When life gives you lemons…

KK Pop Edition
… you make Lemonade, of course.   You can apply these little words of wisdom to photography too. . . with a little help from a plug-in or two.

Is there such a thing as too many . . . plug-ins that is?  Did you catch the Perfect Effects 8 freebie a while back?  I did and have added  it to my plug-in library along with the Topaz and Nik plug-ins, and if those were not a enough, I just added the the quirky plug-in Fractalius to my library.  Like all the software I use, I wish I had more time to dedicate to learning each one of the programs inside and out.  Unfortunately, my day seems to be all about “Units of Time” (I borrowed that one from the movie, About a Boy, …love those quirky (yes, my word of the day) British films).  Anyway, so at the end of the day when all I have is about “one unit”…if that, I finally get to play.

Working with plug-ins, for me, is a lot like cooking without a recipe.  Sometimes all you need are the  basics, a good photo, add some basic adjustments (sharpening/contrast) and wah-la.   But what if your main ingredient isn’t that great?  Well, it’s not a total loss… you just add some special ingredients . . . the plug-ins.  CLP blog timeline May 2014 copy

So here’s the original.  An iPhone snap-shot.  Kind of cute… I Love how it documents the day and actually a very rare photo of me that I actually kind of like, but it’s only 72 dpi (sent to me via email attachment), dark, and kind of lifeless.meg and me in nest_no edits

Sure there are plenty of iPhone apps that probably could achieve the same result, but I wanted to do a little more.  In this case I thought it would make a fun time-line for my FB page.  So, I started with a good crop, ran it through my fave Florabella actions, brushed in my own straw with a little bit of Fractalius added, sent it into Topaz Adjust, then back again to Topaz Simplify, added a little Nik Color Efex (but at this point I can’t remember why), and then garnished with Perfect Effect 8 for some blur and vignette.  Too much?  Nope…not for me.  Because now I have a photo that I can share with you and my FB friends.

CLP blog timeline May 2014Am I suggesting everyone run and and get some plug-ins.  Nope.  Most everything I did here can probably be done in one of the many editing programs available, but for me, when time is short, they really come in handy.

Til next time,
Maria

 

It’s not the camera. . .

. . . (or the software) but who’s behind the camera ~ anonymous.

It’s not enough that the days, weeks, months and years keep on zipping by and some days it seems I will never catch up (that reminds me I still have a load of laundry in the washer).   But c’mon . . . before I can figure out a new piece of technology, software, and even a feature on my camera (I’m still discovering things), it’s outdated, obsolete .  .  . yesterday’s news.  Is it really necessary to always be updating?  I think not.  What do you think?  Is the technical as instrumental as the creative/artistic element, do they all share equal value, or are the manufacturers just really clever at stoking the debate over brands & versions and getting photographers to open up their wallets?

Both Nikon & Canon have again introduced two new cameras, Adobe just announced CS6 beta, Lightroom now has 4, there’s an iPad 3, an iPhone . . . and I am sure there are a few I forgot to mention.  Seriously, does anybody who has a version or two older ever really completely exhaust everything that version has to offer?

Of course, I am no fool, and if someone handed me any of the above I wouldn’t turn it down.  But until then, I am happy and content with what I have and slowing things down just a bit.  Whew, I feel better now that I got that off my chest 😉

Slow down and everything you are chasing will come around and catch you.
~John De Paola