In Hong Kong we happened upon the Royal Society of Photographer’s Show. One of the photographers in the show, Chan Shu Choi, had taken his photos so that they looked as if they were Chinese paintings.
I was fascinated with this and for awhile attempted to take photos of trees in blossom that conveyed the same sense of being paintings. I was handicapped by the lack of aperture priority on my camera which would have allowed an interesting shallow depth of field, but was otherwise fairly pleased with the results.
This spring I got hold of a photo app called ‘Waterlogue’ and transformed several of my ‘Chinese painting’ photos into watercolours. They were a bit too watery, without some of the details I wanted, so I overlaid the actual photo on top, registered it with the ‘watercolour’ using ‘Multiply’, and then used one of the options in the ‘Overlay’ section to make the photo disappear into the painting. If you check out the ‘History’ panel below you can see that I tried out multiple blending changes before I decided on ‘Vivid Light’.
And ultimately went back to a more subtle blending mode for my yucca blossom, known in Chinese as ‘Dragon Tongue Orchid Flower’ (the Chinese characters on the bottom right).
Chocolate vine (Akebia quinata) flowers.
Cherry blossoms (the stamens didn’t show up in the Waterlogued version).
The poem in the image below says ‘flowers bloom, flowers fall’, and is a metaphor for how everything changes over time. These are witch hazel blossoms, and again I added the stamens via an overlaid original photo.