Irish Inspirations, Day 5: Derry from the Walls

Irish Inspirations, Day 5

We just realized that it’s actually Thanksgiving at home, so we’re going to mostly take the day off and pretend that drinking Guinness and eating Shepherd’s Pie is tradition. Just a quick check in to talk about our delightful day in Derry, yesterday.

Our hotel was actually just along the Wall of the Old City, which meant that we were able to walk around the entire Renaissance-era section of town. Looking down on the town from above got me thinking about Deke’s Techniques 044: Miniaturizing the World in Photoshop.

I love this technique because it makes an ordinary street scene look like something magical. Seems appropriate to turn this electrical truck into a toy now that the Irish cities are hanging their holiday decorations. And with Photoshop CS6 and the Tilt-Shift Blur filter, creating the selective focus is even easier.


I followed the instructions in the original Deke’s Techniques (which was recorded in CS5 when the blur had to be created and masked by hand), then switched to the Tilt-Shift feature at the end. To see this technique done in Photoshop CS6 start-to-finish, check out Chapter 30 of Deke’s Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Advanced course.

Next entry:Irish Inspirations, Day 6: Happy Shadow Puppet Turkey Day

Previous entry:Irish Inspirations, Day 3: Belfast with Bobby


  • Found this technique applied to video

  • I like it, quite a bit actually

    Only problem: the people in this video aren’t reliable toys.

    Tilt-shift relies on an enormous suspension of disbelief. I (the viewer) am the child and this (your image or video) is my playground.

    Wide-angle top-down is easy, because in that case length (the height of the frame) translates directly to depth. Without that objective criterion, you have to watch the focus at the tops and the bottoms of your objects and invent your depth manually, which can take some effort.

    Not to buzz-kill the video, of course. Oh, Sydney. Another vacation, perhaps.

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