Photo Art : Altered Imagery Workshop

Do you have folders-full of photos stashed on your computer that are okay, but that you dream of transforming into unique art that you’re proud of, that you can print and frame — for yourself, for gifts, or to sell?

Odontoglossum orchid

Odontoglossum orchid

Ready to take the next steps with your photos, to stretch your creativity and artistic imagination?  I’ve got just the workshop for you! On Saturday July 14th from 11 am to 2:30 pm at Joan Landis’s Pinole Art Studio I will teach you how to transform your photos into works of art with image processing software and techniques.

Digital collage, Monarch and Woods

Digital collage, Monarch and Woods

We’ll explore how to enhance your original photos to achieve unique and artistic effects using Adobe Photoshop Elements. Elements is a very powerful, but affordable, image processing program.  The techniques that I teach can also be accomplished with other programs, and we’ll discuss them as well, including GIMP, a free image processing program.

Kaleidoscope creation

Kaleidoscope creation

Space is limited, and we’ll work on your images at the workshop, so pre-registration is required.  For more information, or to pre-register, email me at heidirand@gmail.com.  The cost is $50. If you can’t make the workshop, email me for other options, including private classes, books, and ebooks.  And here’s a list of my other art and craft workshops.

Peacock feather kaleidoscope

Peacock feather kaleidoscope

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Photo Art : Altered Imagery Workshop

Do you have folders-full of photographs on your computer that are okay, but you want to transform them into art that you’re really proud of, that you can print and frame — for yourself, for gifts, or to sell?

Cattleya orchid

Cattleya orchid

Ready to take the next steps with your photos, to stretch your creativity and artistic imagination?   If you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area, I’ve got just the workshop for you!  Sunday April 10, 2011 from noon to 3:30 p.m., at the Canyon Trail Park & Art Center, 6757 Gatto Ave., El Cerrito, I’ll be teaching you the magic that you can find within your own photographs.

Egret allium blended collage

Egret allium blended collage

We’ll explore how to enhance your original photos to achieve unique and artistic effects using Adobe Photoshop Elements. Elements is a very powerful, but affordable, image processing program.  The techniques that I teach you, though, can be accomplished with other programs, and we’ll discuss those other programs, including GIMP, a free image processing software that you can download from the internet.

Making a kaleidoscope

Making a kaleidoscope

Space is limited, and we’ll work on your images at the workshop, so pre-registration is required.  For more information, or to pre-register, email me at heidirand@gmail.com.  The cost is $50. If you can’t make the workshop, email me for other options, including private classes and ebooks.  And here’s a list of my other art and craft workshops.

Dorian and Lars

Dorian and Lars

Photos on metal, part 1

I love using metal in mixed media works: beads, wire, wire mesh, metal embossed with designs or letters, brads, etc. …..   I used a couple of different techniques on this box:

Hidden treasure box

Hidden treasure box

The box has strips of copper sheeting on the top and bottom front which I embossed using a stencil.  The word “hidden” along the side is metal mesh which I embossed using metal letters.  I also put metal letters spelling “treasures” along the right side.  The image is a heat transfer of a double-exposure photo I took of myself awhile ago (pre-digital, when double exposures were harder but really fun).

Ah, but photos on metal — so many possibilities, but also difficult.

I started out trying some inkjet lazertran on metal.  I got a few rolls of copper and aluminum sheeting made by Artemboss.  You can find it at Michael’s, but I got it at a better price through misterat.com  This metal is soft enough to cut easily and I really like working with it.  I didn’t have much success with the lazertran, unfortunately.  With inkjet lazertran, if you want the surface of your substrate to show through where your image would be white, you have to clear the white with either turpentine or a substitute.  My aim in putting a photo onto metal would be for the surface to show through, so I did need to use the turpentine.   My results weren’t good – my edges curled, I used too much turpentine and some of the image dissolved, the end image was kind of chalky. 

I next tried using a heat transfer, the same t-shirt transfer material I wrote about earlier for putting photos onto tile.  I use Epson transfers with my Epson 2400 pigment printer.  The results were much better than the lazertran.  Here’s an example:

White phalaenopsis orchid

White phalaenopsis orchid

This is an Artemboss copper sheet with a heat transfer of my photo of an orchid.  I worked with the image so it’s softer than a straight photograph.  The heat transfer process doesn’t work well with sharp detail, so I chose a soft image, and I like the effect here.  The colors of the heat transfer aren’t as saturated as a straight photo, but here my aim was the contrast between light and dark, and that worked fine for me.  I also did some random embossing on the metal sheet and then attached it to a piece of wood with nails.

To print my transfer, I reversed the image (there wasn’t any type or lettering, but I decided to keep the orientation as I had shot the image).  I used the matte black ink and the enhanced matte paper and “best” settings.  I set the metal sheeting on a hard even surface (not an ironing board) and set the iron on its highest setting (don’t have water in the iron).  You really need some heat-resistant gloves to handle the metal, because it gets very hot.  Place the heat transfer face down on the metal, exactly where you want it — any movement will blur the image.  I put a sheet of baking parchment between the iron and the transfer, and held the iron down in one spot for a few moments.  Don’t move the iron – pick it up and place it on another spot next to the first spot.  If your iron has holes in it, make sure you’re overlapping so you don’t leave any spots untransferred.

It takes awhile to transfer to metal. You just have to peel up a little bit of the edge of the transfer to see how you’re doing, and you can then place it back down and keep ironing until you have as much transferred as you want.   There’s usually a small ghost image remaining on the transfer paper, as with the tiles.