Foto Friday: Radial Symmetry

August 13th, 2015
A tiny scrunch on the light end in Levels, smart sharpen.  Otherwise straight from the camera.

A tiny scrunch on the light end in Levels, smart sharpen. Otherwise straight from the camera.

Each week I learn a bit more.  This week’s photo challenge was Radial Symmetry.  I love Hawaiian quilts for that very reason, and wanted to try to make my own kaleidescope.  Jeannie Sumjall-Ajero has great software that, alas, works only on PCs, and I don’t want to bother with partitioning my hard drive, buying and installing Windows just to run her software.  So I tried to do it on my own in Photoshop.  It was a bear!  And in the end, I liked this photo of the bee best.  If I were to do it over I’d increase the ISO so I could increase the f-stop one or two to get both the front florets AND the bee sharp while keeping the background blurred out.  The background was our (ugh) dark brown house, but the combination of fast shutter and shallow f-stop just turned it to dark, which I like.

Here are my  better attempts, but after about 5 hours I threw in the towel!

A good idea, but I lack the knowledge of Photoshop.  Really wanted to create a 22.5 degree wedge/triangle, have 16-point symmetry, and a mask to create a star like a Mariner’s Compass.   Totally beyond me.  I’ve done so many edits I have no idea what all I’ve done.  This isn’t perfect—seams show, but enough for now!

A good idea, but I lack the knowledge of Photoshop. Really wanted to create a 22.5 degree wedge/triangle, have 16-point symmetry, and a mask to create a star like a Mariner’s Compass. Totally beyond me. I’ve done so many edits I have no idea what all I’ve done. This isn’t perfect—seams show, but enough for now!

RadialSymmetry45Grn

45 degree symmetry of bittersweet leaves and berries.

Another variation on the yellow-pink.  Like the other one better.

Another variation on the yellow-pink. Like the other one better.

Busy week:  Eli home from wrestling camp (pick up in Boston at 11:49 pm…home at 3:45 am…ugh ugh ugh).  Lots of work whacking back the goldenrod–bought a new brush cutter attachment for my Ryobi–LOVE IT!  Hair cut, visiting with Kathy, ice cream.  In other words, summer in Maine!   Also working on a project for family (lap quilts) and finishing an article for Machine Quilting Unlimited.  Got it sent off (it will publish in January), so more time for gardening.  And Saturday I head down to Lowell, Mass. to the Whistler House Museum of Art where I have two works in the current art quilt exhibit.  The Reception is Saturday–since my quilt is on the publicity I wanted to go Even MORE!   Stay tuned!

Foto Friday, Silhouette

August 7th, 2015

This past weekend we went on a 4 1/2 day trip to Nova Scotia and home via New Brunswick.   Gardening work and unpacking and starting on an article has distracted me (gee, who me?) from blogging, but promise I will.  This past week’s lesson and challenge in the Ricky Tims 52 Week Photography Challenge class was silhouette.   I tried a lot of things, but due to travel wasn’t at a time/place where I could do sunrise or sunset silhouettes.  So I ended up submitting a photo of the rigging of the Bluenose II (the Bluenose original is on the Canadian dime) in Lunenburg harbor.   Right click on photos to see larger.

adjusted levels to darken the masts, smart sharpen.  Lightened the sky by adjusting the blues slightly.  Slightly cropped on the right. The Bluenose II, a replica of the Bluenose which is on the back of the Canadian dime.  Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.  I liked the play of lines across the image.

adjusted levels to darken the masts, smart sharpen. Lightened the sky by adjusting the blues slightly. Slightly cropped on the right.
The Bluenose II, a replica of the Bluenose which is on the back of the Canadian dime. Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. I liked the play of lines across the image.

Major thanks to Valerie Hearder, an art quilter in Nova Scotia, for replying to my email and suggesting stops and things to see between Yarmouth and Mahone Bay and Peggy’s Cove.  More anon!

Lightened vignetting in the top corners, crunched levels to darken masts.  Punched up sky with vibrance. The Bluenose II, a reproduction of the Bluenose on the back of the Canadian dime.

Lightened vignetting in the top corners, crunched levels to darken masts. Punched up sky with vibrance.
The Bluenose II, a reproduction of the Bluenose on the back of the Canadian dime.

The masts to the tippy top of the Bluenose II.  Essentially no edits.

The masts to the tippy top of the Bluenose II. Essentially no edits.

Foto Friday: the Story

July 31st, 2015

This past week’s challenge in my 52-Week Photo Challenge workshop with Ricky Tims was “The Story.”  My story was that I was really, REALLY busy getting ready to teach at Maine Quilts and helping with set-up (as a Pine Tree Quilt Guild member and volunteer).  So I wasn’t really “in” to the assignment.  Turns out my best photo was one I took during set-up on my iPhone, then edited and converted to B&W at home in Photoshop.

Too busy this week, so feeling not creative.  Decided this shot on my iPhone was my best story!  Smart sharpen, removed the back of a person on the left with cloning, desaturated to render B&W.  Learned that you can use the burn tool on highlights, midtones and darks, so darkened the too-bright/distracting overhead lights as well as adding a gradient to the top.  Slight crop to remove more slats/boards on the very bottom.  Guess what I was doing on Wednesday?  I know some of the class members will guess correctly!

Too busy this week, so feeling not creative. Decided this shot on my iPhone was my best story! Smart sharpen, removed the back of a person on the left with cloning, desaturated to render B&W. Learned that you can use the burn tool on highlights, midtones and darks, so darkened the too-bright/distracting overhead lights as well as adding a gradient to the top. Slight crop to remove more slats/boards on the very bottom. Guess what I was doing on Wednesday? I know some of the class members will guess correctly!

My other two alternates were just meh.  But they certainly tell my story!

It’s messy.  Chaotic.  Not a great photo, more of a snap, but it certainly is my story.  Adjusted levels, smart sharpen, A bit of burn on the corners to give a subtle (I hope) vignette. Wish I had more time this week, but …..  Ooops.  Almost told the story….

It’s messy. Chaotic. Not a great photo, more of a snap, but it certainly is my story. Adjusted levels, smart sharpen, A bit of burn on the corners to give a subtle (I hope) vignette. Wish I had more time this week, but ….. Ooops. Almost told the story….

My story.  Sigh.   Messy.  Chaotic.  Piles.  Heavy equipment.  Smart sharpen, slight vignetting with the burn tool, minor adjustments to contrast, yada yada.   Too busy this week, feeling singularly not-creative.

And the cropped version. My story. Sigh. Messy. Chaotic. Piles. Heavy equipment. Smart sharpen, slight vignetting with the burn tool, minor adjustments to contrast, yada yada. Too busy this week, feeling singularly not-creative.

Quilting Arts TV–my free downloads

July 28th, 2015

Well, I’m only a little (ahem) behind the curve!  Finally discovered where the links are to my downloads, and folks LOVE my easy-peasy inside-out bag!  I am thinking of expanding the pattern and adding LOTS of options to make iPad cases, card cases, journal covers and more, so the popularity of the download thrills me!    Here are links:

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

Easy-Peasy Inside-Out Bag

Free-Motion Basics

Thread and Needle FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

I believe you need to have an Interweave/Quilting Arts account, which is free, to download theses freebies.  Enjoy!

 

 

Foto Friday, July 24th, 2015

July 24th, 2015

The week’s challenge was footwear.  I’m not big on still lifes, but most of my ideas had already been done by other students in the class, so I set up a still life of Eli’s wrestling shoes.  The other part of the lesson was on dominance.   The shoes are clearly more dominant in the second photo, but I felt the first one was a better photo, so I submitted that for my week’s challenge.

Here's the photo I submitted for the Footwear/dominance challenge.

Here’s the photo I submitted for the Footwear/dominance challenge.

The usual smart sharpen, slight adjustments to levels, dodged a bit on the red knee-pad on the left as it was too distracting.  I like the tight focus on the well-worn wrestling shoes.  The kid came in second at the State Wrestling Tournament (Class B), and fourth overall in the State in his weightclass, including competing against the big schools in southern Maine.  Proud mama!

The usual smart sharpen, slight adjustments to levels, dodged a bit on the red knee-pad on the left as it was too distracting. I like the tight focus on the well-worn wrestling shoes. The kid came in second at the State Wrestling Tournament (Class B), and fourth overall in the State in his weightclass, including competing against the big schools in southern Maine. Proud mama!