Doggy P.J.’s

Before I eve start, yes, I admit that I’m one of those people.

One of those people that puts clothes on their dogs.

I can’t help it.

It’s just so darn cute and adorable to resist.

In my defense, Sputnick LOVES wearing clothes.

I don’t know why, but I sort of think it may be comforting and securing for him.

Prissy, on the other hand, HATES clothes.

She’s too wild and free. Like a majestic lion, a wild horse, a roaming…

You get my point.

Anyways, here they are in their pajamas.

And for the record, getting Prissy in that required a lot of bribing, and as soon as the picture was taken, she was out of it.

Clearly, she’s just not having any of it.

God love her.

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Milky Way Galaxy/Starry Sky picture attempt

If you have any interest in photography, or get on Pinterest, then you’ve probably seen the pictures of the Milky Way Galaxy, or the super star-speckled night sky, or even star trails.

Here’s an example of a Milky Way Galaxy picture.

I’ve been very envious of picture like these for quite some time.

I’ve tried and failed, tried and failed, and etc.

I tried to take some again tonight.

I can’t seem to get the setting right or something.

Maybe it’s where I live in a light polluted town.

Or my aperture wasn’t set right.

Or I’m using the wrong lens.

You get the point.

Here’s the pictures that I got tonight.

You’ll notice that in the second and third picture I got star trails, which I accidentally got by leaving the lens open too long.

Star trails are formed due to the Earth’s rotation and leaving the lens open any longer than 25 seconds gave me trails.

It’s crazy to think that the Earth is moving that quick ad we don’t even realize it!

 

 

 

Have any of you ever done any night sky photography?

If so, how did it turn out?

I would greatly appreciate any tips or tricks!

My Golden Haired Sputnick

This picture I took in my back yard earlier today.

It was so beautiful out today that I had to let the dogs out to run around and enjoy it.

The dog above, if you don’t already know, is my dog Sputnick.

And to me, he is absolutely the best looking dog I’ve ever seen.

His hair curls the moment it gets longer than an inch and looks like it’s made out of gold when he’s in the sun.

He’s my Goldilocks…. if she were a male.

And a dog.

I also edited this picture with Photoshop Elements 11.

I upgraded to it from Elements 9, and at first I didn’t think I would like the new layout and feel, but now that I’ve gotten used to it I like it a lot.

Adding actions, and using them for that matter, is so much easier.

Definitely worth the upgrade.

State Street: Part 2

This post is a sequel to my earlier post about State Street.

State Street is like the Main St. of my town, but since my town is split in tow right down the middle of State Street, that’s the name it was given.

I’ve been wanting to get some good pictures of State St. at night, so I asked my friend Tiffany to go with me, since she loves photography as much as I do.

It proved to be harder than I expected.

Pictures would come out grainy due to the high ISO needed and it was hard finding things as intriguing at night to shoot.

This is the Paramount theatre. I’m unsure of how long it has been there, but I’m pretty sure it’s been there since the beginning of State St. That’s why I added the sepiaesque filter to it.

This is the huge sign at the end of State Street that shows which side of the street is in Virginia and which side is in Tennessee. For some reason, I really love the grainy, blown out look of this picture.

This is probably my favorite that I took. It has such an eerie quality to it, but I love it!

I love this picture too. It’s of a railroad track and I decided to name this one “Which Side Are You On?”

Stuck In A Rut

I’ve been struggling recently with what to take pictures of and with creativity dealing with it.

So, I forced myself to go outside in my back yard and start shooting what I could.

In my head, I was telling myself “It’s just my back yard, how many interesting things are even out here to shoot? Let alone be creative about shooting it.”

I was actually pretty pleased with the outcome though!

This is by FAR my favorite that I took, and coincidentally, the best picture I have of Prissy.

She’s so active and moves all the time, so it’s hard to get a good picture of her.

The rest of the pictures are the few that I liked from the backyard shoot.

The first one is of some ivy growing on a tree. Nothing special.

The second one is my attempt in trying to capture texture. I thought it came out pretty good, but I couldn’t get the birds nest inside the birdhouse to focus at all.

The third is of some flowers that turned out way too bright and washed out. So, I just put it in black and white to try to save it.

Sunday Afternoon, A Dog’s Play Time

As I’ve mentioned before, I love dogs.

Especially my dogs.

They bring me happiness and joy just by being themselves, and I personally believe that everyone should have a dog just to experience that happiness.

Any-who, today was a beautiful day. Here recently the weather has been so bipolar with all of the rain, sleet, snow and dropping temperatures that I believe everyone was in need for a warm, sunshiny day.

Especially the dogs.

They stay cooped up in the house all winter long. Most of their time spent laying on the top of the couch, staring out of a window, dreaming of warm breezes of air, summer sunshine and being able to wear shorts and sandals again.

Well, maybe that was me impatiently awaiting shorts and sandals weather. But nevertheless, my dogs missed it too.

So, today after church my puppies and I went outside to get some fresh air.

That cute furball up there is Sputnick. He’s my little boy. He’s the one that easily gets cabin fever during the winter, so I take him outside to play any chance I get. He may be chunky, but he’s fast. That’s why he has to stay attached to the leash, because once he runs off, it’s game over.

This is Prissy. The energizer bunny that NEVER stops going. I’ve never seen a faster dog in my life. She loves to run circles in the back yard, kicking up leaves and grass in her wake. She’s very smart and obedient, and always stays in the area she’s supposed to.

Okay, now to the photography talk. As you can tell in the above pictures, they’re not perfectly in focus. Focus is a hard thing to achieve when using a high shutter speed and a quick moving object. So, I’ve learned a little trick to help remedy this. If you use Photoshop elements, all you have to do is make a layer mask. A layer mask is simply a filter put over a picture, in these cases you always use a Blur filter. The awesome thing about this, is that if you use the paintbrush tool with black ink, you can paint over the areas that you don’t want blurred, leaving them untouched.

That very technique is what I had to use on most of Prissy’s pictures. The background would be more in focus than her, but by applying the Blur layer mask to everything but her, it makes her look more in focus.

This isn’t the “traditional” way of using Blur layer masks, which is actually used primarily for portrait shots. Blurring the skin on someone’s face while leave their eyes, nose and mouth untouched creates a very professional, ethereal look.

Also, I’m a firm believer of never deleting pictures that you take. They each represent a moment in life that can only be revisited by memory and that photograph. That’s why I kept these:

If you were to know Prissy in real life, then you would know that these two pictures represent her personality to a tee. Loving, playful, mischievous and beautiful.

If anyone needs help with Layer Mask’s, feel free to leave a comment and I will make a step-by-step post.

Also, show me your pets! I want to see everyone’s little companions.