From The Archives

Duck, Turtle, & Koi

In 2004, I celebrated my 40th birthday with friends and family with a day of festivities at the Seattle Arboretum, the Japanese Garden and finished with dinner at the Queen Anne Sam’s Sushi.

Today’s photo is one of from the pond at the Japanese Garden. The flowers and critters were out in full force that day.

This photo was cropped and color enhanced in the Gimp.


From The Archives

26 Minutes to Armageddon

Back in 2004, I was working in the South Lake Union area.  Bus commuting from the South Slope of Queen Anne to South Lake Union was ridic (and still is). I won’t go into the silliness of that and leave it as I tried walking to work for a while.  I took the digital camera I had, a Powershot S50.

I like graffiti.  Not tagging mind you, which makes me want to run out, buy spray paint, and tangle around it.

There was someone going around Seattle at this time, spraying small bits of graffiti art. All unsigned, so I attribute it to that most prolific artist: Anonymous.

26 Minutes to Armageddon

From The Archives

Old Brick Building

Back in 2005, I was a techie/designer with Open Circle Theater.  When the theater was located in the Lake Union area. Back then, that neighborhood was a pretty run-down, semi-industrial area.  The biggest draws were Fred Hutch, the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, and the Museum of Wooden Boats. Long before the industrial buildings were knocked down for Amazon, the Slut, random biotech firms, etc.

This photo was taken with my Canon Powershot S50 using the black and white setting. The building was next door to the theater. This view is from the alley behind the building. Yes, those are trees growing out of the brick work.

I did 3 layers with this image to deepen the blacks and to sharpen to overall image, layered over the original.


From The Archives

Atomic Laundry

In 2011, I accompanied my mom to Pasco, WA for total knee replacement surgery. Mom was out for a while post-surgery, so I wandered around the neighborhood with my Canon Rebel.  It was a cloudless October morning. Pasco is part of the Tri-Cities area and is near the Hanford Nuclear plant, so there are lots of atomic-themed shops.

This photo needed minimal processing. I cropped and added a color enhance layer. The sky was fairly blue, but the color enhance pass deepened the ombre look.

Mom’s surgery went very well.


From The Archives

Hummingbird Nest

Hi ho friends.  I know the posts have been sporadic of late, I’ve been fiddling with the look of this site.  The design upgrade reminded me of a project I’ve had on the back burner for far too long: re-organizing my files. I’ve owned cameras since 1982 and my first digital camera was a gift from Mr. Thompson in 2002.  You’d think that for all the years I’ve taken photographs, that I’d have some brilliant filing scheme.  Oddly enough, I apply my vast organizing skills at work and get home and, well, it’s the last task on the chore list.

It was scanning my paintings and converting them to art prints that finally pushed me over the edge.  Virtually speaking, my files were strewn everywhere.  Duplicates abounded. As with most tedious chores, I put it off as long as humanly possible.

Truthfully, though, I got as far as Stage 1: getting files into a system. I’ve chosen to group by year.  Stage 2 is to make sure files have a name rather than the Canon file convention of IMG_number.  Stage 1 took just long enough that Stage 2 will happen in a month or so. Stage 3 will getting my 35 mm negatives scanned and cataloged.

More photos than I expected had names.  Unfortunately, a large batch of them were taken with my circa 2002 Canon PowerShot S50, which took photos at a whopping 4 megapixels!

I haven’t run prints but I can’t image the images from era will end up as stand alone photo prints. I can see using parts in photo collages, brushes, and filters. The other benefit to this file clean-up is I can reboot my From the Archives series.

First up, this charming humming nest image from 2004.  The original photo was taken by my Powershot, at night.  We were visiting our friends Pat & Lisa one evening. Lisa mentioned the nest and I naturally grabbed my camera to capture it. Using the flash, I knew I’d get only one chance to capture the bird. I’m surprised the photo came out as clear as it did.

The original photo is pretty standard. I cropped it because the bird was so close to the left edge of the frame.  My current process is to work in layers, flatten the final image and export it to jpg for posting. For this photo, I used color enhance, neon, a layer using the airbrush tool and made blobs of green, pink, orange, and white.

I will start a new series soon called Unfinished Paintings, or UFP.  I have a stack of 9×12 watercolor paintings that are in various stages of completion. I’m hoping that scanning and editing the images, plus a post about them will get the creative juices flowing.

What’s on your work table?  Leave a comment and link to your latest project. I’d love to see what you’re up to.

Happy creating!

Hummingbird next @ night
From The Archives

Cherry Blossoms

CherryBlossoms_0162_v1-tenukihandcraftsHi ho my lovelies. It’s been a while since I made a proper post. I’ve been hunkered down and working on my show in May.  I’m meeting with the gallery owners this Saturday, so I’ll post details of the show early next week.

Plants are beginning to bloom around Seattle, so I dug into the archives for one of my favorite photos: a close-up of cherry blossoms. I took this photo about 12 years ago, with my Canon Powershot.

I added raindrops and text with Digikam.

Fly, be free, my dearies.



From The Archives

Another Digital Buddha


I’m still learning about all the Gimp tools and what they do.  To be honest, I’m not making a scientific study of photography, the physics, or stuff like that. I’m just interested in composition and what I like.  I approach photography more like painting, kinda silly, but there it is.

I merged a couple of my favorite, though flawed photos.  The actual Buddha photo is kinda icky. The Buddha is overexposed and has a deep shadow on the left. The paper lantern photo shows the stage ceiling and all the unattractive stage light equipment. Fixing the exposure on both photos has proven problematic in the past. I made this image by duplicating layers, cutting out parts of the image and then adjusting each layer before merging them into a single layer jpg.

I’d say it’s the closest I’ve gotten to creating something digitally that looks like one of my mixed media paintings. I’m happy to have finally made use of this photo and that I now have enough photo editing skill to salvage some of my other favorite, flawed photos.

Fly, be free, my pretties.

From The Archives

Yellow Boat, or, You Can’t Always Get What You Want

The Mister and I made 3 trips to Hollyhock, Cortes Island, B.C. Two trips were to take Jim Kerwin’s go workshop and 1 trip was for a week away from it all. All three trips were before I picked up my Canon Rebel, which, in hindsight, is a bummer.  As much as I love my little Powershot S50, the photo quality is ok and no raw. With my Gimp skill level, only so much can be done with these photos.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you may have noticed that I’m not a technical photographer. Oh, sure, I understand some aspects of the mechanics of photography, but as with my mixed media art, I create from a tactile, spontaneous place, capturing what catches my eye in the moment. Sometimes it work out, sometimes not.

I have hundreds of Hollyhock photos, all taken with my wee Powershot. This is one of my favorite Hollyhock photos.  I wandered down to the beach one afternoon to sunbathe, where I found this scene. It was a very bright July day and must have been 80 degrees. I love the boat and the water and sunlight reflecting on the rocks below the surface. But the sky was washed out and this has always bothered me.

This photo was includes a Make Wonderful layer, plasma layer, and selected areas brightened and darkened. Very technical, right? I’m not completely happy with the result. This is the third or fourth time I’ve fiddled with the photo. I come back to it as I learn new Gimp techniques, in the hope that, someday, I’ll have all the Gimp skill to make the sky I want.

If you’ve got some Gimp tips to share, I’d love to hear from you.