Monday, April 4, 2011


ds504 - Symmetry
Dog Blog Post #289: No, don't be alarmed. My post title doesn't mean the Daily Shoot tried to lead us into temptation by asking for a picture of cheating... (although a picture illustrating "temptation" might be fun!)

Today's subject is a result of trying to get today's Daily Shoot assignment:

Illustrate symmetry in a photograph today.

I know - it sounds harmless enough. And it was. I took the picture at the top of this post (my favorite) and the picture below...

ds504 - Symmetry (Alternate)

... (my son's favorite) using the usual means (the "set", black stretchy velvet -plus- down, stay, "Leave It!") etc.

I did try to get a somewhat different shot of the boys wearing cheap sunglasses I picked up this past summer as props for a 4th of July picture of Beau of Zachary, which made for the Missing Skill of the Day.

While Zachary was more than happy to wear them...

Wow... this picture is really bad, and on so many levels! :)

... Henry was not. And symmetry with only one dog isn't all that symmetrical! (This summer, Beau would wear them, and Zachary would not!)

Which finally brings us to the post title: Cheating.

Feeling a bit uninspired by my efforts, and wanting to get out to enjoy the weather, I took Henry out and about to try to find some outdoor symmetry. What I found was a park with a ridiculously short colonnade that appeared to serve no useful purpose.

But at least it was symmetrical, and I was tired of driving around trying to find something.

Here is the final shot...

ds504 - Symmetry

... and yes, that is the entire structure, and no, there is nothing on the cement slab.

But on to cheating.

You see, the picture above, is a fake. Despite my best efforts with cookies and a 10 second timer, I could not push the button, hurry down to the end, get Henry set, and get my body completely behind one of those pillars, in the time alloted.

(And yes, I should have fit. Huff!)

So how did I get that shot you just saw? Using the wonders of the "stamp" tool in ImageReady (my fake Photoshop, since we still haven't located the real one).

Here is the principle picture...

... and here is a donor picture...

Notice the difference?

So with a few swipes of the stamp tool, I managed to completely erase myself out of the picture. I then imported it back into iPhoto, clipped it to improve the symmetry a smidgen, hit the "enhance" button (although I'm not sure I really like what it did, other the warmer color is actually truer to the conditions as the sun was starting to go down, hence the long shadows) and there you have it!

Editor's Note: Going back to yesterday's "which do you prefer" question, I noticed half the comments matched my son's "pop" opinion, and the other half noticed a "floating paw", which I hadn't picked up on at all! I agree there probably isn't a right/wrong answer, but it's so easy to just keep pushing the sliders further this way or that, and convincing yourself it looks "better", when I'm not really sure it does. Nice to get some fresh eyes (and minds) on the subject! :)

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Golden Woofs! SUGAR said...

Woof! Woof! Great Leave it photo. Wonderful job on your photo editing. Happy Monday! Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

houndstooth said...

I think you made the right call with editing that picture. In my eyes, you definitely improved it and brought out what you were after, which was symmetry. It's a beautiful shot, although I had to grin at the black background ones, too! Your boys have such expressive faces!

houndstooth said...

P.S. You sucked me in! I tried uploading one of my own photos for the Daily Shoot today, although it isn't one that has the girls in it!

Sage said...

Nice editing job! I really love the first picture of Zach and Henry.

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

I haven't got Image Ready, but the stamp tool sure would be handy! I tend to use the 'adjust colour' in Preview rather than 'enhance' in iPhoto as it gives more natural results in a lot of photos. 'Enhance' can overdo the enhancing:) I could do it manually of course, but I'm too lazy, lol.

Both the top photos of the boys are gorgeous and the symmetry one turned out very well:)

greygirl25 said...

Those boys of yours, such beauties. Slinky wants to know how fast they can run and how long they are willing to sleep.

I love your post processing. Lightroom is fabulous too, I prefer it over Photoshop, although I use both on a daily basis.

And I just left my 2 cents on yesterday's post.