I’ve been working on my stock submission, preparing images in Lightroom, and after a while you just get stir crazy doing repetitive actions! Having to select and prepare images for an upcoming feature in Photoshop User magazine, I too, a few images a step further – something I’ve been wanted to do for a while – play!!

I have the Topaz series of plug-ins for Photoshop – Simplify, Detail, Adjust – and chose Adjust to apply to this image of ice. This program has the ability to create a similar effect to the now-infamous illustrative look you get from Photomatix HDR techniques, but it works with just a single image. That means the thousands of images I have in my files that were not captured with any specific artistic application in mind are now available for use in this program and others. I made this image back in March 2009 in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and was happy with the ‘real’ results, but I’ve wanted to do something more to it, t0 apply more texture to the scene and give it an artistic effect, yet one that wasn’t a watercolor, or oil, etc. Topaz Adjust proved the right solution for the effect I wanted.


For the ice abstract, I wanted to create a more metallic effect since the ice was already a steely gray with just a hint of teal showing through. This same program gave me something close to what I want, although this one is still a work in progress. It’s possible that I could have created both of these effects using Photoshop layers with filters, but not knowing what that would take, I was pleased to be able to get the effect I wanted with this easy to use program.