This week's challenge: #pixlrspace

Like so many millions of people around the worlds, we were deeply saddened to hear about the passing of David Bowie. Throughout his life he was a beacon for weirdness and creativity — a real outsider who found a way to get inside the heads of nearly everyone on the planet with his unique music. What imagery stands out the most about Bowie’s music? Space. No doubt about it, his repeated references to outer space is pretty significant, so we thought it would be a fitting this week to have people make #pixlrspace images. If you’ve never used the many space overlays in your editing then where the heck have you been, brother? They are some of the neatest overlays and can add all kinds of interestingness to your images. A couple of tips for making out-of-this-world, spaced-out images….

Use the Eraser

The Eraser (formerly the History Brush) gives you the most control of any tool in our mobile, web, and desktop app. You can paint away the effects you add and keep your figure nice and clean. Or, you can use the tool to put space effects in just one area, like @cusinusoid did in this very creative #pixlrspace photo. Check out this Eraser tutorial if you’ve never used this tool. It will open up a whole new avenue for your edits.

Silhouettes are superb for space images

If you have a landscape with big open skies or a figure that is overexposed or showing up essentially as a silhouette, you are going to love how the space overlays work in conjunction with your image. Some of the space overlays will work better on light images, but most of them work the best on images that have a clear distinction between light and dark tones, like this one from @cory.j.v.

Color and intensity can make it extra special

Your stars (or clouds from the acquest pack) will look even more amazing if you tweak the color. After adding space overlays, bump up the saturation and vibrance. Try out the Colour or Candyminimal options, which can add a spectrum of color that really makes your space background pop. If you find a space overlay that really works great with your image, try adding it a second time to intensify it. As always, you can control the opacity so always try out that slider. Sometimes adding an overlays a second time at 50% is just perfect. In the image above (taken from our Space Silhouettes tutorial), we used many different versions of the Enif space overlay in addition to bokeh overlays. The combination of all these makes a seriously intense space background.

Sometimes selfies work great

As you can see from this cool duck-face selfie by @farewelldanielle, sometimes these space effects really work great on close-ups of faces. Sometimes it doesn’t, but it’s worth a try!

Learn from an expert

Tag your photo #pixlrspace, and we’ll find it on Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr. Your photo can be a space silhouette if you like those — but any use of space effects will work for us. We’ll feature the best on all of our feeds. Need some help getting started? One of our favorite Pixlr users, Aldrin Gersalia, is an absolute expert at #pixlrspace images. Last year, we asked him to record himself making one of these images so you can learn from the best. Check out the video that came out of that if you want to make an image worthy of being hung on a wall at art:

Making a Space Silhouette with Pixlr Express from Pixlr on Vimeo.