Fall 2020 — leaves 0001

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: the symbol above the PLAY arrow will switch to a full-screen slideshow . . . which I advise for the best experience (press Esc to exit). You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

Fallen Autumn Leaves
As shot (Camera Flat setting) with a bit of noise reduction and sharpening (Topaz DeNoise AI)

Those are wind-blown leaves against a curb that I saw and photographed during my recent trip. Sadly, we were a bit early for the full Michigan Fall Colors, but these caught my eye (and camera lens). And, no, I did not arrange them; that be as I found them.

As nice as the original looks, I prefer some post-processing . . .

Fall Leaves
Processed with DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4

I recently had the occasion to watch someone read a post of mine on a phone . . . I can tell you that on a phone screen you’re not going to notice the differences in some of these. Heck, even on a PC, WordPress down-samples and compresses the photos and they don’t look as good as they would in SmugMug. And, for the best experience, you need to see them full-screen.

But, that’s not for me to tell you how to look at stuff. I provide the opportunity, but I don’t demand compliance with any particular method of enjoying my content.

Anyway, as people know, I’m rarely never satisfied with a single version of anything. So . . .

Fall Leaves with impression plugin
Processed with DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4 and Topaz Impression 2 plugin

As mentioned above, unless you click and open the larger photo, you’re not going to notice much of a difference. The above is a modified Edward Hopper filter with a bit of AI Clear and the canvas texture removed. None of that will mean anything to anyone who doesn’t have the plugin, but there you have it.

Of course, I always look to see how the monochrome version stacks up.

Fall leaves in monochrome
Processed with DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4 and Silver Efex Pro 2

Mind you, there are many ways to convert color photos to monochrome, and this is just one. If you want to be bored to tears (and see a lot of different monochrome and color processing) you could do worse than THIS<<link post.

Anyway, that’s nice, but how would it look with a bit of Glow 2.0 treatment? Well . . .

Fall Leaves in monochrome with a bit of glow
Processed with DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4, Silver Efex Pro 2, and Topaz Glow 2.

On a small screen, this looks just a bit crappier than the regular monochrome version. Oh, well.

Topaz has a lot of older plugins that I still use, one of them being Restyle . . .

Fall leaves restyled to different colors
Processed with DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4 restyled using Topaz Restyle plugin.

For those not familiar, Restyle messes with the colors. There are something like five-hundred canned settings and you can then adjust to your preference. I usually find a canned setting that hits a sweet spot for my current mood and preference.

As an example, here are a few more.

As mentioned, literally hundreds to choose from in addition to tweaking the sliders on your own.

And, of course, there’s Topaz Studio (1.0 & 2.0). There, I have additional options, like AI Remix and Digital Frame. Remix overlays any of a number of photos atop your photo for different effects. It’s a bit like stuff in THESE<<link posts, but not — in my opinion — as nicely. Still interesting and useful, but not as good as what I can do in Deep Dream Generator (which I no longer do).

. . . but still good enough to share . . .

framed stylized fall leaves
DxO Nik Collection Color Efex Pro 4, Topaz Restyle plugin, Topaz Studio 1.0 Remix; Topaz Studio 1.0 Digital Frame.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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