Photography and Digital Transformation

Flower Extrusion
Flower Extrusion by WM House & CF Lovelace (Available at ArcheanArt)

The maturing of digital-art software opens numerous creative pathways for producing new artwork. Digitally produced art is like any other art. It is visualized first in the mind of the artist and later turned into a visual object. The software doesn’t create the art any more than a canvas, brushes, and paint created Van Gogh’s Starry Night. Brushes and software are simply tools used by the artist to transfer the art in his or her mind to a visual medium.

However, software combined with high-resolution computer screens lets the artist create at rates unknown in analog work. Hundreds of new ideas can be quickly investigated to test a wide variety of form and color combinations while the artist searches for the visual representation that most closely matches the picture in their head.

The whole process is stimulating and engaging. Because of the wide array of options and techniques, digital art also offers numerous surprises during the creation process. Simply put, digital art is fun.

Flower Extrusion Step 1

The cover image above started with this photo taken by nature photographer CF Lovelace. A beautiful winter morning scene with snow and ice crystals rimming a red flower.

How did one image morph into something completely different? I will take you through the process.

It’s important to note the first stage of my process was the raw photo. This particular image had a combination of form and color that caught my imagination. I recognized something in the picture waiting to be discovered. Choosing the initial raw image for digital transformations is the most important part of your workflow.

Flower Extrusion Step 2

My first modification was squaring off the picture and converting it to a 300 dpi image.

Flower Extrusion Step 3

Next, I ramped up the color vibrancy and saturation levels. I saw something abstract in my mind and wanted bold colors.

Flower Extrusion Step 4

I then took a big leap from reality and extruded the entire image in 30-pixel blocks.

Flower Extrusion Step 5

On a hunch, I blurred the center of the original flower and ramped up the contrast, slightly darkening the center.

Flower Extrusion Step 6

The flower originally had a clockwise rotation, so I over-rotated the entire image.

Flower Extrusion

Finally, I adjusted the hue to a blue scale.

My wife’s comment was “Digital Trickery.” I don’t think she meant this in a good sense.

Humm… Who am I to say?