Monday, December 7, 2009

Rue Poulbot

Rue Poulbot ©2009 Dianne Poinski

I recently posted this new image on my website and thought it might be fun to show some of the steps I took to get to the final version.

This image, "Rue Poulbot", was taken in the Montmartre district of Paris. A beautiful and historical area, home at one time to many influential and important artists.

This is my original color photograph. Before I click the shutter, I usually have a general idea of the "feeling" I want to convey with the finished piece.

Of course the first step to creating a hand-colored print is to convert the image to black and white. Although there are many ways to do this, I convert by using the black and white adjustment layer in Photoshop CS4.

In addition to adjusting exposure and contrast, I also applied a soft filter to the original photograph. I have begun doing this to most of my images. I love the look and it goes well with the hand-coloring.

Something new I did for "Rue Poulbot" was the addition of some "texture". It's hard to see in these small thumbnails and I applied it very lightly, but it's an effect I want to experiment with more. The rough edge shown below is something else I have been adding to many of my new images.

I am showing the tone here, but I actually create that with my printer. I have the Epson 3800 printer which has an advance black and white setting, making it easy to create prints with variations of tone.

After I make the print, the final step is taking it to my studio and hand-coloring.

I enjoy the fact that my process only begins when I click the shutter. The decisions I make with every step leading up to the actual hand-coloring are critical ones. It is only when all the elements come together that I am able to create the image I set out to make in the first place.

If anyone has any questions about any of the techniques I used here, feel free to leave a comment or send an email.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Wow -that's quite the tutorial! so you print this out and hand color it - what a great idea and to wonderful effect! May have to print this out and keep it with my tutorial on mandalas (for vacation play sometime next year). I keep threatening to actually learn to do more than adjust my art photos with all this high powered software I have!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today! Delighted you found it helpful!

  3. I love when you show the steps you take to make one of your masterpieces. It is such an interesting process.

    How did you find such an empty street in Montmatre??? I couldn't get away from all the tourists and it wasn't even tourist season. We did find a(nother)heavenly patisserie there, though.:-)

  4. Thanks Gabrielle,
    I think we walked a little deeper into the neighborhood to find scenes with less people. There is probably someone just getting ready to walk around the corner. You have to shoot fast!