I’ve been cheering myself up with some festive photography lately – hope you like them …. just a bit of festive fun !
Of course, the true meaning of Christmas is that God sent his Son into the world to redeem mankind and offer eternal life to those who believe in Him, not because we deserve it , but He reconciles us to Himself through His grace.
If I’m not back here before Christmas, I wish you many blessings, Eileen
Decided to go high key as well as minimalist with these beautiful shells, then did a few variations in my PSP software. I had a lovely pearlised nautilus shell until I dropped it on the floor the last time I used it in a still life. I was heart-broken … so I’m on the look-out for a replacement. What a shame I don’t live at the seaside. I will have to buy on line I guess but it’s not the same as seeing it in real life is it? Anyway – I hope you like these pics.
Well – this is going to be another very short post, but maybe that’s a good thing!
Hope ya’ll have a good day, many blessings, Eileen
Sometimes we can get so familiar with the things around us – including nature – that they begin to look ordinary and even boring when you’ve seen hundreds of ‘samey’ looking pics. So it’s always a challenge to try to present images in a different way and even taking pics from different points of view can become clichés in the photography world. eg looking up at your subject from a very low pov. [ At my age I couldn’t get down there anyway and even if I did it would need a crane to lift me upright again!]
So, for me, this is where ‘post processing’ comes into its own … in todays digital world companies seem to be falling over themselves to give us more and more instant ‘effects’ to transform our images. So I thought I would post some that I’ve done in ON1 Perfect effects and Topaz Adjust/Impressions.
These ‘effects’ are not to everyone’s taste of course because they transform a photograph into something else entirely – a painting! As someone who used to paint in oils nearly every day, I was curious to see what my pics would look like after the ‘treatment’.
Actually – there are so many different painting styles and other effects available in these programmes that it can become time consuming to try to find the right one. Your own artistic judgements are necessary as every photo image will need your own decisions. Not every effect will suit every image …. but it all comes down to personal choice in the end. It’s always a good feeling though when someone likes the same thing you do!
I especially liked this one because it reminded me of the old glossy photo, post-card type Birthday cards with deckled edges that were around in the 30s-40s [yes – I remember receiving them as a little girl].
This one has just a hint of a painterly effect applied and is less extreme than the previous images. These effects can easily become addictive and I’ve seen so many that seem to follow the latest fad – eg – a more gritty look, especially in ‘Urban/Street photography, or there’s one that really smooths out choppy water in the sea, waterfalls and around rocks. I must confess, I don’t like to see water like that as their choppiness, to me, is their attraction. When it comes to water in lakes and rivers you can get away with it because it can add to the glass-like quality.
Oh dear – I’m beginning to sound like a bit of an expert, when I’m nothing of the kind – it’s just my personal choices! Anyway – the professional wisdom is that you should always do as much as you can to get a good shot ‘in camera’ and not use and rely on post processing to correct flaws etc. BUT – there are times when you use simple adjustments to remove unsightly/unavoidable telephone wires etc that spoil and detract from an otherwise good image, or use the crop tool for a better composition. The software programmes for all this is extremely clever …..Another thing that can be slightly overdone is the use of a vignette – I think I’ve struck just the right note her [ forgive the pun!]
This last one is an example of a light instead of dark vignette – also softened image. I recently read a comment somewhere [not here] that light vignettes were very popular in the ’70’s’ and old hat to use today – which only goes to prove what I said previously about photographers having ‘fads’. Personally I think all things are allowed – if it suits the subject – use it!
I rest my case,
Hope ya’ll have a great day, and many thanks for visiting … blessings, Eileen
After doing some ‘still life’ with this little chap I tried to use my imagination in other ways to involve him in a story and this is the result. It took several days to do stuff in my Paintshop Pro , mainly because it’s fiddly trying to get accurate selections and then reversing them to enable background alterations. I wanted to keep the objects fairly sharp but not the backgrounds. I’m sure I could have made a better job of it if I knew how to use Layers properly, but sometimes you need even more patience I think – and mine is in short supply these days!
Anyway – I hope it brings a smile …. Eileen
See ya’ll soon I hope – don’t forget to use ‘like’ button[ if you do]or leave a comment – they are always welcome – as well as any constructive critism or suggestions. Eileen
I’ve been picking up tips about lighting for my still life subjects and decided to try using a couple of Led lamps that I nearly got rid of. They turned out to be useless for me in the living room as they weren’t bright enough. However – they are just what I need for taking photos. My ‘studio’ is a table top and I also make use of a light tent – which is simply a fabric cube about 16″ square.
See you soon, Eileen
What I love about Sedums is the way rain drops collect and stay put on the leaves – so convenient for taking photographs. The plant has fleshy, succulent stems and leaves and as it’s clump-forming it makes it very easy to control and also to propagate. I found out by accident that if a stem breaks off you can just stick it in the ground and it will grow into another plant …. even better – you can give them to your friends [if they want them].
So, after the downpour the other day, I saw the sedum covered in bright droplets, looking like little jewels with the sun shining on them. My photos don’t really do justice to what I saw as they can’t completely capture the beauty of God’s creation. Just shows you though what marvelous inbuilt lenses He gave us !
In spite of the monochrome colouring, the sculptural quality of the plant makes it really interesting [at least, to me] and it wasn’t until I uploaded the pics to my laptop that I saw the ‘debris’ in the close up shots of the single raindrops.
Then I had a go at isolating a green droplet against a black and white leaf and stems. I love my Paintshop Pro software! Always found it easier to fathom out than Photoshop – cheaper to buy too….
Bye for now – you are very welcome to comment by clicking the ‘comments’ word at the end of the opening paragraph info. Eileen
I took these photos through the window a few days ago when we had rain as a respite from the heat wave. The forecast seems to be for a bit more of our usual weather shortly, but that’s ok cos I don’t like the heat that much! It’s probably an age thing as all the ‘olds’ I know feel the same , but the young absolutely love it!
When it rains it makes everything look different and it creates opportunities for me [when the rain stops] to search out things in my otherwise ‘samey’ little patio garden. Plus I can shoot through the glass if it’s pouring down outside. I was very pleased to capture some ‘splashes’ in front of Ollie the owl and his companion [who I haven’t thought of a name for yet].
I will post some sedum/raindrops later today hopefully, take care all – Eileen
For weeks I’ve been bemoaning the fact that I haven’t had any butterflies in my garden – well today there have been several fluttering about and even resting long enough for me to take some pics. I think this particular lot are called Gatekeeper [Pyronia tithonus] because they have twin black eyespots with white pupils on their forewing. Anyway – I only know that because I did a google search! I’m delighted – especially as I’m getting more used to using the zoom on my camera instead of the macro setting [which I still haven’t figured out!].
I amused myself no end cropping and trying to be generally more ‘artistic’ without it looking too artificial … BUT – I do try to get the best pics I can ‘in camera’ as is always recommended. I tend to take loads of shots and discard the majority as many of them are almost the same – it’s just a matter of choosing the best of the bunch. It’s been a bit on the windy side today, so as well as the butterflies and bees being on the move all the time – so are the plants they land upon unfortunately.
I’ve deliberately kept some images high key to reflect the beautiful sunny weather – although I appreciate some butterflies suit a bit of drama more.
Even though this Sedum isn’t in flower yet, the butterflies are obviously attracted to it. I’m fortunate in having several Sedums which I love – especially this dark red variety called Purple Emperor.
I’m looking forward to posting some photos I took through the window during a downpour yesterday. I was going to post them today but the butterflies took priority!
see you soon, Eileen
I love lavender plants and so do the bees …. ladybirds and butterflies are in short supply in my garden – well, non-existent really – but the bees are out in force. So, I thought I’d have another go at practicing with the macro setting on my new camera. Hmm – very disappointing I must say – goodness knows what I’m doing wrong. It must be because I’m treating it asin ‘auto’ mode I guess – I don’t know if I’m supposed to be selecting other things to help.
Fortunately I’d read tips from someone about using the zoom lens for flower close ups instead and so I’ve contented myself with experimenting with that. These are the results, but I know I could do so much better! I found it wasn’t much good my trying to set the camera for fast-moving objects either …. I find it all very frustrating as I really hanker after lovely sharp images. However – as I’ve said elsewhere – I try to make up for that with being more ‘artistic’ when sharpness isn’t crucial. And as I enjoy using my Paintshop Pro it becomes such a pleasure to do. I try to get as good a photo ‘in camera’ as I can though and I don’t like to be too obvious in ‘enhancing’ images. But there are instances when it’s ok to go to extremes and a lot of fun too.
Next time I hope to post something completely different to my recent wild-life offerings. More ‘still life’ or abstracty. See you soon, Eileen
As well as buying a new camera I went mad and bought an updated version of my Paintshop Pro software – x6. I tinkered around a bit with the colour on these duck images. They were in dappled shade which I quite liked, but I think I could probably have got more light within the shadows. If I decide to have another go I may post the results here to compare. There is a lot that is the same in my update, but a lot that’s unfamiliar to me, so I’m on a learning curve as usual.
I’ll sign off now …… please leave any comments or suggestions, or even ‘like’ or ‘share’ ! Eileen