Monday, August 31, 2009

A green thumb and brown feet

My parents are extremely talented in the art of gardening.  I really wish that I had their talent, but I am impressed that my hanging basket that I purchased almost a year ago is still alive.  Here are a few of the pictures of their jungle.  A few are from April, a few are from August.
Did you think that I was going to forget the brown feet??  
It looks like he used spray tan, but did not take off his shoes.  Really, he stained his deck with a paint sprayer, and some (a lot) ended up on his feet.  I helped too, but my feet were nothing compared to his!
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I ♥Faces - Before and After

This week the theme for I ♥ faces is Before and After.  The goal was to show growth as a photographer because of the weekly contests.  I definitely think that I have learned a lot, but you'll have to decide for yourself. 

I choose this photo below as an example of a photo that I edited before learning from I heart Faces.  I boosted the saturation and the contrast. I would boost the contrast until the background was black and the highlights were blown out.

(In-case you are wondering the picture on the left 
was taken at a Halloween Murder Mystery Party, 
that is why Dylan is wearing make-up.) 
Recently I had the pleasure of taking pictures of my cousin's son.  He was such a ham that night!  I love taking pictures of babies, and he was looking right at the camera and cooperating wonderfully! I cloned out the background and enhanced his eyes a little.  I also have a much better composition. I used a flash for this picture as well, but processed the picture more naturally.  I also used filters in PSE.  Oh how I wish that we lived closer, I would go over and take pictures of this cutie every day! 

I decided that for this challenge I would try and use Flash to display my photos and that was not an easy task. I took a class on Flash about a year ago as part of my grad school program. I am reminded of the common saying "Use it or loose it!"  I easily figured out Flash, but unfortunately I was not able to find a good site to host the flash file and it was not viewable to others.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Photo Friday - Seaside

I decided to try something new this week, Photo Friday.  It is not a contest, but a challenge with a weekly theme, and this week is seaside.  I can not even begin to count the number of 'seaside' pictures that I have on my hard drive, but since I see the sandy Florida beaches all the time I am drawn to pictures of my travels.  This picture was taken in Vancouver, Canada from the seawall in Stanley Park.  I have plans to print this to hand in my home, but need to decide between canvas or print. I just love the reflection in the smooth water and the symmetry of the picture.

Shuttle Launch

Night launches are amazing and I am a little sad that this may be the final night launch of the shuttle program. It is truly awe inspiring how the sky illuminates despite the 60 miles distance.

My husband was nice enough to come with me to the lake at the end of the street where I set up my 'ghetto tripod.' We used a mini tripod from the dollar store sitting on-top of a stool. (My husband was thrilled about carrying the stool.) I have a list of photography accessories that I would like to have...but I figure that I will appreciate them more if I wait to get them, or receive them a gifts. My husband on the other hand, loves accessories and thinks that if an accessory exists for a hobby we should own it. Believe it or not, I don't think that we have ever had an argument about money or spending. I don't mind that he buys all the accessories, and I think that he laughs at my make shift accessories.  (Last week I taped a piece of paper to my camera to diffuse the light.)  To be honest I think it is fun to use what I have and be resourceful.
Thanks honey for accompanying me to the launch and carrying the stool.


Friday, August 28, 2009

Fix-it - Friday

As you may know from reading my profile, I am a teacher and this was our first week back at school.  As I was driving home (at 7:00 PM on a Friday!) I excitedly remembered that it is Fix-it-Friday.  Photography is great stress reliever for me, so I came home grabbed a glass of wine and worked on fix-it Friday.  (Note to self: Complete fix it Friday and especially cook dinner before the glass of wine next week!)

Here is the original photo:

And here is my edit:

This little girl is beautiful!! and the thing I thought would be fun to change is the background.  I did a few changes to the color and added filter layers.  The biggest change that I made was to cut her out and put her in front of a different background.   I went through a streak of digital scrap-booking, so I opened the blues and greens looking for the perfect match, and I think that I found it!  I love the way that the colors matches her dress so perfectly. Hope that you enjoy.

....Now back to attempting to cut zucchini and make dinner.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Chicago Skyline

As I mentioned in my last post, I recently traveled to Chicago.  Unfortunately we were there on a very cloudy and overcast day, not so great for pictures.  Fortunately at the end of the day the sky cleared up and boarded a "scenic water taxi."  I really like the silhouettes of the buildings that I was able to capture. Enjoy. 

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chicago aquarium

In the beginning of August I was in Chicago for a friend's wedding.  We decided to visit the Shedd Aquarium in downtown.  Growing up my family would make and annual road trip to the Florida Keys to snorkel and see ocean life.  They also had  a basement full of aquariums.  My point is that my family loves fish, and have passed on a little of that enjoyment to me.  Hope that you enjoy the pictures. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I Heart Faces - Nostalgia

I just LOVE sunsets, and I LOVE vacations and I LOVE my husband. I wish this week more than anything that I could just sit and watch a sunset, in a beautiful place and spend time with my husband. You see, I am a teacher and this week was our second day back in school, and it was CRAZY!! I really like my job, but after having such a fun summer, I really wish I could go back in time and enjoy it all over again!

This picture was taken on a hill in Vancouver overlooking the bay and an amazing sunset. I think it is neat that you can see the city in the background. We had been out and about all day, so you'll have to forgive the messy hair. Honestly, that is part of what I really like about the picture, how us is it. I also really like the sunset's yellow colors in the picture.

Friday, August 21, 2009

I heart faces - Fix it Friday

I have a confession to make....
I secretly save pictures that my friends post on the Internet. I open and 'fix' the picture in photoshop . I never share the photos or tell my friends. My husband is the only person that knows my secret... and now anyone who reads this.

I really enjoy editing photos and having a variety of pictures to work with helps me improve my skills. That is why I decided to participate in fix-it Friday on I heart faces.



I added a little bit of a sepia effect,but kept the beautiful eyes.
I also adjusted the colors and lighting, and airbrushed the face a little.

What do you think??
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