Saturday, March 28, 2009

Simply Clean

(ISO 200, f5.0, 1/160 sec)
Washing your hands is a simple way to stop germs!  

Simple: Flower

My crocuses are in bloom. I like this little flower because of its simplicity. It just sits there, not looking ostentatious, but making the world a little brighter.

About the photo: I used the macro setting on the camera, then used Picasa to edit the photo. I made it slightly soft focused, and then also used the "focal black and white" option to really make the flower pop. The editing wasn't very "simple", but the subject is.


A Simple Author


One of my favorite Authors is Beverly Lewis, her books are all about the Amish, a plaine and Simple People. She usually writes the books in series so you can fall in love with the characters and follow along and learn about their Simple way of life.
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And the winners are.....

Sorry to get the winners posted so late. We have had a busy day.

That was an especially tough voting! Tallying was hard because it was VERY close!

The best take on the challenge went to Leanne with her jellybean picture (which was totally cool!) (if I counted right--correct me if I am wrong!)

The best overall was a tie between Lindy and Leanne, but since Leanne took the BEST take award, Lindy gets the Best overall picture for her awesome display of rust. :)

GREAT JOB everyone!

Simple Lighting

I just fell in love with the feel of this lighting fixture. I thought it was a great way to recycle old milk bottles! All I had to do was a simple crop to the photo.

Simple beauty

Children are simply beautiful, no makeup or dieting or waxing, it's just simple perfect beauty.
Taken with indoor lighting no flash. Here are the steps I took to make the colors the way they are.
Went into curves and lightened it just a bit/made it sepia/added a second layer/chose a grayish vlue color turned the opecity down to 8% and put a bit of color in his eyes/ chose a brownish pink turned opecity to 4% added some color to his lips and cheeks/ chose a brown left opacity at 4% made the brush really big and ran it over the whole picture then turned the opactiy up and used it to darken the edges and corners/ flattened image
You can see more of the colors if you click on the picture to make it better.

Simpler Times

Out driving today, I stumbled upon this old house. I think it's a reminder of simpler times.

f/4, 1/250, ISO 100


Just a Simple Puzzle

Just a simple little puzzle to keep a sick husband occupied.. for hours!
In this challenge, I wanted to keep the lines simple, the colors simple, everything clean and uncomplicated.


Another word Mindy suggested--I think this is a really great one. Considering the economic times and how complicated the world can be, I would love to know what SIMPLE means to you.


Let's get those creative minds thinking...this should be a really good one.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Let the voting begin!

Okay! WOW! Amazed, yet again. A WONDERFUL round of pictures! I am truly impressed--thank you, thank you, thank you everyone for really pushing yourselves with this. I feel so inspired!

So, as tough as this will be, let the voting begin!

Be sure to just put in your comment:
BEST OVERALL PICTURE:_______________

And then you can add any additional comments of shoutouts. :)

Again, I can't thank all of you ENOUGH for sharing your beautiful art so freely. I am in awe at how much everyone is improving, and how quickly!

VOTING CLOSES TONIGHT AT MIDNIGHT. Winners announced tomorrow morning. :)


Thursday, March 26, 2009

redo Abstract.

O.K. everyone here it is bigger. the editing program I had would not make it bigger because I only had the trail version. here is is with nothing except how it was straight from the camera.

Abstract View

This was a fun assignment. I took a lot of pictures, but had a hard time deciding on which one to use. I liked the composition of this photo, and the colors, so I went with it. I thought about maybe cropping it down a little more...but then I kept losing that upper left hand side, and I LOVE the composition how it is on that side...What do you think?

Took it with ISO 100
350 with F 8
Canon Rebel XTI

On Angel's Wings

I took a close up of the wings on my willow tree figurine. I used my hubby's new Canon 50D. It was really fun to play with! But I need more practice...

Abstract Circles

So I knew what abstract was, but wanted to read on it some more to get a different idea than what I had. I went to and searched abstract. I found a pretty cool article with tons of pointers. I'll have to look it up again if any of you might want it.
This is what I came up with, Abstract Circles

Taken in shutter priority mode with a shutter speed of 1/2.5, iso:200, F36. This shot is also SOOTC. Can any of you guess what this picture is of?

Abstract Twilight Dessert

Don't laugh! This is kinda cheesy.

I am having a Twilight party at my house tonight to celebrate the movie release on DVD. (That's not the part that might make you laugh) For dessert I am serving, "Bella Bites"- he he.

They are an "ABSTRACT" representation of the film. The pure white represents Bella, young and innocent. The darker Chocolate is the dark side of Edward. And the Blood Red Center (red velvet cake)... what do you think?

Pretty abstract right? I know it's a bit of a stretch but I've been wanting to try these and I thought my party would be the perfect chance-I just needed to figure out how to tie them in. See, Cheesy right? I told ya so!


I have to thank Mindy again for suggesting this challenge. I had so much fun with it! It was so hard to choose what to take pictures of--but I decided on a drinking fountain at our church when I was there last night for a meeting.
I realized after the fact I had my ISO a little high, which was a bummer. But as I took it, it went:
ISO 900, F 5.6, 1/30 sec

A Big Pile

Well, I was really challenged by the word ABSTRACT. So, I just put the camera in the car and started driving around, when I happened upon a pile of wood. I almost drove right past it, but at the last second, I swerved off the road, parked on the shoulder and jumped out. Thank goodness noone else was around and no other cars happened by.

This is about as abstract as I get. Hope it's acceptable.

I took this with my wide angle lens. f/6.3, 1/100, ISO 100. In ps, I sharpened and saturated the colors.


Taking an abstract picture was a a definite challenge for me. But I appreciated that because it made me see everything in my apartment a little differently. And in the end, I think I got some pretty cool angles on some pretty ordinary things. =)

(Taken with a Nikon D-40, automatic setting, slightly cropped.) CC welcome.

Ok, so this next one isn't my official entry, but I loved this picture so much that I couldn't help but share it!

Something Fun to make Abstract

I tried getting shots of everything that I thought would make a good abstract, but for some reason my macro wouldn't focus. I wonder if it is the lighting? I don't know.

This one turned out pretty fun, so I thought I'd roll with it.
Any guesses as to what it is?

Abstract: Literally

I wanted to do something a little nerdier for this challenge, and I knew that I could. My husband is a statistician. This is a photo of a derivation he did for a homework assignment in grad school. Initially, I wanted to post it and say, "this is a picture abstract." But he said it's not actually an abstract. It's a derivation. Well, a proof, he clarified. But it uses mathematical abstraction to provide a mathematical relationship between ordinal categorical variables.

Whatever that means.

About the photo: it is completely unedited. I did nothing to it except load it from the camera to the computer. I tried a couple of things, but it just looked best in its original form.

Water Everywhere

It's a dark, overcast, rainy day here today so I knew I had to incorporate rain in our challenge! My "real" camera is in the shop so I did the best I could with my point and shoot. I just wish I'd gotten something better to go with abstract.


Abstract: Carly Carlson

Not really sure how abstract this is... but there ya go. :) Sorry I haven't been as active of a participant lately- things are insane here and I just have bitten off way more than I can chew right now! :) I'll try harder! :)

Abstract Flowers

I had a fun time deciding what subject to use for this challenge. I started taking close-ups of the carved details of my Turkish jewelry box. But I couldn't really come up with a shot I really liked. So I moved on to close-ups of a box of cracked wheat with a measuring cup. I got some interesting shots, but there was no color! I've been doing bland shots lately so that didn't really work for me.

Then later while I was working on something completely different, I happened to look over at the dining room. Jeff had put our centerpiece on top of the cabinet so the kids wouldn't get to it, and the way it was sitting made it look like the flowers were opening up to face the light of the ceiling fan. I loved the way it looked and immediately stopped what I was doing, climbed up on a chair, and started snapping away!

ISO 50, camera set to overexpose by +0.3 so the flowers wouldn't be drowned out by the light. I'm particularly proud of the fact that I didn't enhance it on the computer at all - this is exactly as I took it on the camera.


Abstract Roots

I set out yesterday to take pictures of clouds. But it was overcast which equals too many of the things...and no cool abstract shapes. HOWever, after I had exhausted my imagination and frustration at the sky, I looked down and saw the roots of this tree. I saw two hands, reaching out and clawing forward...what do you see?
Macro, natural overcast lighting, minor cropping.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


This is one of my table chairs. I moved a bit while taking this but I love the abstract effect it gave the photo. I changed it to sepia even though it was very close to the same color I liked this look better. F 3.2 ISO 100. cc

Is this Abstract?

I have never in my life taken an abstract picture, I had to look it up to see what an abstract picture really was... anyways here is my version, this is part of the fence at the church.

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Hello Again!!!

This subject was hard for me, but it forced me to be a bit more creative. I wish I knew how to change the borders and background colors...any ideas? Or better yet I wish there was no background and all subject, dang wish I would have thought of that earlier! I also really debated whether or not to post the b & w version.

Mr. Picasso Head

Just wanted to have a little fun with this one! : )

Stripes of Something

I'm not going to tell you what... you have to guess! ;) I think that's one of the fun things about abstract photography... you can't always tell what it really is, but the colors and patterns are fun.

cc, of course! :)

Mission Abstract

I took my kids to the old California Catholic Mission started by the Spanish when they settled the area. This is a fountain there on the side of an old adobe building located under an over haning roof from the building. I love old buildings and architecture and this reminded me of an abstract painting or picture. No flash ISO 125 I believe and saturated colors in an editor to brighten a bit. CC please.

Super kid

I hope this is abstract enough, it about as abstract I know how to do. A big shout out to my mom April R for letting me use her camera and her studio WOOT WOOT! I don't know what the settings were, maybe my mom can put it in the comments.

In photoshop I lightened it up, turned it black and white then used the history brush on his cape. I added some saturation and darkened the edges a bit.


(D70, 38mm, f14, 1/25, ISO 400)

This morning at about 8 am, I went outside to our neighbor's burned down house. They have a really old, rusty horse trailer next to our garage, which is great photo fodder, especially for the macro that I seem to have a love affair with. I love macro because it makes every shot abstract and interesting. Looking at this photo, you wouldn't see old, rusted horse trailer...ok, you'd see old and rusted, but not horse trailer. If you were to zoom out and take a photo of the entire trailer, it'd just be, well, boring. They have these random chains hanging from the side and this leaf was just sitting balanced like that. CC


Mindy suggested this one, so all the credit goes to her. I think this will be a really fun challenge to see what people come up with. I think abstract photos can be so amazing.

So, the challenge: ABSTRACT

You have until midnight on Thursday night to submit these. Voting will be Friday!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Feature..."Ready for Takeoff"

Once again....sorry its late!

And the winners are.....

Just a quick note first...

When you vote, if you could please just write:
Best overall: _______ (fill in with one name)
Best take on the challenge: __________

and below you can write your shoutouts and praise.

It's tough to count when there are so many names and people don't decide on ONE, or don't label which category someone should win. Keeping it simple will be SO much easier!


Now, onto the winners. DRUMROLL....

Best overall picture was TERI

Best Take on the Challenge was MINDY

But I have to give an honorary mention to AprilF, who got TONS of votes (just not in the same categories)

You all did an extraordinary job this week! I was SO impressed! It feels like so many of you are really stepping it up and doing amazing things with those cameras. I love that inspiration.

I had been going to create a separate blog, and actually even began the process this morning. But I am actually leaning towards not doing that. It just adds an extra step of work, that I don't know if I can to pick up right now. A thought I had was to go back into the winners posts and add the category they won under their picture so it will show up on the sidebar and you can still click through easily to see the winning pictures.

Anyone else have a better idea? Or do you like the idea of a separate blog for the winning pictures? And if so, is there someone who wants to manage that?

CONGRATS TO EVERYONE! You all did an awesome job! I am so excited to see what the next challenge brings!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Let's VOTE!

Okay, the pictures are in! Let's hear your vote for the following 2 categories:

Best all around picture

Best take on the Challenge

WILL CLOSE THE VOTING ON MONDAY AT MIDNIGHT. So this leaves only a one day voting period (I don't want to drag things on and on into the next challenge)

Leave a comment to submit who YOU think should take the title this week! :)


Hey guys, I know I'm late on this one, I'm SOOOOO sorry. I been working 12 hour graveyard shifts all weekend, and this morning was literally the first time I've had an opportunity to even touch a camera all weekend. So here it is.

(D70, 38mm, ISO 1250, 1/1600, f14)

I got off work this morning at 7 am and walked outside to see a b-e-a-u-tiful day, complete with clear blue skies. I couldn't resist. I sped home, grabbed my camera and my dog, and drove up to our Oregon Trail Interpretive Center, which is definitely a huge "feature" of our town. The Oregon Trail runs right through our valley, and the interpretive center sits up on a hill and has trails down to the wagon ruts. I admit, I've been to the center at least 20 times in my life but have never walked to the ruts. There's also a "wagon circle" sitting on the top of the hill. One of them was painted these great colors, and I couldn't resist laying down on the ground to play with all kinds of angles. With this one, I used PW's "Fresh & Colorful" and "Boost".

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Feature This....

I'm not quite sure what to say about this. My son with my wife's shower cap and my daughters purse in pajamas. Needless to say I struggled with thinking of something out of the box but this is all I have.
Experimenting with different ISO and color settings on my camera that I discovered today. It ended up blurred on its own because he was moving and I just have this disease of not being able to hold still while taking the picture.


Went to a church birthday party the other night and played around with my camera. I'm going to be inherting my hubby's canon eos 30d soon and then I'll get to learn and experiment a bit more. This was taken with my little Kodak point and shoot. I'm getting better with my depth of field. The woman who decorated the cake did a fabulous job with making the cake features... (is that too lame of a tie-in?--I have to admit that I haven't been super inspired in general)

Nightly Feature

Blogger is giving me problems and won't upload my photo. I will try again later. I finally got it to work. I would help if I saved the photo in the right kind of file. 

At our house we love to watch movies, and eat junk food. This week is spring break and I think that alot of movies are in our future. Anyone have any yummy snack recipes?
INFO: f4.2, iso 200 and the attic vignette action from coffee tea photography.

Spring Baby

Featuring a spring baby
Taken in studio at 125 sec Iso 100, F8 with a main light, fill light and a hair light. Added Hodgy soft and dakened edges. I made the nest out of grape vine wreaths

Feature Entertainment

My nieces feature entertainment. I sharpened this up a little, darken the background tones and changed the white balance to cloudy. I think it really pops the colors.

The shiny red feature

I had so many ideas for this one, but most of them involved little people who were in bed when I realized I hadn't taken the picture yet. :)

So after lots of thinking, I realized that one thing I absolutely love is painting my toe nails. Even on the worst of days, the shiny red feature on my toes puts a little spring in my step.

Support and Feature


32 mm, 1/60 sec, F/4

Even though I made a lot of mistakes with this photo (the reflection in the glass, cutting off my Grandpa's head, strange object growing out of my Grandma's head), I love this photo. The emotion in my grandparents' eyes say it all. After (almost) 60 years, they support each other completely. My Grandpa is currently taking care of my Grandma, who has been ill for a long time. They have also always supported me.

Tiny features

42 mm, 1/100 sec, F/4.5

Our friend with his 3 1/2 month baby. CC


These are one of the primary features in my grandma's yard. Spring has sprung and it's so very beautiful!
f/10, 1/80, ISO 100

Feature: Favorite feature in the house

When we were house-hunting, the previous owners of the house we ended up buying were still living in it, furniture and all. I fell in love with the house. It was lived in, but it was full of life with all the colors on the walls. Every room was a different color. I grew up in a home with primarily white walls, so I'm not accustomed to bright colors. After we made our offer and flew back to the state we were living in at the time, I got really excited about moving in. The more I looked at the photos of the dining room, the more I decided it would be the first room painted. My husband convinced me to wait at least six months before making any major changes. I'm so glad he did, because the dark red dining room is now my favorite feature in the house. I get so many compliments when people come over, and I just love the room now.

About the photo: Taken at night, lit only with incandescent bulbs in the room. I used flash, but cropped the photo so that the glare was out of it. I used a "warmify" feature to add even more to the red.

A Prominent Feature... my city's skyline is the temple. It's ever a stark, white contrast against the dark or stormy sky, and can be seen from almost anywhere in town.
(I used a Nikon D-40, automatic setting, no flash, with natural overcast lighting, then slightly cropped it.)

And I know this one is incredibly late, but I never got a chance to post for EDGE, and I really wanted to put up the picture I took. This is an example of what happens to the snow here when it melts--an edgy wavelike effect is created. (Nikon D-40, automatic setting.)

CC welcome on both photos.

Feature Presentation

I know it's a little different from everyone else so far but the first thing I thought of was "And now for our Feature Presentation" so... Take your pick!

I piled all of our movies as high as I could and then tried to find an aperture setting that would let me focus in on Toy Story- it's my little boy's favorite. I actually was laying on the floor under the stack and had to experiment with taking the picture without actually looking through the viewfinder since I needed to be even lower to get the blur right. I'm sure there might have been easier ways but it ended up working.
Question for you awsome photographers out there- I had trouble with lighting. I felt like the top was too dark and the bottom was too light- that's why I did some photoshop edge burning after the fact. How would you compensate instead? I'm trying to get out of relying on that to fix my shortcomings.


So very sorry this is late. Im a little behind. I took this at a friend's house over the weekend. I love the way it turned out!

My Best Feature

I haven't always like my face. I haven't always liked my hands. Or my hair, or my legs.

But my feet, now them I have always loved!

I took this picture after Church so I'm still wearing my nylons. I like the smoothing look they give. As with most of my pictures, I took this with point-and-shoot in natural window light. I lightly enhanced it by adjusting brightness and contrast.

Featuring Playtime

When I went to the science museum the other day they had some flubber to play with.
When we got home.... we made some! Way fun.
This nasty color is a combo between three separate and beautiful colors. Green, Yellow, and Purple. (This is what happens when a two year old decided to mix it up a bit)
Recipe here

**I know, this looks really gross, but it was something new to feature. **