Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Beauty of Decay, Part 1.

Camera Apps: 
BracketMode - for the photos serving for the HDR pictures
Hipstamatic - for the b/w pictures in the photo slide. Lens: Melodie, Film: A0 DLX

Additional Apps used (as far as I remember):
iCameraHDR - for the HDR pictures in color.
PerfectlyClear - to enhance the previouly created HDR pictures. This app is really helpful to create better pictures. Unfortunately it is a memory hog, often coming up with an out of memory error when processing a second picture. In this case all you need to do is closing all the apps running in the background, then restart PerfectlyClear again. No iPhone reboot required.
MonoPhix - for b/w versions of the HDR pictures.
Blender - to blend a lot! I can't even remember how many times I blend what layers because I did not write all the steps down. But I used b/w versions to blend with color versions to obtain better contrast and richer colors and I also used Blender to sharpen the final pictures a bit by application of my technique to create a high pass version in PhotoForge, then blend it with the normal version in Blender with mode set to Overlay. In case of this picture I always set the slider to 50/50, hence in the middle.
FilterStorm3 - to create a 3 nice frame. I used 10-20-10% for the three frames.
PicGrunger - to create a grunge version of my picture with the only goal to receive a badly worn and dirty frame that I wanted on my clean picture. Here I used the Metal texture with Scratched effect.
Superimpose - to put the grunge picture over the clean picture, masking the picture to cut it from the frame so the clean picture from the background layer could appear. This was quite a bit tricky to handle on the tiny iPhone screen but it all went well. Superimpose is currently the best masking app that I know.
Checking my final picture on the big screen I found some white spots, probably bird dung that I removed using TouchRetouch.
Apparently one of the apps that I used downsized the picture slightly so I had to resize it back to 2592x1936 in Iris. I still don't know what app was responsible for that but will check that out. 
EasyMerge - to quickly create a photo slide with four Hipstamatic photos of the old steam engine.
As usual I added my copyright watermark in A+Signature.

Since long years there is a disassembled old steam engine slowly rotting away at Luxembourg railroad yard. It's number is 5621 and it is said it was a so called "Kriegslok" - a war engine ordered by the German Reichsbahn as the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg was still occupied by the Germans in WWII. The engines had been build in Austria. But then the war ended and the remaining engines of that order got delivered to the newly founded "Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer de Luxembourg  (SNCFL) - the National Railway Company of  Luxembourg. I don't know much about the complete history of engine #5621 but it was still running as a tourist attraction in the 1970s. Later it needed restoration and some bloody amateurs took it apart, not possessing the knowledge to perform a proper restoration nor having the funds for it. Now it's slowly rotting away and nobody knows if it will ever be restored to it's old beauty again. At least it is a nice subject for pictures so I took another chance yesterday to photograph it again. This picture is part one of a set of two. 

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