Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Lights, Camera, Action!

Warning: Photo-intensive post.

These past few days DH and his cohorts have been busy filming short films for their class at the MDA Film Institute. MIL's house has been overran with camera crew, catering crew, gofers, gaffers, producers, actors like Meryl Soriano, Ina Feleo and Jao Mapa, and a few others I missed because I wouldn't go out with my hair uncombed lest I be caught on tape. I swear I will go to the parlor first if ever they get John Lloyd to play a role.

They usually work at nights for better lighting, so puyatan talaga sila. Even Diego got into the spirit of things. When DH was directing his short, he was the one who shouted "Quiet in the set" and "Action!" I think he picked up a few cuss words along the way, too. :-(

So with DH busy mastering his new craft, I had the laptop all to myself. Looking at the photos I have somewhat alleviated my disappointment about not getting that DSLR camera I've been wanting since two Christmases ago. My point and shoot Nikon, which I bought 4 years ago for $500 (the price of a DSLR now!), still works quite well. Sure, it only has 3 effective mega-pixels and the battery cover has to be held together by tape, but I've been able to get decent photos using it. The way things are going, I should be happy I have a working camera at all.

I usually just crop or clone out distracting objects from my photos, but this time I played with some Photoshop actions I purchased early last year. When I realized I wasn't getting a new DSLR anytime soon, I thought buying actions on line was a cheaper alternative. (Well, only if you use them.) I experimented quite a bit and was thrilled to discover that I can layer actions upon actions. I love the results. But please don't ask me what specific actions I used to achieve certain effects because I was way too trigger-happy and I didn't take notes of the clicks I did. In some cases I just blended like crazy and used available Photoshop presets.

Love that glow, Diego looks lit up from behind, and look, Ma, no lantern (which was made by Kahlo, by the way.)



Sarah is ready for her closeup, zooming in tighter, some digital makeup and voila!



I just love those eyes and wanted to play them up a bit.



Just traded that grayish pallor for some sunshiney glow. Yup, she is one serious girl. Seriously.



Love the expression on her face but the original photo was a bit too orange for my taste. A few adjustments with opacity here and there...


Somewhere in the middle


DH is not a fan of the last version, but I'm thinking it would look great on textured paper. How about you, which version do you prefer?

This exercise made me realize 1) there are no bad pictures, specially, not with Photoshop; and 2) like what my DH often tells me when I whine about my poor yet trusty point and shoot), "It's not what you've got, it's how you use it." Sabay sayaw. Everybody now...

Don't expect to see these photos on layouts anytime soon though. I am still having way too much fun with Photoshop. It's made me forget (for awhile at least) how much I want that Nikon D90. Sob.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Good Advice

This is my response to Manang Marissa's challenge in Kaya! I think fear of my sister's wrath made my scrapping mojo come running back to me from wherever it has wandered. Hehehe. Anyway, I am quite happy to be playing with scissors again.

Julia Fordham's songs were the soundtrack of my life way back when. This layout is based on the song Girlfriend. I relate to this song for three reasons:

1) In the nineties when this song was popularized, I thought I was in love with a guy who was a "boyfriend ng iba." The lyrics "Don't tell your girlfriend about me cause your girfriend won't like girls like me" were the perfect refrain for my angst-ridden non-existent lovelife.

2) This was also the time when in search of answers, Susie and I frequented manghuhulas or fortune tellers from Quezon City to Makati to Tagaytay City.

3) The good advice the song imparts is as relevant to me then as it is now. In order to be loved truly and fully by someone else, I should stop being pathetic. I mean, we should love ourselves first and foremost.

I used Scrapbook Hawaii's fully loaded First Kiss kit to create this layout, and a few items from my stash. You can view the details here.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I'm in the Carnival!

Happy Valentine's Day! Spent a large part of the day playing games with the KiDS at their school's Family Day. Quite appropriate, I think.

Meanwhile, head on over to Craft Critique for inspiring love creations and projects contributed by their readers. My layout to my parents is featured there and is in very good company.

Ahh...where would I be without the love that exists between these two wonderful people?

Have a romantic love-filled weekend.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Carnival Time

Just what I need to get out of this scrapbooking rut - inspiration. Craft Critique is hosting a Blog Carnival, wherein you send them our Valentine or love-themed layouts, to share with others in ONE big post filled with all the participants' works. This is my first time to join and it promises to be fun. Why don't you play, too?

Love to all!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Magical Wishes

These beautiful collection from Webster's Pages should be enough to jolt anyone out of the doldrums.

How I wish the lucky one would be me. Hope this would be a case of wishes do come true.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Down in the Doldrums

Anybody seen my scrapping mojo? If found, please inform me ASAP. I miss making layouts terribly.

And so to compensate for my inadequacies at that end, I have been visiting fellow scrappers' blogs. I am loving Blogger's new Blog List feature where I am immediately informed if my favorites have updated their blogs (see sidebar). Quite convenient when you have limited time to surf. I assure you I am inspired by the artistry and creativity everyone else is showing, but sadly, the impetus to create just isn't there.

So I thought I'd undertake the monumental task of organizing our library. I have a very simple system. I allotted shelves for My Books; DH's Books, Reference Books, and Children's Books, sorted by subject.

DH's books are easy cause he brought all his film/art books in his studio. Only his history books and Car Buyer magazines are here in the house.

I've also left the Children's Books under Sarah's supervision because and I quote, "I like to organize." That's putting it mildly. This girl can be so OC. She wants to arrange their books first by author, then within that category, by color. Ugh... What else can I expect from a girl who throws a fit when her food are touching each other on her plate? Anybody here watch Monk? His idiosyncracies are delightful, but in an 8-year old, they can be very very frustrating.

Organizing is really no hardship, except that it takes me a long time because I spend more time seating on the couch re-reading portions of books I've read before rather than actually moving them to their correct shelves. I arrange my books in two categories - Books I've Read and Books I have To Read. Sadly, the second category fills up most of my allotted shelves.

I should read more - at least one book a month. I'm off to a good start. Last January I finished Khaled Hosseini's "The Kite Runner." I watched the movie version, too. I recommend both to you. Currently, I am reading Bill Bryson's "In A Sunburned Country." Bryson is my favorite travel writer. Maybe when I'm done I'll watch the movie "Australia" for some visual feasts about this sunburned country down under.

In the meantime, I hope my mojo will be back soo. Even if only to make a layout in response to Manang Marissa's Kaya challenge. Sali din kayo ha? Para hindi ako batukan ng ate ko. Hehehe.