Photography

{153/365} – Tea with Lemons

In preparation for the new site (coming soon!), I photographed, what else, tea with lemons.  I photographed my Lemon as well, but I’m going to use that in the new blog, so you’ll just have to wait for that one!

lemons 

teawithreallemons

And, as an aside, I had fresh lemons in the house because I roasted a chicken for dinner.  Did you know that if you put lemon rinds in the chicken’s cavity, the bird stays sweet and moist?  Perfect bird every time.  Thanks Oprah! 

Brownie Anyone?

Over Thanksgiving, my dad gave me his old Kodak Instamatic 100, flashbulbs and all.  It takes 126 cartridge film, which you can still get here, so, knowing me, I’ll probably get a “roll” of film eventually, and start her up.  After the holidays though . . . until then, it’s just a prop:

brownie3 

brownie2 

brownie 

And, something else that peaked my interest – I saw these in the bargain book section of Barnes & Noble tonight –

 

 

Can you say, “right up my alley????” Of course they are.  Next paycheck!

Brownie Anyone?

Over Thanksgiving, my dad gave me his old Kodak Instamatic 100, flashbulbs and all.  It takes 126 cartridge film, which you can still get here, so, knowing me, I’ll probably get a “roll” of film eventually, and start her up.  After the holidays though . . . until then, it’s just a prop:

brownie3 

brownie2 

brownie 

And, something else that peaked my interest – I saw these in the bargain book section of Barnes & Noble tonight –

 

 

Can you say, “right up my alley????” Of course they are.  Next paycheck!

iphone App Friday

How can you not download an app called Bad Camera? 

I don’t know why it’s called Bad Camera – maybe the bad is supposed to mean good.  It’s a pretty basic app, not a must have, but it’s fine.  Bad Camera is designed to replicate the photography of Misolav Tichy , recreating his light leaks, scratches, and oftentimes, dreamy effects.  So, Bad Camera converts your image to black and white, monochrome or sepia, or something close to it, adds a lighting effect, and also a texture.  Unfortunately, having no drop down menus, or option bars, you have no control over choosing effects.  I guess that’s the “bad” part.   Or, if you buy the marketing for the app, that’s still all good because random is good.   

So, this is what it looks like:

Here’s a photo I took of myself on the train home to my parent’s house on Thanksgiving Day –

  

Here’s what the app home screen looks like:

  

Usually, somewhere on the tool bar will be a little “i” or a “?” or something like that for help, instructions, etc.  Not this app – just push the icons, and figure it out.  It’s not complicated, I just feel like I’m missing something – you know, that part where I decided what goes on the photo.

Anyway, when you hit the four square looking icon, this comes up:

 

This is just the first page – there are five total pages, for  20 different combinations.  So, you pick one, and if you don’t like it, you can hit the next icon – which will continue to generate more choices, one at a time.  Sometimes, I like an effect, but would like to change the texture, or like the texture, and would like to just change the color.  The app would be so much nicer if it had this capability.  But, apparently, this app was not designed for control freaks like me.  Eh well, for 99 cents, I guess I can sit back and let the app do all the work.

Here’s a final image:

 

{144/365} – iPhone App Friday

{144/365} 

How fun is this app?  Pocketbooth simulates the old time, Boardwalk (or the mall, I guess depending on your generation)  photobooth, giving you the option of creating black and white, sepia, color or antique photo strips.  Unlike Incredibooth, an app by the same folks who make Hipstamatic, Pocketbooth allows you to use both the front and back cameras, so you’ll always know that you’re at least smooshed into the frame.  I don’t know how often I’ll use it, but I’m sure I’ll get my 99 cents worth.

My second featured app of the week is Postcard.  The art of letter writing is dying (sob!), so what better way to breath a little life into it than to send a postcard.  Postcard, the app, creates postcards straight from your iPhone, and MAILS THEM FOR YOU.   First, you create an account with Postcard, and you can either buy credits (10 postcards = $15.00), or pay as you go.  Then, simply take a photo, or use a photo from your photoalbum, and import it to the app.  Then you can pick a border, write your message, and address it (using your already saved contacts).  And then the magic – Postcard will then print your card, stamp it, and mail it.  Your first postcard is free, so try it, you having nothing to lose.

{144/365} – iPhone App Friday

{144/365} 

How fun is this app?  Pocketbooth simulates the old time, Boardwalk (or the mall, I guess depending on your generation)  photobooth, giving you the option of creating black and white, sepia, color or antique photo strips.  Unlike Incredibooth, an app by the same folks who make Hipstamatic, Pocketbooth allows you to use both the front and back cameras, so you’ll always know that you’re at least smooshed into the frame.  I don’t know how often I’ll use it, but I’m sure I’ll get my 99 cents worth.

My second featured app of the week is Postcard.  The art of letter writing is dying (sob!), so what better way to breath a little life into it than to send a postcard.  Postcard, the app, creates postcards straight from your iPhone, and MAILS THEM FOR YOU.   First, you create an account with Postcard, and you can either buy credits (10 postcards = $15.00), or pay as you go.  Then, simply take a photo, or use a photo from your photoalbum, and import it to the app.  Then you can pick a border, write your message, and address it (using your already saved contacts).  And then the magic – Postcard will then print your card, stamp it, and mail it.  Your first postcard is free, so try it, you having nothing to lose.

{143/365}

{143/365} 

Remember when I said that I was really uncomfortable photographing myself from the waist down – and that was the most difficult thing?  That’s not the most difficult thing – that’s the second most difficult thing.  The first most difficult thing is my face.  I just cannot be uncritical.  I took a pretty nice head shot, but I’m reluctant to post it because I think my face looks fat.  I know, take a step back, we are all beautiful, yadda yadda . . . but you know, it’s not about not being pretty enough, or not being thin enough – it’s about knowing that I haven’t been treating my body right, and it shows.  If I look bloated, I know I am still beautiful, I am still unique, and I am the same person in front of the camera as I am behind.  But, I don’t like seeing evidence that I’m not exercising, not eating right.  I don’t like seeing the evidence that I know that my clothes are trying to tell me – getting kind of snug here . . . sigh. 

Yesterday, I had a sentencing for one of my client’s.  She’s 27 years old, 4’9, legally blind, has no kidney function (she’s on her last dialysis line, an experimental treatment that inserts the line in through her back, as opposed to her arm, her groin or her chest), and suffers from mental illness.  She was abandoned by her mother at two days old, and when DHS stepped in, they found human bite marks up and down her body.  She has never had a home.  She has had placement and hospitals, and finally, jail.  And, she has been in jail for three years wasting away, fading away, because there is no mental health system in Pennsylvania.  The judge sentenced her to basically time served yesterday, to let her die at home (an aunt, who donated a kidney to her (which failed), moved here from Florida because she feels taking care of her niece, at this point, is a calling) because she’s truly going to die if not within days, probably weeks (this experimental treatment won’t last forever, and when it goes, she’ll have about a week).

And, I’m worried that my face is getting fat.

I like the first photo  – it’s kind of dreamy, and it has a contentedness about it.  And, on a daily basis, I’m more than content, I’m happy – even with my face getting a bit round, and my suits a bit tight, it’s all about perspective.  And my job gives me a unique perspective – I never forget how loved I am, how blessed I am, and how lucky I am.

 

Recess! Art at Lunch

I think I’ve mentioned that I often have lunch at home, spend time with the husband and the dog before he has to go to work.  About fifteen minutes before he leaves to go to work, he shaves, etc., and I generally sit down at the computer, mess around on the internet, or post my picture of the day.  Today, I did a speed edit on the above photo.  I don’t even think I spent fifteen minutes on it, maybe ten.  And I’m not saying this to brag – I’m saying it because it was a really fun challenge.  I had an idea in my head of what I wanted the image to look like – and every key stroke, every manipulation, was either warmer, colder, getting warmer, hot!   First, I cropped it.  Then, I really wanted the little house to be red.  I see so many photos on Flickr of red barns, dilapidated barns, barns with silos, etc., but you know what – there are no rustic barns with lovely peeling paint, and perhaps an abandoned wheel barrow in front of them in urban Philadelphia.  This was as close as I was going to get.  So, I applied a red texture to the house, voila.  I knew that I wanted the scene to be darker, more brooding – so there’s a gradient map in there, brown to white, and there’s a blue color fill mixed up in there as well.  And then a few more textures – Grey Day, and Cool Grunge (both Kim Klassen’s), and then for a finishing touch, I threw a blackbird (just a brush that you can download) in, just because.

Not looking like urban Philly now!

Recess! Art at Lunch

I think I’ve mentioned that I often have lunch at home, spend time with the husband and the dog before he has to go to work.  About fifteen minutes before he leaves to go to work, he shaves, etc., and I generally sit down at the computer, mess around on the internet, or post my picture of the day.  Today, I did a speed edit on the above photo.  I don’t even think I spent fifteen minutes on it, maybe ten.  And I’m not saying this to brag – I’m saying it because it was a really fun challenge.  I had an idea in my head of what I wanted the image to look like – and every key stroke, every manipulation, was either warmer, colder, getting warmer, hot!   First, I cropped it.  Then, I really wanted the little house to be red.  I see so many photos on Flickr of red barns, dilapidated barns, barns with silos, etc., but you know what – there are no rustic barns with lovely peeling paint, and perhaps an abandoned wheel barrow in front of them in urban Philadelphia.  This was as close as I was going to get.  So, I applied a red texture to the house, voila.  I knew that I wanted the scene to be darker, more brooding – so there’s a gradient map in there, brown to white, and there’s a blue color fill mixed up in there as well.  And then a few more textures – Grey Day, and Cool Grunge (both Kim Klassen’s), and then for a finishing touch, I threw a blackbird (just a brush that you can download) in, just because.

Not looking like urban Philly now!

Touch Up Tuesday – A New Leaf

Did I do it?  I think I did it – mouseover – voila!  Before, after!  Fab.

So, how did I get from the before to the after?  Luckily, it’s Touch Up Tuesday, so here it goes:

From the before image above, I fixed the exposure in ACR –

LeafafterACR 

Then, I started piling on the textures:

Screenshotredleaf 

First, I duplicated the background, and then I applied a black to white gradient map, at normal blending mode, 100%.  I then added a layer mask, and brushed the black and white off the leaf.

Then, I duplicated the background again, popped it on top, at Soft Light blending mode, 100%.

Now the image looked like this:

Haflwaydonescreenshot 

At this point, I thought it looked really wintery, and I wanted to keep that fall feel.  So, I picked textures that I knew would warm the image up, and give it drama.

So, I then added Kim Klassen’s Light Paper texture, at Color Burn at 40%.  That really made the leaf pop, giving it that red color.  Now, I was pretty happy with the color of the foliage, but not with the washed out sky.  I added Kim’s Warm Grunge Texture at Multiply, 40%, which gave the sky a cloudy coffee like texture.  And, to finish it off, I added Kim’s Warm Palette texture at Soft Light 100%, and that just made the image glow.

Last Red Leaf 

That’s it!  Easy peasy!

And, for a tutorial on how to do the mouseover affect, check this out!  For those of you who use Flickr, you can skip the part of the tutorial about creating posts just to get URL’s.  Just go to your image in Flickr, and click on Share.  Under Share, go to grab the HTML code – you don’t need to grab the entire code – just grab the part that starts with farm5.static, and ends with jpeg.  For instance, the code for one of these images was http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4103/5182611089_1370bb585e.jpg — just plug that code into Shadowhouse Creations’ script, and you’ll be good to go!

 

Touch Up Tuesday's at the Paper Mama

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