Tag Archive | Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

Project 365 – My P365 Anniversary

Well I can hardly believe it, but today marks the one year anniversary of the date I began my Project 365 journey.  It’s been quite an adventure!  While I wasn’t able to post an image every day, I can at least say that I stuck with it despite feeling, more often than I care to admit, like chucking the whole exercise.  So very many day I wished I had never taken on the challenge.  So very many days that I really didn’t have the time to spare to participate, but grudgingly did so anyway.  And so very many days I did not even want to post all those so-so and even bad images, but felt compelled to do so anyway just to get it over with.

But then there were many, many days that I rejoiced in the challenge because I knew I was growing as a photographer, growing faster than I could possibly have grown without taking the challenge.  There were many ah-ha moments along the way, moments when things just clicked (pun intended) right into place.  But I think what’s even more important than all of those light bulb moments was the cumulative effect of learning just by “doing it” every day.  I am thrilled with how far I have come over the past year and I know a great part of that is because I stuck with it and forced myself to keep shooting, editing, and posting my images even when I didn’t feel like it.

Today marks the end of my Project 365 journey.  A lot of life happened over the past year, and there were times the challenge just wasn’t an even an option for me.  But I feel satisfied in knowing that I did my best and stuck with it until the end.  It was a challenge so worth taking and I encourage you, if you are a photographer reading this post, to take the challenge yourself.  Without a doubt you will grow and you will learn.  It’s a journey worth pursuing, one you won’t regret (at least not most of the time 🙂 ).

So, if you’re wondering if I plan to continue with the P365 journey the answer is no… and yes.  I don’t plan to continue the daily challenge because I need to spend more time working on other important projects, not the least of which is my new photography business.  Several months ago I opened a small home photography studio and I will be dedicating much of my time to growing and developing my business.  It will be a balancing act between caring for my family, my business, and my personal life with friends and through my church.  But my passion for photography will keep me shooting and sharing, so I will still post my work as often as I am able.

I want to say a special “Thank You!” to those of you who have been following me through this journey!  I appreciate you more than you know.  And I want to especially thank those of you who reached out to me with your kind words and “likes”.  Your support and encouragement means the world to me.  As an artist it is often very difficult to put our work out there for the world to see.  Though we are generally our own worst critics (I am certainly mine!), we can’t help but fear (perhaps a little too strong a word to use here, but I am at a loss to come up with another) the other critics out there.  So it really does help to know when we’ve sparked a little something in the viewer and get the proverbial pat on the back or thumbs-up.  This too was a big part of the growing and learning process for me, and I am truly thankful for all of you!

So although today marks the end of my Project 365 challenge, my photography journey is still in its infancy and I anticipate, with eagerness and joy, many more adventures along this incredible journey.  I am dedicated to learning and growing, day by day and year by year, to become the best photographer I can become.  I hope you’ll stick with me, offering your encouragement, support, and even constructive criticism along the way.  If you decide to take the challenge yourself, or are already participating in the challenge please let me know!  I would love to see your work, learn from you, and encourage you along your journey.

Thanks again to all of you and God bless!

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Project 365 – Funky Fence and Thistle

Introducing my first Project 365 photo post!  I love the idea of challenging myself to add at least one photo a day to my blog to help inspire me to keep on shooting and ever learning.  I know it’s going to be a difficult to keep up with this challenge, and I will probably have to get really creative in order to find something new to shoot every day.  But I am sure it’s going to be a lot of fun and a wonderful learning experience.

I am not sure if this is breaking the rules of Project 365, but today’s photos weren’t actually taken today.  I am down with a summer cold and feeling rather rotten.  I might go shooting tonight if I feel better as I have a new lens that I want to take out for a test drive!  But I was anxious to begin and I thought these photos would be a good place to get started.

This first shot was taken a couple of weeks ago when I went scouting locations with a friend.  While I am not wild about the bright flower in the background as I find it rather distracting, I wanted to add this photo as inspiration to try shooting this subject again.  I didn’t care much for this shot in color but I love how converting it to black and white really added drama to the subject.  Can you see the spider web on the left side of the thistle?  I was tempted to flick it away when I saw it before shooting, but I am glad I decided against it.

Black and White Thistle

This image of a fence was taken the same day as the previous image.  This one was just seconds away from being deleted into oblivion because I did a really poor job of framing the shot.  When it came time for editing I found I didn’t have enough wiggle room to frame it the way I wanted. But, while messing around with it in Lightroom I decided to shift the crop angle a bit and lo and behold, I suddenly had something I found rather interesting!  I wish there would have been a bit more space above the front fence post, but alas this was all the image I had to work with.  I have included this one in my Project 365 because I learned a couple key things from shooting this image and I didn’t want the lessons to be lost.

Funky Fence

Thanks for stopping by and please feel free to leave your comments and suggestions below!  As always, I welcome your input.

Unfinished Painting Effect in Photoshop

 

One of my favorite things in the world to do is play around in Lightroom and Photoshop.  I love tinkering with photos!  I am not very skilled in the art of photography so I generally have to tinker a whole lot in order to improve the quality of my photos for scrapbooking, etc.

When I first started using Lightroom and Photoshop I was completely clueless.  It was all Greek to me.  I felt so overwhelmed and seriously considered signing up for Photoshop classes, but that really wasn’t in the budget.  So, I did what I always do when I don’t know how to do something but I want to learn.  I Googled it!  I’ve devoured tutorial after tutorial, tinkering and playing all along the way.  I am thrilled with my progress and how much I have learned so far, but I am forever blown away with all that there is yet to learn.  Those classes look just as appealing to me today, perhaps more so, as they did when I first got started. Ah well, maybe someday…

Fortunately, there are about a kajillion Internet tutorials to choose from and this page was the result of a tutorial from one of my favorite digital designers, Katie Pertiet.  I buy most of my digital content from her site, and her blog and tutorials are invaluable!  If you’re just getting started in digital scapbooking with Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, you’ll want to make your way through all of the Designer Digitals YouTube tutorials.  They are outstanding!

When I saw Katie’s latest tutorial, In the Studio: Painting in Progress, I had to give it a try!  I grabbed a photo from our recent family vacation and began playing with the technique.  WOW!  I was blown away!  Although I didn’t leave much of my photo unpainted the way she did in the tutorial, I really love the way it turned out.

After working my way through Katie’s steps, I took the technique one step further.  I really wanted my photo to look more like it was actually painted so I added a dry brush filter to the photograph.  And that was it!  I was completely hooked!  I loved the results so much I immediately designed this page to showcase the beautiful view from our vacation house.

I can’t wait to play around with this technique some more using other photos.  Ultimately, I’d really love to create something so spectacular that I feel it’s artsy enough to have printed and framed.  Now that would be something!