Sunday, November 29, 2009

Inspired by Jeffrey Friedl

I have been following Jeffrey Friedl's work for years. I knew him first for his book, "Mastering Regular Expressions". Now I follow his blog to see his photos of Japan and get updates on his Lightroom plug-ins.

As I mentioned in my last post, I went for a walk today and took some photos along the way. I saw some trees and leaves that made me think of Jeffrey's recents posts. They are not as picturesque as Kyoto or Otsu but here they are.

Autumn Colors

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Arigatō!

Inspired by Paul Butzi

I have been following Paul Butzi's blog, Musings on Photography for a while now. I went for a walk today and took some photos along the way. I saw some leaves that made me think of Paul.

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Thank you!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Black Friday

Black Friday

We went to Kohl's Black Friday sale in search for a new steam cleaner as our old one finally gave out on us. We arrived at 3:48 am. The doors opened at 4. By 4:10 I had found the steam cleaner, hauled it to the front and was waiting in line to check out. Meanwhile Mary had also been looking for it and happened upon this gorgeous black and green dress. She bought it for Melody so of course we had to have her try it on.



Special Treatment

Be sure that you click the images to see them full-sized because it really makes a difference!

Friday, November 13, 2009

"A Scenic World" has no unread items.



"A Scenic World" has no unread items.

Sub-title: "The Zen of RSS Feeds"

A co-worker's initial thought when seeing this on my monitor was that someone was trying to make a statement. My reply was that it is very zen.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Week 6 Final Project and Artist's Statement

Mom, I hope this blesses and inspires you to continue doing great things.
- Matt


What follows is my artist's statement and the final project.


My mother has been drawing for years. She creates images of people, trees, flowers, birds, etc but also deeply spiritual pieces that really speak to your soul if you are a Christian. A while back I prompted her to expand her horizons; I asked her to move past her monochromatic works done in pencil, charcoal and ink into color. Ever since I completed FND110 Drawing, where I worked entirely with pencil and charcoal, she has been asking me to draw something in color.

For this assignment, I wanted to create a work that would be pleasing to her as well as show some of what I have learned in this class: using variations in hue, saturation and value to imply depth and transparency as appropriate; and choosing a color scheme that results in a pleasant viewing experience through harmony of color while limiting vibration. I chose to work on a religious theme using easily recognizable symbols: a bible, an empty cross and a fiery dove in flight.

During the thumbnail phase, I created for designs that symbolized Christianity: "The Word of God," a bible illuminated from the top-right by divine light; "The Empty Cross," an empty cross, light from above, atop a small hill; "The Inspired Word of God," a bible inside a ray of light coming from a fiery dove at the top-right of the frame; and "The Holy Spirit Descends," a fiery dove flies down inside a shaft of light. This was my first real project using Adobe Photoshop for drawing. A better choice would have been to use Adobe Illustrator but I do know it as well as I do Photoshop and time was running out. I learned how to use the pen tool more effectively along the way. In the end, I surprised myself with what I was able to produce in such a limited amount of time.

While working up the color harmony studies, I started with what I felt was the strongest thumbnail: "The Inspired Work of God." I chose to study monochromatic, complementary, split complementary and analogous harmonies. Monochromatic is probably the hardest harmony to work with for a design such as this one because it just screams out for multiple colors. In the end, I went with a nice orange hue. In the complementary study, I wanted a color duo that would work well for the light as well as the surrounding areas. I decided upon yellow and blue which I think works out well. The split-complementary harmony was a little easier because I already knew that I wanted a nice shade of red for the fiery aura around the dove shape, symbolizing the Holy Spirit. I had already seen how well the blue and yellow combination worked in the complementary study so I went with red, yellow and a different hue of blue. When I got to the analogous harmony, I knew that I wanted to work with warm colors: reds, oranges, and yellows. I put the colors in place and it looked nice. Then I got to looking at it a little more. I felt that I could do better, so I went to work again using the same palette but altered the shades a bit.

For the final project, I decided to ignore the suggestion that the split-complementary harmony would work better and stayed with the warm colors of my second analogous study. The analogous harmony provided more freedom to choose hues that express a spiritual passion that simply was not present in the other color studies. I started with a brand new file that was quite a bit larger. I drew everything over resulting in much smoother rays of light. I added a glow effect to the fiery dove which introduced some new tints. I redesigned the bible as well and shifted the yellow light over top of it resulting in faux gilded edges. There is no noticable vibration but the light appears transparent.

The design is a complete success. The eye is immediately drawn to the dove and then it shoots down the shaft of light to the golden bible. The light and dark areas are balanced and the contrast is gradual. The dove and bible introduce a bit of variety. The composition and layout is extremely pleasing. I feel that I was able to accomplish the stated goals and more; I have attained unity... The viewer is left feeling that this piece is complete.

Week 6 Final Project
"The Inspired Word of God"

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Week 5 Assignment 3: Final Project – Color Studies

My "Week 5" posts are dedicated to my mother. She is a student of the arts who has inspired me to reach for my dreams while striving to do the will of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, through listening to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.


From our thumbnails, we had to pick one design and produce at least four color studies using different color harmonies. I chose to use the bottom left thumbnail, "The Inspired Word of God", for my color studies. I then decided upon studies using monochromatic, complementary, split-complementary and analogous color harmonies.

Monochromatic is probably the hardest harmony to work with for a design such as this one because it just screams out for multiple colors. In the end, I went with a nice orange hue.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Color Studies - Monochromatic

In the complementary study, I wanted a color duo that would work well for the light as well as the surrounding areas. I decided upon yellow and blue which I think works out well.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Color Studies - Complementary

The split-complementary harmony was a little easier because I already knew that I wanted a nice shade of red for the fiery aura around the dove shape, symbolizing the Holy Spirit. I had already seen how well the blue and yellow combination worked in the complementary study so I went with red, yellow and a different hue of blue.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Color Studies - Split-complementary

When I got to the analogous harmony, I knew that I wanted to work with warm colors: reds, oranges, and yellows. I put the colors in place and it looked nice.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Color Studies - Analogous

Then I got to looking at it a little more. I felt that I could do better, so I went to work again using the same palette but altered the shades a bit.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Color Studies - Analogous 2

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project – Design Thumbnails

My "Week 5" posts are dedicated to my mother. She is a student of the arts who has inspired me to reach for my dreams while striving to do the will of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, through listening to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.


From our proposal we had to come up with four design thumbnails using only black, white and shades of gray. This was my first real project using Adobe Photoshop for drawing. A better choice would have been to use Adobe Illustrator but I do know it as well as I do Photoshop and time was running out.

I ended up surprising myself with what I was able to produce in such a limited amount of time.

Week 5 Assignment 2: Final Project - Design Thumbnails

Top Left: The Word of God
Top Right: The Empty Cross
Bottom Left: The Inspired Word of God
Bottom Right: The Holy Spirit Descends

Monday, November 9, 2009

Week 5 Assignment 1: Final Project – Proposal

My "Week 5" posts are dedicated to my mother. She is a student of the arts who has inspired me to reach for my dreams while striving to do the will of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, through listening to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

My mom draws a bit and I prompted her to branch out from monochromatic works done in pencil, charcoal and ink into color. She creates images of people, trees, flowers, birds, etc but also deeply spiritual pieces that really speak to your soul if you are a Christian. Ever since I completed FND110 Drawing, where I worked entirely with pencil and charcoal, she has been asking me to draw something in color.

I would like to create a work that would be pleasing to her as well as show some of what I have learned in this class: using variations in hue, saturation and value to imply depth and transparency as appropriate; and choosing a color scheme that results in a pleasant viewing experience through harmony of color while limiting vibration. The theme will be religious symbols. I will execute the theme by using using three different religious symbols: a bible, an empty cross and a dove in flight.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Color Theory Wrapping Up

Color Theory has been a class with which I have had a love/hate relationship.

Love: I have really enjoyed the color exercises and projects.

Hate: I have never liked critiquing the work of others especially when I know that I know next to nothing about the subject matter. Also, I still find myself tripping over the language and terminology every step of the way because color is such a hard thing to explain verbally.

Today is the last day of week 5 which means that we have half a week of class left and only our final project. I will be posting the week 5 work soon but in the mean time here is a dump of the exercises and projects along the way.

Hue Study
Week 1: Hue Study


Value Study
Week 1: Value Study


Saturation Study
Week 1: Saturation Study


Week 3 Assignment 2: Color Exercise
Week 3 Assignment 2: Color Exercise


Week 3 Assignment 3: Color Exercise 2
Week 3 Assignment 3: Color Exercise 2


Week 4 Assignment 2: Color Exercise
Week 4 Assignment 2: Color Exercise


Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency First Draft
Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency First Draft


Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency Second Draft
Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency Second Draft


Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency Final
Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Transparency Final


Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Depth
Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Depth


Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Vibration
Week 4 Assignment 3: Color Project - Vibration


Sorry about that last one but if I had warned you, it might not have had the same effect. :)