Have you ever seen an awe inspiring scene, raised your camera, and taken the perfect photo? Or is it more like you thought you took the perfect photo? Don’t worry, I’ve been there, too! Check out how you can save your image with Texture Effects 2 in minutes.
A few months ago, I went to Maui! It was absolutely beautiful with lush landscapes, rugged coastlines, and colorful flowers. One of the adventures that is a tourist favorite is the Road to Hana. The road is filled with 620 curves and 59 bridges. However, the trek is filled with waterfalls, views, and adventure! I had to go.
At one stop, Wailua Falls, I was able to capture a beautiful image! The stop was crowded and the conditions weren’t exactly ideal for photography but I got the shot!
…or so I thought. When I got home, I started going through images to process. I was disappointed with how my image came out from that stop. The picture wasn’t as sharp as I wanted and there were portions of the image that were blown out. I guess I got “photographer’s rush” when I was there. My settings weren’t perfect and the image was a little bright. The photograph wasn’t as near as beautiful as what I saw in person.
1. Open Your Image in Texture Effects 2
Go ahead and open your JPG, TIFF, or PNG image. Open your image either in the stand alone application or through a host editor. I opened my image in Photoshop, then duplicated the original layer. I renamed this new layer to Texture Effects so I know what I did if I ever came back to the .PSD file.
Opening Texture Effects as a Plug In: Filter > Topaz Labs > Topaz Texture Effects 2
I wanted to customize my edit so I started by selecting New, located in the upper right hand corner of the Effects Panel. If Texture Effects 2 opens on the Adjustment Panel, press Reset, which is also located in the upper right hand corner of the screen. Now I have a fresh, clean slate to start with! Go ahead and give that a try and Texture Effects will look like this:
2. Make a Basic Adjustment
I remember Maui being lush and green. from the details of the cliff and water spray to the fissures in the rock wall, the waterfall was full of details.
To bring these aspects back into the image, I added a Basic Adjustment. You can add a Basic Adjustment by clicking on Add Adjustment, located in the Adjustments Panel, and then selecting Basic Adjustment from the choices.
I bumped up the Clarity (0.08) to bring the details back into the image. Then I pumped up the Saturation (0.12) to bring back the vivid colors of the scene. You can try out different settings for yourself and find what works for your image!
TIP: The best way to learn is to experiment and play. Adjust the Brightness, Shadow, Highlight, or Clarity to perfect your exposure. Change the Saturation, Temperature, and Tint to color correct your picture. Use Opacity, Blending Modes, and Masking to make your Basic Adjustment precise.
3. Pick a Texture
One thing that really makes an image impactful is dimension and texture. When I saw Wailua Falls, it was alive with depth (see the layers of foliage in front of the falls?) and texture (like the rock wall, the various leaves, and the water captured in a moment in time).
Once the Basic Adjustment is done, select Add Adjustment again. This time we’ll select Texture.
I really like the new professional textures from 2 Lil Owls! They are so versatile and once you learn how to manipulate them the sky is the limit. From the drop down texture menu, I selected 2 Lil Owls and then picked the very first texture. You can search the categories for a texture that works for you. I picked this one because I thought it was pretty… It has a variety of tones in it and it just so happened to be darker exactly where the base foliage is in my image.
Once the texture is applied to the image, the Image Preview and Adjustments Panel looks similar to this:
The texture made the image look hazy, but there’s more magic to do before post processing is done!
4. Edit the Texture
The addition of the texture provides more substance to the image, but it’s not quite right just yet. To edit the texture to perfection, I like to make the adjustment Opacity 1.00. This way, I can see the details and changes to the texture in full force. If you change the opacity, your workspace will temporarily look like this:
To customize this texture for my image, I need more detail, a bold green color, and I need it to enhance the overall scene. To add more impact to the texture, I upped the Contrast (0.07) and Detail (0.50). Then the texture needed to accentuate the scene. I changed the Color Strength (0.61) and the Color (0.37) to turn the texture from blue and brown (pictured above) to green (pictured below).
TIP: You can customize any texture with the various options. Try out the different sliders with your texture at 1.00 opacity and see what they do!
5. Change the Opacity and Blend Mode
Now that the texture is the right color, use the Texture Adjustment Module to change the Blend Mode and Opacity (not the Master, which is at the bottom of the screen). I changed the Blend Mode to Color Burn. Then I changed the Opacity to 0.30. I really want to encourage you to try different blending modes and opacities to find the one that is right for you!
6. Add a Vignette
I am really happy with this image so far! It’s looking really pretty and a lot more dynamic. To polish off the adjustments, I’m going to add a Vignette. To add this, go ahead and select Add Adjustment one more time. Choose Vignette. I added a custom Vignette to enhance the foreground leaves. The soft, darker shading is perfect on the foliage.
7. Save Your Image
When I was done, I selected OK at the bottom right of the screen. This action returned me to Photoshop. I then saved a .PSD file in Photoshop to preserve my layers, an unedited image and the completed image.
The Effects of “Save Your Image with Texture Effects 2”
This 5 minute edit made the final image so much more impactful! Look at the difference in color saturation and clarity (even though it’s in 72dpi on the screen)! Texture Effects saved the day! Now this image shows what I saw in person: a beautiful scene in a magical place!
The Final Image
This subtle edit made the image so much better! The exposure is better and the color is more vivid. The details are back and most importantly, this is how I remember the waterfall!
About Jodi L. Robbins
Jodi is currently the Art Director of Topaz Labs. She has been an artist and photographer for over 15 years, starting with black and white film photography and alternative processing. After completing her BFA in Studio Art from Southern Methodist University and her Masters in Photography from Savannah College of Art and Design, she worked in product photography for companies such as Heritage Auctions, Neiman Marcus, and the Dallas Cowboys.