Birds, Canon 50D, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: (Let the Journey be the) Reward

Easy to say, let the journey be the reward, hard to do though in my opinion.  I had been rethinking the way I view my workday this week so in a strange way this challenge did tie into what I had been thinking about this week.  I have an hourly part-time job and then I have my own business which I am hoping to have up and running in the next few years.  It is easy to let the hourly job, with its short term reward of a paycheck, take precedence over my own business whose reward is more long term and harder to describe.

So, this week I started a timer to keep track of the hours I am putting into my business.  An attempt to remind myself that this job is as real as my paycheck job.  So far, I have found it helpful, so I am going to stick with it for awhile.  One of the things I was working on this week while I was on my new clock, was layers and textures.  As part of that I went out this morning and took some photos of leaves, dead and brown, in the hopes of using that image to create new ones.  So below is a description of what I was working on.

First here is the original leaf photo:

ISO 1000 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/50

ISO 1000 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/50

It’s a bit dark and needed some cropping.  This is a version that I edited into more of what I had in mind:

ISO 1000 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/50

ISO 1000 50mm 0ev f/7.1 1/50

Then I decided to try combining it with another image.  Here is the image I chose:

ISO 800 75mm 0ev f/4.5 1/250

ISO 800 75mm 0ev f/4.5 1/250

I then combined the two and created this final image:

ISO 800 75mm 0ev f/4.5 1/250

ISO 800 75mm 0ev f/4.5 1/250

Is this image one that I will sell? Nope, but it is the technique that I will use in other images that I would.

In this case with the two images in Photoshop, I drug the leaves in as a layer below the owl image. Then I put a mask on the bird layer and using a paintbrush set at about 40% opacity, I painted the leaves faintly in.

What do you think of the technique? Is this something you have also tried? What to you is most rewarding in your artistic endeavors?  Feel free to leave a comment below.



23 thoughts on “Weekly Photo Challenge: (Let the Journey be the) Reward

  1. I think the final image is absolutely terrific, altho I might crop it a bit on the right to take the bird out of the center of the shot. I think adding the background layer was a great idea and made both shots much more powerful. Good luck with your new endeavor – I think tracking your hours is a great idea and will tell you more about effort vs reward, but don’t forget to count value for personal ROI like enjoyment and fulfillment!


    • Thanks Tina, to be honest, I couldn’t really settle on a crop that I liked. Really, I just needed to frame the original shot better 🙂 I hear what you are saying about personal enjoyment and fulfillment, but I think that was getting me a bit off track. Because I was enjoying the work it didn’t seem like work, I would tend to put it off and do my “chores” first, instead of fully embracing the idea that I do enjoy my work.


  2. Aha. Interesting shots. The best part is I like the way to describe your work. Its very enriching and informative for me. Just live it. Thanks so much for sharing your thought process with us 🙂 🙂


  3. I love the final image! The background is really pretty with the painting effect and combining the two photos. I like your idea of keeping track of the time you are spending on your business. I am not starting a business, but I should learn to do that with writing. Make it a priority, rather than putting it after everything else that has to get done.

    I have tried this technique before, but only in I used several photos to illustrate the passage of time. I do not have Photo Shop. I just downloaded Gimp, but I have no idea how to use it. I have heard it is closer to Photo Shop than, but it means learning something new. Sigh…


    • Thanks for your encouraging comment. So, far the timer is really working for me. I think part of my issue was that since I enjoy photography it was had to think of it as work, even though for me it is, and therefore it was going to the end of the line in terms of things to do instead of the front.
      I have used Gimp. I found it hard to use in that it wasn’t very intuitive to me. I did use Youtube a lot to figure out how to use different features, so if you get stuck, that is what I would suggest. I use that same technique for Photoshop as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Bravo Amy! An enjoyable and creative composition. Newspaper photogs “bracket their shots….(1) capture your setup shot; (2) try viewing the shot from a number of different perspectives if you are able. (3) use your Photoshop to add the cropping and other points of finesse to esthetically enhance the artwork.. If you capture a “bird’s eye view” of the scene then you will have more latitude to avoid the dead center positioning of the subject. Thanks for sharing. 🙂


  5. Pingback: A Delightful Surprise [“Risking Exposure”; a paperback gift from the author] | Ramisa the Authoress

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