Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Texture Tuesday - A pink bike in Florence.

Hello dear friends,

Well I am trying to get back in to the swing of blogging after not posting for a little while.
So, I am making up for it today, and this is my second post in a day...a rarity for me!

As you all know by now...Tuesday is "Texture Tuesday" for me so without further ado here is my textured photo.....a pink bike in Florence.

I love old bikes and this pretty pink one just caught my eye. It was such a pretty girly color, especially after seeing all the black ones that were far more common. The only thing missing was an old cane basket to make 'her' perfect. Actually, the more I look at 'her', the more I think she is perfect unadorned.

To achieve this look with photoshop elements 9, I....

1. Duplicated the background.
2. Levels adjustment - adjusted the mid tones a fraction.
3. Hue saturation adjustment....I wanted the little red bits to "pop" a little more.
4. KK Golden texture layer on soft light blend mode at 100%
5. Another layer of KK Golden texture on multiply blend mode at 82%
6. I added a layer mask and removed some texture on the bike, especially seat and frame.
7. KK Love in layer texture on multiply blend mode at 50%
8. Layer mask and removal of some texture on the bike.
9. Text layer "superba' which is the brand of the bike.

Pretty in pink 'Superba' pushbike.

The original photo...oh yes, I also cropped a little on the right hand side.

Please remember to go to the Texture Tuesday logo on my blog side bar to join in on the fun....it will take you straight to Kim's site.

Well this IS really it for me tonight..


Anastasia glass bead-making workshop in Tasmania.

Hello dear friends,

You may wonder why I have not posted for a while. Here is one of the things that has kept me busy and away from the computer...

I was away a few weeks ago in beautiful Tasmania where I went with a few friends, Georgie and Belinda to attend a glass bead making, 3 day course, with Anastasia.

We stayed in a sweet  little cabin at the quaintly named place of Snug, about 30 minutes south of Hobart, Tasmanias' capital city, and drove from there each day to the community centre in Woodbridge another 15 minutes away where the classes were held.

Anastasia is a world renowned bead maker who came all the way from Germany to teach in Australia.
She visited and taught at studios in Sydney, Canberra and Tasmania.  Please  take a look at her website as her beads will just amaze you!

Thank you to Gail at Go glass studio who organised Anastasias'  visit and her Australian teaching schedule.
I learnt a HEAP of techniques and can't wait to get that fine stringer under control!

Here are a few of the demonstration beads Anastasia showed us how to make. (These are her beads)

Beginning with simple fine stringer work. These stringer were as fine as the hair on your head!.

Learning how to use enamels as a background and more fine stringer work.

Base bead using different transparent colors, enamel and stringers.

Using raking techniques and beautiful murrini building.

'Vertebrae technique' with enamels.

Gorgeous fish, decorated with enamel and yes, more fine stringer.

And a few other photos....well, I have missed out on a few posts..so now am making up.. by adding in a few pictures here!

Taken on the road driving from Snug to Woodbridge. Tasmania is really beautiful and the country really only a short distance from any of the main cities.

Little pomegranates in the garden of the community centre.

Miniature daffodils  also in the Woodbridge Community centre garden.

Hope you are all having a brilliant day....!

cheers for now,

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Texture Tuesday - Burano, Italy.

Hello dear friends,

Today my Texture Tuesday post is a photo taken on the little island of Burano, Italy.  I visited Burano in March this year and enjoyed the brief time I had there looking at these pretty colored houses. Somehow, the colors appeared to sit so well there, however I am not too sure if I could ever be this adventurous with choice of color on the outside of my own home. ( although I could easily go with  palette selection of the first group of houses!)

Burano is a small island located about 45 minutes by ferry from Venice. It is a pretty fishing village with a populace of about 3,000 inhabitants.
Its little streets and canals are lined with bright pastel-colored houses. It has been said that these bon-bon colored houses have their origins in the fisherman's desire to be able to see their own house when heading home from a day at sea.

The  group of houses I chose for my Texture Tuesday photo, are certainly some of the more subdued color choices on the island.

On this photo, using Photoshop Elements, I .....

1.  Cropped the left side
2.  Applied hue-saturation adjustment
3.  Removed a pole and wiring using the clone tool
4.  Added KK Mayzee texture, soft light 100%
5.  Doubled up KK Mayzee, soft light 79%
6.  Removed some texture on the hanging clothes.
7.  Added KK Mayzee again, overlay 36%
8.  Added a hue-saturation adjustment again
9.  Added KK Warm Sun texture, with soft Light 100%
10. Added Soft Focus "effect".

Overall, the adjusted photo has a far softer, aged look compared to the original below.

The original photo.

These houses are more colorful!  Totally gorgeous!

Pretty lilac colored house in a cobblestone square.

If you want to have a look at more texturing fun, please click on the Texture Tuesday logo on my blog side bar to take you to the website of our host, Kim Klassen.

Cheers for now,

Sunday, June 12, 2011

I Heart Macro - Beach Glass

Hello dear friends,

I love beach glass...I always look for it when walking along any beach.(that doesn't happen that often!)
It is pretty hard to find and I always feel like a little kid when I do find even one small piece.
I love it's smoothness and the worn, faded colors.

One day I will make a bead set and etch/tumble it so that it looks like that soft beachy look...
I did actually make and etch some discs which you can see here if you wish.

If you Heart Macro too, please visit Lori at Studio Waterstone to see other macro photos - click on the photo below to take you there and join in the fun.

studio waterstone

Thursday, June 9, 2011

First glass head pins

Hello dear friends,

I wanted to post this yesterday for btw, but somehow got a little behind...you know how it can be?!

These are my first glass head pins.
I used two different sorts of wire, a high temp wire, called nichrome, I think this wire is usually used in toasters! It was the stiffer of the two, hard to straighten from the original coil it came in, and consequently a little crooked when the glass was applied to it.
This made it difficult to centre the glass, so some of those  little 'beads' look a little skewiff.
The other wire was copper, 0.6mm, so very fine and delicate.

I had to work way up in the flame for both.

I really wanted to make rose - hips, however apart from adding a little enamel, it was very difficult to add additional glass in the form of stringer, dots etc to the 'bead' as the wire would bend with even the smallest amount of pressure.
 I will have to work a lot more on this and try and be more delicate with my touch!

Leaves,berries, rose-hips and flowers.

Rose-hips and berries.


Hope you all have a lovely day,

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Texture Tuesday - For the love of Singer Sewing Machines.

Hello dear friends,

Here it is Tuesday once again... goodness how the week flies!
I am loving 'Texture Tuesday' and, after completing half a dozen or more textured photos, the penny is finally dropping.. and I feel I am starting to become a little more familiar with the process.

Each week, I am amazed with the variety and quality of the textured photos on Kim's site.

Each time, after viewing other photos, I tell myself..."be a little more adventurous with it, attempt something a little different!"
So, this week, I have done that...however... I am now starting to think I may have gone TOO far....

I find it quite a dilemma really... the choice between simplicity or the problem of it all becoming too over- textured and looking too 'busy'.

Is it better to stay simple both in the nature of the original photographic style and the texturing that goes with it?

Does anyone else ask themselves these questions as they learn this process or am I just being too self critical?
I would like to know your opinion...more elaborate..or simple...? Which is your style and what do you think is 'better'?

This week the challenge was to post a photo with the addition of writing, either in the added texture or as a text over the photo.

This photo was taken in Portobello Road, Spitalfields, London. It is of a window of one of a chain of fashion shops called All Saints.

I was captivated by the wonderful display of old sewing machines which were arranged in multiple layers in each of the windows.
There were actually hundreds of them in the shop....it was quite an amazing sight!

The main writing in this photo is actually on the front window of the shop.

This is how I achieved the look on the photo above, using Photoshop Elements:

  • Added a frame, 0.5 inches all round, thanks to SLucy at Creative Skyy Photography ( sorry I could not get link to work!)
  • Levels adjustment to brighten and increase contrast.
  • Texture 1 - Pixel Dust Photo Art medieval texture on overlay blend mode, 49%
  • Layer mask, rubbed away grey texture from store name.
  • Texture 2 - a hand made paper texture (made by my husband!) on darken blend mode, 48% This yellowed up the frame.
  • Layer mask, rubbed away most of the second texture except I left it on the frame and as a slight vignette.
  • Gaussian blur filter to blur the eraser marks.
  • Texture 3 - old writing taken from scanned wrapping paper (similar to that used in the shop)! Soft light blend mode, 77%
  • Type in signature

This second photo was actually the first texturisation I did of the shop-photo. It is definitely simpler, more muted.

This is how I achieved the look on the photo above-
  • Levels adjustment to brighten and increase contrast.
  • KK Life's Good texture, Soft Light blend mode, 46%
  • KK Vintage texture, multiply blend mode, 81%
  • KK Pourvous texture, multiply blend mode, 87%
  • Levels adjustment
  • Layer mask to remove some texture
  • Text, signature

And finally, while we are on the topic of old sewing machines, I thought I would show you the old, Singer - treadle sewing machine which I have in my home as a hallway table. I really should have removed the cyclamen plant, the flowers are just not in the color palette. (and the plastic pot is terrible!)

I added Kim's latest texture, "Subtly Yours" to this one. (The walls in my home are honestly not that grubby...it's the texture)

To see more pictures of textured photos please click on the 'Texture Tuesday' logo on my side bar to take you to Kims site.

And that's it for today, folks,

Sunday, June 5, 2011

I Heart Macro - Doors Knobs of Florence Love.

Hello dear friends,

It is Winter here in Australia, and although the sun IS shining today, I sadly, have no flowers in my garden to speak of, so todays macro post is about door knobs in Florence.

I just love interesting doors and door knobs. My own front door is not THAT interesting, maybe that is why I love to see others?

No, I just love old and quaint, strange and different... and some of these fit the bill in those areas!
It does also make me think about who lives behind these wonderful doors with their  equally wonderful door knobs....?

Come along and take a look. Hope you enjoy them, too.

Well, I went a bit overboard with those, but I just love them all!

Click on the picture below to see more Macro love and to take you to Studio Waterstone.
Lori is our charming  I Heart Macro host.

studio waterstone

Have a great weekend guys,

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Fairy Tale/Spring Bead Hop..... "Leap Frog"

Hello dear friends,

As you will have read previously, I am participating in the Fairytale/Spring bead challenge organised by
Lori Anderson.

My swap partner is Erin Prais-Hintz from Treasures Found.

You can see pictures of the lovely jewelry components she sent me here.

I have (loosely) based my necklace on the fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm - "The Frog Prince".
The gist of the tale is that a Princess took a walk in the woods, sitting down to rest beside a pool. A golden ball she had been playing with rolled to the ground and into the pool. A frog appeared asking the princess why she was so upset...

"Whilst she was speaking, a frog put its head out of the water, and said, 'Princess, why do you weep so bitterly?' 'Alas!' said she, 'what can you do for me, you nasty frog? My golden ball has fallen into the spring.' The frog said, 'I want not your pearls, and jewels, and fine clothes; but if you will love me, and let me live with you and eat from off your golden plate, and sleep upon your bed, I will bring you your ball again." ......

Of course she was a little scared, did not like the suggestion (well we are talking frogs here!)
More than your average leap of faith was required.....!

"Leap Frog" necklace. 
Can you see the little jade frog, pearls and golden ball?
Also fluorite, crystals and lucite flower.

Take a LEAP, simple truth pendant by Erin.

Ceramic focal by Lisa Peters, green goldstone. (looks so black here!)

Sweet little vintaj butterfly, smokey quartz nuggets, faceted green goldstone.

As the fairy tale goes, from memory, the frog was a prince, etc...... Of course there was a happy ending.....!

Most people would agree that fairy tales are for children.. I  personally think we make our own luck and future. 

However often a LEAP of faith is required to initiate a change, it can be a little scary, more often than not there will be rewards to come, if not straight away, then down the track...

I am slowly making that leap ( more like a small hop)......! 

Please click on the links below to take you to see the other blogs and items other participants in the Fairytale/Spring  bead hop.

Lori Anderson, Pretty Things
Rebecca Anderson, Song Beads
Courtney Breul, Beads By Breul 
Loretta Carstensen, Designs by Loretta
Evelyn Hall, Dragon Lady Evelyn
Sandy Richardson, Sandy's Coloring Box
Tara Plote, Newbie Beader
Christine Brandel, A Hot Piece of Glass
Lisa Sittniewski, Alterity Art
Joanna Matuszczyk, Filcowe
Jenni Connolly, Jenni Bead  You are here!
Geneva Collins, Torque Story
Elisabeth Auld, Beads For Busy Gals
Sally Russick, Wireworked
Mary McGraw, MK's Creative Musings
Norma Turvey, Moonlit Fantaseas
Erin Prais-Hintz, Treasures Found 
Stephanie Haussler, Pixybug Designs
Shai Williams, Shaia's Ramblings
Johanna Rhodes, Fire Phoenix Creations
Sandi Lee James, Do Be Do Bead Do
Valerie Norton, Hot Fused Glass

Hope you are having a good weekend, enjoy your  blog hopping.


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