Most of you probably got the newsletter last week: we’ve launched The Inspirarium! Super fun, way exciting.
But what the heck is an “Inspirarium”? There’s a bit of a story to it… and an evolution, if you will.
I’m doing it with Tanya Wallis. She was part of my cohort in The Arcanum last year – we became friends. If you recall, I wrote a piece about each of my graduates of the KHutt Cohort of Awesomeness… hers is here.
Tanya is incredible at textures, cool Photoshop techniques and graphic design. She’s just got the greatest creative mind! She’s done quite a lot of graphic design for her parents vineyard and winery in Australia… so our two skill sets complement each others well.
I wanted a store. Really, my idea was simply to do it for fun: create a space where I could make inspiring stuff… maybe eBooks, maybe tutorials, maybe purely arty stuff. It’s a lot easier to let ideas flow when they have a place to go. But it couldn’t be just any place…
You’ve heard of a terrarium, right? It’s “an enclosure, container or structure designed to maintain creatures in a relatively natural environment”. I decided that an “Inspirarium” was a “container where the light of of inspiration can be nurtured, cultivated and shared”. I do loves making up words ‘n worlds. Heh.
Thus, “The Inspirarium” was born.
At the time, I had (still have) this ridiculous collection of the raw materials I’ve collected over the years. (like 3000 cloud images alone!). So I figured we’d start with there.
This image, called “Utopia Winged” was fairly complex and used 3 different textures at different points: “Ancient Walls“, “Whirlygig” and “Tortuga“. Of course I did used some of my favorite Photoshop plugins. That’s not news, I pretty much always do that.
At first, my results weren’t that inspiring. I had this concept that textures should always be natural and “found”. Like a macros of wall, a painting, a canvas, a fence. When Tanya suggested I make them… “KHutt style”… I thought “BLASPHEMY!” Then I started experimenting. What I discovered changed everything.
This one from Lucca, Italy also employed 3 textures: “Light in the Dark“, “Warm Cool Folded” and “So Stinkin’ Gritty“.
At first, my results were less than awesome. ALOT less. But pretty soon, I started figuring out which shades, how much texture, what KIND of texture, what colors – and what variety of them made a likely candidate. They surprised me constantly! I’d smooth, sometimes blur, colorize, shape, stretch, layer each one so they were each a creation unto themselves. Then we tested them on EVERYTHING to figure out when, why and how they worked best.
We tried to break them, go back to the drawing board, then come back with new ideas. Pretty soon, a whole new way of processing our images began to emerge! Less software-driven, more layers of colors, hues and textures to deepen and enrich our vision and images.
And before long, our first collection was born. Then another. Then yet another. We made up fun names, suggested by one or more of the textures in each pack, like: A Chorus of Construction Zone, Tales from a Time Traveler, 15 Shades of Grey. They each do interesting things. Bring their own vibe and voice.
Free Sample Pack!
Now, it seems I use them at least half the time in my photo processing – if not more. I like the quality they bring; more organic feeling, less stretched by software.
I’ll talk about HUES next time… what they are and why we’re starting ot make more of those in addition to textures.
And of course CLOUDS… those heavenly clouds (as I’ve named them). There are ALL kinds of awesome possibilities there.
You can visit The Inspirarium by clicking on “Store” above. Or just click here.
And to get you off on the right foot: here is a freebie pack of 3: a texture, a hue and some clouds image to play with. Plus, there’s a link in the included documentation to a simple tutorial that’ll show you how to apply them to your images in Photoshop. Hey, you’ll be up and running in no time!
You can also click on the image below to grab your free sample pack.
Stay inspired! And hey…