Colorization Exercise

March 12, 2007

Original ShieldAs part of further efforts to complete my image assignment, I’ve combined hand-coloring with a matted engraving.  The picture here is a scanned image of the coat of arms for Fort Kamehameha.  The original black and white image was xeroxed from a book and then faxed, so I scanned that image into a jpeg and colorized it in accordance with the description that was in the book.  I used HTML definitions for silver and gold (which show up as light grey and yellow-orange).  The background color is from the fragment of the Kam Zero shown in the March 5th entry, which I sampled in photoshop and then copied to the image here.

Colorized ShieldBefore colorizing the shield, I adjusted the whites and blacks to make the light grey background on the original go away.  I would like to make the black outline more definite, because thin lines tend to disapper when the picture size is reduced.  The larger originals look a lot better.  The final step will be to add the motto “Defender of the Pacific Pearls.”  I did this once before using PowerPoint word art (which allows me to curve the words to fit the scroll), but I’m not sure I can do the same in Photoshop.


4 Responses to “Colorization Exercise”

  1. maureen guignon Says:

    Great idea to use the shield for both your engraving and color assignment. I like the color of the background, it is easy on the eye. I tried to color several old photographs without much luck, so I am off to look at some engravings as well.

  2. John Says:

    Maureen – thanks for the encouragement. I think it makes sense for my site but I don’t know if PP will go for it. Since I have some time this week I’m plugging ahead with colorizing a photo, though that has to be one of the hardest things to do in Photoshop.

  3. Mark Stevens Says:

    Like your image approach of experimentation while working on your images. It really has brought life to the engraving. I used two backgrounds on my matted engraving to see the different effects that could be created. I used an engraving of a Jewish partisan from the Holocaust who was about to participate in an attack. A white background brings out the features of the image more, but a red background speaks to the overall concept of death that pervades the history of the time.

    Then I attacked the hand-colored assignment, and really delved into experimentation to see the effects that could be produced. It seems there are unlimited ways to achieve unlimited photographic effects.
    It has been fun experimenting.

  4. Love that background with the colors-very regal. If I could make a recommendation- the crispness of the black lines is lost in the color. I have a friend who used to “ink” at Marvel Comics. His job was to carefully redraw the black ink lines over the freshly painted artwork. These made the black lines stand out-very critical in showing what artists call “gesture”. Also helps to cover up any oops left by the painters. The problem is getting them too thick. I ruined an animated short once with too thick lines. In photoshop, you could take a copy of the original line drawing, make everything but the lines transparent, then just put it on the top of the stack. Still, it is a nice work. You gonna frame it?

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