I love to photograph nature. But in the winter in colder climates there are significantly less nature subjects to photograph. I still love to go on photography hikes in the winter and tree bark is a terrific subject to photograph.
This winter I’ve decided to focus on a project to produce artistic images using tree bark photographs as the inspiration. Nature is a great inspiration for art. I found the uniqueness of patterns in tree bark to provide a large variety of compositions.
In this blog, I provide a sample of the compositions that I found photographing tree bark during my hikes. This is just a starting point as nature provides an infinite amount of variety in the bark of trees.
Moss in the Tree Bark – Topaz Impression
What To Look For
- Roots growing on tree trunks
- Patterns in the Tree Bark
- Peeling Tree Bark Patterns
- Mosses and Fungi Growing on the Tree Bark
- Snow in the Tree Bark Patterns
- Shapes in the Tree Bark (human faces, etc.)
Menacing Vines on the Tree Bark – Topaz Adjust
In addition to Photoshop and Lightroom, I used a variety of plugins to both speed up my processing and to give me ideas for the look I wanted to achieve for a specific tree bark composition.
I used a combination of techniques when creating the final artistic images: black and white, gritty textured looks, soft focus effects, and painterly looks.
Textured Tree Bark – Topaz Texture Effects
Photoshop plugins Used for post processing Tree Bark Images
Topaz Impression – gives an artistic / painted look to your images. Topaz Impression has numerous presets to scroll through to get ideas. Once you select a preset, you can refine the image further right in Topaz Impression. For more information, check out my blog post on Topaz Impression.
Topaz Texture Effects – Add more than just texture to an image. You can also add dust/scratches, borders, diffusion, light leaks and more effects. Like Topaz Impression, there are a large variety of presets to use for ideas and a starting point. There are also additional presets that are easily downloaded from the Topaz user community. For more information, read my blog post on Topaz Texture Effects.
Color Efex Pro 4 – Nik Color Effects Pro from Dx0 also has a large selection of effects that can be applied to photographs. These are less artistic effects but still worth checking out. Some of my favorite effects are: Darken/Lighten Center, Film Efex: Vintage, Detail Extractor, and Bleach Bypass.
Red Beard Bark – Topaz Impression
Written by Martin Belan