Creating the pomegranate image from last month was a little complex, but very fun!
Here is the original photograph. I was walking to an open house in my neighborhood (I wanted to see how they had upgraded the kitchen), when I ran across a small, skinny pomegranate tree bearing a single, bright red fruit. So I took a couple of photos with my iPhone. I liked this one best:
It was a nice enough photo, but I really wanted the red pomegranate to stand out. First I cropped the image and did some basic color adjustments, then I took it into Perfect Effects, part of the Perfect Photo Suite by OnOne Software. I often use this for my photos to create a lot of great, custom looks. This time I started off easy. First I lightened the shadows, then added an effect called Turbo Boost, which punches up the color, contrast and clarity of the image. Why did I lighten the shadows first? Because applying Turbo Boost without it would have caused me to lose some of the shadow detail that I wanted to keep… at least for now.
Then I masked out the pomegranate because I wanted to preserve the bright red I’d created while going in another direction completely with the rest of the image. I used an effect called Magic Forest because it really punches up the greens.
Then I added an effect inspired by photographer Michael Orton, to give the image a magical sort of feel, almost like a painting.
Of course, all that lush color was going to fight for attention with the red pomegranate, so I dialed it down by using a black and white filter and adjusting it to mute the colors. I used a black and white red filter so that it sucked out more of the photograph’s red values than any of the other colors. That way, it would make the red fruit stand out even more. Once I put the pomegranate back into the photo, I added in a touch of the deep forest effect to brighten the green leaves and to give the photo a nice glow. Then I added a border and that was the final image.