New Camera…

I got a new digital camera last week.  I have been wanting one a little smaller than the Sony CyberShot I’ve been using.  This one was on clearance at Radio Shack so I went for it.  It’s another Sony CyberShot (I do like them and knew I could jump in and use it right away), is 7.2 megapixel (I don’t think I need more than that) and works pretty much the same way as my other one.  It is also smaller, squarish and has a larger LCD screen.  It is set up pretty much the same way as my other one, with a few modifications, but nothing too difficult.

The one thing I have a problem with is loading pics from the camera to my external hard drive.  I keep getting a Delayed Write Failed message from Windows and then it acts like my drive is wiped out (but it’s not…I just have to reboot to see it again).  This is very annoying.  I finally found instructions online about how to get the pics off the camera and onto my desktop.  This is ok, but I like to put my photos on my backup external drive, which I still cannot do.  It’s very surprising that there would be this difference in unloading pictures.  I will keep searching for the answer.  Other than that I love the smaller size of the camera and the pics are still great quality.  Any computer geeks out there have any experience or answers to share?

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Photo of the day: Aluminum recycling center

Blooming Pink Peonies!

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…and one opening up…with a couple of critters crawling…

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Playing With Photoshop Elements…

Tree in my front yard ala colored pencil-cutout-paint daubs-poster edges.

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“My” Picasso…

I finally figured out how to make the center image smaller in this photoshopped image.  It actually wasn’t as hard as I thought.  I had to do some reading on the reflection tool  🙂  (If all else fails, read the directions.)

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FYI this was done using the Distort filter, Liquify function, and the reflection tool. I think it is much better now.

And BTW, a friend called me while I was in Paducah and said she loves this image and wanted a copy of it, so I guess you could say I have “sold” my first copy of this image.  (Even though I’m not charging her for it–she didn’t necessarily want it in cloth.)

Today…

We had SO much fun last night at the Photoshop class. We worked with layers and then we did touch up on a photo of a guy.  We took out his wrinkles and made him look 20 years younger.  I found the bloat tool and made his eyes really big and bulgy and fattened up his lips.  My friend who was with me declared…I can have bigger “you know whats”! (meaning in her own pictures)  I told her she could probably have whatever she wanted.

So today I took this picture…

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…and abstracted it in to this…!

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I love this…doesn’t it look like a Picasso?  Do you see the faces in it?  (Well, maybe not a Picasso….)

Update 4/19/09: I printed this out on a piece of 8.5 ” x 11″ cotton and wow, that part in the center with the white really takes over.  To my way of thinking, I would like to shrink that down a bit and increase the surrounding darker areas….I’m working on it, but it might take some time to figure out how to do it.

Odds And Ends…

There are times in my life (and I’m sure in yours too) when there are too many little detailed things to have to take care of…I think it must be called…Life. Tax time is one of them. For some reason, I can never be early. I have to be getting them out right around The Day. I even took them in a bit earlier, but I guess my cpa was pretty busy this year so it took her awhile. I finally got them out on the 14th. I also have to pay sales tax this month and have been waiting for checks to arrive so I can pay that. One of my election judge friends last week begged me to take a Photoshop class with her because there was a bit of a drive and she didn’t want to go alone. The price was definitely right ($20), so I signed up. We went Tuesday night and I learned SO much. I’m glad I went. We will do the second night tonight. Now, I only have Photoshop Elements 5 on my computer, but I found many of the same functions we learned about in my software and I am very pleased about that. Some of them are in different places, but I was able to locate them and do the same things we did in class. Let’s see if I can show you a photo I played with. My neighbors planted a bunch of sunflowers next to our yard a couple of years ago. I photographed them green as well as when they turned.

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I take a lot of pictures. I have always been a bit of a nature nut, seeking out the woods and the river whenever I wanted to be alone and think. And I have always taken pictures of things in nature. This hobby now comes in very handy with my art also. I love to take a photograph and use it as a jumping off place to start a new art piece. I don’t do realism, but I like to abstract whatever is in the photo. I think Photoshop will be another tool I can use in making my art…all for a $20 bill and a few hours well spent with a friend. (Well I did pay for the software too, but that was minimal.)

Creativity…Inspired!

Aha!  I just found another way to inspire creativity.  If you can’t get to an art exhibit for real…go visit Ragged Cloth Cafe.  I haven’t taken the time to get over there for awhile.  Wow.  I was just there and now I’m pumped and writing down notes and ideas.  There are some wonderful new posts over there. I saw something on tv yesterday and was thinking about photographing it, but photos of the television screen do not normally come out well, so I have committed it to memory and would like to create it.

Oh yeah, another thing I did this morning is take a few pictures of some textures and items I found interesting.  Here’s one for your viewing pleasure and inspiration. (pssst…The flowers are fake, but pretty nonetheless.)

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Seeing…Where It All Begins

I have been reading Betty Edwards’ book, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, as I have mentioned in previous posts. She says that learning to draw is not so much about drawing, but about seeing. She writes extensively about how to turn off the left brain dominance and make a shift to the right brain creative mode. The exercises in the book are there to help make this happen. I find it interesting how one can start to “see” things even when they are not expecting it.

For instance, my husband and I made a trip home for the 4th of July. I was talking on the phone when he pulled into the parking lot of the Dairy Queen in McLeansboro. I thought he had to use the restroom and he never said anything to me as he exited the car. While I was waiting, I began to “see” the side of a building in front of me. I think my mind made the shift to the right brain. Wow! There were some awesome markings. I got my camera out and started snapping pictures. I found watermarks and pitmarks on the building. I just kept shooting anything I thought I might find interesting, because you just never know.

Here are the markings that caught my attention:

This building with the blue doors also intrigued me, so I took a few pics of it too.

I think it’s time to get a new Thermofax screen order ready. I am loving buildings.

For most of my adult life, I have been a bit of a photography bug. Perhaps that’s why I went to x-ray school…to take pictures! But I’ve traded all that in now for a more artistic and interesting picture-taking experience. I love my digital camera.

Ahhhhh….Spring….

I printed this out on photo paper, 8 x 10 inch. This is my blooming Bradford pear. What an awesome picture. Digital cameras are the best, don’t ya’ think? The 8 x 10 looks like a painting!