it’s snowing…

but only here in WordPress. Very nice of them to put the snow script back, because outside everything’s just brownish gray.

Took a walk yesterday, thinking I’d take some photos. Only brought the 50mm lens and went up on Fort Howe — the look-out point here in Saint John. The sunlight was extremely bright and either I wasn’t inspired enough or my mind wasn’t really ‘open’ … I couldn’t come up with anything that I liked.

In the lobby here in the apartment building, Christmas is in full swing already. I used to make those balls in Photoshop! Still, when I see nice ones in the stores, I think to myself; «I could easily make a virtual one like that myself!» 🙂 It was a lot of fun doing that, especially when we were a bunch of people in the blogosphere who were into the same stuff.

Just yesterday, I came across an old account I had in Photobucket and found a folder full of backgrounds and other images that I’d made back in 2005-06 …. hundreds and hundreds of them, many I’d forgotten. It was fun to see but most of the background images were too …. wild …to intrusive. I’ve put one up here in this blog right now, that’s just on the limit. The images shouldn’t take away from the blog, but back then … in that group I was in … we were more about graphics than content.

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the return of the poppy

Some time ago, I downloaded GIMP. It’s an open-source photo editor, and it’s free.

Have had it before, but it’s been a long time and I found it too confusing back then. Thought I’d give it a try again since it’s constantly being updated and I like to see what’s going on.

It was like a whole different world opened up and most of it I didn’t understand. Thought I’d make an attempt at creating my usual, blue orb at least…. just to see what I could do with it.

There would be a lot to learn to take full advantage of it, and I don’t know that I’ll even start, but I’ve seen amazing work being created with it.

made from scratch in PSP, by meI have another photo editor, for whatever little editing I do. While Gerry was in France, I tried once again, to get back into creating graphics, but it just didn’t work. It can’t be forced.

I love the idea of GIMP, though … the fact that it’s free for everyone to download. You don’t have to be «filthy rich» to create graphics, when you’re so inclined! There are others too … paint.net, aviary, pixlr just to mention a few…

made from scratch in PSP9I’ve never picked up a paintbrush in my whole life … I’ve done some pencil drawing … but I did do some «virtual» painting for a while. It was a lot of fun, but also difficult, using just the mouse. Sometimes rewarding. This poppy, and the lilies too, I made totally from scratch. If I’d been into painting in ‘real life’, so to speak, Georgia O’Keefe would have been my inspiration. Now, when I’ve been searching for my own images for this post, I can still remember how much fun I had making these… I didn’t know about Georgia O’Keefe when I made these. Found out about her in some graphics challenge we had back in Yahoo 360. What a revelation that was to me! A person who had already painted what I wanted to do.

We all have our hang-ups

Good Ol' Days
Good Ol'Days by Thomas Hawk

…and here is one of mine.

This photo is by Thomas Hawk. He’s a guy in San Francisco who wants to shoot, process and publish 1,000,000 photos before his days are over. I’ve crossed path with him over the years in FriendFeed, Google Buzz and Flickr.

When I saw this picture the first time, I fell in love with it, and I can’t get over it! I still love it. This picture was what made me get the 50mm lens I wrote about the other day … the «nifty fifty» — was hoping I’d take great photos like this.

It’s something about the colours, glossiness and smoothness of it that so appeals to me.

Myself, I haven’t taken any pictures lately … it’s raining! It’s been raining for three, four weeks, I think, and it will go on this week too. It seems I should work on my indoor photography. Instead I’ve taken up the making of digital web graphics [in Paint Shop Pro 10]. Used to do that a lot, a few years ago while we were blogging in Y360.

Mona, an online buddy and fellow Swede, and I were talking about it … how much fun it used to be and why we lost it. So … slowly but surely we started again. I’ve set up, or rather ‘resuscitated’ a «sister blog» for it, to keep it apart from here.  It’s just for my own pleasure … to see what I can accomplish — it’s not like I’m going to use them for anything.

Today, I had a real urge to sink my teeth into a real good steak. Walked down to the grocery store in the fog and drizzle. Picked up a few other items at the same time and found a piece of meat … its size looked suitable for me … sirloin tip, it said. It looked good so I took it. I came home and fried it … the way I always do, and I tell you!!! This was the worst piece of meat I’ve ever had. Ever!!! I couldn’t eat it. Had I had some raccoon around I would have given it to him. It was next to impossible to cut through it, let alone chew it and there’s nothing wrong with my teeth. What a let-down! Isn’t sirloin tip supposed to be really good meat?!

Easter Sunday 2011 …

is extremely foggy here in Saint John. Were I to go out on the balcony and take a shot, it would be pure white.

One thing, that I really love about Easter here, is the Easter Lily. We don’t have that tradition in Sweden. It’s one of the most beautiful flowers … even though I think all flowers are beautiful, but this has come to be one of my favourites. Maybe I have a thing for white flowers … Gardenia is another favourite of mine.

I never tire of taking photos of them. Flowers are very gratifying as photo objects. When I got my first DSLR camera, it was just after Easter, so we had a white lily here at home, that I practised on. I was in awe … «Did I really shoot that photo?!»

Four, five years ago — when my main hobby was making graphics in Paint Shop/Photoshop — Easter would have been my time of glory. I just checked out my Flickr and found that I’d produced 235 images labelled «egg».

I used to make them at night, while watching TV … the glossier the better! Not only eggs, but all kinds of graphics … flowery background images for blogs, and stuff like that.

At some point, I lost it and cannot seem to get it back, even though I’ve tried several times … Perhaps the photography just took over as my creative outlet. I think, more importantly, back in those days of Yahoo 360, we were a big bunch of people who shared our creations with one another, which made it funnier than to just make a lot of stuff just for one self.

Either way … I guess you could say my graphics were eggsquisite! LOL