Take me to the stars...
This is what must have been the most difficult to create picture ever ;-) The journey there was a long one, a true trip through space and time. Well, time, mostly. Back in March, dear Flickr friend ironicdream had asked a few mutual friends here on Flickr if we would like to take part in a little challenge which was to interpret her favourite song, Foreigner's "Starrider" (from their 1977 debut album). Since I often do space-themed macros for MMs - or rather: they happen to me -, I eagerly agreed to take part. But while ironicdream and dear fdlscrmn both presented their interpretations of the song within a week after the competition started (please take a look at their fantastic captures in the first comment), I realised that it wasn't as easy as I thought it would be. Well, it never is whenever you have to come up with something for a specially themed task, right? Not exactly a new discovery, but that's the way it is ;-) I had a basic idea right away, but, for a (very!) long time, simply didn't know how to get it right.
My underlying idea was that it would be way more fun to go on that little space trip together with my Flickr friends. So I was looking for a small campervan model, preferably the iconic VW Bulli T1. While I couldn't find that anywhere, I was really lucky to find this cheerful, hippiesque Flower Power Bulli T2, which is only 3 cm long (N scale, 1/160), at a second hand shop for all things scale modeling. I also wanted it to "drive" through space on a rainbow road. Why a rainbow road? Dear ironicdream had posted a link to the fascinating original video (check it out here: Strg/Ctrl+ www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUqMRkwxkso), and there is an infinite road in space which, for whatever reason, I remembered as a rainbow. Memory is a weird thing, isn't it? And the rainbow was the hard part. A rainbow in macro world, that is... I tried so many different ways to create a rainbow my little VW Bulli could use as a space road: Cut pieces of multicoloured elastic band, for instance, a glass prism (not easy to handle at all! Yes, I managed to get spectral/rainbow colours, but everywhere else than on my black glass tile which I had put the van on...), sequins (too big for the tiny car and they also didn't look nice in close-up)... In the end a holographic card with a rainbow on it, bought many, many years ago, came to my rescue (that, and a self-imposed d(r)eadline). Even though the card wasn't easy to use either. To simply put the van on the card looked boring, so I tried to use the rainbow's reflection on the black glossy tile. That worked, but not as a starry space background. For that I used the true and tried black glitter foamsheet.
Technically, this is an "extreme slide". It's a double exposure of a (manually) focus stacked capture of the VW Bulli on the rainbow reflection / black tile, and a single capture of the black glitter foamsheet. For both captures I'd used the star filter for some nice starry bling. As blending mode I'd used "Lighten" in PS. In Luminar 3, I brought out the rainbow colours with the Develop and HSL filters, increased the details on the van (the usual suspects), and added sunrays to the small Swarovski crystal in front of the car. You might wonder what those Swarovski crystals are for anyway. Well, this - every - Starrider needs a drive and also fuel, of course, which preferably should be sustainable and environmently friendly. And since there are no filling stations in space, the fuel for the drive must also be obtained from the environment. So what you see here is the all new "rainbow engine®", which does not only fuel the Starrider, but creates the space road for it at the same time by... by... By converting light and matter particles from space into energy. Or something like that. I'd have loved to use "natural" (= LED lamp and star filter induced) bling for all three crystals, but only got some really nice bling on the one on the van's roof (I could have used two extra hands here). So I had to reach into my software bag of tricks to spruce up the other two. By using the aforementioned "Sunlight" filter in Luminar, and the "Lens Flare" > "Tiny Red Dot" effect in ON1 Photo Raw for the rear part of the rainbow engine®. Done. Done? It was then that I realised that the Starrider doesn't drive on the rainbow road, but on its own reflection. Of course. Duh. What now? Take an all new capture of the van and then the rainbow reflection only? It would have been the professional way, but I didn't want to start all over again, so I completed the rainbow road by using, modifying and blending in the rainbow's reflection, which already was there in front of and behind the van, underneath of it in PS.
By the way, the fact that we are celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing on this weekend, and that I'm finally able to upload my Starrider capture, is a mere coincidence. But a nice one :-) And while I've only added the Flickr friends who were part of the Starrider challenge to the photo, I invite you all to join us on this little fun trip. Because this Starrider has another cool and convenient feature: "expandable interior®". This means that the VW Bulli Starrider edition may look small on the outside, but is much bigger on the inside. So feel free to join us (and add yourself to the capture - and if that doesn't work, please let me know and I'll add you), dear Flickr friends :-)
Da ich nun schon so ewig viel zu diesem Foto, für das ich so lange gebraucht habe, auf Englisch geschrieben habe, möchte ich den geneigten Betrachter (und Leser) nicht mit noch mehr Text auf Deutsch abschrecken, und würde Euch bitten, Euch ausnahmsweise mal den obigen Text von DeepL (Strg/Ctrl+www.deepl.com/translator), einem hervorragenden Online-Übersetzer, übersetzen zu lassen, falls Ihr an der etwas verrückten Entstehungs- und Hintergrundgeschichte des Fotos interessiert seid. Danke und einen schönen Restsonntag für Euch, liebe Flickr-Freunde :-)