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[Tutorial] “The Graduate”

Tutorial – “The Graduate”

A Conceptual Piece; Taken and edited with a Windows Phone - Nokia Lumia 920 by Jen B

First, let’s talk about this phone. I was extremely excited to get it! I opened the box and was impressed by its shiny white coat. We shook hands. Firm grip. This was going to be an interesting challenge.  I’d heard about the impressive camera on the Lumia, 8.7 megapixels. I’d also heard that the editing apps weren’t as plentiful as I’ve been used to. I tend toward either straight, minimally edited images or the opposite, heavily edited “app stacking”. For this one I thought I’d attempt the latter.

I hit the streets of Berkeley. It happened to be graduation day. This young man was standing on the corner, alone, cap in hand, waiting to cross the street. I stealthily got the shot (I’m no street photographer, but I try). I imagined him tentatively beginning his foray into the future, the unknown, the abyss. That was my idea when I began here.

Apps Used:
Native camera, Fantasia Painter, Fotor

This is the original image, taken with the Lumia’s native camera:

I wanted to isolate the figure so I took the image into Fantasia Painter, a versatile app with lots of varied functions. The ads on the top of the screenshots are great. Apparently I need to get a boob job and get my party on . ☺

My first step was to paint out the background. You click on the rainbow icon on the left. This brings up a variety of brushes as well as lighten, darken and smudge. I chose “paint”, chose my brush from the bar at the top of the screen and painted around the subject with gray.

You can zoom in and out to get into the little spots. I wasn’t all that precise here because I knew I’d be doing some further editing and it wouldn’t matter. There was a little trial and error going on here. This is my first image edited on the Lumia.

Next, I clicked on the button that looks like a magic wand to bring up further editing features. I chose Zoom Motion under the “Distort” heading. I didn’t take a screen shot of this step. Choosing this will blur the whole image and you can use the eraser at the top to control what parts are blurred. I unblurred parts of this image.

I wanted to distort the subject a little so I chose the Bloat and Pinch functions in the same section. I played around with distortion of the subject. Using these is really intuitive. Just drag to sections you want to manipulate and there ya go.

To make this image look like a stencil, I chose “Stencil/Thresh” in the “Artistic” section.

I wanted to change the background color.I chose the “gradient map” function , also in the “Artistic” section, and chose Gold. (In retrospect not sure this step was necessary, trial and error here.)

I then saved the image and opened it in the Fotor app, my favorite for basic editing. I cropped out the black parts on the top. Then I clicked the Neon button and chose “Dynamic Light” which added some cool swirls of light to the image.

I wanted a monochrome image, so next I clicked the black and white button. This brings up several choices. I liked B&W1.

The last step was to lower the brightness and contrast using the “Edit” button that looiks like a pencil.

All done! Here’s the final image. “The Graduate”

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and learned a little. I’m still getting to know and love this phone. I am very thankful to Microsoft for the opportunity to take part in this challenge! I also want to say CONGRATULATIONS to my two kids who are GRADUATING today, Adam from High School and Charlotte from Preschool. I’m very proud.


  1. What a transformation, Jen! So cool to see the process! And congrats – be a proud mama : )


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