Meet Isawien-my Elven Grandaughter


Introducing Isawien!!  This is in the spirit of my resolution to break the bonds of being so serious about everything and sharing learning and play!! I would like to get much better at composites because with the layering, blending and masking tools Photoshop offers there is no limit to the fun you can have. Composite artists today are producing amazing other worlds and surrealistic scenes which are as strange as they are beautiful and inspiring to try. Isawien is a project which I could not resist after browsing through some ordinary family pictures from a visit with my son’s family and seeing Elise’s contented, pixieish expression.  I thought she looked luminous and something had to be done!! It was just one of those evenings with too much time on my hands working into the wee hours when a sensible person would have just gone to bed so they would be fit for work in the morning. Seriously! What photographer has not had a ‘Photoshop Hangover?” Right?

The following images are some of the source material that made up the picture along with some lighting adjustments and texture changes.  Elise’s expression was already pure elf and her hair naturally parted around an ear which gave way to elfhood with a slight tug of the liquify tool! Of course, I was told when she first saw the image I’d dropped into her cyber mail box,  Elise reached up to feel that her ear had not in reality changed and stated EMPHATICALLY that she did not want pointy ears!! I think she’s grown more attached to the wings.

My original vision was that my darling elf would be a luminous sprite glowing against a deep, green forest background with muted green hues in the atmosphere, kind of like my memory of Rima the birdgirl in the book ‘Green Mansions’.  But, my luminous elf needed to be a Florida elf and so she’s in the Big Cypress Preserve forest. So while this is far from a tutorial, at least you can get the idea that you can have a good time making composites from an ordinary picture!!

My grandaughter’s name is Elise. This is where I got her full eleven name Isawien Aranwion..and you can too..LOTR Elven Name Generator.  If you’d rather be a Hobbit you can go for that as well!!


The source picture of Elise and her parents from which I extracted my elf.  How can you resist that happy face?

Glades Sabal Textures-s

This is a texture shot I made while hiking in the Big Cypress area. I used it for the hints of tree and foliage in the background.

BlueGreen Grunge Background-s

This is a grunge portrait background which resided unused in my design assetts folder for a long time. It seemed perfect to give light where I wanted it, to  blend my elements and add depth.

Wikipedia Moth-s

The moth is on Wikipedia’s page about moths and the wings had the perfect delicacy with the greens and golds I thought might work. I did not show Isawien where her wings came from. But, she’s a nature girl already so I hope she does not mind a moth gave her faerie wings.  It only shows how truly irridescent and lovely the wings of various insects really are.

Now, I do not know if the readers of fantasy and faerie tales will argue that elves don’t have wings or that faeries don’t have pointy ears. But, this is a figment of the Florida Everglades Swamp and I don’t know  if anyone has seen a Florida Elf before? In case anyone wonders about the font, it is called  Dirt 2 Soul Stalker . I think it is magical inspite of the dire sounding name.

bottom flourish for vine

The wall is silence, the grass is sleep,
Tall trees of peace their vigil
And the Fairy of Dreams with moth-wings furled
Plays soft on her
flute to the drowsy world.
~Ida Rentoul Outhwaite

Sweet Dreams,


~ by Judy on January 30, 2013.

9 Responses to “Meet Isawien-my Elven Grandaughter”

  1. Nice to see how it was put together.

  2. What a beautiful portrait of that adorable angel!

  3. LOVE this!! Love the fairy portrait… Everyone should have you commission similar portraits in my humble opinion. 🙂

  4. you are BRILLIANT! I LOVE THIS! parents and grandparents would line up to have you create images like this of their beloved little ones!

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