Thursday, September 27, 2012

Photo Art Friday, September 28, 29

Welcome to Photo Art Friday!

You are always invited to link up ANY piece of photo-ART that pleases you, or you have the option of sharing a piece of photo-art inspired by our weekly prompt.  If you are new to Photo Art Friday, you can read the guidelines for participation by clicking on the tab under my header.

This week the optional prompt is:

Abstraction(s) from nature.

Next week the optional prompt is:


Of course, the fun part is to see all the different ways we can interpret the prompt - so don't hesitate to share something because you think that it does not 'conform' closely enough to the prompt.

This blog is not about 'conformity'!

 Do YOUR thing - and share it!!! 

 Inspire us with your unique interpretation!

I have to send out a big apology for not being able to comment  on all the photo-art submitted last week.  Life just got in the way (doctor's appointments, a special diet required for my husband, house guests from British Columbia, damage to stone retaining walls on our property - caused by strong winds and pounding rain, etc. etc.).  When I did finally find a minute to get in front of the computer, I was fighting with internet connection problems.  (Grrrr ....)   

I did get to view each submission, even if I did not comment, and was truly blown away by the diversity of content and composition.  You all never cease to amaze and inspire me!

Just a quick reminder that the 30% automatic discount on every texture set available in my shoppe ends this Sunday - the 30th.  

If you have been wanting to add some extraordinary textures to your private collection, at a reduced rate, now is the time!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Photo Art Friday, September 21, 22

Welcome to Photo Art Friday!  

The InLinkz button, for every edition of PAF, is open from Thursday evening at 7:00 p.m. EDT to Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m. EDT.  To read the guidelines for participation you have just to click on the Photo Art Friday tab under my header.

As always you are encouraged to link up any image YOU consider to qualify as a piece of photo-ART.  If you choose, you can use the weekly optional prompt.

This week's prompt is, The Beauty of Aging.

This flower's form is shrivelling, losing its allotted amount of life energy ... and still it proudly displays its beauty.

I experimented - adding this burgundy painterly texture (from my private collection) to the photograph of the aging flower.

The texture was blended into the photograph using Hard Light blend mode.  I experimented with bringing in more light (using a Levels adjustment) but found I liked the dark and sultry tones just as they were.  The texture imparts a painterly feel to the image and I am happy not making any further manipulations.

Aged, dramatic and beautiful (to my eye).

Next week our virtual art gallery will be ready for any piece of photo art you wish to 'hang',


you can use the optional prompt, abstraction(s) from nature

The challenge, if you choose to accept it, should keep you busy exploring, capturing photographs and digitally editing this week.  :) 

This weekly digital meme is truly a wonderful way to:

*  train our eye to look for the artistic as well as the beautiful, 

*  expand our creative horizons, 

*  experiment with new forms of digital art,

*  commiserate with others at various levels of artistic development, and 

*  develop our familiarity and expertise with the use of our editing tools.

Remember, we are all at different stages of learning and experience in our digital art journey, so try not to compare yourself to others who have had more time to develop their skills.  We are where we are and should be proud of our desire to create, and the progress we have made at this point in time.

Comparing ourselves to someone who has been a photographer or digital artist for many more years than our self can only serve as a discouragement.  Surely we come here to support and encourage our artistic impulses, so do try to enjoy where you are in your artistic development and what you are accomplishing right now!  When you view the photo art of those with more experience under their belt, just use it as an indication of what you can eventually do too, as you continue your journey.

I would love to know what you would see, and what you would realize if you looked over all the submissions you have made to PAF - in the order in which you submitted them. What would/do you notice about your artistic evolution?  The answers will certainly be as varied and numerous as the number of participants!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012 know beauty...

 This piece of photo-art was created using one of my textures as the background on which I applied and manipulated two photographs in Photoshop Elements 8.  The quote by St. John Of The Cross was superimposed and then the whole piece received a little gentle massage in RadLab.  The RadLab adjustment was not necessary, but it can always add a little je ne sais quoi to a piece.

What to do with this blurry photograph taken from the car (window closed)?  I was about to click the delete key and trash it when I decided to add one of my 'painiterly' textures and see if it could be 'saved'.

 I selected pdpa Spring Meadow texture from the Digital Virtuosity Texture Set.

 And look what a great texture can do for a bad photo!  I love it.  Add a texture and save a photo, I say!

There are only ten days left to take advantage of an automatic 30% discount on all the texture sets in my shoppe.  You do not have to remember or type in any code.  The discount will be applied automatically to your total.  There are some new texture sets that you may not have seen in the shoppe, so do take a peek!

Hope to see you link up a piece of photo art this week.  The InLinkz button for Photo Art Friday makes it appearance Thursday at 7:00 p.m. EDT.  The optional prompt for this week is:  "the beauty of aging".  Can't wait to see your artful interpretations!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

...thank you and a free texture...

Where do I begin?   Thank you seems like a good place to start, so a thousand Thank Yous going out to each of you.  Your submissions to last weeks Photo Art Friday were beyond amazing!  What a great group you are!!!

I tried to take a peek at all your photo art images as they were linked up ... and the way you embraced the prompt was heartening and humbling.  While it was inspiring for all who viewed your art and self-descriptions, it's my guess that it was even more satisfying to create and refine the phrase that represents your journey as a photo-artist.

I don't want to forget to thank those who chose to link up a favorite or recent piece of photo-art.  That is always an option and what PAF is for!

I'll be visiting each one of you to take a closer look at your images and leave a comment in the next few days.

In the meantime, to thank you I'd like to offer you this free texture.  If you like my textures, be sure to check out the automatic 30% discount on all the texture sets in my Texture Sets Shoppe.  The discount expires at the end of this month.

 To download a free, high-res version of pdpa Ancient Treasures texture, click HERE.

Below is an example of how it can be used.  Can't wait to see how you use it in your photo-art!

Thank you, too, for your kind thoughts for my husband.  THEY WORKED!  He is home and doing great.

I so appreciated your insightful and caring comments about my fundamentalist childhood.  

While my childhood was narrow with regard to cultural exposure and opportunities, it was not narrow with regard to love, tenderness and compassion.  I have since indulged in both cultural and educational opportunities - just a bit later than some.

Both my mother and sister maintained loving contact with me after I left their religion - even though they were somewhat breaking the 'no contact with non-believers' rule by so doing.  So no need to feel sorry for my childhood.  It was rich and meaningful in so many ways - including some aspects of my religious education.

While I could not now be persuaded to actively espouse any particular religion, I consider myself a spiritual person and enjoy reading and benefit from the writings of a great variety of persuasions.  I also understand that some feel 'called' to a fundamentalist belief system.  Fortunately, in North America we are free to make our own choices - as adults.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Photo Art Friday, September 14th, 15th

Welcome to Photo Art Friday for September 14th, 15th.

As with every edition of Photo Art Friday, you may link-up any piece of photo art that you wish to showcase in our virtual gallery,


this week you can use the prompt to compose a seven word sentence that describes your life or experience or process as an artist (be it a photographer, painter, mixed media artist, digital artists, whatever ...) and marry your sentence to a piece of photo art that somehow illustrates your sentence.

Can't wait to see the gems that will be set before us!!!  This should be a LOT OF FUN!  I think this prompt will allow us to get to know each other a little better too.  Here's my sentence and image and a little explanation of how I arrived at them:

This is a manipulated photograph of my youngest of two grandaughters.   At that age she looked remarkably like me at the age of two and as she grows it becomes evident we have many physical and personality traits in common - one of which is insatiable curiousity.

I chose this image of her as the thumbnail icon for my blogs because the biting into the apple has a lot of significance for me.  I was raised in a strict fundamentalist, end-of-times religion where devotion to God meant one had to reject the knowledge, education, entertainment, activities, opportunities, culture of the 'world'.  Metaphorically, we were strictly forbidden from enjoying the succulent, juicy fruit of the culture around us.

As a young adult, I found the courage to walk away from such a primitive, stultifying, harsh, dogma-driven way of life.  Every new arena of life that I embraced felt like another bite from a forbidden fruit and it was a joy to embrace a life of choice and exploration - openly and fully.

There was, of course, a price to be paid for choosing liberty of thought and to indulge my natural curiousity, and freedom of action.  Anyone who dares to leave that fundamentalist religion is shunned by their friends and family for making the choice of freedom over faith in their interpretations.  It was a hard price to pay.  But ultimately there was no other choice I could make, as anyone who has made difficult choice for the exercise of free will, will tell you.

All that to say, because every minute of our day in that religion was spent studying scripture, studying their publications that interpreted scripture, going to several meetings each week, and going door-to-door to spread the 'good news' that God would soon destroy the wicked and establish a paradise right here on earth, etc., etc., etc.  (Yes ... I was one of those people who bang on your door and try to tell you how wrong your religion is, so that you will convert to mine.  Apologies!)  Thus there was no time or permission to explore the world, the arts or my own creative potential.  I had to suppress any and all creative instincts.

So the image above was made to try to illustrate how now each and every foray into artistic expression tastes like a sweet bite into formerly forbidden fruit.  Sheer joy!!!


Next week you can link-up any piece of photo art you wish to feature in our virtual gallery


you can use the prompt:     the beauty of aging

As always, interpret the prompt ANY way that pleases you.  While we can use a prompt to help give us focus, do feel free to push the boundaries in any way your inner muse suggests!

My husband is still in hospital (and doing well), so I am spending my days there, of course.  Thanks so much for all the care and concern you have expressed.  May not get to your images/sentences right away, but I WILL visit each one!

Monday, September 10, 2012

... free vintage-y texture ...

Thought you might be in the mood for a great, little texture today.  It's called Vintage Vellum.  You'll see why when you apply it to one of your photographs.

To download your high resolution version of pdpa Vintage Vellum texture, click HERE.

Looks like DH's surgery is a "go" for tomorrow.  We're off to admit him to hospital this afternoon.  I have Photo Art Friday's post all ready to go up on Thursday evening (EDT) - so will see you then.

If you need information and examples about this week's prompt, just click HERE.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

PAF 7-Sentence Prompt Examples

Your submissions for the 'moving' edition of Photo Art Friday were amazing!   So much artful inspiration and so much generous support for each other.  What a great group of people we have frequenting our digital gallery!!!

Emails have come in expressing a lot of enthusiasm for the September 14th PAF prompt of the seven word phrase describing your process as an artist with an accompanying piece of photo art.

However, a couple of you expressed that you felt a bit tentative about the unusual nature of the prompt.  So, I thought I would show you a few examples of seven word phrases I came up with to describe my evolution as an 'artist', in hopes that you will see it is not nearly as difficult or intimidating as you may have imagined.

A great motto for this little project is that famous acronym KISS:


:)  Of course trying to reduce your artistic journey or perspective down to seven words forces you to keep it simple, doesn't it?  :)   

With this piece, the image was already in my archives.  There was something about the woman gingerly putting her foot out to test new territory that mirrored some of my process as an artist.  I have been rather tentative and unsure throughout my evolution as a wannabe artist.  I composed the seven word sentence to correspond to the image.  Perhaps you will want to create an image to match the seven word sentence.  Either/or!!!

For many reasons, for most of my life I basically had no idea that I had any artistic inclinations.  So I felt this piece of digital art with life moving beneath the difficult-to-decipher, dormant image of a woman's face in the clouds would illustrate that facet of my artistic evolution.

As you work developing your seven word sentence you will quickly see that the challenge is to eliminate most of the "I's", "me's", "and's", etc from your phrase.  It's a great exercise in learning to be succinct!  I'm always too wordy, so this is a great exercise for me!  But you already knew that didn't you?   :)

Here, just for the sake of time and more examples, I have put two seven word sentences on this image - one fitting with the light of the sun's rays and the other merging with the theme of flight.

So hope that gives you a better perspective on what this week's prompt is asking of you.  If you have any questions please post them in the comment section.  I will answer you there and everyone can then benefit from the question and answer.  There are no stupid questions just as there is no 'stupid' in the acronym kiss ... well on this blog anyway.   :)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Photo Art Friday, September 7th, 8th

Welcome to Photo Art Friday

After a brief hiatus, the doors to our virtual gallery will open Thursday evening (the 6th) at 7:00 p.m. EDT.  The 'walls' of our gallery are waiting for you to hang your piece of photo art for the week.  Friends are waiting to be inspired and to respond with comments about how your photo art 'moves' them.     :-) 

(Yes, this is a repeat of a post made and removed earlier this week.  I've removed paragraphs that are no longer applicable, left my submission for PAF, and of course the InLinkz button for your submissions.)

This week, as with previous editions of Photo Art Friday, you can link up any piece of  photo art.  You also have the option to submit a piece of photo-art based on this week's prompt:  "moving".  There are several ways to interpret the word "moving', which gives you a good bit of flexibility with your photo art creation.

 I am using this composed image for the prompt because I am "moved" by the quotation by William Carlos Williams and wanted to share it with you.

The collaged image was made with the above three components.  A new, as yet unreleased background/texture;  a photograph of a lone clematis that seemed to want to move away from the rest of the blossoms on the plant to a little corner of its own;  and a painterly texture, "Pretty in Periwinkle" from the pdpa Digital Virtuosity Texture Set.  

Keep your eye out for a post this Sunday with a few examples of what you can do with the prompt for the Sept. 14th edition of Photo Art Friday.  The prompt is:

Create a seven word sentence that describes your life/process/development as an artist (be it photographer, painter, mixed media artist or digital artist), combined with a piece of photo-art that relates to the seven word sentence.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

hold that good thought ...

If you are looking for Photo Art Friday, September 7th, 8th, just click HERE or click "HOME" in my header.  Thanks!  :)

Well ... here we are at home instead of the hospital.  My husband received a call from his surgeon last night informing him that the surgery was postponed until next Mon. or Tues. due to two new and more urgent cases.  We were all prepared practically and emotionally and .... poof .... a change of plans.  That's life, isn't it?

The postponement throws a wrench in our two daughters lives - one who travelled two hundred miles so she could be with us today and the other who will now be on holiday in Spain when her father is in hospital.

We are all trying to adopt the perspective of the quote above, that "... all things are unfolding just exactly as is best."  It is much better on every level to surrender to what we cannot change instead of internally resisting and resenting what is.  So we go with the flow ...

So many of you kindly offered to think good thoughts and to keep us in your prayers. Felt I should share this news with you so that you would not be doing so in vain.  Your generosity of spirit is deeply appreciated.