For the Marriage stage of life I decided to use the photograph of the Eiffel Tower, with Paris being commonly known as the City of Love, and the Eiffel Tower being an important landmark of the city, I felt that this image fit the stage very well.

With this photo, I altered the stroke details of the image, making it blur slightly and altering the stroke effect, before changing the blending style to overlay, so the image seemed to glow more. I then added a grey outline to the photograph and made photo mounts for the corners, as if the photograph was part of a wedding album.
I think that the effects on this photo work well as the rich, bright colours suggest the happy, memorable time that is the wedding ceremony, the honeymoon, and the years following, and that it is always a celebratory time. It also looks as if it is from a wedding album, which helps with the meaning.

Time Taken: 45 minutes
Total Time Taken: 12 hours
For the general Pensioner stage of life, I decided to use the photograph of the two cameo necklaces, as these are often considered vintage and aged (especially before they came back into fashion) and are often seen worn by the older generation, whether on necklaces or brooches.

I worked a little extra on this photograph. First I altered the hue of the image so that it had a sepia tone. Following this, I blurred the photo and added an overlay blend so that the photo appeared to glow a little. I then added a darker tone to the corners of the image, as if they had coloured with age. I then added some noise and a grain effect so that it looked as if there were dust and scratches on the image. Finally, I adjusted the levels of the image so that I could make the black areas a little bit lighter and the white areas a little bit darker as if they had faded with age.
I think these effects work well on this image as it gives the idea that the image is old and has aged with time, representing that the stage of life that it is for, is not at the start of life, but rather, near the end. 

Time Taken: 45 minutes
Total Time Taken: 11 hours 15 minutes
For the Birth stage of the album, the first photo, I used the photograph with the sign saying 'New Life'. As every birth is new life and that's how the world evolves.

To edit this photo, I increased the saturation and brightness of the sign before creating two gradient layers. The first layer had a linear black to white gradient, then I altered the polar co-ordinates so the gradient went from rectangular to polar so that white was in the middle, black around the edges as if light was coming from the centre. I then made the gradient into an overlay so the original photo was visible. With the second layer, I made a radial white to orange gradient so that the centre of the gradient was white and the outside was orange. I then again made this an overlay so that the layers underneath were visible.
I believe this photo works for the Birth stage of life as, like previously stated, the sign reading 'New Life' represents Birth and the sun coming through the clouds is as if good is coming, something new and better is on the way, which is, ultimately, what birth is.

Time Taken: 45 minutes
Total Time Taken: 10 hours 30 minutes
As previously stated, for the generic Childhood section of my portfolio, I used the photograph of the mushroom, as this symbolises how children believe in make-believe and fantasy and how everything is real to them, as well as the age old games played with the 'magic mushrooms'. 

To edit this photograph, I first increased the saturation of the top of the mushroom and increasing the contrast. I then increased the brightness of the bottom of the mushroom. Following this I decreased the brightness of the rest of the image - the grass behind the mushroom. I then created a brush on Adobe Photoshop CS3 and using this brush made the sparkles swirling around the mushroom. Following this I put an outer glow coloured pink, around the sparkles.
I believe that these effects add to the fantasy and magical worlds that are open to children and the photo represents the imagination and creativity that is common in children.

Time Taken: 1 hour
Total Time Taken: 9 hours 45 minutes
For the University part of life I decided to use a photo from Tottenham Court Road. This photograph depicts a part of the underground and on the walls of the corridor are advertisements for films, shows, musicals, and bands. I thought that this illustrates a large part of university life - the entertainment and fun aspects, the culture part of university.

For this photograph I turned the background black and white to make it less prominent but kept the colour of the advertisements. Then I brightened the advertisements, before increasing the saturation of their colour. Before finally adding a slight warming filter to make the advertisements seem more inviting and appealing as this is what they set out to do - attract young people, especially students, to pay to see the films and shows so that they can gain profit. This one took me a particular length of time as I needed to cut each advertisement carefully and make sure the image was still clear and bright after the adjusments.

Time taken = 1 hour

Total time taken = 8 hours 30 minutes




This pocket watch was one I came across when looking for inspiration for my photos. I saw it and instantly thought of retirement - the reason for this is that it symbolises time is running out in the work place, and a lot more time will be on the persons hands after retirement. Also a watch is often given at retirement. 

To edit this picture I duplicated the watch image and then reduced the hue of the background so that this was less prominent. I then increased the hue of the watch so that it was more obvious and added a bit of a blur for mystique. Following this I created a dark shadow of the watch and placed it directly upon it. Retirement usually happens towards the end of a person's life (though with increasing life expectancy this is not often the case any more) and so this shadow suggests that something is catching up with them, the end of their life is approaching. 

I had to take time out due to other work and commitments but now I am getting back on track with working on the project.

Time taken = 45 minutes

Total time taken = 7 hours 30 minutes
After thinking over what I wanted to use the photograph of the donuts for I decided to use it for the Toddler stage. 

I first increased the saturation of the whole photograph, and then again in certain colours: red, magenta, green & blue. Following this I altered the curves to add both brightness and darkness to the photo. Following this I add a few shadows and highlights to the top left corner of the photograph to make the plate of donuts stand out.

I decided to use this photograph for this stage as it shows the brightness of life at this age. You are just discovering the world, everything is new, bright, interesting and exciting to a toddler and they want to explore everything. Not only this the plate of donuts show how most toddlers have quite a sweet tooth.

Time taken = 1 hour

Total time taken = 6 hour 45 minutes
Unfortunately I was forced to take another short hiatus in January as I had 6 GCSE exams which I need to revise for, however while waiting for my results (which I will receive in March) I am able to continue working on my Challenge.

These photos were ones I took and edited right at the start of the project, however I have finally decided what to do with them. Though they are the same picture, I have decided to use them both in the project as their meanings are quite similar and the final product of the photographs are quite different.

The first photography was done simply by using Photoshop CS3 and using the filter 'Coloured Pencil' and then altering the pencil thickness and stroke, and I left the saturation and colour intensity alone. I am planning for this photograph to be for the Illness part of the Pensioner age. The photograph isn't block colour, there are bits of colour everywhere as if something was inhibiting the person colouring it in. Therefore I think it works for this part of life as during illness, especially during old age as this is when illness affects us more than others, thinks inhibit us from working properly and we often don't feel whole, or complete and some parts of us don't feel right.
The second photography was also a simple edit. Using Photoshop CS3 I increased the saturation and then altered the light curves to accentuate the reds in the photograph. For this photograph I hope to use it for the Death stage. The bright yellow on the background at the right hand side, gradually changes to a dark red and finally to a black, as if suggesting the life running out from the fullness of adulthood through old age and finally to death. The flower itself, when I took the photo, was in its dying stages and this can still be seen in the photograph and so emphasises the meaning. Furthermore, the red glow around the flower suggests a life burning out.
Time taken = 30 minutes

Total time taken = 5 hour 45 minutes
About to edit some of my original photos I came across the photos I had taken a while ago of the tomatoes. Seeing the one with the three tomatoes up close reminded me of youth, and growing up, especially with the red, ripe tomato behind the two smaller green tomatoes in front. 

For this photograph I mainly just edited the brightness and contrast of the picture as well as adding a bright backlight to make the three tomatoes stand out. I also sharpened the photograph. I hope that this picture portrays how while growing up we always want freedom, but our parents or somebody to watch over us is always close behind, we're never truly free as there is always somebody watching out for us. I am planning on using this photograph for the School part of Childhood.

Time taken = 1 hour

Total time taken = 5 hour 15 minutes
Now my exams are finished I have been able to get back to doing some work on my Arts Challenge. I've started with editing some of the photos I have, as I have now gained quite a collection of photos to work with. Like I've already said I'm not designating a time in life to each photo before I have edited them, I usually do have a time in mind, however this can change while I am editing due to the lighting effects used can give me new ideas. Even once edited, the photos do not have a set time of life to be suitable for, I know where I want them to go, however when I come to put them all together this may change if I see that they are suited elsewhere. 

Once I have a range of completed photos I will start putting them into an order that is not set, but does give me an outline to how far along I am.

The first picture was done by altering the saturation, brightness and contrast of the original photo to make the colours brighter and be more different than you usually see during sunset. Then using Photoshop CS3 I blur the bottom and the bottom right of the photo and sharpened the top and the top left to make the effect that the good things had passed and troubling times were just approaching. I am planning on using this for the Teenager stage to show how this is the time when we often find we have the most troubles and is the most confusing part of life, and also we are leaving the calm and innocence of childhood where we worry about nothing, into a more mature age where we are more independent.

The second picture was done by lowering the saturation so that the photo was almost black and white. Then using Photoshop CS3 I made the saturation of the chairs very high. This emphasises how the chairs are empty and represents loneliness, a time of being on your own in new settings. I am planning on using this for the Lower School part of the Teenage age as it is a time where you move from Primary to Secondary, often on your own or only with a few of your friends and you have to learn new rules in a completely new setting and know few people so have to make friends.

The third picture was done using Photoshop CS3 changing the hues of the different bottles/liquids/tops and then making the saturation higher. I've tried to achieve the effect of how everything is different and perceptions are changed under alcohol. I am planning on using this for the Adult part of life as in many people especially in the 21st century, alcohol is a large part of their lives.

Time taken = 2 hours 30 minutes

Total time taken = 4 hour 15 minutes
I did also take a couple of more photos as the opportunity to use photos with snow in, with our current weather, was too much to pass by.