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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

(Frustrated) Exploring with a Camera (Cropper)

Linking with my friend Kat for this session of "Exploring with a Camera".  If you haven't checked out this wonderful and helpful series, you're really missing out.  Punch on through....you can thank me later.




Best thing about Kat, she makes you think.  I love learning things, so it's a perfect match for my brain.
The latest installment of Exploring With a Camera is about picture ratios, complete with easy to understand chart.  Very helpful.  Trust me, the word ratio sounds boring, but it's really not and Kat makes it seem easy....even if you're not a math head.

I'd already learned this lesson the hard way.  Grrrrrr.  Last Christmas I tried hard to stay away from gift giving.  I'm not a big fan of the season and keeping it low key helps-I think the ads, music, catalogs, decor that begins on Nov 1 and lasts through Jan 1 (that's 1/6th of the year)-it's just too damn much for me.  NO ONE's life is that perfect please and thank you.  The chance that there will be a new Lexus in my driveway with a big ass red ribbon wrapped around it and seasonally appropriate snow on the ground and falling from the sky is never going to happen.

What was I talking about?  Oh yes, ratios.

So, last holiday season I chose a favorite photo to give to a couple people.  Printed it out, framed it up....and blah.  The 8 x 10, 4:5 crop totally killed my 8 x 12 image.  I couldn't figure out what was wrong.  The little 5 x 7 held up better because it was closer to that 2:3 I seem to favor.  It killed the image so much it no longer held the emotional response.  It became blah.  This happened a few other other times too.  I was finally brave enough to give my images as gifts and when I framed the 8 x 10 size just didn't work.  I finally figured out the problem.  I'll have to give those individuals some more better cropped images.

Fast forward to holiday season 2011 (which I'd prefer to begin thinking about on approximately 12/22/11), I thought I'd make a calendar of my images to give to family and friends.  I can get a really sweet deal at overnightprints.com.  BUT, the size of the calendar image template is 8 x 11.  Last night I tried to choose a few-it took a long time so many just didn't work. I'm afraid I may have to consider another way to create a calendar worthy of gift giving at reasonable cost....suggestions?

Here are 3 that I tried to make work (Tim Gunn...."designers, I'm sending in your models"...) Oh help my brain is really quirky today.   I'll just show you what I mean.

Here's my original image:

Frosty
Frosty

And here it is cropped for 8 x 11....this one isn't too bad.  My anal retentive self could likely live with this one.
10October copy
October

The other consideration that's come into play is changing my images from RGB to CMYK which this online service suggests.  Some of them held up, but most were quite altered.   So much to learn.

Across the Sky {177/365}
Across the Sky

2February copy
February

Perhaps I was a little heavy handed on the processing, but back in February I wasn't doing any.  I also think the CMYK came into play here.

Fish House
Fish House


1January copy
January

The brightness in this image doesn't scream in the larger version, but cropped it is way too yellow.  I've got to revamp that, AGAIN.

These images were 3 that sort of worked as 8 x 11 but overall this is frustrating.  I didn't realize how much I'm framing my image in the camera and in processing-straightening and cropping to a particular size.  Obviously I'm drawn to an aspect ratio that isn't favored by calendar makers.  I wonder how those professional calendars make it look so easy.

Thanks Kat for reminding me about this ratio "thing" and thanks for the handy chart.  I think I'm going to give framed photos instead.  Next problem...finding 8 x 12 frames at a low, low price.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Creative Breakfasting

Linking with Lisa for this week's Creative Exchange.  And I'm doing it on Monday which is always a miraculous thing.  I even amaze myself sometimes.  






I was lucky enough to get a nice photo walk in on Friday morning.  Love that.  Spur of the minute decision when the cat, her royal princess-ness, woke me just before 6 a.m.  Shot a bunch of images until my fingers on the trigger hand got too cold and my stomach reminded me that breakfast might be a good idea.

I don't mind eating alone, especially at breakfast time....however, I think other "diners" might think I'm a total weirdo, because, well....I can't stop playing with my camera.  If I'm confined to sitting still in one place, with camera nearby, I keep picking it up shooting something, then putting it down again.  Repeat, ad nauseam.  I think they rush my order to minimize the ADHD/OCD that I appear (in their eyes) to have.  Thought I'd share some of said results.  BYW, I'm totally OK with people thinking I'm a nut, because I know I'm not. : )  I have many endearing qualities.

Sidewalk
Sidewalk
See that open sign?

Coffee
Coffee
Coffee and colorful menu

Two Top
Two Top
Beat the crowds by about 20 minutes

Neon Blinds
Neon Blinds
I know people were giving me "that look" when I took this one

Touch of Pink
Touch of Pink
Sweet little flower and cool way to have sugar on the table

Eggs
Eggs
Best way to get me to stop....bring the food

Balance
Balance
Of course I start again as soon as the food is gone.

Check please!

Thanks for having breakfast with me today.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday Scavenger

Linking with Ashley for the post-Thanksgiving issue of Scavenger Hunt Sunday. 








I've had a delightful 4 day weekend with NO work!!  Well, there was work; work around the house, etc., etc., but no office.  How great does that feel?  Fantastic.  Best part of my Thanksgiving day was playing "getting hotter, getting colder" (complete with references to bathing suit weather or get out your mittens) with my 3 year old niece and 5 year old nephew.  It was like a scavenger hunt of a different kind.  Fun.

On to the real scavenger hunt where I was looking for:  Waiting, Foliage, Candid, Knife Fork or Spoon, and Rule of Thirds.



Rush Hour on the Bridge
Rush Hour on the Bridge
Waiting:  Cars aligned waiting for the traffic signal to change. 

Leaves at the Curb
Leaves at the Curb
Foliage:  I think foliage means still on the trees-oh well, our trees are D for done, but there are plenty of nasty old leaves on the ground.

Walk to Work
Walk to Work
Candid:  Early Black Friday morning.  This poor guy likely had a long day ahead.  I love corner windows where you can see through to the other side.  Even without Santa's helper, this is a fun shot to take....and it was a momentary quick grab when I saw the hat coming.

Start to Finish
Start to Finish
Knife, Fork, or Spoon:  Couldn't decide, so all three.  Breakfast before and after.  Great scramble.

Still Sleeping
Still Sleeping
Rule of Thirds:  This doesn't seem like a rule of thirds pic, but the yellow house falls in the right place as does the rooftop level and distance skyline.  I guess that's part of the reason it appeals. "Ain't that America, little pink houses....." you know? It's running through my head.  Hope I didn't "ear worm" you, the way I did myself.

That's it for my scavenger hunt.  Thanks for taking a peek at my images today.  Hope you had a chance for some fun this weekend too.


Friday, November 25, 2011

Weekend Reflections

Linking with the fabulous James for this week's Weekend Reflections.  Great meme....check it out.


Taking a few days off around the Thanksgiving holiday here in the states.  The thing I like BEST about having a day off is letting it have no agenda and letting the day unfold as it will.  This morning I woke up at 6 a.m. and made an instant decision to take a run up to Portland for a little morning city shoot-followed by breakfast.  One of my fave things to do.  There was no shortage of reflections this morning.  Big score!!

Delivery
Delivery

Fruit Seller
Fruit Seller

Hill Reflections
Hill Reflections

Double Vision
Double Vision

Cobblestones
Cobblestones

Earlier this week I played around with some night reflections.  Still working on these, but that's the way to learn. Keep trying.

Mill Lights
Mill Lights

And this is one of those drive by shootings.  Sitting in traffic one day, I spied this black SUV parked outside one of those rental furniture places.  I like the way the open sign is seen 3 times.

Black Ford
Black Ford

That's it!!  Guess what I've got planned for tomorrow?  Nothing.  We'll see what happens.
Have a great weekend, and thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Leftover Exchange

Linking with the wonderful Lisa for this week's Creative Exchange.  Love this linky-much appreciative for the opportunity to share. 






 
 
I don't know about anyone else, but I am enormously ready for Thanksgiving.  This year I am thankful for 4 days off in a row.  Since Labor Day I've worked 6 days a week with maybe one or two exceptions and I'm just ready for some down time.  I wonder if I'll use it wisely or waste it?  I suppose if it's my time it doesn't matter.  I'm just ready to stop the speed induced juggling.
 
This year I don't even care if there's turkey-as long as there's potato-and that would be me-a couch potato.
 
Moving along.....in the spirit of overwhelmedness, thought I'd put up a few random pics that are sitting in the recent archives.  No theme-hodgepodge.  Is hodgepodge really a word?
 
 
Afternoon Dunes
Afternoon Dunes
 
Shutter Shadows
Shutter Shadows
 
Salad and Fries
Salad and Fries
 
Life Jacket
Life Jacket
 
Caught
Caught
 
Salon Stillness
Salon Stillness
 
Bear Swim Club
Bear Swim Club
 
Lucky Dog
Lucky Dog
 
Windy
Windy
 
 
 Thanks to Lisa for being such a gracious and kind hostess and to you for taking a peek.
Wishing you a happy holiday-with turkey AND couch potatoes.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Scavenging with Red Wine

Linking with the wonderful Ashley for this week's Scavenger Hunt Sunday.  Wouldn't miss it.





One of my fave activities on Sunday morning is pouring a nice big coffee and sitting down to put together my Sunday Scavenger post.  Today however, the morning got away from me, so this evening I've poured myself a nice big red wine instead.  This is a nice change, but if I stop making sense, you'll know why.

This week's topics were: Mainly One Color, Around the Home, Reflection, Writing, and Water.

Ajar
Ajar
Mainly One Color:  When I look at this again, it's sort of two colors.  Whoops.  I was seeing it as pink-ish tones.  A little "Harry Potter" closet, under the stairs.

Princess P 
Princess P
Around the Home:  Some of the most precious things around my home are my pets.

Checking the Screen
Checking the Screen
Reflection:  At the beach today, this couple was taking late day shots and comparing their results.  A sweet moment.

Car Wax
Car Wax
Writing:  Sometimes I don't know why I take photos.  Car wax?  It was sitting in the garage in nice sunlight....and it has writing on it.

Bittersweet 2
Bittersweet
Water:  Little droplets hanging from bittersweet by the side of the road.

Those are my takes for this week.  I don't think the red wine came into play anymore than the coffee does.  Time for a 2nd glass I guess.   Have a great day and thanks for stopping by to see my pics.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Weekend Reflections

Linking with Sir James for this week's weekend reflections.  Thank you my reflection loving friend.  Hope your hiatus is allowing you to capture new reflections for all to enjoy.


I was better about getting me some reflections this week, I think because the community college was on break so no research papers due.  Yay.  Love the class, hate the papers.  The light is fading quickly from the sky, finding myself in the dark between 4:30-4:45 which is waaaaayyyyyy to damn early for a light lover.  How long is it until June?

Buy Local
Buy Local
No light?  Try shooting in the dark.  I haven't explored night shooting much, so I guess it's time to give that a try.  Note to self.....tripod lower on an angle.  Oh well.  Learn as you go.

Still Open
Still Open
One of the specialty shops in Kennebunkport.  Jus' sayin'....no people around to even give the illusion of shopping let alone getting the wallets out.

Along Main Street
Along Main Street
New community art gallery opened in town this summer.  Cool window ops.

Tabla Reflections
Tabla Reflections
Only reflection loving friends can appreciate this one.....tabla drums, one metal, one wood.  I'm reflected along with some hand-held rhythm instruments on the table. 

In the Wind BW
In the Wind
Always enjoy catching my sweet dog Tula in a beach reflection.  Nice light before sunset.

Library Door
Library Door
I HAD to take this one.  No way to enter in without snapping first.

Have a great weekend....wishing you lots of reflection opportunities.