Thursday, April 30, 2015

Another Fun Software Application

From Teorex

Scarlet The Rose.jpg
Scarlet The Rose 4x3

I would prefer to take pictures using the full surface of the sensor in the camera. This means using a 4x3 ratio. By doing so, my images are made from the maximum amount of megapixels contained on the surface of the light sensor.

Scarlet The Rose HD 16x9.jpg
Scarlet The Rose 16x9

There are several different ratios that are required for the various projects that I enjoy doing, but most of my displayed images end up on HDTV’s which have a 16x9 size.

I usually capture the originals in a 16x9 aspect ratio, and if they need to be other shapes, I simply crop them, or add extra features to fit the requirements.

Against The Blue.jpg
Against The Blue 4x3

There are 2 drawbacks to this method, the first is that i am only using a 16x9 portion of the 4x3 sensor. This means the image is made with fewer megapixels which limits the amount of manipulations that can be applied before the image becomes deteriorated.

Against The Blue MacBook Size.jpg
Against The Blue 11x7 MacBook Screen size (approximate)

The second problem being the loss of original 16x9 image megapixels after cropping it to accommodate a different aspect ratio. So, the quality of the picture is less than it should be.

What to do? Well…

Redding Roses.jpg
Redding Roses 4x3

Enter a program from Teorex that saves the pixel density of whatever I choose to keep in an image, and resizes it by reducing or stretching the parts of the picture that I consider background.

There are a few Teorex programs that have accumulated in my photo production toolbox over the past few years, and they send me emails announcing new products or special prices that make some of their Apps irresistible to pass up. Today was such a day.

Redding Roses iPad.jpg
Redding Roses 7x5 iPad size (more or less)

I got iResizer. Like all the applications from Teorex that I have, there are many layers of tools to achieve image results I have previously only imagined. I have only just begun to discover the wonders that await me as I get to know how to use this.

The first image software I got from them was Inpaint. It is the easiest, magical, erase and correct things in photos program I have. I also have PhotoSissors which removes backgrounds as accurately as you wish, even down to the pixels on edges of your subject.

So, now I have added another tool called iResizer, and it is great. You know what else is great about this companies software? They have Windows versions, too.

I am not being paid to write this. I am not an employee of Teorex. I just like to share my experiences, (both good and bad), with products that I use in my creative endeavors.

Today’s Video;

Results May Vary

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Writing posts with an iPad

This is my second attempt at writing using the iPad. Let's first attempt failed as I was trying to write in Google Docs which I usually use on my regular computer for my pre-edited copy. I got as far as trying to insert an image.

Now that I'm using blogger, I think this is going a little bit smoother.

Today I finally received my Kustom monitor from guitar center that I ordered in December. So it's Christmas on 29 April.

I was happy to receive the monitor. Because I plan to use it as the PA system on Mondays when I play with Peggy on the piano and me on the guitar. It's a small room and we don't need anything bigger than that so I ordered this because they were selling it for a good price and special sale. 

Getting this now is the perfect timing. In addition to P & P on Mondays, John and I are playing as a duo at the post office saloon this summer and it will be perfect for that too.

Okay this is working well. I'll try fancy photograph next. Images so far we're taking this afternoon with my iPhone and that worked out well.

Okay again, the above image is from my real camera and it seems to post just fine on here.

I wonder how to put the video of the day on here. I suppose I have to do one with the iPad.
A few moments later… No it's not gonna work that way. I'm sure there is a way that it will work however if I have to go through a lot of hassle to do it then it's not very Apple like in my estimation.
I imagine it's probably pretty easily done if I was still using iOS six but this new 8.3 that I'm using is just as bad as Yosemite.

Instead of a video let's have a picture of the pie I just took out of the oven.

That worked well. I hope you enjoyed today's experimental blog written with the iPad 4.

Life can be wonderful if we let it

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Aftermath Additions

Keep Multiplying

Wowee Red Rose.jpg
Wowee red rose

The gig on Friday with the Phil Seymour Band went nicely. The keyboard player Bill, is reducing his workload for a few months, so we are using that time to try some new ideas and combinations with the rest of us.

Dove from JPG.jpg
Auto setting - JPG

Speaking of trying some new things; I was interested in seeing just how much I rely on post production imaging of RW2 files for my digital photography, (rather than JPG). So, Saturday, I tried a few experiments.

Dove From RW2.jpg
Program settings - RW2

Tonight, the band had Mike on drums and Darryl on sax when we played at the Jefferson State Blues Society jam. It was fun. It was at a new(ish) restaurant/dance club on California St near Placer. I enjoyed the big room and dance floor. Next Sunday the jam is back at Angelo’s Pizza.

D Q From JPG .jpg

A couple from the Ashland Blues Society who saw the Phil Seymour Band on Friday at the Post Office Saloon and Grill, came to the JSBS jam, this evening. They are nice people and I look forward to playing at one of their jams the next time I am in Ashland.

Drama Queen.jpg

After looking at the resulting images it is best to continue using my own settings and RAW images. There are terrific editing Apps that work well with RW2 (Higher quality RAW) and trying to manipulate JPEGS can get messy when trying to push, saturated or increase detail. It is fun to compare now and then, just to be sure.

Today’s Video;

Born To Dance

Friday, April 24, 2015


Before The Gig

Cloudscape 2.jpg
Thursday Treehouse Cloudscape

These days there is no ordinary backstage. After the band set up at the Post Office Saloon and Grill this afternoon, I went to a special place that has all the comforts of home.

The Real Deal.jpg
Portrait of a driveway rose

Where is this marvelous musicians dressing room?

Thursday sunset

Home is where I spend my time until I go play later when the gig is here in Redding. For me, this is a rare and wonderful treat. One day I will seek the exciting scenario of touring again, but I really appreciate my present musical status.

Onion Bug 2.jpg
Wild onion flower with 2 visitors

I watched Cowspiracy last night. I have been following the development of this project and was sent an email with the opportunity to get the movie for a dollar.

Sheets of rain fall between me and sunlit Lassen park

There is a feature that allows me to send the movie to others as a gift. I would do that, but I don’t like giving away my friends email addresses. Even if is a list with an organization I am a member of, I respect the privacy of other peoples email address.

So, instead I invite you to visit Cowspiracy to experience this eye opening expose.

Minor Details.jpg
Blazing driveway rose

A few years ago I thought linkedin was made up of businesses and entrepreneurs who could network with each other to build their brand and reputation. Like the internet rookie that I was in 2008, I signed up.

Slate Sunset.jpg
Another Redding sunset

Part of the signup process with linkedin, is to allow them access to your contacts. Within minutes I discovered what that actually meant.

Strung out.jpg
You guessed it...another driveway rose

Everyone of my contacts received an invitation from me to join linkedin!

I cancelled linkedin, changed the password on my email and wrote individual personal apology emails to everyone of my contacts explaining that I did not, nor would I ever invite them to join an exploitive, deceptive outfit like linkedin.

Today’s Video;

Time For Me To Play

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Let Me Tell You 'Bout

Golden Idol Iris.jpg
Golden idol iris

That song was a hit 50 years ago! (If you didn’t click on the title, do it now) Chuckle and wistfully smile at the shocking innuendos contained in the lyrics of popular music back then.

PM Iris Too.jpg
Another outstanding iris color combination

This is a wonderful year for Dottie’s gardens. Even if the gophers ate all the tulip bulbs, she planted so many different flowers during past years that something surprising is always popping up, bringing color and happiness to the hearts of those who appreciate the beauty of flowers.

Deep Sea Iris.jpg
Deep sea iris

The one above reminds me of something one would see while scuba diving around a tropical reef. I can easily picture this iris undulating underwater, catching food that drifts by on the currents.

Shady Apricot.jpg
Apricot colored rose

All over the Treehouse landscape, plant life is in bloom. Nearly everything growing here is making flowers. From tiny grasses to the biggest trees, spring has sprung and their colorful reproductive organs are waving in the breezes that blow.

Performing Irises.jpg
Golden iris in front of C building

What? You didn’t know that’s what flowers are? They don’t just represent the fertility of springtime, they are the actual sex organs of plants. Something to ponder next time you are admiring a flower arrangement.

Dick's Kayaks.jpg
Kayaks at Dick’s Sporting Goods

Colorful kayaks were blooming in front of Dick’s in the late afternoon sun. They made a nice picture. They aren’t fertile, but some males will paddle around in them to advertize their virility. So I guess there is a parallel somewhere.

Suset At Trader Joe's.jpg
Late afternoon at Trader Joe’s

While grocery shopping with Margaret Miller at Trader Joe’s, I saw these two picture opportunities, (kayaks and evening sun). I have learned that when the perfect picture is happening it is also the best time to point a camera at it.

Band Flyer 4 24 15.jpg
After the Cruise come see the band this Friday

I am used to having my best camera with me at all times. So much so that I feel like something is missing if my camera bag isn’t on my shoulder. I can assure you that is how I get so many really enjoyable pictures.

Today’s Video;

Now That’s Some Dancin’

Certainly Uncertain

Stability During Transitional Turmoil

Held By A Thread.jpg
Held together by a thread

“Education is not preparation for life, education is life itself.” - John Dewey

Sun Bloom.jpg
Sun in bloom

Have you ever met, or at least observed, people with an appalling lack of knowledge who nonetheless possess degrees and certifications from accredited institutions? “How can this be possible?”, some may cry.

Cloud Art Over Lassen.jpg
Cloud elementals

Anything is possible and nearly everything can be purchased with the appropriate amount of money.

In our high schools there are some people who have money, but can't write an assigned paper or essay. Fortunately for them, there are some other people who are happy to write papers and essays for money.

Pink and Bud.jpg
Pink rose with red bud

For a significant donation, rich people can buy Masters and Doctorate degrees from our most prestigious institutions. Several vociferous illiterate right wing congressmen come to mind.

Yogurt 1.jpg
Broccoli and rice with organic yogurt

I enjoy broc, rice and yogurt dinners. I used to eat steamed broccoli and rice with homemade cheese sauce at least once a week, before I stopped cooking. That was one of my signature dinners.

I am happy to have recently discovered Straus Family Creamery Organic European style yogurt instead of cheese, I think it makes an even tastier, and more nutritious sauce.

Structured Silouette.jpg
Shaded structure

The weather in Redding this spring is delightfully mild and particularly pleasant. This can’t be said for the weather in the rest of the country, (or the world for that matter). Record breaking, uncommonly powerful storms have been relentlessly raging to the east, north, and south of us as earth’s climate changes in relation to rising global temperatures.

Pleasantly Pink.jpg
Pleasantly pink

For the past few years, we haven’t had the usual extreme weather events that used to be a part of living in Redding. No 116 degree temps in the summer or deep freezes in the winter. Just a steady rise in our yearly average temperature.

Creative Composing.jpg
Collection of complementary structures

We’ve been experiencing some of Redding’s mildest winters while to the south there have been a series of heatwaves. To the north, heavy precipitation, and to the east a combination plate of extreme weather events are becoming common.

It’s time to lay some serious penalties and orders to cease and desist on the industrial scale polluters who bankroll anti-climate science propaganda instead of reducing their CO2 emissions.

Today’s Video;

A Life Of Various Sequential Events

Friday, April 17, 2015

If One Asks The Question

Must One Wait For Someone Else To Answer?

Out Of This World.jpg

Can we just answer the question ourselves and move on?

Do we even need an answer if it is revealed by the question itself?

I lIve Here.jpg
I live among astonishingly beautiful living organisms

What do I mean by we? … I can answer that.

‘We’ refers to the reader and the writer here, (even though we/they are sometimes one and the same).

Red In Sun Okay.jpg
This rosebush and tree are great subjects

You are the reader and I am the writer, except when I am the reader. So in that case, we are both readers. Is that a different ‘we’ than reader and writer?

Iris and Company.jpg
Iris and company

Now I can ask questions with a rough idea of who am asking but, how will I know the answers I get are correct?

Supposedly if there’s a bet on the answer it’s likely to be right. I didn’t know that until I read the research about that very thing this morning.

Life Explodes.jpg

If you ask republicans and democrats the same questions about policy and history, you will get divergent party influenced answers. But when you offer to pay them for the right answers they ignore partisan bias and tend to answer correctly. National Bureau of Economic Research

Apricot swirl.jpg
Apricot swirl

Do you enjoy reading?

Today’s Video;
(Disclaimer: Paul Thomas, who writes songs with me, helped found the Green Party in Scotland)

Again, With Feeling