Some days I love photos that are clean, crisp, and vibrant, but other days, I can’t get enough of artsy textures! Textures are super fun and can transform so-so photos into "fine art" images. Or, they can fake bad photos into something presentable with all that muted colors and patterns.

Take this one for example: We were walking around the colorful town of Kenmare when this window caught my eye. Without much of a thought, I put my big camera to my face and basically pointed + snapped.

I like the composition and the "Live Music Tonight" sign, but other than that, it leaves much to be desired.

I applied a graffiti texture that I found online and played with blending mode + opacity of the layer. Then I changed the colors a bit by testing out hue, saturation, and lightness (I used 0 for hue, -35 for saturation, and +3 for lightness). Finally, I added a yellow-ish solid color layer and adjusted the blending mode + opacity until I got the look I want.

This is what I got:

Much better, in my opinion! I like it that it's a bit of antique-y and vintage-y. And you can also see slight graffiti.

Here is another one, also taken in Kenmare. I used a different texture I found online, but adjusted hue/saturation/lightness very similar to above.

Hmm...I really like the After.

I think I will be doing lots of texturizing from now on. Yipee, one more photo editing technique under my belt!

PS. I am in no way think that I am proficient at this technique. Art is so subjective that it's really up to what you like personally. I do think it's a difficult thing to master - to know how to mask properly, to use textures in a way that they enhance the photo, and to know when enough is enough. I am still learning.

PPS. Want to learn how to add texture to your photos? Look no further than here.


  1. Oh cool! I'm so lame when it comes to pictures - a point and click kinda girl. The only thing I know how to do is crop and red eye. :)

  2. There is something to taking the "raw" reality off of a photograph that transforms them into a softer more eye-pleasing artwork. If you aren't "proficient" you should at least consider yourself "pretty good" at it!

  3. Hey Joyce, thanks for stopping by my blog. Photography is something I have become increasingly interested in since food blogging and so I will have to poke around here some more for some tips. The NCL cruise I went on was awesome and my roommate and I couldn't have been happier with. We went on all of our excursions with the NCL-planned ones. It made it easier to know that they would return us, on time, to our boat. The kayaking one was somewhat expensive ($100) but the snorkeling one was less so ($38 I think). I am sure you will have a great time.

  4. Barrel DistortionJune 12, 2009 at 10:02 AM

    Wow, our Tamron lens has some serious distortions based on that top picture. Prolly need to stay away from 28mm when taking shots with straight lines. Oh well, still beats having to swap out lenses all the time. And yes, texturing is pretty damn impressive.

  5. I always love your photos! You are very talented!


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