Steve Estill, EPSA  

Waxing and Waning Tulips by Steve Estill, EPSA

June 2022 - Waxing and Waning Tulips

June 2022 - Steve Estill, EPSA


June 2022 - Steve Estill, EPSA

Original 2

June 2022 - Steve Estill, EPSA

Original 3

About the Image(s)

In a similar vein to April's image of the daffodils / amaryllis, where the old and young were featured, I thought I'd use Tulips, as it's been their time of year. I used one that was at the end of it's flowering with ones that were in full bloom.
I started with a background image of one of the flower beds (Original 1) where lots of tulips were blooming, used Gothic Glean preset in Topaz Studio 3 with the 'impression' overlay, then darken / lighten centre in Nik Color Efex Pro 2. I then stamped up. Because I wanted a dark background, I reduced its opacity with a black colour fill layer below it.
The 'old' tulips (Original 2) were selected (using the 'remove background' tool) then merged into a single later. This was treated with Nik HDR Efex Pro 2, Structured 1 preset, then Topaz Studio 2, Golden Madona with Impression overlay. Finally, I used Redfield Quad Pencil > Early reflections preset at 80% opacity.
The 'new' tulips (Original 3) were selected (using remove background) and duplicated. The bottom layer was treated with Nik HDR Plus > 'Natural Bright' preset. The top layer was treated with Redfield Quad Pencil > B&W in screen mode at 67% opacity.
The stack was stamped up and given Topaz Studio 2 texture, 'Far Away Galaxy', which virtually hid the background layer, but I liked the look of it. The flowers were then brought back on top at reduced opacity and there we have it.
I gave the tulips different treatments so that the younger blooms were separate from the older ones. All a bit of experimentation with plugins. The final image was accidental.

9 comments posted

Georgianne Giese   Georgianne Giese
Stunning, Steve! I especially like the treatment on the red tulips, as well as that other worldly background.
Question: I've not seen the "remove background" tool. Where is it?   Posted: 06/05/2022 13:23:40
Steve Estill   Steve Estill
Thanks Georgianne.
The remove background tool is located in the 'Quick Actions' dropdown which appears below the properties panel. This dropdown doesn't appear with a background layer - the layer maust be made into a working layer (double click it in the layers palette) to unlock it.   Posted: 06/05/2022 15:33:54

Gunter Haibach   Gunter Haibach
Really like the 'young/old' story line. Also the treatment of both, however individually. I'd like to see the older tulip tie in a bit more with the younger - like adding a bit of red. I made a crude attempt to paint in a bit of the red. See what you think. I also like the creative background - well done.   Posted: 06/13/2022 09:35:23
Comment Image
Steve Estill   Steve Estill
Thanks Gunter
I like that!   Posted: 06/13/2022 14:55:40

Candy Childrey   Candy Childrey
Good job, Steve, with the use of plugins to create fading tulips vs fresh ones. Your treatment works well to show the past prime tulips and fresh blooms. I think I would like to see the same type of tulip rendered at past prime and fresh. Your background works well and is quite interesting.   Posted: 06/18/2022 13:10:10
Steve Estill   Steve Estill
Thanks Candy
I would have tried with the same flower but the weather was against me - so much wind and rain that it was impossible to get before and after shots of both flowers - maybe next year!   Posted: 06/18/2022 16:22:40
Candy Childrey   Candy Childrey
I certainly appreciate the rain problem. We have had our share of it recently.   Posted: 06/20/2022 14:29:45

Jan Handman   Jan Handman
Your garden must be a wonderful place to spend time with your camera after all your hard work of getting it to grow so nicely. Another interesting treatment Steve. Since I made my feelings known about past-prime flowers last month, I won't belabor the point again. I think the lower center flower in Original 1 is a stunner with its lovely color and ed petal, so I would love to see that one in your composite. The tulips with the frayed edges are so cool and the colors so vibrant. The other-worldly background works well here. Nicely done!   Posted: 06/18/2022 16:49:19
Steve Estill   Steve Estill
Hi Jan
Sorry about the 'past it' flower. I just love the textures they produce - I'll try to make up next month as the peonies are looking good just now.
The garden is a good place to be, full stop!   Posted: 06/18/2022 17:47:21


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