Friday, July 9, 2010

Randomness about me

I started painting my kitchen and living room in 2005. I ran out of paint close to the end. It's still not finished.

Bear and I had season passes to Six Flags in 1999 and went to San Antonio with the purpose of using our passes at Fiesta Texas. We were making our way down 35 through Austin when I realized my pass was back home (then in Arlington) on the coffee table.... where I put it so that I wouldn't forget it.

I was fifteen minutes late for my own wedding.

I'm 4' 11 3/4" tall.

I broke my right arm (compound fracture, got to see the bone and everything) in the second grade doing a cartwheel. Before then I had trouble telling my right from my left. Now I have a nifty scar to show me.

My kids do not do cartwheels.

I couldn't tell time on a regular clock (as opposed to a digital one) without counting the numbers until my husband bought me a Goofy watch that runs backwards. Never had trouble after that.

I can program in Atari Basic, Apple Basic and GW Basic. Sadly those skills have no marketable value today.

I cannot type. It really makes me wonder how my programs ever ran.

I have ADHD. Heavy on the AD... probably why I cannot type.

I gave Bear mild food poisoning the first time I cooked for him after we were married... though he now says he doesn't think it was, he was adamant that it was at the time. I have not made anyone sick with my cooking any other time.

When I was nine my brother in law threw a jumping jack (a little spinney firework) and it bounced toward my mom. She yelled. I freaked and spent the rest of July Fourth that year with a laundry basket over my head.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Marker text

I've become obsessed with Polaroids. Consequently, I'm working on making my text look more like a marker. I was asked how I do it and thought that it would make for a useful post. I started with a tutorial I found, I really wish I could remember where because the guy had some great tutorials. But it didn't quite get me everything I wanted, so I changed things a little.

anyway... here's what I do. It's by no means the only way to do this, it's just what I've been doing. I'm using Photoshop CS5

Start with your text in a handwritten looking font.

Copy the text into a new layer and apply a 2 pixel Gaussian blur.

Then use wind (it's under filter then stylize). I used stagger and from the right so that it smudges to the left, since I'm left handed. At least that was my rationalization... but now I think maybe I should smudge it the other way. I may have to get the sharpies out for some real world tests.

You'll probably want to turn the opacity down on your copied layer now. I put mine around 40%. but if you like it really messy, leave it darker. You may end up with a little glob of black where you don't want it, like on the edge. Now is the time to use the handy dandy eraser tool and get rid of it.

Go back to your original layer of text. Copy and paste it again. Apply a 1 pixel Gaussian blur this time and then merge the three text layers together

Next you want to distort it just a little. Use the ripple (look under filter then distort). Not too much, just enough to make it a little wobbly.

Anyway, that's how I do it. If anyone has a different method please share!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


The Polaroid look is very popular right now, and I can see why. It's fun. It's fun to make, fun to look at... and it gives you some options you don't have when you are presenting a more traditional image. Like square cropping.

I've been playing with it. I downloaded a few Polaroid actions to see what people were doing, then decided to go on my own.

My first one..

The dimensions are off. The Polaroid frame just screams "hi! I'm here and clean and white!" and the image needs something.

A later attempt that I like better....
But the dimensions are still off, I hadn't corrected that yet. Lazy photochick! And it's still not quite there. Though I like the image in it better. The lomo style processing works well for this.

What I did today...
I dirtied it up more and corrected the dimensions. Stuck with lomo style processing. Still not there yet, but getting closer to what I want.

To make your own Polaroid, without any actions, in Photoshop....
 make a new document that is 3.5 by 4.25 inches with a transparent background.
Select an area that is about 3.1 inches square.
Invert the selection.
Fill the selected area with whatever color you want your frame to be.
Paste your cropped and processed image in, put it behind the frame layer.
Then add type, effects or distress the frame as you like.

That's how I did it. But there are a hundred different ways to do any given thing in Photoshop. And there are like a hundred and one free actions out there that do this for you. Feel free to speak up in the comments with your method or a link to a good one.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

More fireworks!

Tonight we will sit in our front yard and see if we can catch some of the fireworks over the lake near us. Some years we can, some years we can't.

Here's a shot from last night...

I'd love to see what other people are doing to celebrate. Post links for me in the comments!