Paul Meritt Learning Journal Creative Imaging for Educators

Project 1: Kaleidoscope

My original photo. I captured this image in July of 2017 while on my parent's sailboat in Puget Sound. I love this kind of downwind sailing because it allows for a technique called "Wing-on-Wing" which means that you can put a sail out to each side of the boat and gain extra propulsion from the wind on the much larger surface area of the canvas.
I selected this image because the kaleidoscope effect is enhanced by patterns, so the lines and colors of my parent's boat seemed ideal. Also, I love sailing. In retrospect, I think maybe it would be nicer if the colors weren't so bright or maybe if I had cropped it more to cut the water out of the picture entirely. Maybe that's something I'll try with this image in the future.
After adjusting the resolution and creating a pattern, this is the result I would get when sizing the image for a desktop background. I find it a little busy and loud, so I probably wouldn't use it as my background, but it was a fun process nonetheless.

Project 2: Digital Cubism

I started with about 30 photos of my kids that I took in a "photoshoot" we did for a bookmark about two years ago. I figured I would have plenty of different facial expressions to work with and the lighting was consistent. The one problem I found as I was working at combining the images was that it would have been nice to have more from different angles to get a truly cubist look.

A sample of the photos that I used to create my digital cubism project. There were actually about 20 photos that I used pieces from.

I'm fairly happy with the result, although it doesn't feel like cubism to me because the angle of the various photos was pretty much the same. Still, I incorporated many of the skills featured in the lessons for this project. Each kid has at least one element that is supposed to blend unobtrusively with the main photo and one that is supposed to be an obvious addition.

When I showed this to my kids they laughed and laughed. Then they asked me to change other things, like enlarging my oldest son's eye even more until it took up his entire face.

I discovered something about myself during this project: more abstract art styles are difficult for me to appreciate. I usually appreciate it only when the result looks like it could be real. I did have fun with this project however, and I'd be willing to give this another try in the future with a set of photos that included more various angles to go for something more cubist.

PROJECT 3: Composite

This is the type of project I really enjoy in Photoshop, and the extra information I received about how to use the blend modes was really useful. I have several pictures from a walkabout the university campus my class went on together, including a UAF sign and some icicles. I used several masks, the healing brush, blend modes, and adjustment layers, experimenting with settings in each of them until I got to this result.

Project 4: Special Effects

I really enjoyed this project. Learning how to control and manipulate the brushes better was awesome. In addition to what was taught in the tutorial, I decided to change some extra options. I think it was the "Roundness Jitter" that gave the little bits some variance in perspective so they weren't all just perfect little squares. It seems to me like in a pixel explosion pieces would be more chaotic than that, and fly out every which way.

Project 5: Old/New Composite

Thanks to Larissa for giving me this idea with her Charlie Chaplin composite. I grew up watching Marx Brothers movies regularly with my dad, and this seemed like a good way to tackle this particular project. I used a variety of masks, filters and adjustment layers to attempt to create the illusion that I am there with Groucho, Chico, and Harpo.

Created By
Paul Meritt


Me, myself, and I

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