Monday, February 28, 2011

Black and White Photo Linky Party


It's time for a Black and White Photo Party and you are all invited. You can change any photo from color to black and white in a photo editing program. So change those pics (new or old) that you think will look cool to black and white and join the party. Let's make it even more fun and vote for your favorite. Only one vote per person. Just comment your favorite linked photo by checking out the thumbnails that catch your attention the most.  You can also leave comments that aren’t votes.  I love hearing from you.   This is a try and see thing. If it works and we like it then we will continue. If it doesn't work then it will go away. Let's see how it goes.

I wanted to take new photos for the party.  My son and I went downtown to try and get architectural pics.

We found an old warehouse type building that had some broken glass bricks and graffiti.  We parked and took a peak inside.  It made for some cool pics.

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Want to peak inside too?  I left these in color because they were more interesting that way.

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Fun huh? 

Here’s another building right next to it that had some broken windows.  The brick really looks cool in black and white.

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Next are photos of a church.  I used different black and white edits with all my pics to experiment.  It was fun.

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Next up is the Chamber of Commerce. 


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And I can’t seem to go downtown without heading to 6th Street otherwise know as Route 66.

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It was fun to go on a photo shoot downtown.  I am glad I went early.  The winds picked up and blew constant 40 to 50 mph winds and the sky became dirt.

I can’t wait to see what you did.  I hope you had as much fun as I did with black and white. 

Next party in 2 weeks will be portraits with a twist. 



Sunday, February 27, 2011

Wildfires and Prayers

Just a quick post asking for prayers for the safety of our firemen and people in the area of all the wildfires. Also for those that have and might lose their homes.  My husband is a firefighter and he is at a large fire north of our city.  We have sustained 40 to 50 mph winds today.  All day.  It’s bad. 

Here’s some pics of the fire my husband is at right now.  I borrowed them from our newspaper’s Facebook page. 




Lots of dry grass and high winds are not a good combination. 

Thanks for your thoughts and prayers for everyone involved.  Several years ago we had terrible tragedies from wildfires and they are expecting more of the same this year. 

UPDATE:  So far over 40 homes have burned and 2 businesses.  One business was a kennel for animals. Many of the animals died.  So sad.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

Stats. You Just Never Know.

At Christmas time I made a little paper star.  It took me about 5 minutes.  I posted about it with instructions on how to make it.  It’s my top post ever.  7123 views.

You can read about it here.



Right after Christmas I worked really hard to redo a big wall in my family room.  I was so proud of it and couldn’t wait to share it.  I just knew it would be a hit. 

You can read it here.


The stats are so few on this post that they don’t even show up on the list.  I still love it and that is really what matters.  Do what you love and if others love it too it’s a double bonus.

I almost didn’t post about the star.  I told my husband it is too simple and no one will care about it.  He told me it looked really good and I should post about it.  I am glad I listened to him.

You can whip something out in a matter of minutes or spend days working on it and you never know what others will think about it until you post it and find out. 

Have you ever been amazed that so many liked something simple you made or that so few visited something you worked really hard on? 


Friday, February 25, 2011

#7 Stool

This is the final project my friend and I worked on for the fundraiser auction.  She painted a bare wooden stool a brick red.


I made a #7 stencil and used some black paint.

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I sanded the shine off of the paint and dry brushed the entire stool with some black acrylic craft paint.

Here she is.

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Linking to

Furniture Feature Friday @ Miss Mustard Seed’s Creative Blog

Weekend Wrap Up @ Tatertots and Jello

Saturday Night Special @ Funky Junk Interiors

Sunday Showcase @ Under the Table and Dreaming


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Suitcase Makeover

I have two more suitcase makeovers to show you.  One is for the fundraiser auction and the other suitcase was my friend’s grandmother’s. 

First I will show you our girly suitcase makeover for the auction. My friend painted the suitcase in pink.  It use to be dark blue.


I used my Cricut and created some stencils and then bedazzled the crown.


I thought it would be perfect for a little girl’s dress up clothes. 


The other makeover is for my friend to keep.

Here’s the before.


She was very close to her grandmother and she loves vintage and antiques.  She spray painted the suitcase in a gray primer and I stenciled on the word “Antique”.


It looked too new so I added a bit of black glaze and more on the trim. 

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Look what a cool black and white photo it makes.

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I just love it. 

Here is both of the makeovers together.

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I love a good suitcase redo.  Don’t you?  What would you do to an old suitcase?


Linking to

Show and Tell Friday @ My Romantic Home

Remodelaholic’s Anonymous @ Remodelaholics

Weekend Wrap Up @ Tatertots and Jello

Saturday Night Special @ Funky Junk Interiors

Sunday Showcase @ Under the Table and Dreaming

Power of Paint @ Domestically Speaking

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Black and White Photo Tips

I have been trying to read about black and white photography tips and tricks because this is all a learning process for me as well. 

1. You might be surprised to learn that you should shoot in color even if your camera has a black and white function because photo editing software can do a much better job at the conversion, and you’ll have more flexibility on the output of the final image.

Everyone will have and use different editing programs.  Some free ones that have been discussed are Picasa and Picnik, however, Picnik has an upgrade for $25 I think. 

Experiment and see what you come up with using your editor.  I had an example to show you in Picasa. I took this photo this summer in New Mexico. 


Using Picasa I chose the black and white function.


If I use the tuning and move the light bar I get a lighter black and white.


Next I moved the highlight bar a bit.


And then the shadows bar.


I can also move the temperature bar to the right to get a black and white sepia effect.


Practice and you will learn.  Share the tips you discover so we can all learn. 

2. I read that contrast makes black and white photos more interesting.  If you pick out scenes that naturally show signs of high contrast then your black and white photos will be more interesting from the start.

3. Texture is another form of contrast.  Black and white can really help textures stand out because you take away the distraction of color. 

4. If you have a digital camera you should shoot in low ISO if possible.  High ISO can add noise to your photo which is more obvious in black and white.

5. I never knew that a great time to take outdoor black an white photos are on dark and gloomy days when there is an overcast.  Hmmm?  Maybe someone will be able to try this.

6. Composition (which we will learn more about in the future) is important in black and white because you’re unable to use color to lead the eye into or around your shot. This means you need to train yourself to look at shapes, tones and textures in your frame as points of interest. Pay particularly attention to shadows and highlights which will become a feature of your shot.

I am sure there is a ton more of info out there.  Because I am a beginner I am limited in my knowledge, but I believe in the power of practice and I think these parties encourage us all to pick up our camera and try new things. 

I love black and white photography because it is dramatic and looks more like art. 

I borrowed some friends and family photos from Facebook and did some black and white editing to show the power of black and white.  These photos were taken with point and shoot cameras and not by me.  Like I said I borrowed them. 

This is my best friend Becky.  I think she is beautiful.  She used this profile pic on Facebook and got a few comments about it a while back. 

I played with it in my Photoshop elements and used a free black and white action from the Coffee Shop Blog to create a dramatic photo.  I also blurred up the background and gave it a little frame.


She posted this pic on her Facebook last night as her profile and has 21 comments on it ranting and raving how great and young she looks.  Oh the power of black and white. Smile

Next my little sister took a photo of her 2 year old and new born holding hands.  The 2 yr old must be into crafts like me.  She has blue fingers.  Right now mine are black from paint.

I cropped the photo and turned it into a black and white with a vignette around it.  Looks way different.

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So start practicing and get your posts ready for the party on Tuesday, March the 1st. 

The link will open Monday at 6pm central time.  I didn’t get a lot of response on the voting so for now the only rules for voting will be one vote per person and no anonymous votes.

Ok this post is getting way to long so I am going to wrap it up. 

I hope you join the fun next week!




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