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Peter, welding waterwheel axle to hub.

Photo taken at Craigencalt Farm, Kinghorn, Fife, Scotland,
31 March 2009.

The repaired wheel was re-installed to be seen by visitors to the Ecology Centre there.
A small hillside stream feeds it; part of the flow from higher upslope is piped to pour down onto the wheel, in an overshot design.
Alongside, a separate pipe feeds an enclosed turbine which supplies electricity to the Earthship Fife Visitor Centre .

My aim with this image was to emphasize the task of welding, and the concentration by eye and hand.

This has been my first attempt at manipulating existing elements within a single photo (rather than assembling originally-separate elements, as I did here to put myself in Space!)

How (for other learners like me!) :
Using Serif 9, I made multiple layers for the separate picture elements: sparks, welding hotspot, glove, visor window, Peter’s skin, the woodpile, yellow power supply, and so on. I duplicated the basic image as new layers, then on each layer I kept only what I wanted: by selecting its distinctive colour or outlining it by hand, then erasing the rest.
I could then adjust these picture-elements individually, layer-by-layer, altering brightness and contrast, retaining colour, but varying some layers’ opacity.
The background, seen between or through the other elements, I adjusted similarly but made it grayscale.


energy, scotland, mask, hydro, sparks, ecology, welding, sustainable, renewable, waterwheel, fife, peter collins, craigencalt, kinghorn


  • Maryann3
    Maryann3over 4 years ago

    Very nice! Old meets new!

  • Thanks! yes, there is a fine mix of ages of objects in that barn. This waterwheel itself is not antique, but of course its principle is ancient. Currently, after a period in action, it needs some further repair work.

    – armadillozenith

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