Category Archives: Photography

Time to Eat the Donuts

The weekly photo challenge is sweet. I don’t eata lot of sweets on a regular basis. But I do tend to splurge a bit when I travel. When I was Richmond, VA, I went to a local Farmer’s Market where there was a donut truck. People were lined up for these donuts. Once I had one, I knew why. They were delicious! The donut makers were also nice enough to allow me to take some photos.

Tuesday Trekkin’ Cades Cove and Elkmont

We finally got back on the road for Tuesday Trekkin’. My Tuesdays have turned into take the cat to the vet day. We have 6 cats and 4 of them are seniors, so vet visits are a way of life. Anyway, back to the real reason we’re here.

Plans? What plans?

We had been planning to go to Jonesborough, the first town in Tennessee. However, plans are more like suggestions for us, so that didn’t happen. It was cold and I didn’t fancy walking around outside in the cold. We decided a car ride might be a better option. We could see things and still enjoy the heated seats. There was also the lure of possible snow in the mountains. Snow can make pretty pictures.

Lunch

We planned to eat at a bbq place in Townsend, but we got there and it was closed for the season. We found a great little Italian place, Brianna’s Italian Restaurant and Cuisine,  just down the road instead. It proved to be a happy accident. Walt had the stromboli and I had the eggplant parmesan. Both were excellent! We will definitely be going back.

Cades Cove

Cades Cove was a bit of a disappointment as there was only a bit of snow here and there. Winter in the mountains is brown. Cades Cove is a valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The road is an 11 mile loop where you can see tons of wildlife, some old historic cabins, and a few old churches. We took the shortcut though and saw none of that. Onward we went.

Elkmont

Walt decided we might try Elkmont, but the sun was setting fast. We weren’t sure we’d make it in time. They close a lot of the roads after dark due to possible hazardous conditions in the winter. But we made it! I had not been there before and found it pretty cool. It’s a small resort community in the mountains where people could stay in the summer. Most of the leases were up in 2001. After that, it became a ghost town. The Wonderland Hotel was once in this area, but in 2005 it collapsed. Most of the historical items were removed and a small annex was left. The annex burned down in 2016.

What’s old is new

I found an old hard drive with some photos and thought I might breath a new life into some of them. That led me to rework a couple more recent photos as well.

Vintage Signs

The Noshville sign was located in Nashville, TN. I took this photo in 2011 with an old, lo-res camera. The file is small so larger prints are not available. But smaller sizes are available.

The JFG sign is a recent pic. I wanted the final to have a vintage feel just like the signs themselves.

 

For the birds

I took these photos back in 2014.  I wanted to do a series on birds because we have so many blue birds and cardinals. But that proved to be easier said than done. So, I haven’t pursued that much since.

Train station

Main Street Station in the Shockoe Bottom community in the city of Richmond, VA.  I wanted a vintage feel, like it was taken in the early 20th century. Instead, I got eerie, but that’s cool. I like that too. Here is the original.

© Sharon Popek
Main Street Station in Richmond, VA at dusk

Sunsphere Variations

The weekly photo challenge is Variations on a Theme. I have tons of photos of the Sunsphere in my hometown of Knoxville, TN.

Camera Art

In the winter, I struggle to find things to photograph. I was recently cleaning out my office, see my goals for 2018 and found these old cameras. They seemed like the perfect subject matter for a quick still life photo shoot.

Holga Memories

I bought the Holga 120s for $12 in 1991 while in college. My favorite thing about the Holga was the vignette and the unpredictable light leaks. The photos always put me in mind of the early days of photography and felt nostalgic to me. Seeing it again made me want to go out and make some of those type of photos. I managed to scrounge up some of those old photos.

Olympus OM-1

This was the 35mm film camera that I used when I Pentax K-1000 got stolen. I loved that Pentax, too. The Olympus and I did fine. But I don’t miss it much.

I can’t decide which I like better, the black and white or the color versions. What’s your opinion?

Prints are available here.

 

To see vintage camera art by other artists, click here.

 

Ink Stamp Heart – Step by Step

If you recall, one of my goals was to do a video showing my work process from beginning to end.  This is not quite a video, but instead a step by step of my Ink Stamp Heart image with photos. I created these photos after the image was complete. Mostly because if I showed you all the deleted and rejected versions, it would take you all day to go through them. I love to experiment, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

Image Layers

This is the original image. I found this old, wooden ink stamp in an antique store years ago. I knew that I would want to do something cool with it, I just didn’t know what.

©Sharon Popek
Original photo of an old ink stamp

Using a Topaz Adjust filter, I gave the image a boost. The shape tool in Photoshop helped me create a heart mask. So the mask would not have a perfect edge, I used small brushes to roughen the edges because love isn’t perfect.

I copied the first layer, sized it down, kept the drop shadow, and deleted the Topaz filter. I kept both of these layers as smart objects, so that I can go back and change them later if I need to.

Texture and Background

Smoky black and white images helped me create a texture on the background. While a mask with a drop shadow created another heart. Additionally, I used an odd shaped brush to give even more texture.

It’s all about Love, isn’t it?

©Sharon Popek
All layers before the color is added. I admit that I kind of like it that. Maybe I’ll make a black and white with no color also.

Final Image

Finally, I added a black and white adjustment layer with a red tone, added my signature, and saved it. Blend modes on layers are great to play with!

©Sharon Popek
Love stamped on hearts

This image is available as a print, greeting card, and other accessories on my website. 

To see heart art by other artists, click here.