Friday, 25 January 2013

iPhoneography Book from Blurb

Late last year I put together a collection of some of my favourite iPhone images in a book over at Blurb. There was a promotion at the time, so I chose images that made me smile and reminded me of the place or occasion, and using Blurb's template, hey presto! a mini book was created. I ordered said mini book and was chuffed with the quality and the rendition of my images. Yeh!

Here's a selection for you to look at:

A day in the country III
The skies are just so big in the country, making the landscape so small.

Another gorgeous day in the BM's. This was taken a few days ago on first sunny day.
I love taking friends from afar here and see the looks on their faces when they first spot this gorgeous view

On a chilly night I dream of paradise.
Although I managed to get lost on this circuit trail (!), it didn't bother me with a view like this to distract me

The Gong #summerherald
I will always look at this view and think fondly of you ~ how we all miss you ♥

Here's the Deal:

Head over to Blurb and take a look at the book, you can preview about 15 of the 60 pages. If you like the sample enough, click on add to cart. And this is where you'll be helping me out. My earnings from each book is set to $5.00 and I'm going to pledge each $5.00 earned from each book sold to my Ride to Conquer Cancer that is happening later this year.

Who is this book perfect for?

* Those in a hurry to get through a book and say, "Yeh, I finished a book in a day". (There are NO words in the book! That's a bonus right there!)
* Those who are into iPhoneography and dig the faux-retro feel you can apply to images using the various apps rendering the world an arty-farty wonderous place.
* Those who hate iPhoneography and belong to "I Hate iPhoneography" clubs. They could take my book along to one of their meetings and make it a point of discussion.
* Those that live in Australia and love this wide brown land of ours and can't get enough of seeing images from all it's parts.
* Those that can't wait to save their pennies and visit this wide brown land of ours - this book contains a teeny little fraction of what they can expect to see when they visit.
* Those creative writers who look for inspiration in images - there's plenty of white space around the images for you to jot some notes down for your next plot.
* Those who love online shopping and getting parcels delivered to their door while wearing pj's and slippers. They could buy it for themselves, or even a loved one (notice the ♥ shaped tree on the front cover!!)How perfect would this be as a gift!
* Those that are starting out in photography and want to use their iPhone as a practice tool - this book may help them to see the world around them with new eyes.
* Those who have had a family member or friend affected by cancer and who don't mind forking out about A$26.95 of which $5.00 goes to Ride to Conquer Cancer. The book can be a sort of super fancy receipt of their donation.
* Those that have been lucky enough not to have any friends or family affected by cancer and see the A$26.95 (with the $5.00 going to Ride to Conquer Cancer) as a testament to their lucky break they have been spared the anguish, stress and world-will-never-be-the-same-again feeling that comes with a cancer diagnosis.
* Those that are just plain nice and aren't necessarily into iPhoneography, but have a spare A$26.95 of which $5.00 goes to Ride to Conquer Cancer, and don't mind helping out a gal with her goal, whilst helping others along the way.

If I've left any other types of people who you think would love to buy this book, then drop me a line and I'll add them to the list.

 What's that? What else can you do? Well, I'd love it if you shared, tweeted, facebooked, google+, tumblered, stumbled, and basically shared the shit out of this post! I would love to be able to write a future post letting you know just how many $5.00 donations were transferred from the Blurb account to the Ride to Conquer Cancer fund.

Monday, 14 January 2013

How to Watermark your Images

It's about this time of year that I consider updating the watermark I use when I add images to sites such as Flickr. The trouble with this is that I can never seem to remember how I did the previous one... Add to that, I've also been asked by a couple of friends to show them how to add watermarks to their images, so I thought I'd write a step-by-step of how I created this current watermark.

ladybird I 

1. Choose a font, any font, preferably one you like and that can be a sort of signature for you. No doubt you have hundreds of fonts on your computer, so open up a document, type your name (or whatever text you want to use for your watermark) and have a play with the fonts you already have. If you're not happy you have The Font, then turn to the internet - that's what it's there for! I found this font from dafont and it's called znikomit No24 by gluk. The swirly frame was one I had made and used for a previous project, but you don't need to use a frame for your watermark.

2. I use PS but I'm sure that any photo editing software can be used. (These instructions will be PS oriented.) Open up a new file to a size of 4300 x 2300, set layer to white. But to be honest, the size can be approximate, as you'll re-size the watermark down to size according to each image you watermark.

3. Select the text symbol and then select a text colour. I've chosen #a6a6a6 for mine. Type your name on that layer.

4. Go to your Layers menu and select Blending Options. Because the font I have chosen is quite fine, I've selected Bevel and Emboss as well as Drop Shadow. Depending on the font you choose, you may find this step unnecessary. I have also selected Colour overlay and set it to negative image.

You can see the effect of the blending options on a heavier font:

5. I added my swirl frame on a new layer and inversed the colours (it was black, inversed to white) then applied the same blending option as above:

At this stage, it's still too 'dainty' and almost invisible on even the plainest of images. This won't be the case if the font you have chosen is bulkier. If you have chosen a dainty font and/or frame, simply duplicate both the text and frame 2 or even 3 times. Practice popping the watermark on one of your images to see if you're happy with the effect. You may find that you don't need to duplicate the blending effect on each duplicated layer, so simply disable the blending option as you see fit.

6. Once you're happy with the watermark, it's time to group all the layers together using the "Create a new Group" option in the Layers palette (red circle). Drag each layer onto the new folder (green circle). You will notice the Blending Mode is now "Pass through". Save this as a .pdf file:

7. Time to grab one of your images and test out your new watermark. Grab your folder, you'll notice I've called mine "ZNIKO grey" and copy that to one of your open images. How you size the watermark, where you position it and how you blend it to your photo will depend on each image and of course your own personal preference:

So now you should be good to go. I hope you've found this How To easy to follow and implement..

What are your thought on watermarks? Do you use them?  If not, I'd love to hear why. 
If you have any questions, drop me a comment.

Friday, 4 January 2013

Featured Image over at Photographers Connection

I can't tell you how tickled pink I am at having my final image of the "Photographer's 52-Captures Challenge" chosen as Fan Photo of the Week! Following their themes, I was determined to create a new image for each week and what a great opportunity that has been to improve my skills and try things that I would probably never get around to trying. Photographers Connection have started a new 52 week challenge for 2013, but I'll be sitting this one out as I'll be concentrating on a few other challenges this year. A major challenge for me will be the Ride to Conquer Cancer that will take place in October 2013.To find out more, caste your eyes to the left of this page and click on the blue and yellow cycling link. I would love it if you could support my ride :)

Week 52 ~ Self-Portrait
Week 52 ~ Self-Portrait | Celebrating the end of the project - yeh!

Are you a fan of Photographers Connection Facebook page? Maybe you should 'like' their page and join in the fun! Have you tried photography projects before? Other than Photo-a-Day and 52-week challenges, what other photography challenges have you tried? Drop me a comment, I would love to hear about your photography challenges and projects.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Happy New Year! Especially to you, Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude

Happy New Year! And yes, I also wish the overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude a Happy New Year, even if he did almost ruin the start of the year for me and quite a few other people. Against my normally conservative and no-extreme-action disposition, I said yes to going out on a little boat with a few friends on Sydney Harbour for New Year's Eve. Surprisingly, every other person who owns a boat had the exact same idea. Who knew? Aside from the congestion of what must be the Harbour's busiest day, seeing the fireworks from the vantage of the water was really something quite special. So special, I recorded a few clips using my iPhone and edited them and, as you do, popped the finished clip up on youtube:

The atmosphere, the sound, the light spectacular just isn't the same as watching it on the telly even if you do own one of those fancy-dancy tellies. And it's not the same as watching it on the above clip, even if it was shot on an iPhone... Of course at the end of the awesome display - you're not going to believe it - but all the owners of all those boats want to go home or at the very least, be the first one to reach the jetty. And that's where Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude comes into this story. Aside from making bogan comments to those at the start of the queue for taking too long (!), he then proceeded to "help" those boats tied up and waiting for their trailers to arrive. Unfortunately for us,  the trailer for the boat I was on,was parked a million miles away, but that didn't deter Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude from untying the boats, moving them forward and then tying them up again. Very helpful. Now, I don't know boat etiquette, but I would imagine that the person who has their trailer first in line at the jetty should be able to get their boat out of the water first no matter where in the boat queue they are. The trouble was, not only had Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude shifted the boat I was on to the front of the queue, in his overzealousness to help everyone else, he had forgotten to get his trailer which was also parked a million miles away, so off he went to retrieve said trailer. With the only driver of the boat I was on somewhere in the never-ending trailer queue, my friend and I were treated to some pretty colourful language as we were abused for positioning the boat where it was in the way of every boat trying to exit the ramp. The colurful language wasn't anywhere near as pretty as the fireworks either. So, thank you Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude for being the hero you were in "helping" all those of us who weren't fast enough for your liking. You very nearly dampened my New Year's spirit with your overzealousness and heroism and total carry on. Luckily for you, those fireworks were the best damned fireworks ever!

Happy New Year Everyone! Especially Overzealous White T-Shirt Hero Dude - may 2013 be the year you truly help out those in need because I'm sure that deep down you are a really helpful dude. Just not in the early hours of New Year's Day.

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