Monday, April 22, 2013

Celebrating Earth Day...

with a walk on the wild side. It was a beautiful day so I decided to go out after work to enjoy nature. It was warm and breezy and the sun was golden. 

All photos taken on Earth Day, April 22, 2013.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Creative License Friday on Wednesday

This week's challenge for Creative License Friday was provided by SueAnn @ SueAnne's Journey. SueAnn provided this wonderful image of a weather vane.
To Edit the photo, I decided to have a go at my collection of editing programs and some textures.
Here is my first try at the photo.
I cropped the photo to an 8x10 size and added the following edits as shown in the following Gif.
For my next edit I decided to use PicMonkey. I used a bit of this and a bit of that, and come up with this...
I like the effect of the daguerreotype edit and framing with the addition of photo corners. It has an
old-time weathered feel to it.
If you enjoy photo editing, and want a good challenge,
come on over and join us at 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Creative License Friday on Wednesday...

well, at least I made it before the deadline ; )

This week's photo challenge for Creative License Friday was provided by Kerrie @ THE RAGAMUFFIN.  Kerrie provided this wonderful image of an Australian water dragon.

As it is a water dragon, I decided to send it on a little vacation up the California coast to the Pt. Arena Light house. It really seems to be enjoying the view from the cliff.

Here is what I did for my edit:
I edited both photos using the Topaz Simplify plug-in with these settings:
-Painting => Painting IV =>Finishing Touches => Transparency at 45% => Global Adjustment => Adjust => Dynamics at 125% => Structural Boost 125%

Then I horizontally flipped the position of the dragon and layered it onto the light house photo.
Next, I used the paint brush to remove the background from the dragon photo. And that was it!

Now it is time to see what everyone else has created with their edits over at

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Editing Fun at Creative License Friday

It's that time of the week for Creative License Friday over at she who carries a camera. Last week I had the good fortune of discovering this fun edit challenge, and this week I have the honor of providing a photo for the challenge.  Thank you so much Jill for hosting this challenge, and giving me the opportunity to see what others can do with this photo!

I took this photo back in October at the shore of the Sutro Baths on Point Lobos Avenue in San Francisco. When I arrived, the sun was glaring overhead. I knew it wasn't the ideal condition for taking photos, but I was struck by the rock with the hollowed out heart and the view of the ocean through it. I decided I'd worry about the editing later. Well five months have passed, and until this challenge I was still without a clue how to edit the photo. Last week I discovered a new texture artist, Lenabem-Anna, from the participants in the Creative License Friday challenge. I thought her moon and sun textures were amazing, so I downloaded them. Once I submitted this photo for the challenge, I realized Anna's texture, Background-Night, would add the perfect touch.

I wanted to tone down the glaring sun, so I decided to turn it into a night scene. Here is what I did:

I first used Anne's Background Night at 81%
Then used the RHWest Levi texture at 52%
Brightened it a bit
RH West Denim texture at 74%
Pumped up the hue saturation a bit
RH West Robin texture at 8%
Defined and sharpened
Ran it through Topaz Simplify to soften and bring out the color
and that is it.

I couldn't stop at one edit, so I also ran the final edit through RadLab for a darker edit, and  Silver Efex for a black and white edit.

Now it's time to go see what amazing things have been done to my photo over at

Creative License Friday

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Editing Fun

I discovered this fun edit challenge while reading a post by Deanna at Snippets From Springdale. I love editing photos, so I was excited to find "Creative License Friday" over at "she who carries a camera". Each week a photo is posted and anyone is allowed to edit and post their version of the photo.
Here is the original photo.

Here is my version. 
I thought this bird would look lovely resting on a branch full of spring blossoms. I think it adds the perfect touch to my photo : )
After seeing the fun edit from thesmittenimage, I decided to stray from my first try and go a bit out of the box to add it to a photo of my own. Here is what I did to achieve this edit:
1. I uploaded both photos and reduced my photo by 50% because it was too large in comparison to the bird photo.
2. I layered the bird photo onto my photo and brushed out all of the background.
3. I then used ctrl+T to transform by enlarging and placing the bird where I wanted it.
4. I added the texture Comfort by RHWest at 75% on soft light.
5. I then ran it through the Topaz Simplify plug-in
     -Painting => Painting IV =>Finishing Touches => Transparency at 45% => Global Adjustment => Adjust => Dynamics at 125% => Structural Boost 125%
And that was that.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Blue Skies

and magnolia blossoms are the subject of this weeks Texture Tuesday "Free & Easy" Challenge.
Everything is in bloom, and I am enjoying it because it won't be long before the summer drought comes and dries up all the plants.

Kim Klassen textures used: Isobel & Anna
Kim Klassen textures used: Grunged Up & Happy Heart
Kim Klassen textures used: Isobel & Sunkist
I'm heading over to see what everyone has posted this week at... 


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Birds and the Bees...

are enjoying the spring blossoms as much as I am, so they are starring in my Texture Tuesday challenge: "Show us your dream-like photos, soft, gentle, whispery..."

K.K. textures used: Cora, Sybil, Happy Heart & Grunged-up_2

K.K. textures used: Cora, Happy Heart & Grunged-up_2

K.K. textures used: Providence & Serendipity along with the "dreamy blanket of light tutorial"

Time to get posting over at...


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Early Signs of Spring

Yesterday I had fun capturing the beautiful spring blossoms of the ornamental trees in the area.
I used Kim Klassen's Downton textures to edit them.

edited with the cora and anna textures
edited with the cora and sybil textures
edited with the cora and sybil textures

I also used the Topaz Simplify plug-in to give the photos some richness and a tad bit of a printerly effect, after using the Downton textures.
I'm posting and checking how others used the Downton textures over at...


Sunday, February 10, 2013

In Search of...

a painterly effect. After seeing all the beautiful painterly photos created using iPhone apps, I have been searching for editing programs that work the same way on a PC. I haven't had much luck. I've been playing around with the 30 day free trial of Topaz Simplify 4 plug-in. I like the watercolor effect, but I am still wanting the grunge effect that is achieved with the many apps available for iPhone photos.
I would love to hear if you know of any tutorials, or editing devices you have used to mimic iPhone photo apps. Although I don't own an iPhone, I still go to iArt Chronicles to admire the iPhone artists and their beautiful work.

Here are a few of my simple painterly edits with Topaz Simplify 4...

Golden Hills of Mt. Diablo
Scraggley Coastal Oak on Mt. Diablo
Tree at the Entrance of China Camp on the S.F. Bay Shoreline
My favorite winter tree at Mt. View Cemetery
Coit Tower atop a San Francisco Hill