Category Archives: Digital photo editing

Friday Flower Fiesta (12-19-14)

Friday Flower Fiesta

A collection of twelve of my favorite flower pictures that I cataloged this past week.

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Friday Flower Fiesta (12-12-14)—Orbs (or making something out of nothing at all)

Friday Flower Fiesta

My main reason for creating Photographic Art is because my camera, a Canon EOS 550D (Rebel T2i if you bought it in the United States) is a semi-professional camera that cost me about $700. My main camera lens is a Tamron 28-300mm macro zoom lens that cost me about $300. In other words, I have a whopping thousand dollars worth of camera equipment. Although I have 48 years of photographic experience, do I really think that I can compete with the professional with $35,000 worth of camera equipment and his own gallery downtown? No, I don’t.

So with the poor quality from the inadequate equipment, I create something unique, one of a kind images that no one else can create because they don’t know how I do it. They can try because they know I use Photoshop, and they might even come close, but unless they know the exact settings I use, they’re not going to get an exact reproduction of my Photographic Art. Heck, sometimes the Art is so unique that even I don’t know what settings I used, so even I cannot reproduce it!

Some of the pictures in my vast collection are what many photographers would call throwaways. However, a couple of things that my wise old grandmother told me back in 1966 has always stuck with me:

“What comes out of the camera is just the basics to start with.”
and
“Don’t throw anything away. There is no away.”

Throughout the ensuing decades, I have learned to throw things away, but I take far less trash to the curb each week than my neighbors do. Maybe they just buy more crap than I do………….

Anyway, for today’s Friday Flower Fiesta, I thought I would take ten of my throwaway photographs and use them to make flower orbs in brushed aluminum frames. These pictures were out of focus, had poor composition, or are simply too small to use to make high quality Photographic Art. Here they are, with the original picture beneath each framed flower orb.

1

Framed flower orb

flower (226)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

2

Framed flower orb

flower (253)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

3

Framed flower orb

flower (269) original

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

4

Framed flower orb

flower (270) original

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

5

Framed flower orb

flower (301)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

6

Framed flower orb

flower (302)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

7

Framed flower orb

flower (312)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

8

Framed flower orb

flower (334)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

9

Framed flower orb

flower (342)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

10

Framed flower orb

flower (350)

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

Number 5 is my favorite. It looks like a face, maybe something out of a Stephen King novel. Number eight is my second favorite, and then number 7 is third.

If you would like to learn how to create orbs, see my post here. It’s really easy; takes just a couple of minutes…. Unless you don’t have Photoshop…. Then it will take a lot longer!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Looking for a unique gift for Christmas?

Friday Flower Fiesta (12-5-14)—Winter flowers

Friday Flower Fiesta

Some of the “winter” flowers that are blooming in San Diego right now.

African violets are very popular at the grocery stores and plant nurseries for the Fall and Winter. These three are plants of mine:

African violet

African violet

African violet

Begonias, especially the wax leaf, angel’s wing, and cane begonias, bloom year-round in San Diego.

They are some of my favorite plants because of that, as well as the fact that they are easy to grow, can adapt to shady or sunny conditions (or anything in between), and their flowers simply are cheery little things that, well, cheer me up.

The following are from my gardens.

Begonia

Begonia

Begonia

The veritable pansy is another flower which I find immensely cheerful to look at.

It also was one of my wise old grandmother’s favorite flowers, especially purple ones since purple was her favorite color.

Pansy

Pansies

Pansies

Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

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This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Cyber Monday special

My first real Photographic Art advertisement:

I paid money to have it placed everywhere!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Have Bare Wall Syndrome? Need a unique gift?Photographic Art logo
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.
Christmas is just around the corner, so order today!

Moving the mouse in a straight line in Photoshop

How I Did It

It’s no secret that ever since the advent of the computer mouse, those of us working with drawing programs such as Corel Draw and Adobe Illustrator wanted a way to draw a straight line. It didn’t take too long before Corel and Adobe gave us the ability to draw those straight lines.

Recently I was wanting to draw a perfectly straight line in Photoshop, and that’s when it occurred to me that since Photoshop also is an Adobe product, there just might be a way to draw a straight line.

A simple Google search told me how:

Select the Pen tool.
Position the Pen tool where you want the straight segment to begin, and click to define the first anchor point (do not drag).
Click again where you want the segment to end (Shift-click to constrain the angle of the segment to a multiple of 45°).

I’m pretty much a keyboard person, using the mouse only when the keyboard is awkward, like drawing lines.

While I was drawing lines, I inadvertently hit the shortcut key to get to the eraser. In my haste and not realizing that I had switched to the eraser, I clicked where I wanted the line to begin, Shift-clicked where I wanted the line to end, and voilà!, I erased in a perfectly straight line!

My mind started working.

Some experimentation indicated that I could do anything in a perfectly straight line simply by clicking where I wanted to start and Shift-clicking where I wanted to end….

pen tool – yep
eraser tool – yep
clone tool – yep
spot healing tool – yep
brush tool – yep

Doesn’t seem to matter what you need to do, if you need to do it in a straight line, try Click, Shift-click.

Lastly, does anyone have a recommendation for software that will record my screen while I do things? That would have been very convenient for this post.

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Christmas is just around the corner, so order today!

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Friday Flower Fiesta (10-31-14)—Merry Halloween!

Friday Flower Fiesta

Let’s see if anyone can guess what the theme for today’s Friday Flower Fiesta is.

Aloe flower buds

Flower in an organic garden

Flowers at San Diego State University

Friday Flower Fiesta 4-5-13

Friday Flower Fiesta 4-5-13

Nasturtium flower

Ranunculus at the Carlsbad Flower Fields

Flower and rain drops

Flower and rain drops

Flower and rain drops

Coneflower

Friday Flower Fiesta

Happy Halloween!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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Need a unique gift?
Visit Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.
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My first Photographic Art sale to a Realtor

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I had great success in March and April 2014 when I set up my first galleries at Fine Art America. Then, on April 27, I hired Julian Rey Saenz to help me with my Photographic Art. He cataloged thousands of files, uploaded hundreds of files to Fine Art America, and created a database of over 8,000 Realtors to whom we could market Photographic Art as close-of-escrow gifts.

Photographic Art, and thus Julian’s job, had been capitalized for six months. I thought we would easily have appropriate sales at the end of six months to keep the company capitalized into the future as far as we wanted to go. That didn’t happen, and I’m not really sure why. I still have some analysis to do there.

Yesterday, though, I sold my first Photographic Art to Thomas J. Nelson, a La Jolla & San Diego Realtor who is using it as a close-of-escrow gift. Thomas and I have been working together since 2004; I have been doing the home inspections for his buying Clients.

Thomas bought a 48″x6.75″ metal print of San Diego Panorama. Looks like this:

img_5974 panorama 1200

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Click on the picture for a huger version, and then visualize that huger version (1200 pixels wide) as a metal print 48″ wide. That’s four feet! It’s going to be awesome!

Total cost, including shipping, was $126.49, and my profit was $23.26. Not much but it will buy half a tank of gasoline. More importantly, though, I have that first sale as a close-of-escrow gift, which allows me to do better marketing, i.e., marketing with a testimonial.

Now if I do some projections with those 8,000 Realtors in my database, all I need for first-year success is 50 Realtors to buy close-of-escrow gifts similar to that just once a month. That would allow me to continue to capitalize the company with ongoing sales, and those ongoing sales would allow me to do some very serious marketing, including keeping a small inventory to use as samples and emergency close-of-escrow gifts.

Julian got a job with one of our city politicians. Maybe after political season is over with, or during the spring when Julian will be playing high school tennis instead of working, I can hire him back and we can have another go at this.

With or without Julian, I can make this work. I’m going to go back to what I was doing in March and April and see what happens for the rest of the year.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Have Bare Wall Syndrome? Need a unique gift?Photographic Art logo
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.