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Zebra Crossing!

By Andrew_Hurley
When I arrived at Belfast zoo (18 March 2011), as soon as I saw the zebras I remembered a picture I saw in the early 90s (either in a competition or a book); of a Zebra crossing a zebra crossing. It was one of the most graphical and memorable image I'd ever seen and it has never really left me. I deliberately took a dozen or so pictures of the zebras, especially walking (for obvious reasons), to recreate this image.

Selecting the zebra was a nighmare and I won't tell you how long it look me to draw round it (I only have CS2 and therefore it was time consuming). I drew the zebra crossing in Publisher and copied it across, added noise and 'splatter' to create a tarmac effect and lightened the blacks a little to make it stand out from the black background. I've left a little colour in the zebra (my god it was dirty!) and I am really pleased with the final result.

I've included the original image, untouched at all by a PC!

All comments very welcome indeed.

Thanks for looking and enjoy your evening.


Tags: Wildlife Nature Monochrome Ireland Zebra Black and white Specialist and abstract Digitally manipulated Digital art Belfast Zebra crossing Belfast zoo Pets and captive animals Humour and fun

Voters: morpheus1955, gazlowe, christinecilia and 14 more

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like bouth vs good photos Grin
paulcr 17 1.5k 9 Ireland
29 May 2012 7:00PM
What a really great idea. Well thought up. To bring it a stage further though I think you need to "ground" the zebra. Try adding some shadow on the crossing. Theres a technique Here that might help. Paul
philhomer 12 88 32 England
29 May 2012 7:09PM
i think that the main praise should be levelled at the amount of effort and dedication that this must have taken, have not looked at the link provided by Paul above but would be interesting to see a mk2 version when you have the time / inclination

however if christinecilla above is stating that both images are very good then sadly i have to disagree however as the only reason for taking the original would have been to do something with it given the amount of background distraction etc
Andrew_Hurley 16 71 73 United Kingdom
29 May 2012 7:33PM
Hi Paul; Thanks very much for the comments, very much appreciated. I did want to add a shadow but I spent so much time selecting the zebra, I decided not to. I'm not sure how I would have added a shadow (something I've never tried), but I will look at your technique with great interest and upload version 2 shortly. Again you have been very helpful indeed.

I agree that the additional shadow would certainly 'ground' the zebra and give it that additional element of realism.

I agree Phil, the original image I took is quite awful, but I wanted to show what I had to contend with in the beginning; the only important thing was the zebra needed to be walking, I was pleased with the original as I knew what the final image was going to look like. It really was a dirty zebra!!!

Thanks for all your comments, I really appreciate them.

Chinga Plus
11 61 3 United Kingdom
29 May 2012 7:34PM
Nice one! IB
Andrew_Hurley 16 71 73 United Kingdom
29 May 2012 7:58PM
Modification now added with shadow! It was easier than I thought, thanks again Paul.

paulcr 17 1.5k 9 Ireland
29 May 2012 10:41PM
Your welcome Andrew. I understand some elements of an image can take ages, however its always worthwile leaving an image sometimes and coming back to it. Save it as a PSD and finish it at another sitting when your rested. Paul
banehawi Plus
17 2.7k 4307 Canada
30 May 2012 9:05PM
You certainly cleaned up that Zebra.

To make it more realistic, I think using mono may work better, - theres quite a bit of colour in the Zebra. The mod with the shadow is a good effort, but to ground it the shadow needs to be in contact with the hooves on the ground, and have a little more of the animals shadow on the ground. Its a little overly sharp for me, and a slight blur tones this down a little in my mod, which is also cropped.

Good idea,


JuBarney Plus
10 36 5 United Kingdom
30 May 2012 9:20PM
Lovely composition & a great idea.
31 May 2012 1:00PM
i think you should go out and take a picture of a zebra crossing,maybe with people actually crossing on it and then add the cut out zebra to it.maybe even get a friend in a car to pull up at the crossing and give a suprised look
Andrew_Hurley 16 71 73 United Kingdom
31 May 2012 7:18PM
Thanks Willie for your mod; I'm new to this type of manipulation so any assistance is very much appreciated. I'll certainly take on your comments on board.

Thanks Ju for your comments, although no marks for the idea as it's quite an old one (sadly not mine).

Wozza321; it may well be worth trying a far more realistic approach to see what results I can achieve. Watch this space!

stevesloan 11 9 Scotland
29 Jul 2012 8:13PM
very clever and well worth the effort Steve
Andrew_Hurley 16 71 73 United Kingdom
29 Jul 2012 8:22PM
Thanks Steve for your kind comments.

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