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Silent Sunday

Amur Leopard Cubs at Marwell Zoo

Silent Sunday (a gallery)

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NaBloPoMo – My Cats and Photo Apps

Luna

NaBloPoMo – My Cats and Photo Apps

As you may have already guessed, I’m only posting photos taken and processed on my phone for NaBloPoMo 2014. I’ve had some great feedback on the processing! My favourite app is Google Photos that comes with Google +. There are lots of styles and presets, many of which can be modified, as well as manual tonal adjustments, HDR, Drama, B&W, Vignettes and Frames. Personally I find this the most versatile and comprehensive free app for artistic processing.

I’ve just added the Adobe Photoshop Express App and Adobe Photoshop Touch. I think they both give some good quality, basic adjustments. PS Touch has some really great features, akin to Photoshop CC or CS6, that I think I need to investigate further. They should be brilliant for my abstract work! Whoever would have thought that you could create layers in a phone app!!! Images that are processed in Touch are saved to Creative Cloud so I can download them as needed. The PS Elements app comes with free basic adjustments but you pay for their “premium” filters. Worth it just for the noise reduction! I paid for PS Touch app as I really think I can have a lot of fun with it on-the-go. I think it would work much better on a tablet than the smartphone but we shall have to see what I can create with it!

For today I’ve photographed our two cats and processed a version in both Google Photos and PS Touch to see what you think of the quality and artistic enhancements.

Juno – Original, Google Photos, PS Touch

Luna – Original, Google Photos, PS Touch

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Cute Caturday!

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It’s NaBloPoMo time and I will attempt a photo a day throughout November, alongside regular challenges! Today I’m posting a rather cute photo of one of our cats, Luna, from my phone.

I think my Sony Xperia and the Android app for WordPress will be a great help in sharing so many posts over the month! Hope you enjoy them all πŸ™‚

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Feline Familiar

Familiar

Feline Familiar

Wishing you all an enjoyable Samhaim, All Soul’s or Halloween, wherever you are in world and however you celebrate! I thought this would be the perfect post from me today, a feline familiar. He totally ruined a recent outing to photograph birds by the River Mole by suddenly appearing at my side full of meows and purrs, then following me around for the next half-hour or so! Perhaps he thought I might provide an easy meal for him with my bird-seed and mealworm tempters for the birds, but they were definitely aware of his presence and kept to the far side of the river. I love his arched pose in this image πŸ™‚

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Monochrome Madness: Look This Way

Look This Way

Monochrome Madness: Look This Way

For Monochrome Madness Week 24, I delved into my files from our holidays in Greece. These two cats were living in Nikea on the volcanic island, Nisyros, which we love visiting by ferry when we’re in Kos. They made me laugh, almost seeming to be on watch duty!

Leanne Cole creates a gallery in her weekly post to share all our entries and I always enjoy reading everyone’s comments. Cybele from “There was a time” had us all laughing with her perfect quote from T.S. Eliot’s book Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats on The Naming of Cats:

When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation.

I have to say that of all the cats that I’ve met, Greek Cats are the most Jellicle a cat could be! I wouldn’t be at all surprised if they had secret names in Ancient Greek, Roman and High Egyptian too πŸ˜‰ I often define the cats I meet by one or other of Elliot’s great poems.Β  My old cat Pan was a mysterious Macavity type, always up to something but never getting caught out! Pixel was the magical Mr Mistoffelees incarnate! Luna and Juno are very much like two of the kittens, perhaps Electra and Etcetera πŸ™‚ This Greek pair instantly made me think of Mungojerrie and Rumpleteazer:

Mungojerrie and Rumpleteazer had a wonderful way of working together.
And some of the time you would say it was luck
And some of the time you would say it was weather.
They would go through the house like a hurricane,
And no sober person could take his oath
Was it Mungojerrie – or Rumpleteazer?
Or could you have sworn that it mightn’t be both?

I’ve known a few Jellicle cats over the years and every now again I meet a Bagpuss, although they are more usually found in quintessential English cottages, curled up in front of a roaring fire, purring with contentment! I knew one called Mr Bigglesworth, a big ginger tom who loved a walk with the dog, a ride in the car (not in a basket) and when he was poorly, still managed to purr at the vet whilst having his blood taken!

That Bagpuss reference is especially for fellow blogger Laura Macky, who’s recovering from surgery at the moment. Wishing you a speedy recovery Laura and I hope this post gives you a giggle!

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Monochrome Madness: Tiger

Monochrome Madness: Tiger

Monochrome Madness: Tiger

There’s another wonderful collection of images over on Leanne Cole‘s blog this week for Monochrome Madness. She and Laura Macky have really started something here! I have to say that Leanne just astounds me, her own work is just sublime and her commitment to blogging has really inspired me!

Every week she brings up new points for discussion, introduces us to fellow bloggers, hosts the Monochrome challenge, interacts with everyone AND creates her own work! Hats off to you Leanne πŸ™‚

I’ve had some lovely comments within Leanne’s post that I wanted to share and discuss:

RoSy said “Beyond beautiful!” –Β  What a wonderful thing to say! Comments like this mean the world to any artist.

Alex – buddhableu2000 – said “An excellent capture. Very well presented.” – Composition is really important to me! It’s good to hear when I get it right πŸ™‚

Anica Art Photography said “Stunning portrait!” –Β  I very often categorise photos of animals as Portraiture and have been asked why on many occasions! I treat a photograph like this in exactly the same way I would when creating a portrait of a person. A portrait is very much about capturing the essence of your subject. I like to create expressive portraits πŸ™‚

hutchphotography2020 said “An animal created for monochrome. Beautiful.” –Β  I couldn’t agree more! I’ve created many monochrome images of tigers over the years. In fact, cats both big and small are great monochrome subjects! I had a really interesting discussion with Laura about B&W photography. Not EVERYTHING looks good in B&W or monochrome. I wouldn’t photograph our garden birds in B&W but some birds-of-prey and sea-birds work really well in monochrome. Creating a good B&W image uses a very different skill-set to colour photography. I started out in photography using B&W Ilford film and my trusty old Praktica SLR. When I looked through the lens I almost saw the world in B&W. Processing is key! I always spent more time in the darkroom than I did on shoots and these days it’s more time with Lightroom, Photoshop and Nik. Learning to take good colour photos when I got my first DSLR was a real challenge! I’m always striving to learn more and challenge myself with my work.

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Travel Theme: Close-Up

Travel Theme: Close-Up

Travel Theme: Close-Up

It’s been a while since I shared any photos of our lovely, little cats, Juno and Luna, so today is a Caturday Close-Up!

What big eyes you’ve got Luna!! Whatever is the reason for this wide-eyed stare? It might have something to do with our attempt to introduce them to the great outdoors today! I spent over an hour trying to coax the pair out with me on a lovely, sunny afternoon and they got as far as………

………heads out the window, tails firmly on the windowsill! Not at all what I was expecting from such curious cats!