Revising Photos With PS Elements/ University Of Richmond January 2012

D's Photos, D's Writing, The University of Richmond

Recently I took some photos over at the University of Richmond. And I actually cropped this photo to not include the lamp post because the light was not in focus. But now, with the help of PS Elements I’m able to make some different decisions regarding some of these photos. Include the actual sunset, not just the reflection in the windows and so forth. It’s very liberating and hopefully works for the viewer.

Wanted/ The Barred Owl / Not Good News For This Cool Bird

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Writing

Yesterday on my walk around Maymont Park I spent some time with this cool bird, the Barred Owl. He only has one eye and if you’re an owl that’s a major problem. But he’s still standing proud and tall on his perch watching the people.

And then, today, I read this article about a plan to hunt the Barred Owl.   And I’m thinking there’s a good chance that all the Barred Owls are going to the polls in November and voting NO to this plan.  Or maybe I will have to cast a vote for them.  Is this really necessary?  Can’t we let the owls work things out for themselves?  I don’t know how many programs I have watched about Africa where a big animal is stalking a small animal and people are watching or taking photos.  Nobody would dare intervene in nature’s drama.

 

 

Only in America, I guess.  Seems like politics is involved.  I can understand why alligators and deer are harvested every year.  But owls?  What’s next?  Near-sighted walkers who get in the way of bicyclists?

 

 

 

 

You might like. . .books about owls!

PS Elements And The Cloning Tool

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos

I have discovered a new, very relaxing pastime.   It is using the cloning tool in PS Elements.  In a way it’s like doing a jigsaw puzzle only not quite so exacting.  It took me awhile to figure out exactly how this thing works.  On this photo things seemed to go better if the photo was magnified quite a bit. 

And the weeds went away!  It was a lot more fun than actually picking weeds.  And no need to clean up afterwards, either.  I think there is a big improvement in this photo using this operation.  But, as always, I’m open to different perspectives and hope to learn something every day from you, the reader. (Also it may actually matter whether you are looking for this sort of change in the photo or not in order for it to be successful.) 

 

 

 

 

The Japanese Gardens At Maymont Park In February/ Richmond Virginia

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Slide shows, Richmond

Today I took the walking routine to Maymont Park where the hills will wear you out and was happy to find they have lost their power!  Twenty years ago they were killing me!  So I guess you can be in better shape at sixty than forty.  Or fifty than thirty!  Or forty than 25!

Anyway, you get the picture.  Here are some photos.  The weather was fine.  One of the horses looks like he has some problems and he is in a good place to receive the care he needs.  One of  the Red Tailed Hawks seems to be missing some feathers or maybe even most of his wing.

The sky was a nice blue with some wispy clouds.  I have been studying  Adobe Photo Elements lately and tried to use the clone tool on some of the clouds where they were blasted out.  Let me know if  any of them look like they are manipulated.  The sheep photo may be a bit bright.

 

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But it’s great fun playing with them (the tools…not the sheep).  And I have been working on using manual controls with the Nikon D70.  Understanding depth of field and the various combinations of shutter speed and aperture.   Reading a great book about photography called Understanding Exposure. It’s all a little too much for my aging brain but the daily exercises with Lumosity are going well so maybe that will help.

 

 

I mention this to encourage anyone out there who feels like they are “losing their mind” to find it and make it stronger so it won’t get lost again anytime soon.

It really does pay, all joking aside, to work on the mind and body, especially as we get older. As someone once said, we do things to ourselves that would make us really mad if someone else did them to us!

Here are photos of a beautiful day at Maymont Park and the Japanese Gardens at Maymont with the animals.

https://picasaweb.google.com/s/c/bin/slideshow.swf

It's Time To Get Out!/ Calling For Some Spring Weather

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Writing

 

 

I’ve been working on the loading speed of the blog this morning and it seems to be working significantly faster thanks to some blogging friends and resources. WordPress does tend to run slower than Blogger because, I guess, there is so much more going on with it.  It’s a good idea to delete unused plugins and  post revisions they tell me.

And do much more. It’s not worth going into here. Because I need to get out and take some photos! Like my friend here I’m tired of looking at walls! But here is the link to one of the articles worth reading if you are interested http://www.problogger.net/archives/2012/02/08/make-your-blog-load-faster-than-problogger-part-2/.

One suggestion involved cutting down the size of the photos but that obviously went in one ear and rapidly out the other one.

 

Taking A Cool Ride/ Downtown Richmond Photo/ Richmond Folk Festival/ Brown's Island

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Writing, Richmond

 

 

When I saw this meeting taking place at the Richmond Folk Festival last fall it seemed pretty funny. And I’m not really sure why. The kids are having a great time. It’s always great seeing a child smile. Maybe it has something to do with their rides. Baby carriages just seem to be getting bigger and better all the time. This one is cool.

And it was fun doing some people watching on this day.

May I borrow your Grey Poupon?

 

 

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Quotes About Aging/ Don't Wrinkle Your Soul!/ Douglas MacArthur/ Muriel Spark/ Samuel Ullman

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, Well-known Quotations

 

 

Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years.  We grow old by deserting our ideals.  Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.  ~Samuel Ullman

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.  ~Douglas MacArthur

Be on the alert to recognize your prime at whatever time of your life it may occur.  ~Muriel Spark

 

 

If Gas Goes Much Higher–I'm Gonna Jump!

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Writing

First Guy: If gas prices go much higher I’m gonna jump!

Second Guy: Wait! I’m gonna jump first!

Dear Mr. or Mrs. Consumer,

Have high gas prices gotten you down in the dumps? Do you wonder how much grocery prices will rise as the cost of bringing them to market increases? Join us in March as we stay home as much as possible to save millions of gallons of gasoline and create a surplus at the pump. Prices won’t rise and, in fact, may come down significantly if we all join together in March and park the car in the garage. Or on the street. Wherever. There are things you have to do and then there are things you want to do.

So get out the library card and find a few good books. Bake some cookies. Download Star Wars on the computer. And see how long you can go without driving up to the pump. In March.

Send a message. One that WILL be heard!

Paid for by the Committee to Bring Down Gas Prices By Staying Home In March.

Ghost Rider/ Satan Is Real/ Where's My Remote?

Blogs or Posts, D's Photos, D's Writing, Movies

 

Well the snow is going, going gone here in Virginia. And today we are looking forward to weather in the 70’s with a light breeze and lots of sun.

Very nice. The blogger is feeling better about life in general, too. He walked ten miles in the past two days, six the first day and four the second, and life is beginning to return to normal. He found his backscratcher and finished hooking up all the wayward wires in his room. He watched Ghost Rider last night for the umpteenth time and was once again happy to see good triumph over evil. There is a new Ghost Rider movie in theaters now, by the way, called Spirit of Vengeance, and we can only hope it lives up to the awesome standards of the original.

Because Satan is real! I had no idea! But the current political debates have been very educational. The blogger has learned a lot. But one thing he already knew, thankfully, is that suicide is not a solution. So when he wants to stick a gun to his own head after listening to these guys he quickly thinks about something else. Something happier. Like connecting his Comcast box to the stereo receiver or locating the remote control.

It would be great if we could all whip up some enthusiasm and get together behind Nick Cage, the Ghost Rider. And then confront Evil. But Satan is probably rolling his eyes because somehow we have managed to convince ourselves that he is the guy next door. Or the leader of some political party we abhor. And it doesn’t help at all that some of these religions believe themselves to be the only way. Guess what?! It’s not that easy! It would be so much easier to fight real evil if some of these faiths were not so busy fighting with each other!

 
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The blogger realizes he is taking his life in his hands just talking briefly about politics or religion. And both at the same time? Maybe he is suicidal! Or, maybe he is just warming up as the weather reaches into the seventies. Feeling strong and ready to take on the world.

So I’m putting up photos of our recent winter wonderland. Here’s a photo of our long driveway decorated with snow. Thank goodness the city plows it for us, ha-ha.

 

 

But what would be even better is the Ghost Rider rumbling up the drive! Melting snow as he goes! That would be so cool! No politics. No religion too. Just power and a pure flame!!
Where the story begins. . .