Flypaper Textures



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It’s been a while since we’ve had some floral prettiness here on the blog!  This was taken in our New Zealand spring a few months back. The flowers grow over the fence just down the hill from where I live and I couldn’t resist picking a sprig while passing, I’ve no idea what they are but they’re a beautiful subject, especially when paired with one of my little oriental styled teacups.

Processing as always was pretty quick, I used just one texture, but I used it twice at different blending modes, something that often works well depending on the photo.

Organza @ Overlay 74% masked from the flowers so as not to overwhelm them with texture.
Organza@Softlight 76%
At this stage it did look okay but to tweak the tone slightly I used a Flypaper Nik Preset, Sugar.

Organza is from the Distressed Painterly Pack, the Sugar preset is from Nik Presets 4 pack.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!


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During the recent summer holidays we paid a visit to the Catlins, a beautiful unspoilt coastal area to the south of Dunedin. The day we visited it wasn’t very summery, but looking on the bright side, the overcast showery conditions did lead to wonderfully moody photos, the kind that are so good for texturing. After a walk to Jacks Blowhole  (stunning coastal views but a fairly chilly walk since I was dressed for summer); we stopped for lunch at a bay at the mouth of the Catlins River near the little town of  Pounawea, it was low tide so between showers  we walked out on the interesting looking exposed rocks, hence this photo.  Later we walked along the lovely beach of Surat Bay on the other side of the river and spotted a New Zealand Sea Lion resting on the sand…and then the sun came out!

So onto the processing….

Azurite @Overlay 100%
Moody Blue @Overlay 53% masked from the sky area
Birds added to give some extra interest 🙂
Levels adjustment layer to tweak tone.

Moody Blue and Azurite are both from the Distressed Painterly Pack
Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

the vacancy

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Welcome to our first blog of 2016, here’s to hoping you, our Dear reader, had a good Xmas and New Year? 🙂
Just going through my old external hard drives and came across this Eastbourne shoot I’ve dipped into many times and was even lucky enough to sell a few, the last was to the UK Guardian newspaper.
I recall trying to process a similar image ages ago and gave up, so it’s always worth going back and seeing what else you can come up with. The thing that brought this to life was the Topaz Impression filter, as I’m sure I didn’t have it the last time I tried?
And now Topaz has their own automated Texture panel, we’re truly beginning to get spoiled for choice! I personally quite like both, Russell Brown’s Adobe Flypaper Texture Panel and the new Topaz app, both have their strengths, but to cut to the chase, you can try the Topaz app for free before you buy, HERE!!

So, for the processing, I turned down the whites and highlights in Adobe Raw and brightened the shadow as the shaded part of the breaker was almost black. Turning down the highlights muted the seas natural texture as its always easier to texture a textureless area, the less busy the image, the better. I then opened the image up in Nik color Efex Pro and created a new preset called ‘Gull’ which we’ll release later, but if you’d like to try, I used the Polariser, Reflector efex (gold) and Cross processing BO2 @ 39%.
I then used Surat Afternoon 111 Filter in Topaz impression, this made it way too bright and blobby so I did what I usually do and knocked it down 50% then saved and cleaned up the gulls a little and cloned out the few white holes it had left, oh, and I always switch off the Topaz Texture effect, after all, our organic based textures are all you need!

Finally, after trying a few textures from our last Distressed Painterly set I settled on just one:

Forest Patina– Soft Light @ 82%

Forest Patina is in the Distressed Painterly set.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

Cliff Cottages

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Just came across this image that I’ve so far never processed, I think I tried before but couldn’t balance out the heavy bottom part properly, though some would perhaps say I still haven’t!

However, this time I had Nik Color Pro to help out rebalance and I created a new preset that will probably be out in the next pack. This brightened, lightened the middle and darkened the sky. I now find it a bit too fruity, but that’s easily remedied by a colour tweak.

I achieved the painterly effect in Topaz Impression, and saved the effect, ‘Oil Painting’ at just 50% strength before continuing processing.
Processing was straightforward, choosing textures from our recent Distressed Painterly Pack uploaded into our Russell Brown Paper texture plug-in, which now spins textures around to their correct format without stretching as it used to, thanks to our suggesting this upgrade to him in the summer!

Shot on location in early summer morning mist at Cuckmere Haven, near Eastbourne, England’s south coast facing the famous seven sisters chalk cliffs.

Forest Patina – Hard Light @ 10%

Verdaccio – Overlay @ 64%

Sakura Skies – Soft Light @ 68%

Forest Patina and Verdaccio are from the Distressed Painterly Pack. Sakura Skies is from the Spring Painterly Pack.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

Hotel Concorde

Welcome to the first Cracks blog, with a bit of a graphical bent, because over the last weekend I found myself both homeless and then booked into this Hotel courtesy of our local Mayor of Beziers, M. Robert Menard who met us outside the house and was both charming and sympathetic after a huge fire in the adjoining property made their towering party wall unsafe and liable to fall and crush our house. I was lucky because I was already planning on driving up to the Jura on the Sunday so only had to rough it for two nights and our two cats were reasonably happy in my renovation project house around the corner.

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Back at the hotel I awoke at dawn, opened my shutters to this scene below, the sun was just coming up and catching their illuminated Hotel sign with its first rays of golden sunlight, I quickly grabbed my Iphone and took several shots.

When using the new cracks pack, to make a Fine Cracks PNG ‘sing out’ we’ve found that by using the ‘Bevel and Emboss’ blending options on one layer, then duplicate this layer and invert it in a top layer, then play around with the opacity sliders until you get the desired effect.

Remove parts of cracks that obscure faces etc with a soft brush at around 30%, repeating until the desired effect is achieved, as I did with the above Hotel sign image, removing the embossed lighter cracks from its dark background areas.

Firstly in processing, I used our Orford Nik Fly Preset to balance the image before opening up in Topaz Impression, as always I just used their painterly effect at 50% strength, so as not to degrade the base image too much.

Finally, our Textures, I used a new PNG texture 21 transparent cracks Plate as described below. Then I opened the our New Cracks pack from the summer, Distressed Painterly into Russell Brown’s Paper Texture Panel Plug in and tried a few textures and almost immediately settled firstly on Diptych which made it a little too red so I then also chose our Belle Epoch texture and turned the final layer into a bright green to enrich the green tones. And Voila, a souvenir of a disrupted weekend!

PNG 21 Cracks @ 63% Soft Light
PNG 21 Cracks @ 69% Soft Light with Bevel and emboss filter, removed from background areas.
Diptych @ 67% Soft Light
Belle Epoque @ 35% Overlay, turned bright green with colour effects slider.

The crack textures are from the Fine Cracks Pack, Diptych and Belle Epoque are from the Distressed Painterly Pack.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

Fine Cracks Pack Launch

We’ve had a crazy time crackle glazing this summer and here with the autumnal fruits of our labours we’d like to present a first ever Fine Cracks Pack!
This set was made following on from our Distressed Painterly set, a natural progression to more or less round off where we started, we wanted much finer, smaller sized cracks in this set plus several PNG transparent overlay versions so this has fewer plates but with the mixed Jpg and much larger PNG files it adds up to just as many megs. This set also complements our Antique Glass Edges sets and Tintypes and all blend beautifully together for a completely authentic classical organic look that is hard to obtain from fake CGI texturing alone in your photographic workflow.
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Cracks Mosiac

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When finishing your painterly images with these transparent PNG overlays its now possible to achieve a realistic 3D cracked look with photoshop drop shadows and emboss filters and we’ll be demonstrating how to achieve that and how to easily change the B/W PNG’s to colour shortly in an upcoming blog.

We’ve also taken care to ensure this Fine Cracks set works beautifully even when loaded onto Russell Brown from Adobe’s free Paper Texture panel plug-in, which now flips textures to the correct orientation of your original art within photoshop, this new update also makes our Fine Cracks easier to use with much less distortion!

Walking through this brand new Fine Cracks set there are 2 different kinds of textures, the flat plate and the Canvas. The canvas textures retain their original woven fabric bases for merging with your painterly images, whilst the Plate versions were flat panels with no weave texture, these work well merging with our edges and tintype packs to get that old cracked emulsion effect you sometimes see on tintypes. The PNG transparent overlays lose the colour and most background texture for a slightly cleaner finish with no ‘muddying’ effect.

Photographers, Scrap bookers and paper artists will also love this set for finishing decoupage images and then simply printing out to cut and paste.
Graphic and fabric designers are always hunting out realistic grunge textures, so these large size Fine Cracks are perfect for backgrounds and overlays!

The pack contains 34 cracked effect textures, a mix of ordinary jpeg textures and png overlays, they’re a minimum of 5000 px on their shortest side and are all at 300 ppi.

To download, click on the add to cart button, a download link will be sent to you upon payment.

Fine Cracks

34 Crack Textures

Add to Cart


Please note it’s a large file, so depending on your connection may take a while to download, so why not grab a coffee while you’re waiting.

Winter Rose

It’s been a while..sorry! Blame holidays and suchlike. You’ll be pleased to know spring is finally starting to spring here in southern New Zealand (though it doesn’t feel much like it today)! There’s not a great deal in flower in my garden yet, but the Hellebores more commonly called winter roses are in flower, they start flowering midwinter and brighten the garden when there’s not much else around. I picked some and discovered they aren’t the best as cut flowers but before they drooped I did manage to photograph them.

It’s yet another simple recipe (see the full recipe below the image) but it gives a good bleached type effect and has transformed the image.


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Byzantine @ Hard light 100% (masked as necessary from the focus flowers)
Fly Nik Analog preset Key adjusted as desired
And it was done -told you it was easy 🙂

Byzantine comes from the Distressed Painterly Pack, the Nik Preset comes from the Analog pack

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

Feather Light

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I got a new macro lens for my lovely little SonyA7 a couple of weeks and I can definitely say that it’s money well spent! It’s a Sony 90mm F2.8 and the results are beautifully clear and sharp and it has wonderful bokeh. I’m looking forward to having more time to play with it. In the meantime, since flowers are in short supply here with it being winter, I’ve been taking macros of anything that catches my eye, kitchen tools, fences, things from the workshop and feathers!

This was processed quickly using just one texture and a new Nik Preset.
Renaissance Brush @ Soft Light 74%
Nik Preset Fly 5 Frost
And that was it! I love simple processing 🙂

Renaissance Brush is from the Distressed Painterly Pack and the Nik preset is from the new Fly 5 Preset pack.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!

Summer Sale and Preset Launch


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Welcome to our latest Preset release and Summer Sale!   First the Sale, simply enter the code Summer and you’ll receive a 20% discount on anything in-store including these new presets, but get in quickly, the sale will finish on July 26th!

This 5th pack of 40 Fly Nik Color presets are a mixture of subtle and dramatic and are perfect for jazzing up your holiday imagery, for use with textures and without, the sample images pictured above are mostly without so you can get an idea of their effects, a few of the above images are not yet published, but we’ll blog those shortly using some of the presets in this pack.
Just a taste of things to come over midsummer!

Downloads of this very small file are fast and they just need to be unzipped, normally by double right mouse clicking. Then open a picture in your Nik color pro efex and press the Recipes button at the bottom of the left hand column; at top of the recipe menu click – Back – then look to the bottom of the page list to see – Import – click import and a loading page will open, find your unzipped preset file, open and simply select all the presets inside the folder and import. Your collection of new presets will then be found in its own recipe list. Each Preset begins with the handy preface: Fly 5, so you’ll always know this set from others.
Please note, if your copy of Nik color Efex Pro, isn’t newly updated and registered or if its only a trial version, the importing and saving of presets is not possible. If in doubt try downloading this single free preset ‘Here’ as refunds of unusable presets cannot be given due to the nature of software downloads.
A tutorial on installing the presets (including screenshots) can be found HERE
To purchase, please click on the Add to Cart icon. A download link will be sent to you after you’ve made your payment.

40 Presets for Nik Color Efex
Add to Cart

Find our other Preset Packs and the new Preset Combo Pack HERE

Lacewing Texture with Misty seed heads

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I shot this very early one misty morning back in the autumn with my new Iphone 6 plus. It’s a view looking back towards my girlfriends house up in the French Jura which is surrounded by mature pine trees. Would have been great if a light was on in the top window, but I like it as is or I would have photoshopped one in!

We’re both now using the top half of this image as a screensaver, works really well with the all over cracks, like a wallpaper. Ive tried others since but I always come back to this, like coming home!

Shooting – contre jour – against the light with the billowing mountain mist cloud as a backdrop, I got a very sombre mouse over for base image image and a skeleton of a plant, so it needed a lot of help brightening, firstly I opened it up in Nik Color Efex and created a new preset (for the next pack!)
Then I opened this brightened image in Topaz Impression and created another painterly preset, but as usual only used 50% opacity of that filter.

Finally, the exciting bit was to use our new unpublished at that time, cracked texture now fittingly named Lacewing and voila, it pulled it all together! I used a few more Flypaper Textures to also brighten, balance and warm up, but it’s the new cracks texture that finally made this image for me!

Sakura Skies – Soft Light @ 78%

Lacewing – Multiply @ 68%

Casanova – Soft Light @ 100% totally desaturated of colour

Sakura Skies is from the Spring Painterly collection. Casanova is from the August Painterly collection and Lacewing is from the Distressed Painterly pack.

Please visit our Pack page or Combo Pack page to buy Flypaper Textures. Or our Preset Page to buy Nik Presets.
We recommend : Topaz filters !!