So even though I limited myself to only two photos, I experimented with them a lot and now don't even have a clue what I like, but I did get a lot of practice in on many different techniques. Good for my editing skills in the long run, not so good for you.
Here is my basic edit of my friend, Julie.
Then I had not created my post when Ashley's tutorial came on-line, so I had to try some more. I kind of misunderstood at first and used gradient fill instead of gradient map. It actually made for an interesting edit, but I like the gradient map better. Here are both of them at once to speed this post along. I am actually very excited about what a gradient map can do. It is kind of like adding a fill color but with a little more control.
The original flower had the tip cut off. I had one picture very similar in composition except it had more of the tip and bad focus on the middle of the flower, so I added it's tip to my flower. My cropping choices became somewhat limited after the merge, but I like square crops anyway. I also ran Nice and Easy with my own hue adjustments.
Ramblings and Photos for more Mother's Day edit!