Beyond Layers – Catch Up on Assignment (Day 24 – Now YOU)

Beyond Layers Day 24 – NOW YOU ……. An assignment in Self-Portraits. I’m way behind especially since we’re at Day 60 now.

Wow … it’s been months since this assignment was given and I planned on adding my Self-Portrait long before now.  I was having fun with the camera in the middle of the night a couple of weeks ago, … sitting in front of the computer … yeah, … this is when I decide to take a self-portrait? No make-up … tired because I should have been in bed actually sleeping to remedy that but no … I decide to take a picture.  It’s not too bad though … I left it at that and loaded them up another day.

Here is ME saying HI  to all my Beyonder friends … and the rest of you of course if there are any … (peekaboo … I am hoping my kids don’t laugh at me for doing this) … I just look goofy. One day I’ll take a better one but for now … this is ME being silly. And .. holy Cow! My hand looks really FAT! … notice I cut off my chin so you can’t see the four extra chins!!  LOL … sigh*

Love yas …  oh and I tried Xanthe’s horizontal three layout for this one and it worked awesomely!

Just Goofy Old Me … Love YOU

Until the next thought …

xo Joy


Having Fun with the Print Module in Lightroom 3 or 4

Oh my goodness,  I was having some fun in Lightroom with the Print layouts after watching a Behind the Scenes video with Kim Klassen and went back into it to see what I could come up with.

I have always used this module for actual printing but it is awesome to use as a tool for building photo layouts for your blog too!!

I haven’t spent enough time looking through my files to pick and choose what to bring into my Blog folder yet … it’s on my LIST of ‘To Dos’ believe me so I just used what I had there already which was a couple of my blog headers and my Vancouver watercolour pano.

So while there I figure what the heck, post it to my blog.  YOU can do this too with Lightroom 3 and 4 in the PRINT module. It’s very cool and easy peasy.

You can use one of the custom layouts to drag your pictures up to or you can clear the layout, start with a blank page, drag your pictures up onto it and by holding the shift key to constrain proportions while you resize them on the page, you can then move them around to where you want them to sit.

Once you have them laid out to your liking, save it by choosing PRINT TO FILE and it will automatically save it to a jpeg bringing up a dialogue as to where you want it to live for a moment. Remember to choose at least 150 resolution which will still give you good quality for the blog. Also I choose high for sharpening in output.  I just save to my desktop until I finished it in Photoshop unless of course a folder is set up for all the practice stuff in it already.

When you then bring it into Photoshop you can crop, add text, put it into another layout if you like and then save it to WEB which will bring up the web dialogue in relation to the size for your blog etc.

Here is my random layout for today reminding you that I didn’t pre program the sizes of the panoramas because they were already in my system.  There are lots of ideas for future layouts using this system. Kim has Lightroom 4 and I want to get that very soon, but I have Lightroom 3 and it works exactly the same in that version.

Layout using Adobe Lightroom3

Please feel free to email me with questions. This is quite easy to do and the main thing is to practice and have some fun. Added note: Place your images on the page size you want to use, where you want them to live. Once you have done this in Lightroom you cannot change their position in PS so if you are making something where you want to add text such as a small story, leave room for it while you make the template in Lightroom first.

Enjoy and have fun with this!!

Until the next thought …

xo Joy

BTS Five Fact Friday August 17th



Vancouver BC – My Home Town

My Five Facts for this week …

  1. I love COLOUR and I can get that through FLOWERS!! They make me smile and feel happy.
  2. I love adding TEXT to my images because is seems to help nourish my soul and perhaps provide more insight to my viewers allowing fresh thought and a feeling of wellbeing.
  3. I love STARS and this little set of stars that fit into this awesome jar. Doesn’t matter what form the star comes in … Sky, Star Fish, Star stickers, Star Shapes, just STARS.
  4. I love GERBERA DAISIES … favourites are the pinks … no pale yellow, no cream, no red … no … ALL OF THEM!!
  5. I LOVE my Hometown which is Vancouver BC …. I will never move away from here. It’s like no other place I’ve ever been and will always hold my childhood with memories of my parents and how dear this place was to them. This particular image was made looking north from the lookout on Little Mountain aka Queen Elizabeth Park above the flower gardens which lie in what used to be the CPR Quary. It’s a very touristy spot with a restaurant, a wedding chapel, the Blodel Conservatory, a beautiful set of fountains and gorgeous manicured gardenscape. It sits in the heart of Vancouver which some of the downtown is visible here. The North Shore Mountains house North Vancouver and West Vancouver on the other side of the Burrard Inlet. This picture was taken before our BC Place was remodeled last year. You can still see the dome roof below center here.

Until the next thought …

xo Joy

Five Fact Friday August 10th

Graycee our Baby

Yes … she wakes up from what look to be bad dreams, cries, shakes her head, then comes over and jumps up on the desk between me and the keyboard for some cuddles. Leans on me waiting for me to acknowledge her presence … so funny. She’ll lay over my arms, she’ll sit on the keyboard … NOTICE ME!! … I’ll give her a hug and snuggle then off she goes back to her bed until I get up to go to bed.

She’s a great mouser … we live on acreage in the country so that’s a fact of life. I don’t mind that she kills them … it’s if she eats them that grosses me out. Sorry … gross I know, fact of life though. She most likely didn’t kill them until she was living outside for over a year before we got her. And, a lot of loving had to be done to allow her to trust again.

Sophie, her predecessor, would kill and leave them where I could see them just to let me know she was doing her job. And speaking of Sophie, we lost her right before we brought Graycee home. She was killed by a coyote … another drawback to the country. A hot August night … doors open and no screens damit. As a matter of fact I mention her because it is 4 years today (I write this on the 12th of Aug) … that it happened. Yep … devastated here … it’s like losing one of your children, well you know what I mean … heart-wrenching, and I miss her every day. She was only seven.  The year before that, we lost her brother Tucker, who died in my arms.

Hardest thing I’ve ever experienced with any of my animals. Remember the year of the cat food recall? Well that is the spring we lost him (2006). However it may not have been to do with that as he had been hit by a car a year and a half before that, survived the odds and graced us with his fur baby love for 18 more months. Most likely liver failure from the damage as it can take a long time for it to manifest itself but boy, when he went, he went fast. Only a week-ish prior is when I noticed something wasn’t right. My poor Tuck … he was six. He was an awesome cat, had Ragdoll in him … gentle and accomedating especially to the grandchildren … he loved everyone.

Okay … enough about that … didn’t mean to bring anyone down. But … hey that’s life and each experience, love, sorrow, pain, grief in any capacity allows us to grow.

Anyway … I started this extra post hours ago, left to go make dinner and totally forgot about it. Better publish!!

I’ll put up something more fun tomorrow … I have been spending the better part of the past three days trying to get my lensdancer email to work in my windows mail. Suddenly it won’t load, can’t connect to the computer or my phone so it’s driving me mad. In the mean time, I’m not getting my work done. Argggggh~ All the others are working … geez laweez.

Until the next thought my friends …

Joy xo

Happy BC Day

The gorgeous PINK Dogwood inspired the title of my blog.

Happy BC Day here in British Columbia

It’s a Holiday across Canada celebrating each province this weekend.

I do hope you have all had a fun, safe and enjoyable weekend.

I thought it would be nice to share our Provincial Flower with you … it is the DOGWOOD

BC’s Provincial Flower


I used Kim Klassen’s texture – kk Serious Magic on this twice with Screen Blend Mode reducing the opacity on each and adding a blur filter which I masked out only the flowers. Now I’m looking at it here and I’m thinking I should have brightened them up. They were in the shade … hmm.

I captured these Dogwood in bloom while sitting outside my grand-children’s school in June on a bench right under this beautiful tree.  I had arrived early for an award presentation so had some time to spare. Rather than leave and go back I decided to sit and write in my Beyond Layers journal. I looked up and above me to see the tree heavy in blooms. It was a bright day so I hadn’t even noticed them when I initially walked toward it.

I had my camera with me to capture the awards the kids were receiving so what better time to make use of that. I haven’t been hauling my heavy camera around too much lately. It must weigh ten pounds, some days feels like twenty and since my arm has been giving me grief, I tend to leave it at home when not going out with specific intent … or I’m just getting lazy.

I think I’ll go find some BC Facts and add them here later today so off to find them …

later … =0)



5 Fact Friday – Behind the Scenes Inspiration

Hello Lovelies … yes I know it’s now Saturday, actually Sunday by the time I publish this, but I couldn’t get to this until now and didn’t want to miss out on this fun assignment. I plan on getting next Friday’s in on time.

First and foremost I wanted to create something special for it.  I laughed and giggled at Kim and Xanthe’s antics … oh my gosh so funny!  Of course then my mind went blank. You’d think I’d have something more interesting to share for our first ever 5 Fact Friday wouldn’t you?

Here is my Creation.  The original is a combination of the Moon shot from this past week’s full moon and Pt. Wilson Light at Port Townsend WA in the USA

Happy BC Day in … BC of course, and the rest of the provinces that are celebrating a great long weekend! Hope you’re all having a safe and happy summer.

I was outside shooting the full moon a couple of nights ago. I wish I could get closer, I don’t have any doubler or tube extensions. Only my 75 – 300 mm Nikkor which with digital makes it a 450mm so that’s not too bad. I have painstakingly tried to get sharp shots for years. These were not too bad.  SEE CAMERA SETTINGS BELOW for Shooting the MOON

Thanks to Kim Klassen and her extraordinary textures. I used kk confusion over the whole piece twice and masked out the moon. This image had so many layers that I ended up saving then making a jpeg before I even got to the five facts section. Then I added the stars, the lights in the windows and on the lighthouse. I was having trouble with some of my layers on the first concoction to the point of frustration. Better to save and change things than to risk losing it all.

5 Fact Friday – Pt Wilson Light, Port Townsend, WA

Moonrise over Point Wilson

August Moon

The settings for shooting the moon with my DSLR Nikon D2x using a Nikon Nikkor Zoom 75mm to 300mm 1:4.5-5.6 Lens  (which ends up being 450mm on a digital camera)

MANUAL Settings – Exposure 1/60 Sec, at F8 , Daylight or Sun White Balance, Manual focus set to infinity, on a tripod and using a cable release or remote if you have it.

Wouldn’t ya know, I trekked way out back of my house in the dark, set it all up only to realize I had forgotten my cable release back at the house. Oh well, … held my breath and the tripod steady as I could.

Much more detail can be achieved with a larger lens of course but also with Extension Tubes or Doubler both of which I do now have =0(

I have always wanted to get those cool shots we see where every crater is visable practically … so awesome. Maybe one day I’ll have the opportunity to use them or learn how to achieve an even sharper image with what I have.

Moonbeams and Starlight Dreams

Thanks for indulging me dear friends.

Until the next thought …

xo Joy