Monarch sounds much prettier, don’t you think?
One of the new features of Photoshop CS5 is the “mixer brush” which allows one to mix pixels in very much the same way you mix paint so that you can easily achieve a painterly effect. Even when I was painting with real paint in a studio, I usually worked from a photograph, so I have totally fallen in love with this new feature — all the joy of painting without the mess and expense of paint and canvas and brushes with the bonus of unlimited do-overs!
Earlier in the year, Scrapblog contacted me to do a product review. Heretofore, I had not been much of a scrapbooker, had never ventured into the world of digi-scrapping, although as one who loves photography and the like, it did hold a certain appeal. But, sort of like knitting, I thought it was one of those things I wanted to do but figured I’d never get around to doing. Nonetheless, I checked out Scrapblog and really liked them. A lot. And now I’d like to work for them but they only pay in stickers.
Soon thereafter, I somehow ended up being in charge of the Kindergarten memory book for Sean’s class and I investigated a lot of different ways to get that done. What I found was that Scrapblog was hands down the easiest and least expensive way to accomplish that task. But more than that, they offered me 1000 times more creative horsepower than anyone else. All the stickers and backgrounds and stuff I used in that sweet little book was free. Free! My only cost was the printing which is on par with all other sources who do this kind of thing. All the moms were really happy with the book and I wish I could show you how cute it turned out, to show you some of the cool tricks I learned.
So then, here are the top 10 things I like about Scrapblog and I think you will too:
1. I don’t have to buy a program – it’s all on-line.
2. I don’t have to download a resource intensive program to crunk up my computer – it’s all on-line.
3. I don’t have to buy paper and other stuff that would occupy space in my house – it’s all on-line. (Bonus: I don’t have to go to a scrapbook store which overwhelms me.)
4. I can move stickers around and change backgrounds to my heart’s content – it’s all on-line.
5. I can work anywhere I have an internet connection because – you guessed – it’s all on-line.
6. Lots and lots of free stuff!
7. I can have my scrapbooks printed or just share on-line (you can set your Scrapblogs to private or invitation only).
8. I can earn points in their marketplace to buy stickers and backgrounds just by buying from some of their partners, whom I buy from already anyway.
9. They offer lots of printing options from books to note cards, all the standard stuff.
10. It’s just plain fun.
This is the aptly named Mirror Lake in Yosemite Valley. The last time I saw it, around 10 years ago, it looked a lot different – it was bigger and less “mucky”. Through natural processes, the lake is filling in and will someday disappear altogether and become a meadow.
In this photo, I applied an HDR affect which gives it a surrealistic quality, although Yosemite is surrealistically beautiful all on its own without the aid of Photoshop.
Here’s one of Sean climbing El Capitan. Hoo boy did he take to mountain climbing. I could hardly keep up. Of course I had to carry the camera, so it was a bit more challenging for me what with my bad knee and all.
Here is one of the approximately 30,537 pictures I took of flowers while I was in California, most of which are in Cousin Judi’s fabulous garden. I learned how to make the frame in Photoshop in a video tutorial at Yanik’s Photo School, which you can see here if you are so inclined. He has great easy to follow video tutorials and I love the soothing quality of his voice.
I know. It’s probably not a gecko. But I couldn’t think of a cute alliterative name to go with lizard. Larry was just too obvious. Gordon lives on my front porch and eats ants. In exchange for room and board he patiently poses for my camera.