Thursday, November 11, 2010

one-armed art

Since breaking both bones in my arm, near the wrist, five weeks ago, I have not gone in my studio to paint.  Creative energies have instead been directed toward experimenting with my slowly expanding knowledge of Photoshop Elements 8.   While creativity is required for editing and altering photo images, the actual learning required to use PSE 8 is more of a bang your head on your desk activity ... for me anyway.  However, like most learning, it proceeds exponentially, one skill building on another until ... VOILA - you feel a bit of competence building.

Often however, when I get too 'cocky' suddenly a tool refuses to do what it has previously done.  I, of course, know that it is me and not the tool that is misfiring.  There is always some step I have neglected, done backwards, or out of order.  I have finally learned to pay attention to the cues on the screen.  The information is usually there and if I curb my impatience, slow down, sit back and absorb the whole screen in front of me I usually discover what I was missing in the little area in which I was working.

For those of you who use Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, I would like to know what tool or function you most enjoy using, and what tool/function gives you the most trouble?  If you have any tips you would like to share, I know all the neophyte photoshoppers would be grateful to hear them - well, this one would!  If you are not into photo-editing then I hope you will just enjoy the little examples of some PSE 8 experiments below.

(P.S.  Thank you for your e-mails inquiring about how my arm is healing.  It is doing great and in one week I get the protruding metal pins out.  Hurrah!  Has anyone had metal pins pulled out of bones?  How was it?  The surgical nurse told me it doesn't hurt, but I have my doubts about that.  Well, it cannot be worse than the break and the surgery to put them in!)

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  1. Bonnie your recent efforts in Photoshop are nothing short of inspiring. I am thrilled how much experimenting you have done and how much you have added to your skill set.
    And since fixing broken bones used to be part of my "old job" I can tell you that having the pins out will be a cake walk compared to having them put in and your arm fixed! :-)hugs

  2. nice great to hear about your arm! and love teh train...and the two people ones...

  3. I don't play with editing, but I do enjoy looking at what others do. You do what I would expect an artist to do; make art. Beautiful art.

    So I have no tips, only appreciation.

  4. Glad your bones are mending. I really like the one with the pot of little blue flowers.

  5. Well, let's see. I had a screw unscrew itself from my knee after it was repaired.It hurt a lot until the doc figured out what had happened. Getting it out didn't hurt at all because they put me out. Waking up was a different matter. Hope you're making good progress.

  6. Interesting images, Bonnie, especially the second one. You are doing fascinating things with Photoshop. Unfortunately, my skills in that area are quite limited. I need some Photoshop training and may try to find something online, as you did. I'm curious to know if you think the online training was as good, or perhaps better, than the training that one would receive in a face-to-face workshop.

  7. Hopefully your ordeal with your arm will be over soon - and painlessly too.
    I experimented with PhotoShop 2 and 3 when it was offered as a trial version. I decided the learing curve was way beyond my patience. Same with Gimp. I stuck with Elements - I think it's version 2! (Grin). Most of my editing is done with Goldsone Image Viewer - pretty basic - no layers.

  8. Glad to hear you are going to get your arm back. Once the pins are out (it didn't hurt my ankle much to have it done) the hard work of rehab starts. Physiotherapy and exercise, dear Bonnie, lots of perseverance in the teeth of a very sore and stiff joint - if your arm is anything like my ankle.

    As for Photoshop, I have had it for six months already without ever using the damn app. Could you please kick me into overcoming - seeing that you can't punch me - my reluctance?

  9. Glad to hear that your arm is healing as it should. I used Corel PaintShop, which is a knock off of PhotoShop. I've dabbled with cloning, contrast, highlighting, sharpening, etc., but none of the layering stuff.

  10. I've used Photoshop for some of the work I've done over the last 20 years and have scarcely tapped into the surface of what the program can do. Just have fun with it.. the solution to most problems are just a Google search away.

    Good luck with the pin removal. I hope you heal well and quickly.

  11. It's remarkable how even with a broken wing , your creativity must manifest! Your photo shopping has been fun to see and inspiring...though I have a head ache from even glancing at the "how to" book...
    Good luck with what is to follow- the mending and physical therapy part. Pain management is important! Cheers- Love your photos!

  12. I love the penultimate picture (that's not to say the others are not stunning) but this one is so evocative it mixes media - for me a feeling of suplture and paint wonderfully bound together there is a strong akin ship to Elisabeth Frink - inspiring


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