<<< o >>>There's nothing on (mosaic) 17 comments + add yours

I still haven't managed to get out and shoot any new material so thought I'd post a follow-up to my previous entry, i.e. another mosaic constructed using MacOSaiX. This one is based on one of my favourite beachombing shots, there's nothing on: a shot of an old television that John Washington and I photographed back in 2005.

If you're thinking of trying this process, using either MacOSaiX (for Mac) or AndreaMosaic (for PC), you will probably find that most of your attempts aren't great. For example, I've tried using at least 20 of my own images as the basis for a mosaic, and have only liked two of them, i.e. this one and my previous mosaic portrait. Part of the problem, in my case at least, is that I just don't have enough images to construct a convincing mosaic, at least not without using the same images more than once. As I've been trying to avoid this – by using each of the 1600+ images I've posted on chromasia just once in each mosaic – most of my attempts have ended up looking far too random.

By the same token, I've found that black and white mosaics work best, as each tile just need to be matched to the source image in terms of contrast and content, but not colour. Again, if you have access to a very large number of images, colour matching might work well, but with the images I was playing around with it simply didn't work.

What did work though, at least I think so, is the technique I used for this image, i.e. I superimposed the original image over the top of the mosaic, changed the blend mode to colour, then lowered the opacity to around 75%. The net result is that the contrast and content is determined by the individual tiles while the base image sets the overall colour.

As with my previous entry, I've posted a much larger mosaic here:


Oh, and in case you're wondering about why this one was cropped to 16x9: I would have preferred to have retained the 3x2 ratio of the original, but the bottom section of the image was rendered last, using images that were far too bright for this area of the image. Again, had I had more images to work with, a 3x2 mosaic would probably have worked well, but just didn't work out in this case.

16x9 + digital art
comment by Craig at 08:49 AM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

You say perhaps it's not as effective as the last image but I have to disagree, I think it's worked well. My one observation about these mosaics is that the distance you view them at has a great impact. Close up it's a little difficult to get your head around but take a few paces back and it's transformed into something rather jolly good :)

I've downloaded this and I'm going to have a crack at it-when I get time........ ;)

comment by Christine at 09:16 AM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

I think it looks brilliant! (And I'm glad that I can read up on it and comment now in Safari as well.)

I've always loved the original photograph - so it was interesting to see it all over again this way!

comment by Chris Johnson at 11:06 AM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

One way to reduce the problem of a limited number of images is to cut the source images into nine or 16 pieces, and have those as the source material for the mosaic program. The abstract shapes and blank areas in the chopped photos can be better at representing a small part of a larger image than a whole-photo tile, plus, you get a lot more tiles...

comment by ROB at 12:25 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

Interesting, unlike the previous one I did not recognise the original image. Then I clicked coments and the thumbnail shows it off instantly. Thanks for the PC link too...

comment by Jacques at 12:37 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

Although the trick to superimpose the original image is nice, I also had problems identifying this image before reading your explainations, David.

comment by Carlos Garcia at 02:38 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

The original is one of my favorite! Wonderful image!


comment by Adam Stevens at 04:02 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

Still love the original. Funny I had a hard time "seeing" it in the mosaic until I saw the original, then it jumped out! Really showed how the computer sees the image, the reflection of the TV was as clear as the set itself in the mosaic....

comment by Akshat Gait at 05:16 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

I like it.

comment by Dan Kaufman at 11:23 PM (GMT) on 12 August, 2009

I actually didn't have any trouble recognizing "what" the image was--cuz having seeing last week's mosaic I knew to look to the lower right corner for the "source" image :)

comment by crash at 01:02 AM (GMT) on 13 August, 2009

dang! that is pretty cool!

comment by Jay at 02:00 AM (GMT) on 13 August, 2009

Beautiful colour and composition...

comment by Scott Webb at 04:43 AM (GMT) on 13 August, 2009

oh no you didn't! This is really cool as well. I agree the portrait had a much larger impact for me but this is still outstanding. well done.

comment by Andrew at 12:16 PM (GMT) on 14 August, 2009


comment by Bob Towery at 02:24 AM (GMT) on 16 August, 2009

As usual, incredible work. Very inspiring. So glad you share your talent with us.

comment by Ovidiu at 02:52 PM (GMT) on 16 August, 2009

Very interesting! I love it!

comment by djn1 at 06:23 PM (GMT) on 16 August, 2009

Thanks everyone :)

comment by singapore product food photographers at 02:51 AM (GMT) on 31 August, 2009

that's great pic...