Category Archives: Skywatch Friday

#SWF Rainy Skies Photo-artwork

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

Yesterday I shared an ordinary photo of gray rainy skies and as promised today I’m sharing how I used that photograph in Pixelmator applying some cool brushes and backgrounds to create three new photo artworks but first let me ask, did you vote in my latest round of BoTB yesterday? If not, I hope you’ll hop over to cast your vote! 😉

In the first photo, I applied two different Brusheezy brushes – birds and deer.

Usually, I keep my layers visible in a working copy of my image so I can share with you what I used but I messed up and didn’t save the file. In the next image, I added a grunge background. There are many good free resources you can find on the Internet if you like this look. It makes the picture a bit moodier.

Finally, in the last image, I added another overlay of realistic water drops to the above image. I shot the original picture through a raindrop splattered car window which is barely visible in the unedited photo, but with this added background enhances that rainy day sense.

I am sharing my Rainy Day Photo Artwork with the Skywatch Friday photo family.

Thanks for joining me today, Kittens & Dawgs and I hope y’all will come back tomorrow for your weekly dose of laughs with Friday Sillies!

Save

#SWF Mountain Stream #GreatSmokyNPS + CTST & Vol. 8

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

Hello, Kittens and Dawgs! About this time last year, we spent the day in Upper Tremont area in the Smoky Mountains which I shared with you.  I thought I’d share today’s image of a lovely mountain stream that no doubt feeds the Middle Prong Little River with the sun peeking through the trees.

I invite you to visit the global photo enthusiast community Skywatch Friday for more spectacular sky views!

 

Today, I Celebrate The Small Things!

I’m celebrating…the nice weather. The spring-like conditions we’re having is a double blessing. It’s great to have a break from the cold and it lowers our electric bill. I’m celebrating long weekends. Last weekend, we had a 4-day weekend. DH’s scheduled Friday off and then President’s Day this past Monday. It was nice to just relax, especially since we’re both a bit under the weather with allergies.  It’s an ongoing thing. I’m celebrating photography creativity.

a touch of romance with perfume and pearls

It’s wonderful to experiment with textures and colors to express something new with my photos. How are your creative energies today?  I’m celebrating DH’s spontaneity bringing home take-out from a Mexican restaurant we hadn’t eaten at in years.  What fun! And the best news of all, I’m celebrating the marvelous mews that DH’s employer moved him to “permanent employment status”. This gives a bit more job security and all the employee perks – insurance, paid vacation, sick leave, … Thanks to everyone who’s kept him in prayer and thank you, Jesus, for answering our prayers. Yippee!

What are you celebrating?

See what others are celebrating this week and if you want to join the linky, then visit Lexa for details!

 

I invite you to stick around for your weekly dose of laughter with Friday Sillies & Friendly Fill-ins.

cathy-gif-smiling-cat

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Whitewater Falls SWF+CTST Vol. 7

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

Hello, Kittens and Dawgs! I’m delighted you stopped in for another peek through the lens.  This winter I’ve been cooped indoors mostly due to bad weather but our hectic schedule plays a bit into it, too.  I’m left to dip into my photo archives. About the middle of February 2014, we were out exploring. I’m sure it was a Saturday and our travels took us to western North Carolina near the George state line. There we revisited Whitewater Falls. It seemed like ages ago before this last time that we’d been and it was a gorgeous day for being outdoors to visit this spot again.

 

iPhone capture

Where I stood to take all of these photographs is accessible by foot on a paved path a short hike (less than half a mile, easily) from the parking area. It’s very easy. We met an elderly couple on the trail. They were using walking poles but they looked great.

 

The original image in color wasn’t bold enough to suit the mood of the photo, so with Pixelmator, a photo-editing software, I applied the B&W effect allowing the contrasts to bring the picture to life. Big Girl Camera: Nikon D7000 18-105mm Nikkor lens

 

The original just didn’t say “Winter”. I created a piece of photo-art by adding an ice crystal image layer and bumping the blue hues a bit in Pixelmator. Big Girl Camera: Nikon D7000 18-105mm Nikkor lens

You’re welcome to check out a slightly different angle of the falls, here, that I shared in 2014 and I invite you to visit Skywatch Friday for a global sky view experience!

 

Every day is a celebration and today, I Celebrate The Small Things with you. I’m celebrating my Sweetie-pie, aka DH! I wasn’t expecting him to come home with a single red rose, a cute teddy bear, and a box chocolates for Valentine’s Day but that’s what he did.  I shared a pix on Wednesday of everything together. We got small boxes of chocolates before Valentine’s Day, so I didn’t think any more about it. What a darling husband I have!  And, no I won’t loan him out! Ah, well it depends on how much you want to rent him for. lol He treats me far better than I deserve and yet he says I deserve more. He’s just purrfect for me. I think I’ll keep him. I mean, why stop after 40 years. I think we might have something good going on, don’t you?

 

I’m celebrating fun Valentine’s Day recipes like my Mini Heart-shaped Raspberry Pies and my faux petit fours, see recipe below.

Faux Heart-shaped Petit Fours

Faux Heart-shaped Petit Fours

Ingredients

  • Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate cake mix
  • Left-over butter cream frosting (for center)
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1-tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1-teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup white chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Follow cake recipe directions, then pour into a greased, wax paper lined cookie sheet. Bake about 15-minutes.
  2. Remove from oven, set aside to cook completely. While cake cools prepare left over butter cream frosting. What I had on hand about half a cup of vanilla butter cream which I added a teaspoon of Wilton strawberry extract and Wilton Red-Red icing color. I mixed it thoroughly.
  3. Once the cake cooled, I used my Ann Clark heart-shaped cookie cutters (2-sizes). The thicker pieces of cake (one end was taller than the other), I split the hearts in half. On one half I layered about 1 tablespoon of the strawberry butter cream frosting then topped with other half. I did this until I ran out.
  4. I placed all the sandwiched chocolate strawberry cakes on the a cooling rack over a cookie sheet, then spooned generously over each cake. I repeated this process a few times covering the tops completely.
  5. The rest of the icing, which was less than half of what I started with, I used Wilton Red-Red icing color and added about ⅛ teaspoon Watkins Strawberry extract. I realize this isn’t precise but I’m tossing the idea to you to spur your creativity. 😉 I spooned over the tops of the rest of the heart-shaped cakes that were not sandwiched. The end result turned out not purrfect but it was festive & tasty for the occasion.
http://curiousasacathy.com/2017/02/whitewater-falls-swfctst-vol-7/

Just thought you’d like to know that it turned out DH and I preferred the little cakes without the petit fours icing and of the sandwich cakes, two of them I used leftover raspberry pie filling on and these we liked better than the strawberry buttercream filled ones, which sorta surprised me. 🙂

What are you celebrating?

See what others are celebrating this week and if you want to join the linky, visit Lexa!

 

 

I invite you to stick around for a weekly dose of laughter (goes live at 5amEST) with Friday Sillies & Friendly Fill-ins.

cathy-gif-smiling-cat

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Afternoon Sunshine SWF + CTST Vol. 6

January brought a mix of gray and blue skies but it seemed the gloom hung around more than I cared for so when the Mr. Blue Sky showed up the last full week of the month then I had to get outside for a quick snap and to enjoy the lovely afternoon sunshine!

Linking with photo enthusiasts around the globe in Skywatch Friday

Along with my weekly sky views,  I’m including my Celebrate The Small Things segment. Here’s my list of celebrations!

I’m celebrating better hearing!  I went to the doctor last Friday. He told me I had an inner ear infection and gave me an antibiotic.  While it’s not all better I do hear better. I reckon another round of antibiotics is needed.  I’m celebrating a new marshmallow cereal treat I made for Super Bowl weekend and I’m sharing my recipe below.

Super Bowl Celebration Treats

Super Bowl Celebration Treats

Ingredients

  • 6 cups Post Fruity or Cocoa Pebbles
  • 3 tablespoons Butter
  • 10 ounces Campfire marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Butter a 13x9x2 pan and set aside.
  2. Melt butter and marshmallows over low heat; stirring frequently so to not burn.
  3. Pour cereal into marshmallow cream and stir thoroughly with a butter coated spoon, then spoon soft-marshmallow coated cereal into pan.
  4. Use either buttered coated hands (be careful to not burn yourself) or spoon to press into pan.
  5. Cool completely, cut into squares, serve, and enjoy!
http://curiousasacathy.com/2017/02/afternoon-sunshine-swf-ctst-vol-6/

The Cocoa Pebbles were our favorite! Mmm, don’t they look good? 😋

What are you celebrating?

See what others are celebrating this week and if you want to join the linky, then visit Lexa for details!

 

I’m playing along with TMP again and if you’re interested the rules are simple; base on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them, then link up with Wandering through the Shelves.  This week’s movie theme is Prodigy/Genius.

 

 

October Sky is close to my heart. The author of the book, Rocket Boys, Homer Hickam hails from the same West Virginia county as little ole me which later became the movie, October Sky, that coincidentally premiered here in Knoxville (they shot a lot of the movie in nearby Oliver Springs, TN).

 

Young Homer Hickam got the right nudge from the right science teacher to literally shoot for the stars. It takes a true genius to pull one’s dreams off like Hickam did! The movie is fun and it leaves you with that feel-good sense that only one can get from a film like this. We own it on Blu-ray!

I.Q. is a romantic comedy between Albert Einstein’s niece, Catherine Boyd (Meg Ryan) whose a highly, intelligent doctoral student at Princeton University and an auto mechanic, Ed Walters (Tim Robbins). The thing is, Boyd is engaged to a stuffy Princeton Professor but when Walters shows up at his home looking for his niece then he knew she needed a little push. Einstein devises a ruse with the help of his friends that might give Ed a fighting chance at winning Catherine’s heart.to open his niece’s eyes to at giving Ed a chance. love when he realizes Ed is the man for Catherine.

 

 

This film portrays Einstein as a fun-loving genius with a streak of mischief. I highly recommend this fun flick! We own it on DVD.

 

My last movie pick I decided to a different direction and although I never really thought of composers as geniuses but after revisiting the film, Amadeus,  my eyes were open with the portrayal of this mewsic genius. 

 

The movie takes you through Mozart’s life from the perspective of another composure late in years whose admiration for Amadeus mushroomed into bitter jealousy and anger. How accurate the account is I don’t know but I am finding the movie entertaining. During today’s elliptical session I plan to finish watching it.  Available for streaming on Netflix!

 

 

I’ll leave you, Kittens and Dawgs, with The Best of Mozart but you’re invited to join me for some media fun while getting your weekly dose of meds laughs with my newest edition of Friday Sillies!

 

Have a celebratory, ingenious, skywatch-tastic day! 😉

 

cathy-gif-smiling-cat

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Near Big South Fork SWF + CTST Vol. 5

Hello, Kittens and Dawgs! This is the 3rd week that I’ve shared Skywatch Friday/Celebrate The Small Things on Thursday.  How is it working for ya? Do you like that I broke up my regular Friday posting to making it more digestible?

I haven’t taken many photos since December with the holidays winding down, the cold weather, and DH’s work schedule.  This isn’t a bad thing. It forces me to look through my archived photos of those not-so-purrfect pictures to run them through a bit photo-editing to share.

In today’s Skywatch Friday I’m pulling out a few images from a day trip to the Big South Fork area of Tennessee from 2011.  These are off the beaten path and honestly, I can’t recall more precisely where we were when I snapped these shots with my Canon SD880 point n’ shoot camera. This is what I had before getting a big girl camera (Nikon D7000).

Looking back, I remember it being a rainy, cool April day.  Given that it’s winter I felt this photo needs a B&W touch to trigger a bit of chill down your spine.

We wandered up a gravel road where it came to an end.  This pond looked inviting but the sprinkles kept me inside the car.  The sky was rather bland, so in the Affinity photo editing program, I used the haze remover to make the sky more dramatic.

Later, I decided the little pond needed some friends (I’m sounding a bit like the painter, Ross, now aren’t I?).  I borrowed some free brushes Brusheezy and placed a family to the right of the picture and a woman with a child (silhouette needed to be a bit darker) in the left center of the pond.

When we got close to the main road again we noticed a hawk flying over a field and it landed on a tree limb.  It was really hard to distinguish it from its surrounding, so I used the depth of field feature in Affinity to make the hawk more prominent for the viewer.

Can you see him?  On Wednesday I shared more shots from this day taken of a WWII hero’s home if you’re interested in taking that tour.

Today, I’m celebrating like I do every day, I Celebrate The Small Things in life.

I’m celebrating… the feeling I get with art. I don’t consider myself an artist but I love creating and dabbling with simple sketches and using my Prismacolor pencils is totally uplifting for the mood. I doodled four designs to use for this Valentine’s Day greetings I will share with my children and DH.  I plan to create a special pre-Valentine post with ideas and will include my drawings. 🙂 Also, I’m celebrating getting my exercise time on the elliptical to an hour each day and maxed the resistance for an intense workout. It’s good to be active again!

What are you celebrating?

Please joining CTST’s host Lexa and others to see what they are celebrating this week!

 

 

I will wind things down today with a new meme I thought I’d try hosted by Wandering through the Shelves. The rules are simple. I am to share 3 to 5 movie picks based on a weekly theme and tell ya why.  The category is “Movies About Artists (Painters)”.

I thought it interesting the movie prompt today is about artists and my CTST segment I celebrate my wannabe artist side. 🙂  In all honesty, these sorts of movies wouldn’t be my first pick but I certainly am not opposed to watching them especially if the mood hits me just right. The below list of flicks I haven’t seen but work purrfect for today’s theme choice.

 

 

The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965) Charlton Heston portrays the biography of Michael D’Angelo’s facing his doubts and struggles painting the Sistine Chapel upon the behest of Pope Julius II.


A friend recommended this film after I shared A Picture of a Painting last year and if it should ever make its way to Netflix or Amazon Prime then I will watch it. I love old movies!

Frida is the Mexican self-portraitist who survived a near-fatal bus crash when she was 18.  The story revolves around her injuries, art success, and volatile marriage with artist Diego Rivera. Frida is currently available on Netflix, so I watched it mainly because of this prompt. It was interesting to see how this woman lived. She was a bit progressive for a woman of that era. Wikipedia describes her as a feminist and the movie eludes to this fact.  Her dreams gave birth to her folk art style paintings which tell of her life’s struggles and it’s a bit too abstract for my taste. I prefer realistic art. I enjoyed the movie but I doubt if I will watch it again.

 

Big Eyes is a drama based on the 1950s success of paintings by Margaret Keane, whose husband claimed credit and the legal battle to remove her husband as the creator and to gain recognition for her work.

 

The story where the underdog rises to the top in the end, is my kind of flick, especially one that’s been mistreated or misrepresented as Keane.  This along makes it a good reason to see and when it shows up on Netflix then I’m gonna catch it.

Have you seen these movie picks?  Can you think of or have you seen any movies about artists?

Tomorrow, I invite you to join me for some social media fun and your weekly dose of laughter with Friday Sillies.

 

cathy-gif-smiling-cat

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save