Elements, which one can still buy, is not too expensive andmight prove
useful to you.
JANICE: KEEP MOVING 3: I love the actual picture and
all three of your images but this is my favourite. I am guessing that
the blue and yellow signs are the pictures original colours and the
lined (water?) effect layer over it, for me that is, makes the signs
stand out and suits the image.
JANE: 1 is easily my favourite of your
three effects. I think the black lace texture layer contrasts well with
the yellow and suits it, but most of all I like being able to see the
stems of the flowers and the subdued greenery behind it. It givs the
flower a sense of place for me. A lovely flower, is it yours?
SPOOKY, is my favourite of yours, although I think the actual building
in your B/W Mysterious Cloud has a nice light on it. But Spooky is
interesting all over and although less is more is what I often prefer,
in this instance your varied texture layer looks good across the image
and makes it as your title suggests.
JILL: TEXTURE 2 is the one I like
the best. You used your texture layer as a backdrop and I chose this
one because to my eye, it doesn’t detract from the beautiful face of
this young boy. But, let’s face it; he looks great in the other two as