I did play with a photo like his example, but I wasn't happy with the result compared to my GIMP skills as of yet. So, I decided to work more with what I am good at and use shading as a process rather than aim for a black result as some have done for this competition.
Here, I'm taking an old (2008) macro shot I caught of a bumblebee on a bit of lavender.
In Photoscape, I used one of the "vignette" settings to blacken the corners, added a "film effect" to darken the whole thing tastefully. I then took it over to GIMP where I added a layer (at 50% opacity) for a color mask - filled it with black paint until I was happy with it. Finally, I took the eraser and erased the black just over the subject of the photo. I do like the over all effect.
Here is the original. I would have loved a bit more clarity on the bee's wings, but it was moving and it was one of my early macro forays.
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