One Photo Focus – September

After a break in August, while sailing with my family, I am back in the digital dark room to take part in the September One Photo Focus challenge.  This photo processing project is hosted by Stacy Fischer at Visual Venturing.  As the name suggests, all participants work on a single image and bring their own interpretation. 

September Image

Ben Pendennis original-1This month the image we are all working on is by Benjamin Rowe of Aperture 64.  It depicts Pendennis Castle, a defensive castle built by Henry VIII to protect the Cornish town of Falmouth.

I was intrigued by this edifice, noticed the name Falmouth, which has also been given to a small seaside town in Tasmania, and went on the internet to read about it.

Pendennis Castle was described as one of the finest fortresses built by Henry VIII, which defended Cornwall against foreign invasion since Tudor times.  It guarded the anchorage of Carrick Roads and the port of Falmouth for over 400 years.

Summary of my editing process

With so much history, I knew straight away I wanted to convert the image to Black & White, to emphasize the passage of time.  I also wanted to bring the castle closer to our eyes, to bring out more detail.  So here are the steps I took:

  • Imported the image into Photoshop and adjusted the curves
  • Removed a sensor spot on the top left hand corner above the castle
  • Cropped the image
  • Opened up the shadows the bring out details
  • Converted to B&W using Silver Efex and selected the High Structure preset.  The idea was to extract more details in the stones and in the sky and to increase the drama in the overall image.
  • Adjusted the contrast and structure to my liking
  • Added a vignette, soft edges burn and image border
  • Added the text at 40% opacity: “Step into England’s history”, which describes what I felt as I read about this imposing castle.
  • Shrunk and saved the edited image as a JPEG.

Here is the result:

Ben Pendennis-1

Thank you Ben for allowing us to work on your image.  I hope I have done it justice.

Do take the opportunity to head over to Visual Venturing for this September One Photo Focus challenge, and check other participants’ creative efforts.  It is always fascinating to see the different interpretations.


22 thoughts on “One Photo Focus – September

  1. I briefly toyed with the idea of a black and white image, but I just couldn’t get it started in any way that I liked. You, however, nailed it, Chris! Beautiful tones and textures and love the light on front of the castle. Just gorgeous!! And thanks for the history lesson too 🙂

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