Downtown Memphis, Tennessee, where the fountains come out of the sidewalk.
Print available here (larger image).
- 1st layer, square crop from larger image, shot in RAW, increased saturation in RAW converter to leave more “room” to work in with regard to color
- channel mixer, 100% red, set to monochrome, mixed down with Hard Light blending mode, then selectively brushed out in a few areas
- color balance, set to “preserve luminosity”: shadows +15 Cyan/Red, -20 Yellow/Blue; midtones +13 Cyan/Red, +3 Magenta/Green, -37 Yellow/Blue; highlights +44 Yellow/Blue; mixed down using Linear Light blending mode, set layer mask to “hide all” then only selectively brushed back on in order increase contrast and saturation in “heads” of fountains
- color gradient, gunmetal blue at bottom to tan at top, brushed out in select areas, blended down with Pin Light (it’s the pin light mixing mode with this layer which gives the image it’s almost polaroidish feel in places; the same is generally true of a carefully-chosen solid color or gradient fill layer with almost any image)
- another color gradient, light tan to brown, then punched a hole in the center with a 250 pixel feather in order to create a vignette effect, set to 51% fill
- channel mixer, 100% red, monochrome, only selectively brushed on in soft light mode in order to increase contrast in select areas
- channel mixer, 100% blue, monochrome, 43% fill in order to decrease overall saturation
- color balance, set to preserve luminosity: shadows +20 Yellow/Blue; midtones +14 Cyan/Red, -22 Yellow/Blue; highlights +11 Cyan/Red, -15 Yellow/Blue
- duplicated main image layer, then dropped it back down on top of the pile, set layer mask to “hide all” then selectively brushed it back on in Luminosity blend mode, in order to increase detail and saturation in certain top areas
- inserted a macro shot of my tennis shoe for texture, using Soft Light blending mode; attached an adjustment layer to this layer as a clipping mask: channel mixer, 100% red, monochrome, solely to remove color from it and leave only texture
- curves layer, way maxed out all crazy-like to increase brightness, then punched a hole in layer with a 250 px feather again in order to have the effect apply as a vignette across the bottom corners of the image, which is essentially what made it fade to white there
- yet another color gradient, tan to a less-saturated brown, overlay blending mode with 56% fill (I tend to use a lot of gradient fills on pieces like this because, with all the other stuff going on, it helps pull it all together in a subtle way, helps maintain its chromatic integrity as a single image)
- one last curves layer, only selectively brushed on at bottom, in order to bring out the contrast in the texture in the small areas of the wet pavement towards the middle bottom area.