Welcome friends...thanks for coming by. We're seeking beauty in all of creation... in our faith and our families; our art and our music; our crafts and kitchens, and even in our own backyard. We'll share a poem or a recipe, a picture or a memory; maybe a dream of how we wish our life could be. And though we acknowledge that the world can be harsh, we're keeping it pleasant in our little corner; endeavoring to keep the words from the Book of all Books: ...Whatsoever things are lovely; think on these things.

I so enjoy hearing from you...so leave me a comment; it'll make my day!

Photo: Bee and thistle: Taken high in the Cascade Mountains where there is a bee buzzing on every thistle. by Debora Rorvig

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Easy Peasy Photo Secrets Revealed

Wanna know how to make your pictures look better? Would you like to hear some easy secrets to how to make YOU look better in photographs?

You say you do??? Well allrighty then! (Just bear in mind, I'm not a pro...this stuff is for non-techy's. Easy peasy stuff.)

So I'm assuming that you've got a good camera. That's number one. And I'm not going to waste my breath telling you how to use it. You've got a manual and a community college that'll do that for you. Remember, this is just little hints...OK?


First, my dear, since nobody's perfect, you need to learn how to edit. Photoshop is the cadillac of photo-editing, but the learning curve is steep. If you know Photoshop, you needn't read further. But if you're just starting out, give Picasa a try. Below are some pics I fixed up using Picasa...

Here's photo 1, unedited. I gotta work on my lighting!
This is the same photo. I used Picasa's highlight and light fill effects.
I cropped the above photo and added glow. BTW...the model is moi. We had crazy day at school, hence the bows, heavy make-up and polka dots. Kinda fun!

Mama Mia! Thats a bad pic! What a pained expression...and check out the leathery neck. Not good. Note to self, do something about that neck!!!

Think I'll put my hand in front of my neck...now isn't that better?
Not so fond of this one...it's the neck thing again and that crazy front tooth. I never got braces, as you can tell. I'm not worried about it; it's who I am. But I know that look better facing the camera or from the right side. Just something to remember. Go stand in front of a mirror and see how you look best. Then go with it! What, you think that's cheating? I'll betcha that Tyra B. and her top models all know what side of their face looks best in photos. Why should they look better than you?

I don't mind this shot, but I think it could look nicer.

Same photo, but don't I look more rested...like I've been to the spa or something. Naw, I just used the retouch feature in Picasa! Evened out the skin, took the red lines out of the whites of my eyes, and heck, even removed the crow's feet and frown lines between my brows. GRANDMAS, take note...YOU WILL BECOME YOUR TEEN GRANDCHILD'S FAVORITE GRANDMA IF YOU LEARN TO RETOUCH THEIR BLEMISHES!! What kid wants a permanent reminder of acne? I sure didn't. You can retouch their pictures and let them put them on facebook. Nobody'll be the wiser and it will sooo help their confidence!

Bokeh is the term for taking a picture so that part of it is purposely out of focus and blurry, while the subject is crisp. It takes a while to master this. I can do it, but sometimes I'm too lazy or just didn't think to create this effect in my photograph. Never fear. There is a button called 'soft focus' in Picasa that will mimic this effect. You just put the arrow where you want clarity and the rest will blur!

Here are a few more things I've figured out using Picasa...

  • Soft glow is great for aging skin.
  • If your photo is a wee bit out of focus...but you want to keep it, try making it black and white then use soft glow.
  • If your picture tends toward sallowy yellow, go to the Saturation effect and move the button to the left. It'll make a nice cool tone. This is also great for creating a sort of washed out, fadey effect that looks vintage.
  • Is a smart-aleck ruining your picture...crop him right out!
  • Sometimes part of a face is better than the whole. The eyes have it! Use that cropping tool to make many photo's from one.

So there you have it...some easy ways to improve your photographs. You have nothing to fear when you stand in front of a camera. Those things you call flaws; either celebrate them or just fix them. It's that inner glow we're looking for...that special something that makes you so unique. Remember, you are a beautiful, beautiful, one-of-a-kind creation! The world has never seen anyone like you before...and never will again. Work that camera, girl!!!


Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Amen Sister! Picasa editing tools are God's gift to us who are less than perfect face wise and going downhill from there.

I would never expect to look great up close without at least a swipe of lipstick and a dab of powder ; Picasa is just a form of advanced electronic make up!

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

PS: professional model photographers shoot pictures as far away as possible because camera lens bow out and hence cause noses to appear elongated. If one must do self portraits, use the camera's timer feature and a tripod or shelf to get at least half a room away from the camera! Or shoot overhead slightly looking up.

BECKY said...

Wow! I've heard of photoshop, but not picasso! It's obvious I need to look into this!! Your photos are great! And you're so darn cute!! :)
How thoughtful to share all this with us!


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