Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: February 11, 2018

I’m pleased with these effects. For the first time, I created the effects I wanted. Not from scratch — I’m not that talented. I found basic designs I liked, but weren’t quite “it.” The originals were in black & white. I wanted color in a graphic sketch style using more detail, color, more texture to created a painted graphics image. Sort of.

Grab your keys on the way out.

I worked from two designs — an HDR-Micro format in which I loved the design but hated the colors –and another using a black & white graphics sketch that needed more contrast, color, and texture.

Good morning!

Then I saved my effects and released them to Topaz. I have been creating these or similar effects for a while, but I never saved them. Each time I wanted to use them, I had to reproduce them.

Crowd on the docks in Boston

It finally occurred to me that I was wasting a lot of time creating the same things repeatedly when I could save them and add them to the studio. I had not realized I could release them so everyone can use them. That was a nice touch.

Along the edge

All of these oddballs are effects I originated based on models from Topaz.

Morning coffee is ready

What am I trying to do? Glad you asked. I’ve been trying to create a “magazine cover” graphic design. I want it to look like old copies of Look (think Norman Rockwell) or maybe The New Yorker. I’m not there yet, but that’s the goal.


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: February 4, 2018

Marilyn with Cows – Photo: Garry Armstrong 
Long path home – Photo: Garry Armstrong 


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: January 21, 2018

“Antique” wires along the road. I have some kind of “thing” about wires. Everyone else seems to be trying to erase them. I’m trying to capture them.

To be fair, it isn’t nearly as cold today as it was a week ago … and almost all the remains of the last snow have melted to nearly nothing. As winters go, so far, so good.

Marina in Lake Otsego – graphic view
Hay bale, rolled by machine awaiting pick up in the field

I haven’t been out much. I’ve taken a few pictures. Posted many of them. What I have been doing is opening up folders from times when I took a lot of pictures but didn’t get around to processing them. These are all from a few years ago. Not newly shot, but newly completed in the sense that I just processed them. I was surprised at how much better they are than I remembered.

I’m pretty sure this is some kind of forage crop. We saw fields and fields of it, but there was no one around to ask what crop it is. If you recognize it, let me know.
I think there is a beaver in this pond, but I can’t find him. Lots of ducks, though.

Of course — why not? I’m still using the same lenses, though the cameras have been upgraded and no matter how great the camera is, no one’s pictures are any better than the glass on the camera.


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: January 14, 2018

Late twilight by Lake Otsego

Considering it has been snowing, blizzarding, pouring and/or freezing, this hasn’t been a great time for getting out with a camera. Other than Garry’s one trek into the blizzard for pictures (all credit to Garry for freezing in that bitter wind and actually getting some good pictures, too!), we haven’t been outside. I’ve been taking a few shots here and there inside.

Night falls by the trolley tracks

The other thing I’ve been doing is poking around in my 100,000 pictures in folders. Those are a lot of pictures and many of the folders were barely touched by me at the time.


Some, quite literally, I never opened because something else came up and I didn’t remember taking the pictures. Thus this time has been a great time for exploration on my own hard drive.

Gray afternoon in winter

Some of the pictures are oddballs, though to be fair, I’m not all that sure what an oddball is these days. Some pictures are a little bit odder than others, but there’s more than enough oddness to go around.


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: January 7, 2018

Face and feature by wire

It has been really cold around these parts, though beginning tomorrow, it’s supposed to warm up. So although today is minus something or other, by next Friday it will be a lovely, springlike 50 and the entire world will be a mass of sucking mud.

Taken to show Judy where her lovely diorama is located on my living room wall, it also made an interesting photo

I haven’t been doing much shooting and Garry’s pictures simply don’t fit into the oddball category. I think he deserves some kind of “frozen fingers” award for actually taking pictures in one of our more brutal patches of winter.

Let me retract my previous statement. Garry came in and from the staircase, took an entertaining portrait of me, my computer, and the winter living room.

So my oddballs are less odd than local. I’ve been inside. In this weather, people with heart valve replacements and asthma are cordially invited to stay home. Which is where I’ve been. Home.

A winter living room


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: August 27, 2017

Painted rocks to comfort the afflicted. What a lovely idea.
One very busy wall!
Littlest dogs and a few other tiny things
For the dawgz


Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: July 30, 2017

Loving rock at Roaring Dam
Photo: Garry Armstrong – The Menu
Blue flowers by the dam
Photo: Garry Armstrong – Grill at Imperial Motors
Summer blooming – Catalpa
Photo: Garry Armstrong
Petunias at the grocery