Selective color is one of my favorite styles of image manipulation.  I love the way the color stands out from the black and white portion of the image.  To do this, you take an image with a bright color and make most of it black and white, leaving just a small portion of color in the image.  This process can really make part of an image stand out and sometimes even make a not-so-great picture an amazing picture.  Here are some pics and the inspirations behind them…

The first image you saw a few days ago.  It is from my cousin’s wedding.  When I took this shot, it didn’t have the amazing sky that the others had.  It did have something else.  Romance.  Old fashioned romance.  My cousin Bo is a true Southern gentleman.  What would really portray his love for his new bride?  Black and white.  As I sat there analyzing the photo, I noticed that flowers really stuck out in this one.  As I type this I also notice that their shoulders and the way Melanie’s arm curves down to the bouquet sort of form a heart.  Maybe it’s just me.  I really fell in love with this image.

The kiss

The kiss

When we were setting up the reception area the day before the wedding, the ladies were putting bows made of tulle.  They did a wonderful job with the fabric and even incorporated leaves in it for the fall wedding.  Later that day, the sun was shining in through the windows and I just happened to catch it as it was glowing through the fabric on the chairs.  it was amazing, and it had a warm golden color to it.

Golden Bow

Golden Bow

Earlier that day, I had seen a few more of these chairs sitting in the middle of the dance floor, freshly decorated.  The three chairs in a row seemed like a perfect picture.  I added a little blur around the edges to draw your eyes to the chairs in the middle.  The leaves stood right out and I knew I had to make this one selective color.

Triple Bows

Triple Bows

The following weekend, Rose and I attended another wedding.  Our friends Mandy and Jeremy were getting married and I decided to bring the camera with me.  I figured I would sneak a few shots here and there.  Boy, am I glad I did.  The picture below was not a great picture, but it was of a ceremony I had not seen before.  The bride and the groom each had a container of a different color sand.   On the table was an empty bottle.  When they poured the two different colors into the empty bottle, it signified putting two things together that would never be separated, just like their marriage.  Although the picture didn’t come out well in my eyes, the colors did.  So, I began the process of selecting the colors and desaturating the rest of the picture.  I absolutely love the way it came out.

Two Lives Together Forever

Two Lives Together Forever

As Mandy was being walked down the aisle by her father, I snapped this next shot. The building they were having the ceremony in was dark, and I didn’t have my large flash with me.  So, I took the picture and made it pop.  I took the color out of all but the flowers.  I love the result.

Mandy & Her Dad

Mandy & Her Dad

At the reception of Mandy and Jeremy’s wedding, one of the guests stood out to me.  She was wearing bright red heels.  At one point during the reception, I joke that they would make a great selective color shot.  As she was coming in off the dance floor, I asked her to put her foot up on the chair.  Voila!  Add in a little border to match the shoe and this is what I got…

Red Shoe

Red Shoe

Rose and I took a trip to see her family in Honesdale, PA a few summers ago, and I spent a little time walking around her cousin’s yard.  As I walked around the front of the house, I found a wilting rose.  Instantly, I knew it would make a great selective color shot.

Wilting Rose

Wilting Rose

Of course, you know my love for motorcycles.  How could I do this post without including one?  Every Wednesday night during the summer, we ride with a great group of bikers.  The bike in the picture belongs to our friend Murph.  He is about 6’8″ tall and makes everyone I know look like a munchkin.  His bike is bright red with some anodized aluminum in it.  Perfect for selective color.

Murph's Bike

Murph's Bike

I hope you enjoyed.  I welcome questions if you are interested in selective color techniques.  Don’t be shy.  See you soon.

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