Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Feeling Vampy

So I decided that I wanted to try some more photo manipulation. This time I used a tutorial to help me look a bit Vampire-ish.


The tutorial is in 3 parts. I sort of followed it and sort of didn't. I was using Pixelmator (cheap-y Mac imitation of Photoshop that works fine for most purposes) to do this.

I started off with a picture from a few years back (before I started caring much about the quality of my selfy photos, I was more concerned with documenting my awesome costume!)

It's my Ravenclaw-Gone-Punk costume. ;) 

I started off following the tutorial. I skipped the whole make the skin paler thing cuz... I'm REALLY pale by myself. I didn't need to make myself any paler. I jumped right to the eyes. 

I didn't want to be a lame "good" vampire with the golden eyes, I wanted to be bloodthirsty red. Other than the color change I followed the general eye color tutorial. 

Next came time to darken up the shadows under my eyes. When I did that I noticed that it also did awesome things to my eyeshadow so I made a separate layer for the eyeshadow. I darkened those two layers independently. I also darkened up my lipstick.

Finally I cut out my background and set it to black. I want to do something more elaborate for the background but at this point I'd been fooling around on this for a few hours with trial and error and it was dinner time! So I left off here. Maybe I will revisit this photo and add a better background next time.

Yes... I really am THAT pale...


Ok, so upon reflection I am just *too* pale in this! I had to darken it up a bit.

I think that is a bit better.

Before... and after...



I processed this photo in Lightroom 4. I adjusted the shadows, highlights, whites, and blacks before using a preset to change it to high contrast black and white. 



In Lightroom 4 I adjusted the shadows, highlights, whites, and blacks. Then I brightened the blues and greens. I also darkened the photo a bit.



In Lightroom 4 I adjusted the shadows, highlights, whites, and blacks. I brightened the blues and greens. I also removed the green wood and warmed it up to a more wood-like color. My favorite part of this photo is the moon which is visible near the mast on the far right. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Mark eats a baby octopus...

When my husband and I went on a vacation up in Maine we stopped in to visit our friends Mark and April. We went out for Chinese food one afternoon and Mark discovered a baby octopus.

After much discussion it was decided that Mark must eat the baby octopus, and I must take pictures.

His wife was vaguely horrified and refused to join him in trying the baby octo, but we are all used to Mark doing such things so we went with it.

Just to be especially sketchy Mark starts off by licking the baby octo's tentacles. Ick.

It was decided that this did not need to be repeated.

Thanks Mark!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Cracking up

So I am trying to learn how to do various "photoshop" techniques. I don't have photoshop. I have Lightroom and Pixelmator, but they do mostly the same thing.

I watched this youtube video on Cracking and Peeling Faces and decided to try and emulate it in Pixelmator.

This is what I came up with:

I still need to learn how to cut an image from the background better. This cut is rather rough... Otherwise not a bad first attempt!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

First attempt at Adobe Lightroom

I put a question out to my G+ community asking if anyone knew of photoshop tutorials that I could use to improve my quite bad processing abilities. I was referred to some Youtube videos created by a French photographer named Serge Ramelli. The first video I watched was a basic introduction to Adobe's Lightroom photography program. 

I do not have Lightroom. I have a program I downloaded from Apple for $3. I downloaded a trial of Lightroom to try this tutorial out and see how I liked it before I invested any money into it.

Serge starts off with a sunset photo, so I went into my photos and grabbed the first sunset picture I came across that I hadn't attempted to process yet. I hadn't processed it because it was bad. It was blurry and washed out and all around blah. I figured, what's the worst that can happen? I find out this picture is unusable and I go search for a new photo or wait until tonight and take a new one to use. 

So here is what I started off with:

I then watched Serge's tutorial (which can be found on Youtube here) and edited my photo along with him, pausing frequently to play around.

After about an hour of playing around I ended up with this:

It came out much better than I expected! I am actually pretty pleased with this picture. Of course, I would be happier if it wasn't blurry, but I softened the image and made it all a little fuzzy so that the blurriness was not so bad. All in all I am satisfied that I have saved this picture!

I think I may end up buying Lightroom. I am going to try a few more tutorials first before I make my final decision.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Medford Spinjam

My friend took me with her to the Medford Spinjam last night. The people in this group do fire spinning. Essentially they light things on fire and spin them around in intricate patterns. It was really cool!

This was a fire puppet!

Fire puppet dancing away in the darkness!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Off to Canada!

I just got back from my first trip to Canada! We drove up from northern Maine and crossed the bridge over the St. John River to Edmundston. There was not much to do over there, but we drove around and had lunch.

The bridge to Canada
I was convinced we were going to die on the bridge. We were stopped for a long time and I dislike bridges!

Straight down to the river. This is what we drove over. Apparently it's so the snow can go right through in the winter.

We had to stop at customs.

Sideways stoplight! 

We got lost. This is the hotel that we stopped at to get directions.  They were very nice, as was the hotel.

There was a ?paper? factory

Cute footbridge

Look! Canadian ducks!

Look! Canadian seagull! 

Look! Canadian tree!

Look! Canadian spider!

We went to KFC, which is called PFK, and my husband got his fries Poutin (with cheese and gravy) GROSS! 
Everything was in French. I don't speak French... I could read most of the signs though!