Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Selling The Fake

Today's image comes from an Indian powwow held at Foxwoods Casino over the weekend.  It is definately not what it looks like.  The "fake" in the title of the post doesn't have anything to do with the young woman dancing.  She was great.  Very energetic, getting her fringe going every which way.  I'm certainly no expert (not even close), but there appeared to be a similarity to the Hawaiian Hula.  The dancing seemed to be very "story telling".  Looking to the ground.  Looking to the sky.  Looking out at the distance.  I didn't know the stories the dancers were telling, but each dancer was "acting" out a piece of tribal history.  I saw it again and again, from dance to dance.  There was a smoke dance, a shawl dance, a harvest dance and the men were "telling a story" in the war dance.  If you paid some attention you could pair up which people belonged together.  The head dress, the style of clothing, the tools and utensils were different enough from tribe to tribe to be able (for the outsider) to pick out sets of people.  The dancers were very gracious with their time, explaining where their tribe was from, what era their dress represented, and a little history or fun fact about their ancestors.  To find out what "the fake" is in today's image, hit the "Read More"

Today's image is actually two separate images.  The dance was part of a crowd out in the dance circle and the "background" was a couple hundred people sitting around under their shade, watching the dancing.  Extraction of the dancer was made "easier" with Topaz Labs ReMask 3.  It still didn't come easy, just easier.  ReMask had a hard time with the internal spacing of the fringe

The corn was behind a rail fence that "needed" to be removed.  Easy enough with the Healing Brush (J) found in Adobe Photoshop CC (PS) (and earlier versions).  The big gotcha there was making sure all the Blurring was done before removing the fence.

One thing that had to be addressed was the big olde number on her shawl, facing me like a big olde beacon.  It was right in the corner and covered a quarter of design.  That had to be rebuilt by taking pieces and doing quite a bit of Free Transform (CTRL T) work.  The general shade of the pieces were formed using the Lasso Tool (L), then moved, spun around and warped.  The Free Transform Tool does it all.  Make a Selection using the Lasso Tool (L), Copy to a New Layer (CTRL J), bring up Free Transform, drag to the area needing to be patched, put the cursor just outside the bounding box and spin the Selection to somewhat match the area needing the patch, right click inside the box to bring up options, choose Warp and pull the handles to made the patch fit exactly.  Easy-peasy.  The big trick is taking your time to fit all the straight edges.  It takes a little time.

One more little trick.  The sun was casting a big time shadow.  Rather than recreating her shadow I made it part of the Selection and matched the grass in front of the corn to the grass in the shadow. 

Destination shooting is the way to go.  The Powwow was on the other side of the state, but the shots were there.  Much better than driving around aimlessly, burning the same amount of gas and maybe finding something to shoot.