Archives for the month of: July, 2010

From time to time I get emails & comments from you all.  And I love it!  But the other day I got a gentle reminder that I hadn’t yet posted one special session*…it was unusual that these two were able to type out a message to me through facebook…it’s a skill I wasn’t expecting!

Dear Kate….we noticed there were not any adorable kitty pictures on your websites. we know how cute we are but we sometimes like photo evidence.
♥ Dexter and Maggie

You see – I forgot to post Dexter & Maggie’s portraits.  Shame on me.

Isn’t Maggie just the cutest.  I thought about stealing her**.  She was very interested in my bag.  She kept climbing in and playing with everything.  So it would have been very easy for me just to scoop her up, plop her inside, & take her home.  But I think she would have been missed by this fellow…

Isn’t Dexter a handsome dude.  He was trying to act aloof, but he’s a lover under all that tough guy facade. 

Yup – he almost came home with me too.


*Note:  This “special session”…was just me snapping a few quick shots of my friends Phil & Lauren’s sweet pets.  But the facebook message was all real.

**Note #2: I was serious about almost stealing them

I told you that I wouldn’t fail again today.  I said I was going to actually unpack my camera and take some pictures.  And I did.  Woo!

So I decided to explore an area of town that I have been eyeing for a while.  There’s a big river that runs through town & there are lots of paths and trees and benches that run alongside it. It’s a pretty nice place.  I went there today and although it was HOT & SUNNY (read: sweaty) I got a few keepers.

And then…while I was shooting…I noticed an old-school boat. Sorry I don’t know anything about boats. I mean I’m from a Midwestern, land-locked town.  Sure we had a river…but I never got in it.  And if I did…I wasn’t there to learn about boats!  I just know this was an old style one.  With the big paddle thing on the back.  I hope someone know what I’m talking about!

Anyway, talk about good timing! What a perfect prop for my pictures!

And then because I seem to like geometric shapes, repletion & pattern…I found this park bench interesting.


It felt really nice to get out my camera again.  I’ve been in a funk lately.  This move was a big one for me.  I left everyone behind and I think it was getting to me at first.  My daily routine changed dramatically as did my support system & the climate.  It’s no joke saying that the South is HOT!  But I’m trying to take the advice of one of my favorite bloggers (Confessions of a Young Married Couple) to “bloom where I am planted“.  And I think this was a good step in the right direction.

I posted my 25 by 25 list a few weeks back and I have made some progress (evidence to come soon-ish), but on one particular item I’ve failed…miserably.  #9 – Take photos every week.  Since I’ve moved to the South, I’ve only removed my camera from its case 1 time.  And it wasn’t to take a picture of anything pretty either.


I’m going to change that today…today I’m going to take my camera out and snap a few shots of my new community.  Then I’ll share them with you.  Mostly because I’m sweet like that.

Each Friday I Heart Faces hosts a Fix it Friday.  I decided to jump in this week.

This week’s photo is so summer-y, and oh so adorable!  It was taken by I Heart Faces c0-founder Amy.  And this photo really captured my attention.  Hello cutie! I’m loving the peeling teal chair (where can I get one of those!)…the matching teal hair accessories, that sweet little grin…and the wind slightly blowing back her hair.  ADORABLE!

Here is the image SOC:

And here it is after my edits:

I really thought this photo needed a little vintage touch and a bit of cropping to draw attention to her sweet little face.  I wanted this to be a bit heavy on the edited side because I thought this photo could handle the treatment & wanted it to be a bold, fun photo!  Here is a quick run-down of what I did with this image (all edited in Photoshop – CS2).  Feel free to tune out and close the browser now if you don’t care at all about photo-editting. Just come back later 🙂

First I opened the image in CS2, then I adjusted levels (to lighten it up & darken the blacks), bumped the contrast a bit, then used the curves to brighten it overall.


I made a duplicate layer and touched up the dark spots under her eyes then reduced back the opacity a bit (~75%) because if you don’t the cosmetic fixes start to look a little doll-like & we don’t want that!


Then I duplicated the layer and changed the layer type to “Color Dodge” and reduced opacity to 25%


I desaturated the color (-58) & bumped the contrast some more (+18).  Then I felt it needed a little more sunny warmth so I added a photo filter (warming filter (81)) at about 35%.

Finally I cropped the photo in a little closer to put more emphasis on her face.

I probably could have accomplished this by running a few actions, but I like to try to edit things without the use of actions from time to time.  It helps me to learn more about how Photoshop works!

Hope that made sense!

Here they are side-by-side one more time:

I bet you thought I forgot all about this sneak peek

Here are a few more shots from Brent and Amy’s engagement session.

I just love these two!  They were great sports and did whatever I asked them too.  Always a good trait in photo clients & friends :

This great grassy field was at their house…Yup…I was loving that!


Thanks you two…Thanks for letting me take your photos…Thanks for trekking out into tall grass & sitting on the wet ground…thanks for your patience while I pack up and move across the country and then slack off before posting these photos…I just think you guys are the best!  I just can’t wait for your wedding!

I’ve been a bad blogger lately.

Very bad.

Not that I want to make excuses. But I’m going to make excuses.

I moved.  Very far away. 

I know no one here.  I’m adjusting.  I needed some time to get settled.  I’m almost there.

I was going to post a few old flower photos to add some color & life to my recently very dull posts, but Flikr has changed their setup…Pfff….not sure how to work it just yet.  I’ll be back to normal shortly.  I apologize!

I mentioned last week that I was creating a list of 25 things I wanted to do before my 25th birthday next year.  Well…I’ve thought it through…I’ve contemplated…set some goals….wrote the list…re-wrote the list…and finally here it is:

25 by 25

  1. Cook a brand new recipe once a month
  2. Visit Memphis
  3. Cook fish
  4. Take a trip to the beach
  5. Get comfortable cooking without a recipe
  6. Live more frugally (Hard to measure – I know)
  7. Visit Nashville
  8. Create less food waste
  9. Take  photos every week
  10. Sew something I can am willing to actually wear in public
  11. Learn to sew from a pattern
  12. Go to a wine tasting
  13. Visit the Chicago art museum
  14. Go spelunking….not the real kind…the guided tour of a cave kind
  15. Buy an original piece of art
  16. Make homemade icecream
  17. Visit a winery
  18. Learn to how to decorate a cake
  19. Shoot a gun
  20. Make art that I’m willing to actually put on my walls
  21. Reupholster my grandma’s side chairs
  22. Redesign, relaunch & advertise my Etsy site
  23. Visit local art festival
  24. Wear lipstick
  25. Refinish my old furniture

I’ll be crossing things off my list as I go.  Stay tuned!