San Diego Clock Tower, CandyTecture style
San Diego Clock Tower, CandyTecture style

I've been having a lot of fun posting to Instagram lately. It's been really great getting to know other photographers and artists there and seeing some really beautiful images. I feel like I get so much inspiration looking at other people's work there. I've been working on a new style that seems to be taking hold on Instagram called #CandyTecture. I've discovered that some of the buildings I love to photograph here in San Diego are ideal and well suited for this style. I've found that these types of images work best if the building is photographed from afar so there is minimal distortion and you get a nice profile image of a building.

Since downtown San Diego is right on a bay, I've discovered that the best vantage point is being out on the bay on a boat. I've gotten some of these photos from the Coronado Ferry as well as the Pilot boat at the Maritime Museum. Being out in the middle of the bay with a decent zoom lens seems to be the sweet spot. The only issue I've had is if there is choppy water and the boat starts to rock. A fast shutter speed seems to solve that problem.

Once I get back and load my images into Adobe Lightroom, I choose one to work with and bring it into Photoshop. I create a selection around a building with a layer mask and this will serve as the basis for my new CandyTecture creation. I typically save the masked layer as a base, hide it and then duplicate it so the masked layer is never touched in case I need to go back to it. Then I might duplicate my building and rotate the hue or change the saturation.

I try to get really creative with these so to add depth and drama, I might add a cloudy sky, birds, planes, a background texture, the moon etc... I keep an "object library" in Lightroom of images I have taken of these types of things. These are PSD files that have already been masked off so it's easy to quickly bring a masked selected object into my main image.

Summary

Creating these CandyTecture images are a lot of fun and helps push me creatively. I really like the surreal qualities these images have. 

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