Saturday, October 26, 2013

Our 1000th Post - Halloween, Big Sky Pics, and Seen Around The House

I thought this turned out sooooo cool. I was sitting at the computer trying to figure out what I could do with some of the photos Bettina and I have been taking. I wanted to use a flying witch graphic found on my PrintMaster Platinum program and combine that with a photo of the Ravensblight Manor paper kit. Then Bettina says, "Why don't you make a .gif with it?" WHAM - that was it, that was the idea I was looking for. 

I've been using Broderbund's PrintMaster program since the days when they came out on floppy discs.  I've become so used to the way things work in there it's been difficult for me to fully transition to either Adobe Photoshop or Corel PaintShop. PrintMaster does have its limitations though. Often times I'll layer-up a project in PrintMaster, save it as a .jpeg, and do any cropping or cleaning up using other programs. 

Using one of Bettina's photos from a month or so ago as a backdrop, and my photo of Ravensblight Manor, I then layered a series of graphics culled from PrintMaster Platinum to get the following. The photo below consists of 8 separate pictures:
-Bettina's photo of the sky
-Ravensblight Manor photo
-A photo of a grassy field (mostly hidden from view) positioned on the back layer. Only a small portion of the grass is visible at the bottom
-3 trees. Two are the same graphic but one of them is flipped horizontally and enlarged
-Pile of leaves

Next, I started adding the witch, positioning her, saving the photo, then re-positioning her, saving, etc......

Okay, you get the idea. My subconscious mind must have been at work because it took a lucky 13 images to put together this Halloween treat :-)

When you load the photos into Google's Picasa web albums, it has a built-in .gif generator. All one has to do is load their photos into an album and wait (sometimes it takes a while for the program to generate the .gif - and occasionally it doesn't work at all). We were fortunate in that the Halloween .gif turned out exactly the way we'd hoped.

Okay, today we're givin' you a lot for your money - enjoy the show!

Okt 20, 2013:  We like Crows (or Blackbirds, or Ravens - heck we still don't know what we've got). Why? Well, we don't have a farm so there are no crops for them to disturb. They are at times funny to watch. We like their shiny black coats, and THEY'RE NOT PIGEONS!! (Bettina had a point: there's a reason the word 'pigeon' begins with 'PIG') Here's some shots Bettina took of our little friends.

Okt 21, 2013: The Hunter Moon is now waning. The Fuji camera is very temperamental. Sometimes Bettina gets beautifully detailed shots of the Moon, other times it's just a bright white bulb, and no setting we try helps (despite what the experts say in on-line articles). The camera will not respond as it should - I think it has a mind of its own! It's stubborn - like us LOL

Here's our friend again

Okt 22, 2013: Hunter Moon, blackbird, and alien landscape

What I've begun to do is save a copy of photos like this as possible backdrops for use in photo projects where I'm trying to convey an alien landscape.

Okt 23, 2013: Today was a good day for .gif's. Most of the time blurry shots don't really work well, but there were a couple Bettina took today which look pretty cool in spite of being blurry. The cloud cover made it a great day for taking photos of the sky.

This is not the sunrise, but rather the Moonrise

Okt 24, 2013: Another gorgeous day for sky watching

Here we see virga, a mass of streaks of rain hanging under a cloud but evaporating before it hits the ground.

...follow the bouncing ball :-)

Another of our feathered friends

...nervous little sucker, ain't he? :-)

Okt 25, 2013: Yesterday was mostly about the stars and Bettina managed to capture some nice shots - who says you can't see stars in the city?!

The photos progress from the early morning hours and on into the evening

The early morning mountain scene

The evening sky

The stars begin to appear

Okt 26, 2013: Bettina has been out there taking photos while I was preparing the blog. So here ya are folks, all up-to-date.

Looking towards the Mt. Charleston area. These hills are much farther away from us towards the west than the Sheep Mountains towards the north.

These photos are of the Sheep Mountains to the north and we're able to get much clearer shots

This morning's Hunter Moon

A visit from our little feathered friend