Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Photo Art Friday Reminder

Hello my dear photo art companions ...

Here we sit on the cusp of a new year!  Hope it was a good one and sets the stage for an even better year in 2014 for you and yours.  

I am also hoping that we will connect throughout the new year by sharing our photo art creations in the link-up Photo Art Friday!

Yes, Photo Art Friday will continue as a once monthly link-up - happening the first Friday of every month.

For January, 2014 the first Friday is this week - the 3rd day of the month!!!  So it's time to prepare now!

The doors will still open early (on Thursday) for those who like to get a head start hanging their art in our virtual gallery.

If YOU have been thinking about joining in to showcase your photo art here ... please do. Everyone is welcome.  You can read the guidelines for participation HERE.

The optional theme/challenge for January's link-up is to showcase a piece of photo art that features a word you would like to use as inspiration for 2014.

If you are not into 'guiding words', you can, as always, showcase any piece of art you have created from your photographs.

And, it occurred to me that as 2013 closes we could also have another option of showcasing our favorite piece of photo art from the year, or a collage of some favorite pieces from 2013.

Again, let me wish you a new year full of joy, inspiration, connection and health!

I'm so looking forward to seeing your photo art contributions at the end of this week!  Until then have a wonderful new year's celebration ... in whatever way you choose to celebrate.

Monday, December 16, 2013


Just popping in to again wish each of you a very happy holiday season!  May all your preparations unfold smoothly and may you each find a little time to rest, reflect and count your blessings.  (Even in the midst of difficult times, there are blessings to be found.)

One blessing that is high on my list is the connections made with so many like-minded photo artists during 2013.  Your creativity and generosity truly touch my heart.  May our interest in making art from our photographs continue to bring us together in 2014!

Here are a couple of pieces of photo art made from one photograph of a poinsettia.

This version had a levels adjustment, was sharpened, the filter 'poster edges' applied and text inserted using the font 'Papyrus'.  I always make a couple of calendars each year using my photo art creations and this image is found in one of them for the month of December, 2014.

The recipe for this second version is as follows:

*  levels adjustment
*  gradient adjustment using soft pinks and greens
*  sharpened
*  run through Rad Lab using stylets 'Oh Snap', 'Vario-Tone', 'EZ-Burn' and 'Rusty Cage' and reduced the overall 'strength' of the Rusty Cage stylet by 15%.
*  reduced the opacity of the whole Rad Lab application by 20%
*  merged layers
*  duplicated resulting layer
*  applied Filter>Artistic>Poster Edges, adjusting sliders to 0, 0, and 3. Reduced opacity of the   poster edges to 85%.
*  applied text using 2Peas Gift font

I like both versions, but probably favor the second.  Since I made it just a few minutes ago, it does not appear in my second calendar.  Oh well, maybe for one of my 2015 calendars!

If you have a moment in your busy schedule, please mark down the date for our first Photo Art Friday in 2014.  It is January 3rd to 5th.  Early birds will find the doors open to our virtual art gallery on Thursday, Jan. 2nd!  Looking forward to seeing you then.  (Scroll down to the previous post to see what the optional theme is for the 01/14 edition of Photo Art Friday.)

P.S.  Did you sign up for the Photoshop Artistry course?  I did and am really happy with it!  You log in and watch as many of the instructive videos as you please - whenever you please.  Can't get more convenient than that!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Photo Art Friday, December 6th - 8th

Hey Everyone - it's time again for PHOTO ART FRIDAY, our monthly virtual photo-art vernissage - an on-line gallery where you can 'hang' your photo art and then 'hang out' to enjoy the work of other digital creatives like yourself.  If you have never linked up - please join us!

The gallery doors always open early (Thursday), so you have about four days during which you can link up.  That gives everyone time to create a piece of photo art, if one is not ready right now.

Before we get started, I just learned about a new course on how to use Photoshop (CS or Elements) to create "stunning photo art", by Sebastian Michaels and want to give you a 'heads up' about it.

The course is "Photoshop Artistry".  While I love grunge artistry, if you are not 'into' it don't worry about the word 'grunge' in the name of the course (see image).  From the example images on the Photoshop Artistry page, it seems to me that you will be able to create any style of photo art that pleases you after taking the course.

One of the blurbs about the course says:

"Go from merely editing your photos to creating awesome photo-art compositions fit for print and canvas.  This cutting edge course will awaken your creative genius and reveal the secrets the pros use to create stunning works of art."

It sounds like a really comprehensive video course that gives you lifetime 24/7 access, plus lots of bonus textures, brushes and frames for your photo art creations.  Best of all it is being offered at 1/2 price ($147) for the next few days.  And - even more, Sebastian offers a 60 day, money back guarantee! Get all the details HERE.  

While I would love to take this course, I have not taken it ... yet* ... and so cannot yet personally vouch for it, but it sure sounds like something that would be great for aspiring photo artists.  I believe it has been offered before, so if any of you took it or are taking it now and wish to review it in your comments - please do!  And, if you sign up please tell me and tell Sebastian I sent you!

*Update:  I'm signed up for the course now and what I have seen so far looks fabulous!

The optional theme for December's Photo Art Friday is OPEN/OPENING/OPENED.  Of course being December, one could think of 'opening' presents, but the presents aren't opened yet - in fact, if you are like me they aren't even wrapped!  So I chose to share a couple of images from my archives that fit this theme:

An image of a restaurant in Old Montreal with its door open, beckoning weary tourists to come in and relax a while.  The original photo before digital editing and addition of a couple of my textures is below.

Love the red fire hydrant and the red industrial equipment under the window that match the trim paint and the awning in this pic!

An image of an open-armed woman procured from the web, placed upon one of my textures, and finally, digitally manipulated to create a blurred Orton effect.

Did you know that someone, somewhere did a study that showed seeing open arms has a strong, positive physiological and psychological effect on humans.  So when loved ones arrive at your door this holiday season, why not open your arms to welcome them. That way you'll assure that they'll be feeling good before the festivities even begin!

Here is a texture for you that fits with this month's theme of all things 'open'.  It's a vintage looking cluster of notes and envelopes. You could use it to make a piece of photo art to feature here, if you want!  However you choose to use it, feel free to add it to your personal collection of textures.

To download your complimentary copy of pdpa Dear One texture, click HERE.

Our next Photo Art Friday showcase will take place in 2014  -  January 3rd - 5th.  Since many of you follow the blogging tradition of choosing a word to inspire and motivate you through each new year, how about having an optional theme of:

An image that features the word (or phrase, if you prefer) that you want to guide, inspire or motivate you through 2014.  

If you are not into 'guiding words' or optional themes you are always welcome to share any piece of photo art that pleases you.

Wishing all of my participants and readers the happiest and healthiest of holiday seasons.  I look forward to sharing our Photo Art Friday tradition with you in the new year!

Friday, November 22, 2013

some 'goodies' for you....

Hi dear friends ...

Just a quick post to remind you that Photo Art Friday is just 2 weeks away (December 6th).  It seems that this monthly virtual showcase is harder to remember than a weekly one.  Oh well ... for now it will remain a monthly get-together to share our art.

December's optional theme is OPEN or "opening" or "opened".  However if you have a piece of photo art that has nothing whatsoever to do with the optional theme, please share it with us.  Everyone is welcome to showcase any (family friendly) photo art creations with PAF.

Would a new, free texture give you a little nudge to create some photo art?  Well then, here's a vintage-y texture I made just for you yesterday:

 To download your free, high-res copy of pdpa Vintage Scratch texture, click here.

Here are a couple of photos that I turned into little pieces of photo art using this texture.  It took about fifteen minutes to apply the texture and do the few digital manipulations to both.  Both images had the texture blended in Difference with the opacity set at around 90%.  I then added some Poster Edges to both and a sweet quote to the first one.  Easy peasy!!!

This one obviously needs to have the black line at the top cropped off.  Sorry, I missed that and I don't have time now to go back, do that and reload it, etc. etc. - but you get the idea ...  :)

While I'm here, I HAVE to tell you about a fantastic, time-limited offer from Adobe that is designed especially for photographers.  AND if you like to make digital art from your photographs, this offer will prove to be very tempting!  You get Photoshop CS6, Lightroom 5,  Behance and 200 GB of Creative Cloud space for only $9.99 per month!  I'm in!!!

If you sign on to this exceptionally low-priced plan, when it comes time to renew next year, the $9.99/month fee will not be raised to a higher fee!

The only caution I would add is that you need an operating system that can support 64-bits as opposed to the usual 32-bit.  If you have Windows 8 (or Windows 7 with an upgrade for 64-bit) you are good to go.  Unfortunately, I don't know how that works for Mac users, but the info will be available to you from Adobe.

Here's how Adobe briefly describes their special:

Introducing a special Creative Cloud plan designed for people who love photography. Get the latest versions of Adobe Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5, plus 200 GB of cloud storage, a Behance ProSite for your own professional portfolio, ongoing feature updates, and more. And for a limited time, this great deal is available to you for just US$9.99/month.
Hurry — Black Friday offer ends December 2.  You can learn more by clicking here.

Let me know what you think!  :)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Photo Art Friday, November 1st - 3rd

Welcome to the November, 2013 edition of Photo Art Friday.

 P.A.F. is a virtual art gallery where you can hang photographs you have digitally enhanced into an art piece.  Not only can you showcase your art, you can view and comment on the work of many other digital artists from around the world.  The great thing is they will also view your work and hopefully leave a comment on your site.

Each month we have an optional theme that you can use to create your photo art.  This month's theme is "EMBRACE".  Are you going to 'embrace' the theme???

In my last post I have a free texture that you can use (if you wish) to create your art for this or any venue.  If you missed the free texture, you can download it here.

Here are a couple of my digitally manipulated photographs created around the theme "EMBRACE".

 An image of a couple greeting each other in a park.  I added one of my textures and gave an 'Orton effect' to blur the image and protect their privacy ... somewhat.

 Yes, I seem to be stuck on the most obvious form of an embrace!  Here is a couple embracing across a tavern table in Old Montreal.  While the couple sees no one but the other, we can see the reflections in the windows behind them and the quaint, cobble-stoned streets.  A few digital manipulations give a bit of a 'poster' feel to the image.

 Same image as above, further enhanced with warm tones.

Warmed version of the photo with the free pdpa Aged Vintage texture applied.  The texture was blended in Pin Light at 85% opacity.  I applied a layer mask and using a large soft brush made one click over the couple's embrace to accentuate the focal point.

The next and last edition of Photo Art Friday for 2013 will be on Friday, December 6th.  The optional theme for that edition is:


You can apply the theme open in any way you please - the word can be applied in so many ways - can't wait to see how you use it as a prompt for your photo art!

Next Monday The Eagles are in Montreal and my kids bought DH and I tickets for their 'last tour before we croak' performance.  Can't wait!!!  "Desperado ... why don't you come to your senses ..."   :)

Not to worry, I won't be throwing any of my under garments on the stage.  ;)  "Dignity and decorum" will be my mantra for the day.  Oh, it's so hard to act my age and I really don't manage to do so often  ...  Can you relate?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

PAF reminder & free texture!

Hi!  Just dropping in to remind you that Photo Art Friday's next edition is coming up in a week or so - Friday, November 1st to be exact.  You can, however, showcase your photo art here from the Thursday to the Sunday surrounding Nov. 1st.

The optional theme, if you care to create a piece of photo art using it, is "EMBRACE".
Can't wait to see the artwork using this theme!

If you need a new texture as a starting point for your photo art creation, I have a free one for you:

To download your free high-res version of this texture, pdpa Aged Vignette, click HERE.

See you next week!  :)  xo

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Photo Art Friday, October 4th - 6th


It's time for the monthly showcase of digital photo art, aka
Photo Art Friday.  

The doors to this virtual gallery always open Thursday to give our international participants an equal amount of hours to link up their art.  From this edition of PAF on, the inlinkz button will remain up until Sunday evening, giving you approximately four days to 'hang' your art in the 'gallery'.

The optional theme for this month is the word SKY.  Your photo art can optionally feature sky in any form you choose.

We're having a lovely autumn here in Eastern Canada.  Many of the trees have changed colors and many are already shedding their leaves.  Such a gorgeous time of year!  I always feel so thankful for the sweet, warm, colorful days of this season.

The Canadian Thanksgiving holiday is always the second Monday in October (the 14th this year) - the perfect time for gratitude for the year's harvest.  I also like that that leaves a good 7-8 weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas - time to recover from one holiday feast before the next arrives!

Here are my photo art images that are of or include SKY:

Stretched out on my deck last week, I raised my camera and took this photo of my little piece of sky. Amazing to capture such beauty with so little effort!  :)  Treating the photo in Photoshop gives it a nice abstract feel ... and that was easy-peasy too.  (Click on photos to enlarge.)

Love the abstract design in this plant caught my eye during a walk.   I had to really crouch down to get the sky as a backdrop - allowing the design to shine.   A few manipulations in PSE make it a little more 'artsy' than it already is naturally.

 Again, sky as backdrop for nature's designs.

Same as above!

Next month's PAF will be Friday, November 1st.  As mentioned above, however, you can share your photo art beginning Thursday, October 31st and the inlinkz button will remain up until Sunday evening, November 3rd.  I will remind you a week or ten days in advance.

The optional theme for November's edition of PAF will be:


Use the word 'embrace', or its meaning, in any way that pleases you.  If you feel that the photo art you submit incorporates some form of embrace (whatever the stretch) it is okay by me.  Keep in mind that our themes do not require a literal interpretation - but rather YOUR unique interpretation.  Of course, it goes without saying that all photo art showcased here should be family friendly ... right?  :)

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Free Texture and PAF

Just a quick post to remind you that Photo Art Friday opens its doors for your artistic creations in about 1 week -  on Friday, October 4th to be exact.

A few folks missed PAF in September and their comments helped me see that I should leave the virtual gallery doors open beyond Saturday.  So the inlinkz button will remain operative for the entire weekend each month.  Of course, regulars know that the doors always open on Thursday for early birds.  So in reality you can share your artwork from Thursday, October 3rd to Sunday, October 6th - four full days!  Hope you early birds come back during those four days to enjoy some of the other contributions.

The optional theme for your photo art for October's edition is SKY.  SKY any way that you wish to represent it in your photo ART.

I'm still having trouble wrapping my mind around the fact that summer 2013 is over here in the northern hemisphere - although brisk morning temperatures are hard to ignore!

A mini rant about cancer (which you are free to skip, however, do scroll down to pick up a free texture):

Thursday, this week, I will be leaving one of my teeth with the dentist (an extraction!) in preparation for an implant.  Oh joy.  While I'm not looking forward to it, I'm able to keep it in its proper perspective when I think of my husband's recent colon cancer surgeries, my non-smoking daughter's major surgery for lung cancer, and now a son-in-law's upcoming surgery for a tumor (with possibility of being cancerous) in the bladder.  (Daughter and husband are doing well now.) 

What's happening with all this cancer everywhere - and in so many young people too??!! 

I've had blogs for a few years now, and during that time 5 bloggers that I followed and exchanged comments with have died of cancer! 

Seems every time I turn around I'm hearing about someone else I know who is battling this pervasive disease!  It just was not so prevalent 25 or 30 years ago.  Really - what's happening?!!!!  

It makes me quite suspicious about all the prepared foods we consume - the genetically engineered wheat in our breads, the unnatural breeding practices with chickens*, the liberal use of hormones and chemicals in our meats and dairy products, etc.   Not to speak of the for-profit greed that governs all the decision-making in these monolithic industries that control the 'science', evolution, growth, harvest, preparation, packaging, shelf-life and distribution of our food.  It seems large industries are willing to sacrifice the quality and duration of all forms of life if it means more profit.  (*Did you know that chickens only need to be allowed out of their cages for a minimal period of time each day to be called "free range"?)

And is it simply a co-incidence that huge pharmaceutical companies have a pill for every and any ailment that might be a result of what we consume?  And is it just a co-incidence that U.S. insurance companies and  health-care companies are fighting to keep health care as a for-profit industry that mops up the mess made in our bodies by the foods we consume?  

Yes, when everywhere I turn someone else has come down with another form of cancer, I do get a little suspicious ... sort of.  :-/

Okay, the rant stops.  I feel a little better now ... sort of.

On a less sombre and frustrated note .... here is a free texture for you. :)  I may have released a similar version of this before, but I think the warmer tones and pared down script will please you.  Enjoy!  (If you do appreciate these free textures I design for you, you can say thank you by following this blog if you are not a follower already.)

no longer available

Photograph of gerbera daisy with the addition of texture pdpa parfums de paris processed in Linear Light at 70%.  Poster Edges Filter was added with opacity reduced to 60%.

I'll have an eye out for you next week in the PAF virtual gallery.  See you then!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Photo Art Friday, September 6th - 7th

Hello my Lovelies!

It's time to prepare and hang your digital photo art in our virtual art gallery, aka as Photo Art Friday or PAF.

If you are new to Photo Art Friday, you can read the guidelines for participation here.

Please remember that the central focus of this linky party is to showcase photographs that you have digitally manipulated into a piece of photo ART.  While you may feel (as I sometimes do) that your photo is more beautiful than the artistic version of it, we still want to see your digital ART work here. The great thing is you can always display the photo your art piece was created from, in your post. That way, we get to enjoy both!

The OPTIONAL theme for this month's Photo Art Friday is "WATER".  You can share photo art that contains any form of water, if you choose to go with the theme/challenge. But you always have the option to share any piece of your photo art.

If you need a texture with some water droplets on it to make your piece of photo art, I released a free one for you here.

I chose to 'artify' photos of plants/flowers with droplets of water on them:

This photograph of variegated leaves does have droplets of water on it.  However, because the texture was blended in Difference they appear green.  After the texture application I ran this piece through RadLab and used the stylets, Boutwell Magic Glasses and Cool As A Cucumber.  A soft application of the filter Photo Edges completes the artistic manipulations.  You can see the components that make up this piece in the spread below.

 The photo art, one of my pdpa script textures and the photograph of leaves with water droplets.

A macro shot of a nasturtium flower with water droplets, transformed in Photoshop without any texture or RadLab application this time.

The next edition of Photo Art Friday is scheduled for the first Friday in October - the 4th. As always, I will give you a little 'heads up' warning a week or so before.

The optional theme/challenge for October will be:


Your photo art should contain some element of sky (clouds, sunrise, sunset, rainbow, blue sky, etc) ... easy peasy!  :)

Friday, August 30, 2013

Another Free Texture!

Hi Everyone!

Just to let you know that I am thinking of you, I have made a new 300 dpi texture for you.  Take a look:

pdpa Just A Note texture

I don't know about you, but I love textures with script on them.  You should find many uses for this one!  You can download this texture here.

The 25% Summer Discount on all my texture sets ends tomorrow Saturday, August 31st at 9:00 p.m. EST.  All you have to do is buy a minimum of 2 sets to qualify for the automatic discount.  So don't delay, there are just a few hours left!  You can visit my shops here.

Another reminder:

It's almost September and that means we need to prepare for Photo Art Friday! PAF happens on the first Friday of every month - so that will be September 6th.  (Early birds know that I always open the doors to this virtual photo art gallery on Thursdays - so that gives you a total of 3 days to come and hang your photo art.)  

The optional theme for your photo art for September is WATER - a photo art image highlighting any form of water you choose.  Whatever piece of photo art you choose to share, I can't wait to see it and read your post that accompanies it!  See you next week!   :)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Reminder and a Free Texture

Hi Friends,

It will be time soon to hang your digital art in our virtual gallery, aka Photo Art Friday! The next opportunity to showcase your work will be Friday, September 6th.  That's just a bit more than two weeks away!

For those of you who like to use a theme to get your creative juices flowing, we have the theme of "WATER" (water in any shape or form that you can think of) ... for the upcoming PAF.

Some of you may not have been following here when I released the free texture, pdpa Drips of Rainbow a while back.

pdpa Drips of Rainbow texture

The droplets of water on this texture can be used to create a lovely piece of digital art with one of your photographs.

If you do not already have it, you can download this free texture by clicking here.

Summer 2013 has continued to be largely a summer of painting for me.  I have now graduated to some bigger canvases (3' x 4' is my biggest so far).  I can also be found sitting down by the brook with my i-Pad watching YouTube video demos and tutorials of painters doing their thing and sharing their techniques.

So if you ever come by for a little visit, check the studio and if I am not there - wander down the hill to the little patio by the brook!  I'll welcome you with open arms!!!

Obviously I'll never be a great artist, but the sensory enjoyment and the immediate satisfaction of a tangible product keeps me pressing on ...  I'm also enjoying not banging my head on my desk due to the frustration of computer glitches, too!  :)

Here is a sampling of a few pieces coming out of my little studio in the last month:

Lover of texture(s) that I am -  :)  - many of these pieces have great texture in them - which is not so visible in the above collage.

If you like using textures to create digital art from your photographs, do check out my texture shoppes (just click on the tabs in the bar under my header).

The 25% summer discount ends in ten days (August 31st).

I hope you will join us for Photo Art Friday (always the first Friday of each month) on September 6th and 7th.  Don't forget that we open the 'gallery' doors on Thursdays (Sept. 5th this time round) for you early birds.  :)  Can't wait to see the photo art you choose to share in our gallery and reconnect with you!

Until then ... be well.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Photo Art Friday, August 2nd

Hi Everyone!  Hope this post finds you in good spirits!  If not, I'm sure viewing some great photo art from all around the world will brighten your mood.  Yes, it's time to display your photo ART in our virtual gallery, aka Photo Art Friday!  Hard to believe it's August already!!!

You can showcase any piece of photo art here with our link-up OR you can share a piece that follows this edition's optional theme of FLOWER photo art made using at least one Pixel Dust Photo Art (pdpa) fine art textures.

Here are a couple of pieces of my flower photo art.  Hope you enjoy viewing them.  I'm really looking forward to viewing all of your digital creations.

Aren't we lucky to live in a time where we can share with other like-minded artists simply by the click of a few buttons?  Amazing!

Here, gerbera daisies in a pot on my deck have been layered with a couple of my textures to make a sweet piece of photo art.  This image is on the July page of a 2013 calendar I made with my photo art, so I have been enjoying it for a month and thought I would share it with you.

A macro photo of a gorgeous cleome flower (they are taking over one of my flower beds this year!) has the silhouette of a monk and one of my scripted textures added to make a little piece of art. Perhaps I'll include it in a calendar for 2014.

Our next Photo Art Friday will be on Friday, September 6th

Yes, that is a month away.  In case you missed the announcement, PAF will take place only on the first Friday of every month, from now on.  Not to worry about forgetting and missing it - I'll make sure to post a reminder a week or so in advance ...   :)

The optional theme for the September PAF is:


Water comes in so many forms that it should not be too hard to take or find a photo that you can digitally make into a piece of art.  Think:  droplets, tears, puddles, rain, splash, rapids, ponds, ice cubes, etc. etc.  Have fun!!!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Are you ready for Photo Art Friday?

Hi dear friends!

Hope all is well with you.  All is good with me - still painting my little fingers to the bone - trying out different paint mediums, tools and styles.  Some of my painting experiments are decent ... most - not so much. However, the occasional success keeps me trying for more.  I'm quite enjoying the mess and unpredictability of it all!

Have to admit that if I have the choice of making art on my computer screen or art on a canvas, I prefer the canvas ... for the moment, anyway.

But I certainly do not want to forget all the programs, techniques and digital manipulations I worked so hard to learn, so I am still taking photographs and editing the occasional one into a piece of 'art' so as not to fall too far behind with my digital art-making skills.

If you are interested in creating art from your photographs, I'm sure you have many photos of flowers in your archives.  If you have been following Pixel Dust Photo Art for a while, you must have several of my free textures in your archives.

That being the case, you are all set to create a piece of flower photo art to share in our up-coming virtual art gallery called Photo Art Friday!

The next edition of Photo Art Friday is Friday, August 2nd - 3rd.  However, the in-linkz button will be up and ready for your photo art submissions (as always) on Thursday, August 1st!  That's just eight (8!) days away!

While you can always share any piece of photo ART with Photo Art Friday, we also have an optional theme for each edition.

The August 2nd optional PAF theme is:

A piece of FLOWER photo art made using any Pixel Dust Photo Art texture.

Here's an example of flower photo art using one of my pdpa textures and a bit of manipulation in a digital editing program. (This is not the one I will feature in the Aug. edition of PAF .)

If you are in need of a texture to create your art piece for PAF, you can find a free download of one called "Sky Love", in this previous post.

I do SO hope you will be back here on August 1st, 2nd or 3rd to share a piece of art created with your photographs!!  Can't wait to visit you and see what you have been up to ...  :)

If you are in the market for some of my unique textures, the 25% off sale continues until the end of August.  Check out either of my shoppes by clicking on them on the bar under the header!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Texture Sale and the next Photo Art Friday

Hi Friends!  Hope this post finds you well.

I'm enjoying my time away from the computer - still painting, gardening and enjoying all things 'summer'.

Just wanted to alert you that a 25% discount is being offered on all texture sets in both of my shoppes.  This discount will automatically be applied to your total purchase when you buy at least 2 texture sets for the rest of the summer.

Photo Art Friday is still scheduled to resume on August 2nd and will appear once a month, on the first Friday of every month from here on out.

I've reconsidered the optional theme for August 2nd.  What I suggested in my last post just seems way too ambitious for these lazy, hazy days of summer.  Soooooo ...

The new optional theme or challenge for the August 2nd Photo Art Friday is:

Flower art made with a Pixel Dust Photo Art texture.

Looking forward to linking up with you in the Photo Art Friday 'gallery' in August!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Photo Art Friday, June 14th

Hi there!  Hope this post finds you well and enjoying your life.

It's Thursday, so that means it's time again for Photo Art Friday!  Our virtual art gallery opens its doors early to accommodate our photo-artists in other time zones.

Hard to believe that it has been two months since our last virtual photo-art showcase. The doors to our virtual gallery open Thursday and close Saturday.  That gives you lots of time to create or select a piece of photo art to share, if you have not done so already.  If you are new to Photo Art Friday, you can read the guidelines for participation here.

Regulars will recall that you are always welcome to feature any piece of your photo-art here ... AND, if you wish you can create some photo-art in line with the optional theme. The optional theme for this edition of Photo Art Friday is:   DREAMY or ETHEREAL.

Before displaying my photo-art, thought I would share some of my recent creations from playing with paint.  Actually, these photographs are now from a couple of weeks ago.

A peek at one of the work tables in the studio.

This one was photographed as a WIP (work-in-progress).  Some white has since been added to the background, among other tweaks.  I love the sort of eerie mystery and monochromatic tones of this one.  I'll be doing some other versions with different colours.  (Click on the image to enlarge.)

This quasi abstract image was created using only a metal spatula - slapping areas of colour on the canvas and then carving the trees and branches into the colours with the corner of the spatula.  The path was created by simply smoothing the area with the spatula and the leaves were made by patting the spatula up and down on the areas.  Yes, I had to add some green blobs of paint to the canvas in the appropriate areas for those leaves.

This piece hardly qualifies as a painting - not sure what to call it.  When I completed this piece it reminded me of something but I could not put my finger on exactly what it was.  Then my son said it looked like native American Indian totem art - the kind seen in British Columbia.  That was it!

Unplanned cracks appeared in a lot of the paint due to a glossy 'pouring' medium used to thin the paint. I actually love all the cracks.  No brushes were harmed in the making of this piece!  All the paint was poured onto the surface.  Guess I should call it a 'pouring' rather than a painting!

Now for this week's 'dreamy' photo art:

A coral-colored poppy made pink and dreamy with simple edits in Photoshop Elements.

To achieve the dreamy look I played with a pale gradient fill - among other manipulations in Photoshop.

I have decided to have only one Photo Art Friday per month - on the first Friday of every month.  This new schedule will begin on Friday, August 2nd.  I'm skipping July for health and holiday reasons.

The optional theme for August 2nd's edition of PAF is:

A photo-art collage sampler that also includes one of the following features -

*  your name (or initials), or
*  the name (or initials) of your blog or website, or
*  the name (or initials) of your business

This could turn into a useful project that can be used as a background or header for your blog/website;  business cards;  shipping labels; etc. etc. 

(A tip:  Add the initials or name to the collage using a separate layer.  Then you can easily remove it and use the photo-art collage sampler as is - for other purposes.) 

This may seem like a big project, but you have about six weeks until August 2nd to create something using your photo-art, your editing skills to make a collage sample of your photo art, and featuring as much or as little 'self-promotion' (3 choices above) as pleases you.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Help ... I can't stop ...

Hi Everyone ...

Hope all is well in your little corner of the world.  I'm missing connecting with you through Photo Art Friday and seeing all your creatively-edited photographs.  I'm still planning on bringing PAF back for June 14th (June 13th for early-birds).  The optional theme or challenge for that date is at the end of this post.

In the meantime, I'm still caught up in a painting frenzy - experimenting with as many new styles, tools and techniques as I can manage.  I tend to get a little obsessive when it comes to my creative outlets.  Hope to have it under control soon!  :)

 Here's a view of the studio from a couple of days ago.

 Backgrounds done ... now what?  Creates a lot of excitement and even a bit of anxiety as I face the 'blank' canvas!  :)

Here's an easy one that's finished.  While easy, it does take thought and time to choose the right colors and divisions.  The thin black line was suggested by my personal art consultant (my supportive DH!) and it adds just the right touch in my opinion.

Here I took a little 'walk on the wild side'.  I knew I wanted to pair shocking pink and a vivid orange, but it took a while to get the proportions devoted to each color the way I wanted them.  On an impulse I mixed paint with a special pouring medium and let it flow down from the top.  Probably ruined the entire piece.  But I'm learning what I like, what's possible and above all I am slowly learning that I have to know when to stop!  It's a bit like learning when to stop adding ingredients to a favorite dish!  Knowing when the piece is complete and that I need to STOP seems to be my biggest challenge right now!

If you take the time to add a comment to this post, I'd love to hear what you have been up to of late.  Please take a moment to share!  :)   I'm happy I took some time off but I'm really feeling out of the loop.

Here's a lovely little texture for you:

To access your free download of pdpa Eau de Cologne texture, just smile and click here!

So, since Photo Art Friday link-up gallery returns in only three weeks (June 14th), we need an optional theme or challenge for the photo art to be showcased ... Hmmmm ... how about:

Dreamy or Ethereal

Looking forward to seeing all your submissions to our virtual photo-art gallery in June!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

... clinging ...

Pulled this piece of photo art out of my files for you.  I am still painting - and loving it!  It's been incredibly cold here in the northeast for this time of year - so I've had a great excuse to stay in the studio painting and to not work in the garden.

Temps are supposed to get back to normal soon, so if you are looking for me this weekend, I'll be in the garden. Wish you could drop by ... there are lots of sweet spots on our land for sitting, a hammock for dreaming and a babbling brook to sooth your soul. I'd bring you a lemon-aide and we could chat while you relax and keep me company and I weed and plant some annuals.....  One can dream ...   :)

NOTE:  PARC subscribers - please complete your downloads of textures as I will be closing the site tomorrow.  I've been seeing many of the textures released during your subscription in various pieces of your photo art over the past few weeks and it really pleases me to see how you use them.  It's been great fun ... thank you!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Checking in ...

When I look at the calendar, I see that I have not posted anything here for a couple of weeks.  Have to admit I've really been enjoying some time away from blogging.  In fact, I really had to talk myself into sitting in front of the computer today.  My body balks at sitting and my mind demands that I go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather.

But here I am ... because my heart tells me I must maintain my connection with all you wonderful people.  Right now, YOU are what I miss about blogging.  I hope you are all well.

First, let me say to Photo Art Resource Cache subscribers that the full subscription of textures is up and waiting for you to download.  If some of you had trouble with the downloads recently, the problem has been fixed.  The site will close on May 15th, so grab your textures while you can and enjoy!  

A couple of you asked for a peek at my work (paintings) and my studio - so here goes ... Now don't get too excited ...  My studio is a just a portion of our large, finished and well-lit garage and my adventures in painting are definitely more therapeutic than artistic ...

Here is where I play with paints, brushes and spatulas.  I love texture (you already know that!) and find using spatulas (more than brushes) suits what I like to do (and am capable of doing).

This is the same collage as above, but with some text added to it.  The canvas in the upper left of this collage is now a painting hanging in a stairwell in our home.  The painting of two women was framed given to my eldest daughter for her birthday.  The two red pieces have evolved since this photo was taken and are waiting to be framed and hung.  The empty blue canvas laying on the table has been finished and is waiting for my son to pick it up. (You might be better able to read some of the words in the collage if you click on the image to enlarge it.)

Not the best photograph, but it gives you a bit of an idea of what became of the canvas in the upper left of the previous collage ...  I intended for the edges to look scuffed and textured.  Really ... I did!  This painting is really much brighter and more dynamic than this photo shows.  Really ... it is!

Canvases in various states of completion.  The blue one is one requested by my son - 'wide, narrow and full of blues' were his words.

 Here's a clipped view of the finished Pollock-esque piece for my son.

The black figure on a red background above is a study of a famous painting by Matisse and I am calling it, 'Etude Matisse'.  The one with a similar figure to the left of it has been claimed by my middle daughter and her partner and is now set off in a great gold frame with white matte.

Do you see the remnants of wool Berber rugs on my studio floor?  My husband installed them so that my feet would not get cold.  The garage is heated and rugs are totally impractical, but I don't complain when he is so thoughtful!  :)

Here is the painting for my middle daughter, sitting on a table in poor lighting in the studio, waiting for her to pick it up.  I saw a little something in it I wanted to adjust, so she could not take it home when she first saw it.

So ... as you see I just try my hand at different styles of painting and see what happens. And, yes, because I am a neophyte painter and have not yet discovered my own style, I sometimes copy master works to try and get a feel for their style. That is a common technique of art teachers, btw. (It can be a very demoralizing exercise, however!)

Right now I am trying my hand at some Rothko-style pieces.  It looked like it would be really easy, but as with many things, appearances can be deceiving.  I am finding it to be much more of a challenge than I anticipated.  You can see examples of Rothko's paintings here.

If I can paint, anyone can and I highly recommend giving it a try both as a creative and a therapeutic endeavor. If you love the form, color, texture and self-expression of photography and digital photo-art why not dip your toe in the waters (colors)?  Be warned, however, there are no 'Undo' buttons!  :)

Here's a free texture for you.  It does great things to skies, hence its name 'Sky Love'. The download button will be removed in a couple of weeks so download it while you can.