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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

mary's boy child

Long time ago in Bethlehem
So the Holy Bible say
Mary's boy child, Jesus Christ
Was born on Christmas day.

Hark, now hear the angels sing
A new King born today
And man will live forever more
Because of Christmas day.

music and lyrics
Jester Hairston


LR preset: kk_litely
Textures: kk_waterfront30 and kk_myrtle
Drawing: newborn Fen (from my own photo files that day)

Linking up with

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

in this place

...and I knew it not.
Genesis 28:16 

Sometimes it is hard to believe
that God is
in our lives,
trying times.

If He seems distant
we have only to
reach out

I remind myself of this on a regular basis.

LR preset: darkmood
Textures: kk1 and kk-magic0916

Linking up with
My Still Sunday (via Instagram)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

an american-italian thanksgiving

These things
to me:
Canon 6D + Tamron 24-70 lens
LR preset: kk_earthywgrain
PS textures: kk_waterfront1 and kk_waterfront21

as seen on Instagram
iPhone 6 captured with Camera+ app
edited with Leonardo and Stackables apps

family heirlooms
now in my keep:
ravioli rolling pin,
macaroni pot,
Italian embroidered linen tablecloth
and matching napkins
(a wedding gift for my folks in 1953)


This is what
Thanksgiving dinner
looked like
in our family:
homemade ravioli
homemade ricotta filling
the best ragu
you ever tasted.

We kids never had a traditional
Thanksgiving turkey dinner
until we were
and living on our own.

For the record,
none of us
ever objected.

Also for the record,
we considered ourselves

Greg, Cindy, Mom, Grandpa,
'Dudie,' Adrienne, Lissa
(Dad was behind the camera)
Thanksgiving 1966
at Dudie & Grandpa's house

Dudie wisely got out her best
plastic faux lace tablecloth
for us kids
(tomato sauce stains quite reliably)

Greg, Cindy, Adrienne, Lissa
making ravioli with Grandpa
in our kitchen
November 1969
See the rolling pin?

The tradition continued
- in a way -
when we kids
had kids,
only now it's

Linking up with

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

humble of heart

There's something about
dried flowers
that speaks
to me

LR preset: kk_pause
Textures: kk_anne and kk_bamboo

I gathered several of these
'daisy heads'
from my garden
this fall.
I found them
to be
infinitely more
than their
showy summertime
the black-eyed susan

I set up
this little still life
and captured it
with my iPhone 5
just so I could
with some apps.
as seen on Instagram

It is a mystery that unless unless the seed falls to the ground and unless it dies, it remains alone. I realize that there are many things in me that must die before He can live: my pride, my ambition, my impatience, my anger. The difficulty in loving my neighbor, or listening to the problems of another. There is much that I must die to. But unless these things are conquered, He cannot live in me.


Linking up with

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

i'm never really ready for this...

...but after an unusually warm October
(I was just on my bike the other day - in shorts!)
near-zero temperatures
and blizzard-like conditions
are indeed a
shock to the system.


Yesterday I watched
out the window
as it began
to snow.

I felt compelled
to draw.

Soon the white stuff
began to collect
on the few remaining leaves
still clinging to
the aspen trees
in our back yard.

As my eyes saw
my hand drew...
in my heart
I sensed
their plight.

I felt
their fear.

I knew
how it would end.


Early this morning
I felt compelled
to capture
this unfolding drama
with my camera.
It was so cold
I didn't want to risk
damaging condensation
in my 'big' camera,
so I made a few quick captures
with my iPhone 5.

Version 1

Editing done on my iPad
with the following apps:
LEONARDO - adjust exposure, contrast, brightness
PHOTOGRID- create layout
STACKABLES - add textures:
Winter Frost (Multiply 20%)
Glacial Ice (Color 25%)
Bleached (Soft Light 75%)
Worn Canvas (Hard Light 25%)

Version 2

Editing done on my iMac with
LIGHTROOM (preset: kk_truecolor)
The 'platinum' Gradient Map adjustment layer
(Lighten Blend Mode 32%)
toned down the bright
yellows and greens
just a bit.


For everything there is a season
and a time for every matter
under heaven.
Ecclesiastes 3:1


Linking up with

Thank you Roxi and Julie
for getting me hooked
with your
This is seriously
too much fun!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

still life: unwrapped


This week's Be Still 52 challenge:
Start with just two things.

Canon EOS 6D
Tamron SP 24-70 f/2.8 lens
Aperture Priority Mode
on tripod
ISO 400
f/5.0 1/200 sec
original photo SOOC

Preset: kk_truecolor

I've been revisiting Kim's
Photoshop Recipe Book
which, BTW, is now
included in a subscription to her
There is so much goodness here,
you gotta check it out.
I experimented with
a few recipes
and ended up with my own.
Playing with filters is fun too!
is one of Kim Klassen's classic textures
from her
Texture Collection 1

Linking up with

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

still life: mountain bike shoes

This week's Be Still 52 challenge
was to
"create a still life photo
inspired by a still life painting."

After a little bit of research
a lot of thought
I captured this
still life
my beloved
mountain bike shoes.


And once I had
through my lens
I felt compelled to
with pencil on paper.

When, at last, while seeing/drawing,
you see for the first time
what all your life
you have only looked at and recognized,
it reveals itself to be of inconceivable intricacy.
The commonplace becomes uncommon.


I have been biking the trails in these shoes
for years,
from the foothills west of Denver
to the steep summertime slopes of
Winter Park, Copper Mountain and Crested Butte
to the rugged cliffs overlooking
the Colorado River.


You might say
these are my favorite shoes.
They securely fasten me
to my trusty
Specialized Stump Jumper
and are
comfortable enough
for hiking long distances
in all terrain.
(I once walked over a mile in them
with my flat-tired bike.)



Canon EOS 6D
Tamron SP 24-70 f/2.8 lens
Manual Mode
on tripod
ISO 400
f/5.0 0.6 sec
incandescent light
I purposely chose to shoot in the laundry room
as that is where we store our bike gear
and I wanted to capture
an authentic

original capture SOOC

Staging in a cramped space,
my back against the wall

Lillian doesn't like the laundry room

I experimented a lot with
color saturation, vibrancy, clarity, exposure
because - face it - bike gear can be gaudy;
and the basement laundry room
is not the most flattering setting.
Then I applied
Kim's kk_walnut preset
and further adjusted
a bit more.

I auditioned a number
of textures and combinations
before settling
on this one
Font: Carbon Credit

I was inspired by these still life paintings
pinned from http://cargocollective.com/creativesyrup/Still-life-painting


Linking up with

Saturday, October 25, 2014

comic relief

Lately I've been exploring
thanks to my friends
Roxie, Sarah, and Viv
who have been tempting me
for months
with its
myriad of
creative possibilities.

So much to learn!
I have only just
scratched the surface.

was not exactly at the top
of my list;
however, one day last week
as I was sitting down to
draw this little dried rose petal
- in a quiet, contemplative, Zen-like state of mind -
who should happen along
and plant herself
right in the middle
of things?

couldn't resist
this set-up.
my plans were


I am always fascinated
by the dexterity of her
comma-shaped paw

as she daintily
sweeps small objects
hither and yon.

And then she glanced back at me,
as if to say,
'Well, what did you expect?'

God bless
for her
gift of
comic relief!

Good thing I had
my iPhone

iPhone 5

initial capture
(rapid fire mode)

Details: Sharpening ~25-30%
Drama: Bright 2 - default filter strength
which nicely lightened
Lillian's 'darker side'
and oh-so-subtly
brought out just enough
detail in
the sketchbook.

Second layer: kk_tuesday texture
Blend Mode: Soft Light 20%
I wasn't really after any
'dramatic' texturizing,
but rather to see how
subtle texturizing could enhance
an image.

Linking up with