Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Thanksgiving Visit

Woke up to a snowstorm in the Hollow! Glad to be by a cozy fireplace with family.
My sister Elzunia with Reba, whose father, our beloved Rex, passed away the week before.

Weather cleared up in late afternoon. Time for a walk around the pond before dinner!
Freshly fallen snow turns the back yard into a wonderland.

Sunshine in the morning makes me happy!!!!

Mom, Elzunia, me and Hanka in back--trying out the auto-photo feature.

Happy 86th Birthday, Mom!!! Sto Lat!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Olenka's Still Life #3 - 5 Alike

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Returned from the holiday visit at my sister's in the New York Catskill mountains with new ideas for this month's challenge (originally took photo's of 5 Autumn maple leaves) It snowed on Thanksgiving Day so I went out for a walk and saw my favorite apple tree still laden with fruit. Found a subject for the challenge!

This is the original with other apples showing. First I took out all the color from all but five apples, then cropped the photo and raised the contrast with Photoshop.

SSL3: Ruby Fruit V

Later we walked over to the barns to feed the chickens, ducks, geese & piglets. These 5 'ladies' lined up perfectly and another idea clicked!

Hungry hens having Thanksgiving meal.

Sparkling Quintet

After outlining the sparkling images in yellow and adding the swirls, several filters and color changes between steps were made to arrive at this image.

Fine Feathered Friends

Simple Still Life #3 - The Flying Five

My photo of seagulls by the beach, taken as a flock suddenly flew over my car, also suited this challenge. This one shows five gulls and some nearby branches.

I erased the tree branches, painted in some clouds and stylized the birds.
Then working with a rectangular selection tool in Photoshop, blocked off the various areas to change their colors/contrast. The black shapes on the right were overpainted with blue and some orange was sprayed onto the flat hot-pink area on the left.

Flight of Fancy

Monday, November 07, 2005

Timeout: Car Accident

Had to post a beautiful tree to distract my mind from the 'discomfort' caused by an auto accident which occurred Saturday night. Sigh. My car was rammed by a van on the passenger side, so the back door is bent in. This morning I took this photo while waiting out front to give the car key to the tow truck driver who was picking up my car from the parking lot where the police parked it for me when the ambulance took me to the hospital. Hope to get back to work in a few days, but today it's still painful to sit up for any length of time. Have pulls, strains, bruises and some whiplash---thank God it wasn't worse!!! Talk to you soon.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Progress & Off-shoots

Blogger wouldn't process my entry yesterday so trying again. These photo's show progress on the Vortex ray stitching. Four left to thicken with thread.

The back is looking interesting to me I wish I'd quilted through a backing fabric instead of just the batting. Maybe a sheer yellow fabric will serve as backing and allow the quilting to show through.

After I took the photo's, took a break by coloring a close-up b&w back segment and came up with several ideas that inspire me toward new pieces. I did print a collage of them onto photo-transfer fabric already, but have to finish Vortex since there are so many printed quiltlets waiting already.

This last one was from the first day's photo's. Amazing how one image evolves into another one that is so different. Having great fun!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Why Powerpoint to Photoshop

Mystic Weaver stopped by to see my Still Life Challenge 2 postings and wondered why/how I used Powerpoint & Photoshop to do the designs with the 'tree & me' shadows, taken at the beach. First, no I don't have any fractal design programs and second, I used Powerpoint because I did them during lunch-time at the office and that was the only program the computer had which would allow me to manipulate a photo in several ways to produce a repeating pattern. Unfortunately, I only had the simple red, green and yellow background versions (all shadows black) at the office, so I did the cutting, pasting, flipping, mirroring, distorting with those and emailed them to myself.

At home I downloaded the file and then in Photoshop changed the colors enough to give them a more individual character since the red-green-yellow-black versions were a bit strange at first glance, i.e. if you didn't know they were just for shape. Of course, there is so much more that could be done next by changing colors of the individual elements in the designs (like any patchwork quilt design) but for the purpose of this exercise, I was more interested in how the two shadow shapes allowed for these abstractions by simple repetition and inversion.

Since I enjoy printing, have considered cutting 2 stamps with the shadow shapes and using those to print up one of these patterns on cloth or, as with the last challenge, printing the designs onto cloth and then letting the quilt stitches & embelishments further develop the design. Each would provide a totally different result.

Then again, I'd like to finish the small quilts that are fused and ready to sew, plus a batch of art cards and I still have to decide on my '5 similar objects' for this month's challenge.

But not tonight...woke up with a slight fever this morning and much congestion and swollen glands (after three days of sneezing & runny nose) so going straight to bed when I get home after work. Thanks to all who have sent me emails with encouraging comments. They are very much appreciated!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Diving into "Vortex"

Decided to plunge in and start quilting one of the photo fransfers that I made during the first Still Life Challenge and had already fused to batting. I've outlined in white pencil the flow of the lines intended and then started sewing with red rayon thread. Looked very thin and weak, stitches too tiny...after a few rows remembered one can 'draw' with the thread so started sewing back and forth over the line to thicken it up. Yes! Much better balance. Have done two lines and will continue tonight when I return from the office.