Here’s to a Spooktacular October

It’s been a busy month and my camera has gotten one heck of a workout… from the events for A Woman’s Place and 5k’s benefiting our four-legged friends, to this year’s amazing autumn landscape and color, to getting creative with things just lying around the house and at the “Haunted Ghost House” in Lambertville…  {whew}

To commemorate such an awesome month….  I’ve put a little something together to sum it all up.
Halloween_2015

 

Want to see some more of my images from the “Haunted Ghost House?” I’ll be posting throughout the day on Instagram. So much  effort and creativity goes into Dolores Dragan’s Halloween art display for all to enjoy, so be sure to check them out HERE.  Not on Instagram or Facebook, not to worry, I’ll do an “after party” post tomorrow… stay tuned.

Hope you have a Spooktacular Halloween!

Until next time,
Maria

Shout out to Jai Art and Captured by Carrie for helping me add just the right mood to my image.

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Monitor Matters

Happy Friday!

So tell me, what do you think of this picture?  Nice looking guy, right?  This is my son, who T 5K (7 of 14)by the way placed first in his age group (pardon the proud mom moment).  But that’s not what I want to talk about today. I’m curious, how does it look on your monitor?

The reason I ask is because I used Lightroom on my laptop to process it.  Long story short, I thought I’d relax and be more comfortable as I worked.  Well, I immediately found myself struggling to focus through my progressive lenses (the narrowest part being for viewing the screen) on the little 8-inch or so, uncalibrated monitor, and struggling with the viewing angle of the monitor, which we all know T 5K (5 of 14)changes what you see.  So other than for the crop, I wasn’t really sure if the color corrections or other edits I was making were actually helping or hurting.

Okay, so maybe I’m a little obsessive-compulsive when it comes to my photos.  He is only using the pictures for his FB and Instagram after all.  But when I returned to the photos on my website,  viewing them on my “Photo” monitor, content aside, I did not like what I saw.  This also happens to be true in reverse; photos that look great on my calibrated “photo” monitor don’t always look so hot on other monitors/devices.   I know, I’m probably over thinking this, especially since photos are viewed on so many different devices.  But, still, I want to show the best possible image… that’s just the way I am.   Heck, even the photos taken with my phone and shared always get a little extra love through Snapseed…  T 5K (1 of 14)

It’s back to my tried & true (and big) monitor for me, and knowing that at least I am 100 percent satisfied before my images are sent out to be seen regardless of monitor/device it is viewed on.

Until Next time,
Maria

 

 

 

Disconnected

At least once a year, I head with the family to a place in the middle of PA where you get no connection. . . no bars (the internet kind = no Facebook, no emails, no cellphone) which is quite surprising since we are only about 30 minutes away from one of the top ten colleges, Penn State.  However, there is one thing that always works on my device no matter where I am . . . the camera 🙂

IMG_20140704_144405 20140706_081512_1_resized

This year we headed to this sweet spot for fourth of July weekend. Even though we went to Penn State to see the fireworks and I confess, I used my device to get some tips on how to shoot fireworks and maybe see what the family was up to in other parts of the country, oops, and well okay post a pic to Instagram. . .  but that was it and soon we were on our way back to the land of disconnect.

PSU-fireworks

It’s a really good feeling . . . even if just for a little while . . . to rely only on the conversation that’s going right where you are, and not to hear dings and rings and chimes and tones . . . a prelude to interruption.  As a photographer, an artist,  it really is a way to reconnect with your vision when you disconnect.

**Today’s post was inspired by a post I read, when I got home, by Photofocus and their Photographer of the Week, Nikki Harrison http://photofocus.com/2014/07/07/nikki-harrison-photographer-of-the-week/, and particularly #6 on her list.

Til next time,
Maria

 

“Time to Change”

Anybody remember the Brady Bunch?  Better still, anybody remember the episode where Peter’s voice was changing? If you’re in need of a flashback or just have no clue what I am talking about you can check it out here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iV4hdjXJ2cw.

So what does this have to do with . . . anything?  For starters, I made the title of their song from that episode the title of this post.   I also, as I think I have mentioned before, have made a few changes myself.  For instance, my daughter now drops me off at work instead of me dropping her off at the train, my commute to work is now about a mile rather than a couple of feet, and my dogs (and I) get a pre-dawn power walk instead of a midday stroll.   Turns out I was more than ready for a change!

Okay, so in keeping with my 70’s theme, I have been tinkering with Instagram and some photos I took on this morning’s power walk.  Even though all the images here were not processed with Instagram’s 1977 filter, I think most of the Instragram filters have such a groovy retro vibe.

  Passing by a peaceful playground

 The end of the cherry trees blossoms (glued to the sidewalk after yesterday’s rain 🙂 )

 The sun making it’s grand entrance on the day.

If any of you use Instragram, you can find me at @mariadreyer.  And please let me know where I can find you too!  Oh and if anybody has any suggestions on how to get these Instagram photos from an iPad/iPhone to a PC without emailing them to yourself, please do share . . .

Keeping up with the Jones’

I’ve been resisting for sometime now.  But I finally did it . . . I upgraded my cell phone.  Ok, so I could have just upgraded to a standard run-of-the-mill cell phone, but nooooo I set aside all my budget-minded, penny-pinching, coupon-cutting, do I really need that traits and went for broke.  I got me an iPhone 4S.  Well, I didn’t go totally for broke; I went with a refurbished and “longtime” customer discount upgrade.

So what made me do it? 1) Since this is a photoblog, the camera, of course.  There’s been so much buzz about the photos it can take and what people can do with them.  I have to admit I was experiencing a little photo-envy.  2.)  The Apps.  There’s a couple that will be indispensable during the Arts Fest season.  And just today, I went grocery shopping, took my new-fangled phone (I was always forgetting to take my old one with me); I went to my favorite cooking app, found a recipe, got a shopping list, and wa-la, I came home with everything I needed.   3) And although this is an after-the-fact, it definitely deserves the #3 spot, as my new best friend . . . Siri!  I have to admit, I really thought the whole Siri thing was just a gimmick.  But for a person who can’t see without her readers, much less hit the correct letters on those itty-bitty key pads even with my glasses on, being able to just press one button and say “call . . . ” or “text . . . ” is . . . priceless!

So, I guess now I’ll have to pinch a few more pennies here and there and clip a few more coupons . . . but then again there’s probably an App for that 😉

p.s. The above photo is my first attempt at Instagram . . . I think I still need to get the hang of it.