Hey folks!

Not too much to report tonight as I just got back into town and am working on a few fun projects, but I just wanted to pop in and say hi and thanks for stopping by!

Quick Tip Tuesday, yeah I know, I missed it again!

I’ll share it tomorrow I promise.

So yeah, I just got back from California again, but this time it was for a photography project. Kinda cool as it was not one of my usual “wander the earth” searching for interesting scenes, but a payed gig for someone in my own special events industry. I must say, it was great fun and I can’t wait to do it again!

I grabbed this one as I was walking thru the lobby on my way to the event space down the hill (have i mentioned that I LOVE California?!) This place was a cool little gem up in an area of California called Escondido. If you are in that neck of the woods, the restaurant right off the lobby (in fact, right past the mirror in this picture) is amazing! From what I hear, the spa and the golf course are world class as well. Guess I’ll have to check them out out next time:)

Here is a link if you are interested!

The Rancho Bernardo Inn - Exploring the lobby

So I’ve attended a few Photoshop World Conferences over the past couple of years. Its a great place to recharge those artistic batteries, make connections with others in the industry, and share tips and tricks with other creatives. One of those creatives I always look forward to hearing from is Julieanna Kost. For me, she has always stood out as a very engaging instructor for all things Adobe, but it wasn’t until I saw her presentation of her art at a late evening session that I realized what an amazing artist she is.

To create a unique look and style with the camera and its tools has always been one of the great challenges that the digital artist is faced with. She nails it! Every time one of her images pops up in my Instagram feed, I immediately know its one of hers without ever glancing at the name.

Its not often that an artist is gifted not only on the way they see the world and can share it, but is able to teach and present with such clarity, passion, and style.

She is definitely someone I look to for inspiration and thought some of my friends here might like to follow her as well!

Here is a collage of some of her unique pieces as well as a quick video of her sharing a few tips!

More links below the video, but if my RSS feed eliminates them (it does that sometimes after I embed a video!), then make sure and click back to the post on the website here to get them!



She share here work all over the place but her website here is a great place to start or her Instagram feed here is a close second! For tips and tricks, she shares them on here Adobe page here.

Make sure and check them out for a little inspiration. I’m heading back to here site after I hit publish on this post actually! I’ll see you over there  :)


“The joy of living is his who has the heart to demand it.” – Theodore Roosevelt

For me personally, taking those opportunities to absorb this amazing planet is one of the ways I purposely add that joy to my own life. If you read this blog, I am quite sure you can relate as well!

If you’ve never been there and hope to get there someday, I highly recommend the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. There is literally a path that hugs the edge of this thing with amazing views all over the place! Although there are a lot of tourists and busses that drop off people at the main stops, there are long stretches that I had all to myself.

Hats off to the recommendation from my friend Steve!

Layers of color over the canyon

So I get emails from time to time about my images and print purchases, and the answer is YES! I do sell prints from time to time and for the most part, clicking on the image here on the blog will take you over to the site I host and sell them from. The main page link is here as well.

If you find something on the site here and can’t find it over there, let me know and I can upload for you!

As always, I appreciate you being here and supporting the site:)


I don’t think I have posted nearly enough of these shots from the ice cave trip I took up to the Apostle Islands last March. Apparently last year was the first time it was cold enough and frozen over enough to make the 1 mile walk across the ice to explore this amazing wonderland. Here’s hoping it gets that cold again this year! (Sorry Wisconsin!)

Inside the ice cave

So I planned on sharing a video I posted on the YouTube channel (you are subscribed aren’t you?) for todays Quick Tip Tuesday but as is about a regular series here on the blog, it might be a little redundant for those regulars here. I’ll share it below for you anyway, but here is a bonus tip for just you folks:)

I processed this one a little differently based on a short little tip from Scott Kelby’s Digital Photography Book #5 – The Photo Recipes Book. Here is an amazon link to it if you are interested (it, like all his books, is a must read!).
I love his opening segments to each chapter. He kinda goes right up to the comedic cliff edge, and well….., takes sometimes takes a leap:)

Anyway, the trick is this:

  • Use either Bridge or Lightroom to select the HDR brackets you wish to process. I used the -4, -2, 0, +2, and +4 exposures myself. After those are selected, under the Photo menu, find edit in and choose Merge to HDR Pro (in bridge, I believe its under tools and under photoshop. This then opens up the Merge to HDR window.

  • I then chose the Scott 5 preset (I usually choose to process a 32 bit file and tone in camera raw, but I went this route instead this time). You have to be in either 16 bit or 8 bit to use these built in presets. Most are garbage in my humble opinion, but Scotts is kinda cool! Check the Edge Smoothness box to soften the effect and then hit OK. A merge of these images with this preset will then happen ……… magic huh?

  • The final touch is to duplicate the background layer, apply a gausian blur at 50 pixels, lower the opacity of that layer to 50%, and use a blend mode of soft light. Then finally, add a levels adjustment layer and hit auto and you are done!

  • I took mine into Nik ColorFX and added a subtle Glamour glow and BARELY painted in a little “blueish” tint.

  • And there you have it! Yet another way to process an HDR bracket.

Of course I have a whole lotte tips in my course here just in case you haven’t heard about it!

Oh yeah, here is that video I mentioned, and like I said, check back on Sunday evenings (or Monday mornings) for my Meet the Artist posts! I am sure you will find a few cool people to follow:)

“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.” – Jawaharial Nehru

If you are like me, the hard drive is just FULL of images that might never see the light of day, or as in this case, the exposure to the inter-webs! Here are a few (like I mentioned last night) that although are not typical of my HDR processed style, as a collection, they still tell a story. Not exactly sure that story is, but hopefully it at least captures the tone of the season change.

As a South Floridian that is lucky to see a dip in the temps below 80 and perhaps a faded palm tree leaf to go with that as a season change (man is this an akward sentence to read? ….. its becoming quite akward to finish, I’ll tell ya that!), I look forward to my escapes up into the fall weather. (Wow, glad thats over!) Not sure if I am heading out this season, so for now, here are a few I captured from a couple previous trips to New England.

Hope this finds you in the spirit:)

Scenes of fall

A special thanks to Matt Kloskowski for the cool Lightroom print template that I was able to create this collage with. You can check out his art here:)

Oh yeah, here is that video I promised you as well.



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