Tints and Tones — Poly Blue

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

At Serendipity we are excited to introduce one of our new techniques that we have developed this year! Poly blue is inspired by the season, and is a logical flow on from our beautiful copper blue technique.

serendipity photography technique

From strong to subtle, from whimsical to sharp, we love being able to change the mood of a image to something very precisely suitable to each client, inspired by your theme and the magic of your day!

serendipity photography technique

Poly Blue production process.

At first we work with a good colour conversion (in the example here the base picture uses strong contrasty colour, and then make the foundation monochrome layer by combining layers that have been derived from the various colour channel density algorithims — here the faces are soften and lighten, and texture and tone are blended from the various layers in order to focus the eye onto the couple and the wall.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

Now this mono foundation layer could have a simple blue tint applied. Alternatively we could start with our usual blend of lavender tint and colour layers, with the colour having the greens and yellows selectively focused more towards the red end of the spectrum. The saturation of the image is then played with by blending  back some more saturated layers to again drive the eye more towards the subject.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

Now for the Poly Blue extension! A bluer layer is blended both into the shadows and the anti reds, allowing further complexity in the image.

The image is finished with further sharpening, and hand rubbing more aqua and blue around the figure to draw the eye to the dress and the couples interaction. Our inspiration comes from winter fantasy film landscapes, from Tim Burton, and the creative process seems to feel not unlike layering pigment on a silk screen image, or working back with lith separations and the colour enlarger.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

Poly blue combines delicate tones, with complex textures with dramatic effect! The joy of the this technique is that although we’re maintaining the same drama and sharp lines evident in great black and white photography, poly blue adds a far more interesting dimension. Poly blue photographs emphasise line and shape, drawing out the surfaces and 3dimensionality of the image. The melodrama of poly blue image is heightened by the incorporation of strong line, texture and composition.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

 

Density and control of contrast are very important in poly blue images. The amount of colour is also important and can be varied to suit the desired effect.

In this example a very plain black and white conversion is contrasted with a poly blue conversion made from a good quality mono conversion (made from blending a variety of preshaped mono layers derived from the densities of the varies colour channels) where the skin tones are lifted and softer, and the veil and flowers have enhanced contrast. This mono layer was tinted and rubbed back onto a modified colour original several times, allowing blue into the anti reds and blue green into the shadows. The colours are then further focused and saturated with further hand rubbing stages. The resulting image is poised somewhere about half way between mono and colour, whereas the image above on the pier is more a somewhat modified monochromatic image.

serendipity photography technique

Poly blue isn’t just cool tones. The changes of colour can be quite subtle, and the eye registers shifts of only 5–10% in the red green axis around the soft, cold magenta to blue neutrals of our poly blue imaginary space.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

Contemporary Emphasis

Textured techniques don’t have to be all about enhancing the romance and nostalgia of an image! At Serendipity Photography we use poly blue techniques to highlight textures to create sharp and contemporary moments.

We are able to bring out all of the exciting textures and tones by creating a highly textural black and white foundation layer. In this example the original image has a sharp feel, but we wanted to really emphasize the mood and the strong radiating diagonals with what is essentially and enhanced black and white image.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

As always the foundation layer is made from blending our stack of mono layers that are derived from the colour channels. The sky is dramatised via the red and oranges channels, and we are able to apply more sculpting in the dress via the blue channel, blending several contrast enhanced layers together in this area.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

The purely mono or straight blue tint are shown here for interest.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

Our final result is made with about 10 more rubbing stages with subtle red green shifts around a cold blue base, where the final result relates to the colours of the original underlying colour layer as well as the densities of the foundation mono layer. At Serendipity we find the process creates a quiet impact. It allows a mood of sophisticated drama and a strong illusion of depth compared to the previous two treatments.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tones

More Tint and Tones Pages

At Serendipity Photography we are proud to present our array of wonderful pages on our favourite photographic techniques! High saturation gives photographs a vibrant and dramatic feel, drawing out the colours that are already present in order to create an almost magical moment. Copper Blue is our newest technique, combining old and new historical aesthetics for stylish effect. To emphasise the light and shade of your special day we use high contrast to bring out the complex and dynamic mood of your wedding. Lilac, purple and gunmetal grey come together with beautifully subtle results and slight tonal variations to capture intimate and personal moments. Selective colour works by enhancing the feature colour of each photograph. Red sepia is the perfect way to bring an historical and graceful ambience to your photographs, giving them a warmth and richness as well as allowing for complex textures. Monochrome uses black and white photographs and subtly incorporates coloured tones to create depth and complexity. Warm tones can also add a new layer of intensity and sophistication. At Serendipity we use a wide range of techniques to adjust, create and enhance tints and tones.

Serendipity Photography Tints and Tonesserendipity photography technique

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