Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The beauty of the WhiBal

I recently purchased a WhiBal white balance card to add to my photography tools. It's really great! If you clicked on the link, you saw the videos of why it's so great. But since I'm not good at explaining the science of it all, let me just show you.

Here is a picture of my tree:
Obviously, you can tell it's not the right color. I mean, the Christmas lights make a certain color, but in general, it's got that yellow tone that comes with taking indoor photography with no flash. So...enter the WhiBal! The WhiBal is a neutral gray, lighter than the normal 18% gray card used for exposure. Because it's neutral (no red, yellow, etc. undertones), any color coming from it in a photo will tell you the color that is coming from the lighting.

Again, I'm not good at 'splaining. But here's what you do. You take a photo in the same place as before, only this time include the WhiBal:
Now, open the two images in Photoshop. This is where the magic happens! If you've taken the pictures in RAW format, it will open the RAW converter, where you can make all kinds of adjustments. Then, you show Photoshop what color casts are in your photo by selecting a spot on the WhiBal. It takes that information and removes the color cast of all selected photos.

Now for a little final tweaking, and you've got a nice photo!
Sometimes I look at it and think, "But I like the first photo better!" Well, in that case, you leave it the way it was. There's no rule saying you can't! And in this instance, it's kind of nice to have the warm tones of the first photo. However, this is a big timesaver when it comes to portraits, because no one likes yellow undertones in their skin tone.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving 2007

Thanksgiving was a wonderful time with family and friends. It was good to enjoy the day in John and Karen's home, which was beautiful and inviting. Ken joined us for the first time, and it was great to have him.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Christmas lists

Okay, everyone, the last month of shopping is upon us! If you have an Amazon list, this is your gentle reminder to update it, or you might get something you already have 3 of. If you don't have an Amazon list, I would recommend looking into it. It's a great way to keep track of things you like throughout the year. I've found it handy in case I come upon some extra money in a month, or Jon wants to add something to his order to get free shipping. And then, of course, it's handy when Christmas comes around! So look into it! I've done my part by updating my list. You'll see the link for it at the bottom of the side bar.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

November 2007 Camping Trip!

Here's the camping trip! The camera was passed among myself, Margie, and Jon. If you see a really great artsy shot, it's probably Margie!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Murder Charades

Here is a slideshow of one of the many reasons I love Jon. He's really great at charades!

We're playing Murder Charades on our camping trip, taught to use by a newcomer to the camping trip, Christy. What is Murder Charades? Let me 'splain.

Divide up into two teams.

Team 2 goes to a place out of hearing distance from Team 1. Team 1 decides on a murder. They have to decide three things: 1) Who was murdered, 2) Where they were murdered, and 3) How they were murdered.

Team 1 calls for one person ("Player A") from Team 2 to come over. They explain the scenario to that player. Player A then calls over Player B from Team 2. Player A proceeds to use charades to explain the scenario to Player B.

Then, the game becomes a little bit like "Telephone" we all used to play as kids, where we started a sentence at one end of the line, whispered it from person to person all the way to the other end of the line, and got to see how the sentence changed.

Without being able to confirm with Player A, Player B must also use charades to explain--this time to Player C--what happened. It goes like that all the way through the players on Team 2. The last player has to guess what really happened.

It's a lot of fun. In the slides above, Jon is acting out this scenario: PeeWee Herman was in Greenland when he was murdered by an icicle. Of course, I had been Player A and he was Player B, so he thought my version of PeeWee Herman was a baseball player...I'd tried to show a little boy on the peewee baseball league, but never could get the "Herman" part. Oh, well.

My first photo shoot

Yesterday, I went out to the park with Tim & Margie for my first photo shoot. It was a blast! Margie's very creative and very good with the camera, so her input was excellent. I'm really good friends with Tim & Margie, so we were all comfortable and had a lot of fun. I appreciated Tim for going along with what I asked, because I know guys don't always get into photo shoots like girls do. His mind was on the guys football game, and yet he didn't say a word when he was going to be late for the start of the game.

I got some good shots, and they've already made their order on my new smugmug page. I'm trying it during a free trial period, and we'll see how it goes! I hope it works, because I already have three other couples interested in taking photos! I'm so excited, and loving it all!

Friday, November 09, 2007

A normal day

Today, after getting out of the shower, I did my normal routine. Only this time, as I raised my arm for it's daily anti-odor application, I realized I was holding the toothpaste, not the deodorant.

"Wow..." I said out loud. I amaze myself with my scatterbrained-ness.

I quickly put the toothpaste away, grabbed the correct toiletry, and the next thing I realized, I was reaching for the toothbrush. I'm glad I stopped short before I actually applied deodorant to the toothbrush. Or the initial toothpaste to the armpit. Neither of those would have been particularly pleasant.

Aren't you thankful that these kinds of things don't happen to you? Don't you feel a slight tinge of pity for this girl who has probably forgotten your birthday, told you something twice, or never returned your phone call? Now you know it's not just you. I do it to me, too!

Photography Note

I've added an RSS feed of my LMN-o-Photo blog in the side column. That way you can check and see if there are new posts. As you'll see from the latest posts, I'm just playing around right now. :) This weekend is the camping trip and my first photo shoot, though! Hopefully some good pics will come from that.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

It's Here

My camera is here! In honor of the occasion, I've started a new blog! LMN-o-Photo will be a spot I can put my favorite photos. I'm going to try to take photos each day and post my favorite at the end of the day. But maybe it'll just be every few days. Who knows.

I'm starting off with my favorite and most patient subject....

Monday, November 05, 2007

What's in a Name?

10.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother & father's middle name)
Marie Byrl

9. NASCAR NAME: (name of your mother's dad, fathers dad)
Wilbur Otis

8. STARWARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, any 2 letters of your first name) Norla I like this one! Or Nordl looks like a SW I could read but never pronounce.

7. DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, fav animal)
Red Cheetah My tagline: I'll find out if your wife is a cheetah! (Get it? a cheater?....never mind.)

6. SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born)
Marie Dallas (Yeah, that's not gonna fly.)

5. SUPERHERO NAME: (2nd fav color, fav alcohol drink, add "THE" to the beginning)
The Green Pepper (Dr Pepper, that is, not the actual green pepper.)

4. FLY GIRL/GUY NAME: (1st letter of 1st name, 1st 3 letters of your last)
L'Nor (I think it might work)

3. GANGSTA NAME: (fav ice cream flavor, fav cookie)
Vanilla Peanut Butter (that one doesn't work at all, though it might make a good rap)

2. ROCK STAR NAME: (current pet's name, current street name)
Friday Countryside (Definitely a country singer, not so much rock)

1. STRIPPER NAME: (name of your fav perfume/cologne, fav candy)
Happy Three Musketeers (I'll let you draw your own conclusions)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Left Out

Yesterday, I was with my church group at the Fall Festival. The guys were manning the bean bag toss, leaving the womenfolk to pass out candy. I realized very quickly that I was the ONLY girl there not pregnant. Out of SIX girls. So, since my costume wasn't that great (I came as a college student: jeans, freshman t-shirt and flip flops), I quickly stuffed my jacket under my shirt, and managed a pretty convincing baby bump--convincing enough that I had the pastor looking at me and whispering to his wife to come over and ask me. He finally figured it out and thought it was pretty funny. And all the trick-or-treater parents got to figure it out, too. "One of these things is not like the others...."

Today, I tried out a new place for lunch: Juanes Taqueria. Very Mexican. Everything was in Spanish and I was the only gringo in there (or would I be a gringa?). I wasn't about to order the "gringo tacos" so I stuck to real tacos (I suppose), which were meat, cilantro and onions. I like cilantro a lot.

Also today, I headed to the store only to realize I'd forgotten my grocery list. I'd put it in my pocket, but then promptly changed pants before leaving the house.

Okay, the last incident isn't the same "left out" as the first two, but I was running out of incidents.

[EDIT] Aha! I did have another one! I was making baked potato soup after my grocery run, and I left out the crock pot liner. I really like crock pot liners. They make crock pot cleaning so much easier. Unless, of course, you forget to use them.