Sans Marina

This picture was shot in 2012 and I have shown it on this blog site before. I’ve never been happy with it before. It was grainy, the color was washed out, the brightness was off, the sky was grayish. I wanted this to be a good picture, and it just wasn’t working out for me.

Among other things, there was a giant boat dock marina in the background that just ruined the shot for me.

One day, I had a thought. If Bob Ross doesn’t like something in one of his paintings, he’ll just say “well, maybe a happy little tree lives here.” I may not have oil paint or a canvas – but is there some reason I can’t paint some happy little trees? Is there some reason I can’t do like Bob Ross and just “blend it out?” If you watch his show you get that reference – there are many times where he does something he doesn’t like very much. He literally grabs his painting knife, scrapes it off, then blends it away. He usually follows it by the famous brush cleaning where he beats it against the post of his easel. If Bob Ross can do it on canvas, why can’t I do it digitally?

I digitally painted out the marina. All of a sudden, I was left with the peaceful and serene image of a lake at sunset that I wanted to take in the first place. As good fortune would have it, the GIMP software (a.k.a. “the poor man’s Photoshop”) has all sorts of goodies for dealing with color highlights, so I’m no longer stuck with the drab gray sky that bothered me so much back then. Better software exists to filter images now, so I was able to give this the “painting-like” look that I wanted.

Originally, in 2012, I had intended this picture to be a photographic tribute to my mother-in-law, who we lost about a month prior. Trouble is, I wasn’t happy with the photograph and the idea never really took off. As time went on, my wife and I did other honorable things. This picture, however, went off to the hard drive archive. Though I have posted it before, I only had luke-warm feelings about it so it didn’t stay up for long.

This may be an image that you’ve all seen, but it’s never been the image that I wanted. At least not until now, sans marina. There are some purist photographers that say that once you start editing, it’s not really photography anymore. What you get out of your camera is it, and if you’re good, you’ll get it right when you take the picture. My response to that is, quite simply, this: I do edit, and I don’t apologize.

Shoot photos, not each other!

Canon Digital Rebel XT, Canon EF-S 18-55mm lens, darktable, GIMP 2.10

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