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Visual Alchemy: The Fine Art of Digital Montage Paperback – 6 Jan 2014
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About the Author
Catherine McIntyre is a digital artist living and working in rural Scotland. From a traditional illustration background, she now uses Photoshop alongside collage and montage techniques. Thematically, McIntyre works with still life and nude subjects to explore the light and dark of life. She often develops something new from the old and incorporates found objects and drawings with photography to create textured and layered visual meditations. Her work has been published in books and magazines worldwide and is in private and public collections in the UK, US and Europe. Her work may be viewed online:
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If like me you are interested in digital montage then this book will be your constant companion. I first became aware of Catherine's work in the days of Photoshop 4. I can recall being utterly gobsmacked by her work, so beautiful, such control of colour and with faultless composition.
She takes us through the process of making an image from scratch emphasising that you the reader should use what you are interested in. The old artistic method of copying is advocated, in my experience this is the best way to find out how to do it, 'Them as never made a mistake never made anything'. The images in this book will give everyone something to grasp at something to start with, something that they can say to themselves, 'I know how I can do that'. And then as Catherine says surely with a smile, '... your own vision will soon take over'.
The book does not contain great lists of Photoshop steps, she assumes that you will know the basics of layering and of selection. She does give some 'advanced' tips in the method chapter she does explain about the equipment you may need, non of it very expensive, older versions of Photoshop have all the tools to make the images in the book. The techniques are really quite easy it's the application that counts.
Where most 'how to' books stop this one carries on immersing the reader in concepts and the unconscious imagery that can be brought forth from the mind of us all to assist in the creation of an image. It encompasses and acknowledges the fact that everyone attempting this aspect of art will be using images from their own sources. Catherine's words and images will help that initial spark turn into the flame of inspiration and determination.
Filled with illustrations to demonstrate topics visually, the author gives a comprehensive overview of all aspects of the art of montage, but doesn't give in-depth Photoshop tutorials, (leaving that to the plethora of existing books on the subject). She does, however, simplify workflow into what are the important steps to take in Photoshop, with some pointers on what works well/less well.
I discovered Catherines work about six years ago and have been amazed at the creative process that goes into her designs of images .
This book reveals her methods, knowledge and experience in a relaxed and informative way.
With an assumed basic photography and Photoshop knowledge, her ideas and the easy way she communicates will take your skills and inspiration to a new level.
Some books can be twice as much for half the information which makes this one very good value. I love it!!
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