Friday, 29 January 2010

Best Shot - The Inner Moss & Other Stuff!

I went OUT today with my camera, so decided to give you a slide show :D This is a bit of my locality that I hadn't explored before. It was so peaceful to walk for an hour ~ alone ~ no kids, only the birds :D

Other snapshots of my week:

I seem to have spent a good deal of time this week lighting fires ~ it's been pretty chilly here!

If you'd like to see everyone else's Best Shot's of the week check on over at Lolli's Better In Bulk blog ~ see you there!! :D

FIX-IT-FRIDAY - NO.42 - "Small Snowman"



Edit One.


Edit Two.


Edit Three.


Edit Four.


Edit Five (just for fun!)

This weeks photo was a dream to work with :D
I fiddled with it a little in Lightroom first and then took it into PSE7. Everything I did was someone else's handiwork first, except for at one point I added a reddish hue layer so her face wouldn't look so green.
I used LR presets from CoffeeShop (mocha B&W) and a vintage 'people' one from Laura Roberts (who I found on Flikr).
I used textures from eKristina and the starry overlay was from Isabelle LaFrance (also from Flikr)
Edits 2 & 4 also have a very faint 'DPM Oh the Drama' action applied.
The Pencil Drawing was a LR preset from Vivian Chung (Flikr) - with some fiddling and then textures added in PSE+ a texture by Pareeerica (flickr)

These didn't take me too long this week ~ actions and presets are definitely a handy short-cut :D!!

Now to see how everyone else fixed this up, check over at Fix-It-Friday :D ~ See you There!

Thursday, 28 January 2010

You Capture - Colour


It's been quite the colourful week in our house actually...

Cookery gets to be quite colourful when the girls using their 'cooking in a cup' book and this week's offerings were as delicious as they were colourful!

We have been learning about the colour wheel in art, looking at primary and secondary colours and how they combine to contrast and blend. This is Bug's work this week (he is quite an artist in the making...): not only is his artwork colourful, but catch a look at his clothes! He is all about colourful at the minute :D

But then I wanted to stretch myself and get one of those close up shots like I see people take of pencils and crayons, only with pens. My camera was having none of it though (it really HATES poor light and struggles to focus at all) - this was the best I got ~ I think I actually prefer the blurry one in the end though!

And then at bathtime my DD & Stitch got these little fellows out of the bottom of the bath-toy box (where they have been for a VERY long time) and decided to play with them ~ how convenient!!

If the colours in my post look a little 'off' I'm sorry. I have been relegated to the laptop tonight - the screen is just not the same as the lovely PC, & neither do I have my fancy editing programs :( !

Now to see all the other pretty colours people have captured this week, head on over to Beth's Blog (you should see her lovely seat covers she's made!) and have some fun!!


I went for a walk this morning (Friday) ~ I wanted to capture some outside colour and it was a lovely day :D Anyone would think I was after bonus points or something!! ;-)

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

WordPlay Wednesday #3 - GLASS-PATH



I hope you had fun doing this again this week ~ I'm looking forward to seeing what you all captured and how you interpreted the words :D



SLOW (shutter speed)





(ok - so it's not the wind ~ there hasn't been any for a while here to speak of ~ but I thought it looked like how the wind might!






As you might notice I failed to get a shot for PRIZE - hope you did better than me :D!!

Time to link up and join in!
(For more details of how see HERE.)




See you next week :D!!

Monday, 25 January 2010

I ♥ Faces - Week 4 - “Texture” Photo Challenge!

I'm seriously thinking these wonderful ladies at iheartfaces are trying to ruin me!! I have spent HOURS deliberating over a photo to use. I have done three or four edits. I eventually chose this one and I'm still not sure it's the right choice! But in the end I figured Christmas is not so far since, that we have forgotten it yet :D

This is my beautiful nephew. This little man is my s-i-l's longed for child, and WOW - was he seriously worth waiting for! He is so adorable, so cuddly, so funny, so loving. He is the child of any mother's dreams :D

The texture I have used came from Pareeerica Textures on Flickr - she has some great Christmas ones :D. Then I used a whole mish-mash of actions & tweaks on actions! I know some were Coffee-shop and some were from Nelly Nero's PSE actions set. The predominant one of hers in the end was called 'think vintage'.

I must confess, I've found this really tough (did you get that!). I'm not sure my photography suits textures all that well - especially not on people. I can make it work with flowers & nature shots, but somehow it just doesn't seem to fit people all that well. I have a beautiful photograph I took of a friend's daughter. I was going to use it, but in the end I simply preferred it without the textures and the tweaking (I'll enter it when the time is right). Maybe it will come with practice, but I just had a real job finding a picture that would work well with a texture.

In the end I AM pleased with this, but boy ~ it was hard work!!

To see everyone else's beautiful creations this week check on over at I ♥ Faces.


My handsome almost-13 year old son (in serious need of a trim - there's long and there LONG!), but I love this shot. It may not be technically brilliant (which I am finding very frustratingly hard to achieve indoors with a not-very-good on-camera flash), but it is him! :D

Some of my favourites this week have to be of my kids playing on our new 'Just Dance' Wii game -it's such fun!!

I liked this one ~ it was 'homework' for my DPS 'Nuts & Bolts' course that I am doing (I bought the e-book) ~ looking at light refraction :D

And my Willow mother - I liked this shot. It says something of who I am at heart ~ I hope! :D

Everyone else's Best Shot's can be seen over on Lolli's Better in Bulk blog - hop on over :D

Saturday, 23 January 2010

You Capture - "Love Around Your Home."

Beth's You Capture this week is all about "Love around Your Home!"

I didn't get to taking my shots until today - busy, busy and all. It wasn't all that easy actually. I don't keep a ton of trinkets ~ I used to, but then I had 7 children, and some of the things I love(d) are no longer :( So now I don't, but there's a few ~ up high!

A willow and a soap-stone figure. Both were bought for me by Paul.

The Soap-stone was my 'New Mummy' gift with my eldest ~ almost 13 years ago.

The Willow was a Mother's Day gift a few years ago.
Behind you can see a beautiful shell/fossil thingy - given to me on the birth of Stitch, by a friend ~ and various other 'nice' things :D

Going upstairs ~ on the landing is a map of my favourite place in the world!

...and into my room. I love my room simply because I have one that is nice at last! For several years, our room has not been a place of peace or rest, but shared with the study and a horrendous squash ~ and then we moved here! :D

above my head I have this. It's a framing of a some cards that Paul has sent me over the years - it tells a story :D

and this is the one that's still waiting for a frame - my very first Mother's Day card!

Beside my bed (on a chest of drawers that was my Great GrandFather's) is this ~ my Bible and reading notes, a stack of half-read books, a photo of my children, and a bear...

...Paddington Bear! He was given to me by someone very special just before she left for Chile to be a Missionary. She has been home a long time now, but the bear remains special to me! :D

I hope you have enjoyed a glimpse of me and mine. There's lots more interesting stories to read over at Beth's so see you there :D

Friday, 22 January 2010

I ♥ Faces - Fix it Friday - #41- We Are Family

To go along with the "We Are Family" theme, i heart faces wanted to highlight a family that is very special to them - the Zwart family. Angie (co-founder of i heart faces) is friends with Jeff and Adrienne...and Adrienne is also an active participant in our weekly challenges.

The dad in this family has been struggling with cancer for years and they found out the devastating news in December that his cancer is now terminal. They are now doing everything they can to enjoy the rest of the time they have together on this earth.

To bless this family please stop by Adrienne's Blog or Jeff's Caring Bridge site to leave a kind word of encouragement today. One thing is for sure; i heart faces has got to be the kindest, most caring, compassionate participants in the blogging world and they would be thrilled we all took time & overwhelmed this beautiful family with kind thoughts today.

As part of blessing this family today we have been asked to 'fix-up' a family photo of them all. It's a lovely photograph, with mum and dad subtly faded into the background, but none the less there. I guess that's how it gets to be as our children grow up ~ we fade into the background of their lives and yet remain there, watching them and being there for them when they need us. It struck me, that these children may face teenage and adulthood without the physical presence of their earthly father, but he will always remain in their memories forever ~ as a figure in the background of their lives, who adored them and was always there for them. All this somehow made this capture even more poignant. I wanted to give it a timeless feel, so that when they look at it in years to come it's aged appearance will not seem out of place because ~ "that's the way it's always been!"

As always I used a hippity-hoppity combination of LR, PSE7 and Gimp.

We Are Family

With basic LR adjustments - auto tone (tweaked a little), punch, sharpen, crop & rotate.
We Are Family

Taken into PSE7 and applied coffee-shop's Perfect Portrait action – WOW …


This looked amazing, but I wanted it to look old, so I took it into Gimp, where I have a script called ‘Old Photo’ that I love. I applied that and then I did something to make it darker and more contrasted, but I can’t remember what!! It was only subtle though! After that I applied a texture of my own (an photo of an old piece of timber) – converted it to B&W so as not to alter the colour of the photo again – lowered the opacity right down, set it to ‘soft light’ mode, applied a mask and erased over the bits I didn’t want the effect on. I like it a lot, but I must tell you – this was my 2nd edit :D

We Are Family 1bgimp-tex


So – here’s the first batch I did ~ I know you’ll want to see them, but I just wish I’d applied that ‘perfect portrait’ to them before I did anything else ~ it made such a difference to their faces! They all carry straight on from the basic LR fix instead.

Coffee-shop Attic Vintage + Coffee-Shop Vintage Honey (fiddled with the layers) + a texture of my own in multiply mode and erased from certain areas.

We Are Family-4 copy2Really can’t remember, but I think it might have been the ‘Creamy Toffee Latte’ action turned right down.

We Are Family copy6 Coffee-Shop Splendor B&W with some layer tweaks.

We Are Family-3Can’t remember at all, but I know it was a coffee-shop job!

We Are Family-9 Last one – perfect portrait + creamy chocolate with some tweaks + curves adjustment to pull down the blown out areas ( I've got an action to adjust curves in PSE called ‘Grants Tools’ and it works in the guided action player).

And one for luck..!
I took the perfect portrait into picnik and added a faded dageurrotype curve (so easy) - and framed it :D

I think I could have applied just about any action to this photo and it would have looked great, because it was lovely to begin with! So I stopped!! What I love about these 'almost' last two, is the fact that everything is desaturated except Mum and Dad. I didn’t use selective colouring, I just upped the saturation by 10 % and it picked them out – easy :D ~ I'm not sure which is my favourite overall, but I do like the desat’ ones. It depends what you want from the picture I guess…and I think for that reason I like my ‘old photo’ – it achieved my aim :D

Just to add - these look really pixelated on Blogger (and the layout has gone weird too!), but if you click on them you will get to see them as I see them - nice and clean!

Now please make sure to go and see everyone else's beautiful fixes of this photograph and bless this family today ~ heart faces

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