Another victorious PhotowalkingUtah wrapped up on the 4th of July as the temperatures began climbing toward 100 °F. About fifteen members photographed Provo’s Freedom Festival Balloon Launch; a dozen of us actually found each other on the field amongst the 25 balloons. The good folk of Utah County were there in large numbers, impressive considering the pre-dawn launch.
Since it was the 4th of July, the event started with the Pledge of Allegiance, with the lead balloon hoisting the flag over the field. It came down and tied on a long streamer to indicate its status as the Hare as opposed to the rest of the Hounds, game that involved dropping bean-bags over the field, but the winds weren’t that cooperative, and the balloons drifted off toward BYU and the surrounding neighborhoods.
I did get a shot of one balloonist popping a target helium balloon, which gained him some points in their competition. The long morning shadow of the Wasatch Mountains prevents the classic sun-lit-balloon-at-sunrise images that are so familiar, but it was fun to be there when they lifted.
I have two reasons why I like Photowalking: it’s a chance to try new things and to meet new people. The photos I made that morning seemed pedestrian, so I decided to try an idea Harley gave me on Photowalk 6 or 7: to remix frames that weren’t aligned. Since I was mixing it up, I combined a bunch of remixing techniques together for the first time as well. I started with one straight-processed layer, actually the last in the sequence of images, then stacked 7 prior images above it. The layers are remixed with several blending modes (multiply, screen, overlay, linear burn), in some I selected advanced blending to reduce the layer’s contribution to a single channel and/or limited brightness ranges, and there are some adjustment layers. I topped the whole thing off with a duplicate of the base layer, processed with the “Find Edges” filter, converted to grayscale and blended via multiply at 20% opacity. The final images isn’t something I set out that morning to make, and that’s why I keep Photowalking.