Thursday, July 22, 2010

Depth of Field

Prompt 7 for Shimelle's class was to play around with depth of field. This, I think, is the easiest photography concept to understand. A large depth of field is when everything is in focus. A shallow depth of field is when a small part of the photo is in focus and the rest is out of focus. Easy enough right? Large depth of field - large area in focus, small depth of field - small area in focus. I tend to shoot with a shallow depth of field. This is in part to the fact that I use a zoom lens but, also because I think it puts more focus on the subject. Now, I tend to shoot small objects and people, which work well with a shallow depth of field. I shoot less landscapes, which typically work well with a large depth of field.

I chose two photos to show this concept. They are both of the same thing. It is a centerpiece I made using a Jenni Bowlin kit. I took it outside to shoot in natural light and after several variations, found the wagon sitting next to the fence with grapevines and thought it would be perfect!

The first one shows a narrow depth of field, while the second shows a large depth of field. This was all done by changing the opening of the aperture. The first had a large aperture opening - F2. The second had a small aperture opening - F22. You, of course, can get varying degrees of depth of field by changing the aperture opening. It's why I typically choose to shoot in aperture priority.
Which do you prefer? I like the one with a shallow depth myself but, photography is an art, and art is subjective!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


You still have plenty of time to play along with the nerdy girls. Take a look at this collage:

You know it inspires you and makes you want to create. You know you have some great pictures that are begging you to use them a girly girly way. Pull them out and get scrapping! Currently, there are only 2 entries. That means your chance of winning a fabulous prize pack is VERY GOOD indeed!!
So grab your pictures, grab your materials, scrap your little, crafty heart out and post your layout here: Nerdy*Victorious*Scrapbookers

On a side note...I managed to blog everyday for a week : ) Woohoo!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Ah...the lazy days of summer. I am loving having time to actually play with my camera, photoshop and blogging.
Prompt 12 for Shimelle's class is about adding texture to your photos. I had many new experiences with this one: using flikr, playing with layers, adding texture to a photo.

To do this, I first searched flikr for "bokeh texture". Bokeh is that dreamy circles created in the part of the picture that is out of focus. You can create this in the camera or you can add it. I added it over some subtle texture that was already there!

I've never done this before and really wanted to play around, so I did it three times with 3 different textures on the same photo.
This was my first attempt. I used a texture from e.kristina . I covered the whole picture with it then used the darken mode. You not only see it on the right hand side but, in the left corner as well.

For my next attempt, I used a texture from shironekoeuro . This one, I only used on the right side of the photo. I then used the eraser tool and erased the dark part off the banister.

For my last attempt, I used a texture from inspire*dream*create*
I also only used it on the right side of the photo. I had a more difficult time erasing parts I didn't want. I think the colors on this one are more suitable to the photo though.

I'll have to make time to play around with this more. There were a couple of music page textures that I tried to make work with this photo, but they didn't. I'll keep that in mind for future pictures!

I've never given credit to files on flikr before. Will someone please let me know if I did it correctly? Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Not a real girl

Prompt 12 was to add text to a picture. I had purposely left space in my 3 things photo. I have added text to photos before. It's quite simple with Photoshop elements. It was my first time purposely leaving space on a photo when I shot it in order to add text later. I always fill my frame as much as possible. This took actively thinking about the negative space. I like how it turned out.
I'm in an in-between phase right now. I've moved from carrying my ID and keys, to wallet and keys, to finally adding my cell phone, which I frequently forget (much to the chagrin of my friends). I have a purse and I use it most days when I'm working, but it's summer, who wants to lug around a purse??

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The World As My Tripod!

Prompt 9 for Shimelle's class was to use the world as my tripod. The idea was to look at the world from a different perspective. I did this the same day as the sky pictures. It was warm and the ground was hot, especially those red bricks! I also rediscovered that I'm still allergic to grass and had red scratches on my legs for several hours after my photo shoot.
This first picture was taken across the street from the City Hall. It is a building that is no longer in use. The flowers growing on the porch were just beautiful and this picture turned out better than I thought it would! I had a difficult looking in the view finder, so I pushed the button and hoped something good happened. I really like the calmness represented in this photo.

This next one was easier to take. I am at the end of a ledge, so I could easily get behind my camera and focus where I wanted. I chose to focus on the brick wall leading into the picture.

The next was more difficult. The red bricks were super hot. I had a very difficult time getting behind my camera. I tried to just push the button and see what happens, but the camera wouldn't focus. I turned off the auto focus, focused it a bit, took picture, focused some more, took a picture. I was able to find one I liked after several attempts!

The last is just a different perspective of the red bricks. I thought the hotel brick was funny. I framed it with my summer feet and shot from above. I wish I would have saw the writing in the left corner. It's not too distracting, but I could have framed it out of the picture.

On another note, I'm so dang proud of myself; I blogged almost everyday this week!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Shimelle Class - Prompt 8 Blue Skies

I rarely take my setting off aperture priority, but this prompt helped me do that. I set it for shutter priority, started at one side and worked my way through the different shutter speeds. It's really cool how exposure can affect the color of the sky.

I went down to the city hall that was recently remodeled and played around. I had been waiting for some clouds to shoot, but, the sky keeps telling me no. I wake up to fog and when it finally leaves, it's blue skies all day. I should be happy, it's finally feeling like summer! The best part was when I was photographing the top of city hall, the bell rang. I didn't even know there was a bell in the tower. I had to stop and smile!

I made a layout of the different shutter speeds so you can see the difference that exposure has on your blue skies. The longer the shutter is left open, the more light that comes in and the lighter the sky will be.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Prompt 3 - Three is the magic number

The prompt was to choose three objects and photograph them in different ways. I chose the three things I carry almost daily. I sadly carry these things in a purse - this is great because they are all together - but sad because I'm becoming a girl that carries too much stuff!! I purposely left space on the left of the picture to add text in photoshop - a later prompt. I think I like the one with the objects on the green couch.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Prompt 2 - Fifty Zillion Flowers

Assignment 2 was to take pictures of flowers from all different angles...get close up, get far away, shoot from above, shoot from below. I had a lot of fun with this assignment. First, I took the plant outside: I shot from a distance.

Then I pulled out my close-up filter and was able to get the detail on the flower. I love that you can see little dust particles on the petals.

Then I took some pictures inside later in the day. The later lighting changed the color of the flowers. I was also able to shoot so the light coming from the window shows through the petals. The flower veins are very cool!

I wouldn't usually think about photographing from behind the flower. But, I think it worked really well with the lighting and thin petals of the plant. What a great assignment. I always love it when I'm able to be pushed to think outside the box!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Shimelle's Class - Prompt 1

The first prompt was to play round with available light. You were supposed to pick and object that represented you and take pictures of the object in different places and at different times. I chose one of our wedding glasses. I found it looked the best near the windows or outside at about 5:30pm or in the morning. Unfortunately, that changes as the seasons change, so I can't rely on knowing that light will be great in my house everyday at that time. You also have to think about weather too!
I really enjoyed this prompt. It was fun seeing how the lighting effected the glass in different rooms, with flash and without, with natural light and with artificial light. I was fun to just play with my camera. It's been awhile since I have had time to do this!
I made this little collage showing some of the different lighting.
The top two pictures were in taken in the kitchen window at about 10:30 AM. The red one was taken in the living room with light coming in from the window. The last one was taken in the hallway using the very dim hallway light and a flash.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

New Envious Challenge!!

The prompt for July has been posted at Nerdy*Victorious*Envious You girly girls and cupcake lovers out there are going to swoon over it!

I took the pink, the girly girl title, the brackets, the flower in the corner and swirls and made it my own:

It's about 99% more pink than I typically use. I think it worked well with the black and white photo though. I really enjoyed making the flower. I looked through my stash, but didn't have anything big enough. When all else fails, make your own! You can't really tell, but the pink patterned paper is mounted onto a sparkly white cardstock. It kinda gives it that 80's theme that I think the collage invokes.

Like the collage? Use it as your own inspiration and you could win great scrappy loot!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Back in the classroom!

I am embarking on my first on-line class adventure. I won a class through Becky Novacek's blog. This is something I haven't done before, but am excited about. I'm hoping it will jumpstart my creativeness, which has been sorely lacking lately. I like that the first assignment has to do with light - what I need the most help with in my photography!

The class is by Shimelle. She does other class revolving around photography and scrapbooking and everyone that has taken her classes just raves about them. Check out her website if you're interested!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Squirrels are nuts!

I caught this squirrel napping on our fence and tried to sneak outside for a super cute photo opportunity. He awoke before I took my first shot, but I was able to get a couple of pretty good pictures. I'll be watching for this guy for the rest of the summer.

He was just relaxing in the sunshine enjoying himself.

I love his little feet hands. This isn't the best compostition, but I love that I got the little guy running!