Saturday, 23 January 2010

Playing with Photoshop

I was lucky enough to be given Corel Photoshop/Paintshop as one of my Christmas presents and due to various other time constraints I have only just taken the time to start having a play around with it. I've realised how little I know about the program as a whole, it is a whole new set of 'tools' to mess about with!! After a quick look at the book that came with it (where's the fun in reading that!) there are just so many hundreds of things to do within it, that I haven't yet even begun to touch the surface of what clever photo-enhancement type things that I will...hopefully one day... be able to achieve with some of the pictures I have taken.

So, of course the first 'victim' of my photo editing has to be a picture of Kiah. It was a photo I had taken over the park which as I couldn't get down low enough in front of her, happened to have a load of trees, houses, lamposts and general rubbish in the background, and you can hopefully see the result of how I managed to make it all 'disappear' by using the clone tool. I do get a brilliant feeling when I have taken a photo that I am really happy with, and then that it doesn't need any type of editing (as I think editing should only be done to enhance rather than change), but there aren't many like that, so programs like this can be such a useful - and precise function - to be able to use for those photos when there's a pylon, tree branch or similar coming out of the side of someone's head! For my first attempt on this photo, I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. Now time for more investigating to see what other things I can do!

Saturday, 16 January 2010

"Did Someone Say Agility!?!?"

Of course I'm talking about the start of the agility show season 2010... what else?!?! Now the snow has finally packed its bags and gone (not that I mind the snow, just the chaos it brings!) and very slowly the nights are starting to get lighter too, we can start getting back into our weekly training so getting both of us a bit less unfit, and thinking about mine and Kiah's hopes and plans for the coming year.

The shows have all started to slowly arrive ready for entering, got to keep an eye on the websites to make sure I don't miss the closing dates - done that before! We have already entered three shows, and obviously they are all at Kiah's new grade 5 so they are going to be a real challenge for us, I know some courses will be a real step up from anything we have encountered before so it is definitely something to work at, but definitely enjoy! We have also signed up for Boot Camp in May as we had such a great time last year and it will also help me with one of my aims which is to improve my handling. Generally though within grade 5 I'd really like if we can get a few places and though various people have said that we will easily win out, I am in no rush to do so, we have a lot more to learn first. Roll on summer!!

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

First Snow of 2010

And it really has been a proper snowfall, it has been unlike any amount of snow that I ever really remember seeing before apart from a vague recollection of sledging and hitting a tree when I was very young - and I'm 28 now, which is saying something...No comments please!! Though there are disadvantages, because unfortunately this country still isnt best prepared for extreme weather conditions, not just the travelling but also the getting back home once you have finally made it to the destination - so I really do feel for the emergency services who are doing a fab job, plus all of the people that may have had to travel for any length of time, it is just so scary and really dangerous.

Anyway back to last night... the snow started coming down in blizzard form about 8pm and was settling everywhere almost immediately, when we woke up this morning and looked outside I don't think it had stopped all night!! It certainly continued to settle when we took the dogs out at about 9.30pm (even though it looks like daylight in the photo, the sky was kinda creepy it was so light!) and didn't get back home til about 11pm, after a mad four-legged run around in the pristine white snow, and of course after making a HUGE snowman he was about 7ft - even taller than Alex so miles taller than me - Kiah looks tiny next to it (in her pretty Hurtta coat)!! We went for another long snowy walk this afternoon with the doggies, and apart from the snowman going on a diet I think someone had shaped his body a bit ;) he is still standing proud in the park.

Friday, 1 January 2010

...And a Very Happy New Year!!

From your celebration hosts; Princess Kiah and Prince Yahoo. As you can see they were both proudly sporting their party outfits in the form of bow ties that they wore on our New Years Eve / Engagement gatherings that took place last night!! I think a good time was had by all, with lots of drinking, eating and celebrating in style, and reminiscing over good memories of 2009 - two of the most enjoyable being Kiah winning into G5 (somewhere I never thought we would get to) and a fabulous weekend in Brussels leading to mine and Alex's engagement!

So at the beginning of a brand new year, and also a brand new decade, all four of us - two and four legged would like to wish our friends, families and everyone that takes the time to read this blog, a Very VERY happy new year moving into 2010, with good health, friendship, good luck, happiness and everything you ever wished for. Let us all look forward to a positive and enjoyable 2010!!!