Thursday, July 9, 2015

Happy 4th of July--a bit late

I know this is 5 days late, but so much is going on...and I believe in the old adage "better late than never". So, here's my tribute to the United States on the anniversary of its founding. 

This image was created from layers of fireworks, set at different blend modes and opacities, topped with the American flag (also blended and lower opacity). I then added the text and used different layer effects on it.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

My New Adventures in the Art of Photoshop

It's been a long time since I've posted in this Blog...No excuses, just haven't done it. So much has been going on in my life that has gotten in the way. Now that I'm finding some time, I plan to post at least once a month--either photos, Photoshop hints or full Photoshop lessons. 

One of the projects I've been involved in has been a Creative Art course, using (of course) Photoshop. It's a year-long course focusing on creating art...either from photographs or from other artsy elements. 

I haven't been totally happy with my results yet, but am learning--and that's what's important!

Here are some samples of my new 'creations'.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Thanks to our Military Personnel--past, present and future

A friend forwarded a poem to me that really touched my soul. I wanted to share it, but didn't want to infringe on a copyright, so I went in search of the poet to ask permission to reprint. I found out that Larry Vaincourt had passed away on August 20, 2009. I wrote to his son, Randy, asking permission--and he granted it. He even sent me the proper version of the poem to be sure I got it right. :)

(A Soldier Died Today)
by A. Lawrence Vaincourt

He was getting old and paunchy and his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion, telling stories of the past.
Of a war that he had fought in and the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies; they were heroes, every one.

And tho' sometimes, to his neighbors, his tales became a joke,
All his Legion buddies listened, for they knew whereof he spoke.
But we'll hear his tales no longer for old Bill has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer, for a soldier died today.

He will not be mourned by many, just his children and his wife,
For he lived an ordinary and quite uneventful life.
Held a job and raised a family, quietly going his own way,
And the world won't note his passing, though a soldier died today.

When politicians leave this earth, their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing and proclaim that they were great.
Papers tell their whole life stories, from the time that they were young,
But the passing of a soldier goes unnoticed and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution to the welfare of our land
A guy who breaks his promises and cons his fellow man?
Or the ordinary fellow who, in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his Country and offers up his life?

A politician's stipend and the style in which he lives
Are sometimes disproportionate to the service that he gives.
While the ordinary soldier, who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal and perhaps, a pension small.

It's so easy to forget them for it was so long ago,
That the old Bills of our Country went to battle, but we know
It was not the politicians, with their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom that our Country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger, with your enemies at hand,
Would you want a politician with his ever-shifting stand?
Or would you prefer a soldier, who has sworn to defend
His home, his kin and Country and would fight until the end?

He was just a common soldier and his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us we may need his like again.
For when countries are in conflict, then we find the soldier's part
Is to clean up all the troubles that the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honor while he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage at the ending of his days.
Perhaps just a simple headline in a paper that would say,

Our Country is in mourning, for a soldier died today.

Please check out the website dedicated to about him and read some of his columns and can even buy a book! Thank you, Randy, for sharing your father with us. He truly embodies the spirit of Memorial Day. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Klotz Throwing Company - Lonaconing, MD

Last month (April 2013) I went on a fantastic photo workshop at an abandoned silk mill in western Maryland. My friend, Susan, set it up for our Meetup Group. The photo opportunities were amazing! Here are a few of my processed images...this place is HDR heaven. :)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Radio City Music Hall

Went on another photo workshop to New York City--this one was to Radio City Music Hall. The workshop was with my friend, Susan's, meetup group:
Here are a few of the images from that great day!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

St. Patrick's Cathedral, NYC

On my first photo shoot for 2013, I headed to New York City with a small group of photographers. The destination was Rockefeller Plaza, but I found my most interesting photos to be the ones I shot in St. Pat's. Here is a sampling of the best ones:

St. Pat's, all dressed up for Christmas.

Lots of prayers!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Winter Comes to New Jersey!

After weeks of mild, almost spring-like temperatures, winter finally made an appearance in New Jersey. This photo of my backyard was shot with my Samsung Galaxy Tablet...which I LOVE! It's not an award-winning photo, but does show the snow. Wasn't sure we'd be getting snow this year!