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Journal Entry: Sat May 30, 2015, 5:09 AM

I promise

"900 watchers = new raffle(?"

Sooo, thankies to all of my watchers and the support yvy
I love you guuuys -gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay-


- Do a poll or a journal about this raffle (+1 point)
- Fav journal (+1 point)
- To my old watchers ONLY (+2 points) <3
You didn't have to watch me, but if you like my art, It's free <3

You have to comment below, with the link of your journal/poll, and I give you the number.





Killstein by TsuukyOldivory1 by Tsuuky
Happysadliife by TsuukyLusy2 by Tsuuky


CFS 2015 Part 2 - The Blooms

Journal Entry: Sat May 30, 2015, 6:44 AM
This second part of the Chelsea Flower Show 2015 presents some of the blooms of flowers that were present in the great Flower Pavilion. The light was better than last year, and there was more room. I thought the displays were much better overall, with peonies and pinks being the star attractions (thanks to TV coverage). But the favourites of begonias, irises, lupins, gladioli were also there in stunning colour. Rather than comment, here are a few of my shots, roughly arranged by flower type. I used Lightroom and Nik/Google Colour Efex Pro to process the shots.

The images and this Feature are dedicated to all my Watchers and, in particular to my close friends and supporters:

Scooby777 :iconscooby777:, kayandjay100 :iconkayandjay100: martaraff :iconmartaraff: MYPeanutGallery :iconmypeanutgallery: LindArtz :iconlindartz: Canankk :iconcanankk: SabakuNoShi :iconsabakunoshi: Thelma1 :iconthelma1: piglet365 :iconpiglet365: jellybear07 :iconjellybear07: BrightStar2 :iconbrightstar2: gigi50 :icongigi50: Lady-Compassion :iconlady-compassion: jennystokes :iconjennystokes: Guard-of-the-Citadel :iconguard-of-the-citadel: feigenfrucht :iconfeigenfrucht: Andorada :iconandorada: My-he-art :iconmy-he-art: COLOREDINLOVE :iconcoloredinlove: Gerda1946 :icongerda1946: AngeInk :iconangeink: .... and ....who have I forgotten?

Untitled by Okavanga  Untitled by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga 

IMG 2200-Edit-Edit by Okavanga   IMG 2191-Edit by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga

IMG 2209-Edit by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga

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IMG 2129-Edit by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga   IMG 2248-Edit-2 by Okavanga

IMG 2204-Edit-Edit by Okavanga   Untitled by Okavanga   IMG 2186-Edit by Okavanga

Untitled by Okavanga   IMG 2211-Edit by Okavanga


David :iconokavanga: Okavanga

Part 1 - The Gardens here ==>  CFS 2015 Part 1 - The GardensThe Chelsea Flower Show is the premier horticultural event of the year in the UK. I was lucky enough to be able to attend again this year. Apart from commercial stands and stalls, all the catering, military bands and other side attractions, the Show comprises two main arenas: the sponsored gardens and the Flower Pavilion. In this short feature, I show some of the sponsored gardens, so far as the milling crowds permitted reasonable shots. These gardens are designed and fabricated on site by national and international gardeners who obtain sponsorship from commercial and other sources. The hoi polloi like myself are not allowed to enter these constructions, but must gawp and gaze from a roped off perimeter. Consequently, such gardens, which can be of considerable size,  may not look their best from outside the fence. In my humble opinion, I thought some of them wouldn't look any better wherever I was standing, there bei

This Journal Skin was designed by Night-Beast modified by Okavanga

2x 100 point raffle

Journal Entry: Sat May 30, 2015, 7:11 AM
I was very inactive lately and i dont know when i will feel like drawing again....
So as a apologise i give 200 points away<3

-watchers only!
-fave this journal
-write a comment

I will use to look for the two winners^^

This will end on sunday
good luck <3

  • Mood: Approval
  • Listening to: mlp mix
  • Watching: youtube stuff...
Replaying this series - currently making some progress in KH 2.5 - has made one thing abundantly clear. 

This franchise is - and has always been - badly written. It is, as a matter of fact, on par with a typical fanfic. It is a fanfic. 

It is, indeed, one of the most successful fanfics of all time, with a multi-million dollar budget and corporate backing. Not that it had never occurred to me. I knew this for years. But mention this to some people and they might get a tad defensive, as some are wont to do for anything they love. Not many like being told the object of their affection is dumber than a bag of hammers. Given emotional investment, one is subconsciously inclined to take offence. You can't help it, it's just how the brain is wired. 

Hence the title of this journal: 

"Kingdom Hearts is Bad Fanfiction, and That's Okay."

It absolutely is. I'm about to point out the glorious stupidity of this bloated franchise and defend it, all in one swoop. 

Let's look at the very first game in the series. All the hallmarks of a fanfic are stamped over its face. 
  • Sora and co. are "original characters" - and not at all terribly basic stock anime archetypes (the shonen hero, the shonen rival, the moe waif).
  • The story crosses over two major franchises (Final Fantasy, Disney) to serve as background dressing for an "original" mythos.
  • The crossover in the first place is bait, luring in audiences by way of advertisement. Both fanfiction writers and corporate marketing teams understand that the best way to grab someone's attention is to exploit familiarity. What is Kingdom Hearts, if not an exploitation of both a) Disney nostalgia and b) Final Fantasy nostalgia? Fanfiction writers do this all the time. How else are they going to get people to read their... masterpieces of dubious quality and originality?
  • Sora is unfailingly pure, corny, and will never shut up about the Heart of the Cards, the Power of Friendship, and so on so forth.
  • Sora, as the audience surrogate and everyman, gets to smack down and/or show up canon characters like Cloud Strife, Hercules, Hades, Aladdin, Maleficent, Sephiroth, Squall, etc, using skills he... never actually earned or trained for. Just picking up the keyblade makes him a badass. At least Cloud and Squall were soldiers; at least Aladdin had to get by on streetsmarts all of his life; at least Hercules trained for (it's implied) a few years to become a hero, and then nearly dies several times before proving himself; at least Maleficent and Sephiroth both took decades to reach the heights of their villainy. Sora just has to pick up an oversized Fisher Price toy and suddenly he's a master swordsman who can punch out gods.
  • The "original" villains get to do the same likewise, to establish their villain cred, as "original villains" in fanfics tend to do. 
  • If the original plots of the crossover material are ever referenced, they're streamlined. Any original character development, dramatic weight, meaty conflict, or any heartfelt emotional moments are either dumbed down or excised completely in favour of making the OC protagonists and antagonists look good. They are, after all, the real stars of the show. 
  • The dialogue is awful. 
  • It's tremendously clear the writer has never written a joke before. More on this in a moment. 
Kingdom Hearts is every bad fanfic about "original flavour" characters supplanting the canon of popular media ever made. Kingdom Hearts is what happens when some kid takes the broad strokes of Joseph Campbell and substitutes any substantiated frame of reference for the pop culture he or she consumed/is currently consuming as a writer's guide. Kingdom Hearts has it all; from soap opera reveals to corny dialogue, from blatant character or franchise favouritism to canon characters sucking up to the newbies. 

Incidentally, want an example of Kingdom Hearts' infamously awful dialogue and forced attempts at humour? Check out this exchange from II. 

Goofy: "Yahuck, y'know, Sora and Jack sure are alike!"
Sora & Jack Sparrow: (in unison, in forced tones that sound like their VA's were either stoned or had to recite the lines at gunpoint) "No we're not!"
Party: (Everyone laughs)

Even the writers of Big Bang Theory would say, "Don't quit your day job." 

Ever seen a fanfic writer tell a good joke? I guarantee, they're far and in-between. Comedy is subjective, sure, but there's still a craft to it. Some people are a natural. Others are not. 

But to get to the meat on the bone here...

Think of all the special privileges or pats on the back Sora and Riku receive. Rick gets taken in by Maleficent as her apprentice, trains him in the dark arts, and then our brooding bad boy becomes the Luke to King Mickey's Yoda... and he also becomes every Jedi Mary Sue ever made, the kind of lazily written anti-hero who went into the Dark Side and came back to the light, so he gets to have all the Dark Side powers... but, hey, he's good now, so it's cool. He can use them with impunity. 

Sora, meanwhile, easily befriends every Disney/Final Fantasy hero and side character he comes across. All immediately help him in his quest, and he's often the one who - when participating in their stories - comes up with the solution that they (again, in their own stories) would have originally stumbled into themselves. He's a sort of narrative blackhole, sucking up the character development and dramatic weight out of other character's stories, making him all the more special and reducing everyone else - true heroes and characters in their own right - to background pieces. 

And again, think about the timeframe of the Kingdom Hearts series. Yes, I know, horribly convoluted - even the fans have trouble figuring it out -, but even during the events of the first game... let's just make the safe assumption it took Sora at least took a few months in-context to a) save all the available Disney worlds, b) seal all the Keyholes, c) defeat Maleficent and her council, d) undermine Ansem's evil plan and e) save all existence. In that amount of time, he's proven to be so good with a Keyblade - a weapon he's had no training with - he can take down experienced heroes who spent their whole lives training to become the heroes they are. 

Both Sora and Riku are gifted with incredible power from the outset. As chosen ones - something Birth by Sleep makes quite clear - they have all the necessary gifts beforehand. There is no effort in any skill they acquire. Naturally, they're excellent swordsmen, spell casters and physical specimens. The reason why they're so broad? Our heroes are blank, they're the Campbellian hero, they're everymen the audience can live their wish fulfillment fantasy through. 

They're everything The LEGO Movie took the piss out of. 

Hell, Kingdom Hearts is The LEGO Movie without the irony, parody or satire. In The LEGO Movie, the crossover is initially designed to overwhelm the hero - Emmet - and (for a time) overshadow him with the bigger name stars (i.e. Batman). The crossover in KH, meanwhile, has two main purposes, when you get right down to it. In-context, it's to make Sora and Riku - and possibly Kairi, if KHIII gives her the chance - look effortlessly awesome.

Again, contrast that to The LEGO Movie, where Emmet is consistently treated with scorn or mockery by the Master Builders. 

Out of context, the crossover is there for the sake of being there, for the sake of spectacle, rather than to tell a compelling narrative where all these worlds intertwine into one, and see what sort of consequences such a meta-union would unfold. 

Now that I think about it, you know what else serves as a good antithesis to Kingdom Hearts? Alan Moore's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. 

Namely, in that it's a good fanfic. The kind of fanfic where the author uses the crossover to explore their respective source material; where the crossover is a vehicle to highlight a few nasty truths behind the culture and era that spawned them; the crossover is a dark, vicious, brutal satire. The world and mythos Moore creates from this crossover is meticulously detailed. There's an entire book devoted to deciphering the connections Moore makes between just about every fiction of the Western world (up until the 60's, evidently). 

Contrast that to Kingdom Hearts, where Disney and Square Enix media meet up at the proverbial pub and... sit there, more or less, drinking quietly from the tap while the original flavour characters get to have the party and drink all their booze. 

The crossover is window dressing; decoration; garnish; maybe a side dish to the main dish that is the main story of Sora, Riku and Kairi, if we're being generous. 

The actual story? Even the fans think it's a bit silly. When you get past the repeated uses of "Heart," "Light" and "Darkness," it's ultimately a shonen anime about some kids with bad hair who have to save the world from supervillains who want to destroy the world/rule the world for... reasons.

What makes Kingdom Hearts notable is just how insanely convoluted the whole mess is. It's simultaneously straightforwardly simple and yet so complicated in scope fans have had to create pie charts just to make sense of anything. What should have been a simple story has turned into a decade-old nightmare told across multiple games, since some genius thought it'd be a great idea to release the games on multiple consoles instead of just the one, for several years. 

Gaming is full of simple narratives. Simple narratives are easy to digest, simple plots are easy to integrate into game mechanics, and simple stories can often be a vehicle for truly unique and memorable experiences. From saving princesses in Zelda or Mario, to working your way up the Kanto League, simple tales often yield happy memories.

Kingdom Hearts... again, simple, but not. What does that leave us with as an experience? We have to deal with hours of hackneyed dialogue, the intellectual dumbing down of classic stories, grinding, obtuse side quests and treasure hunts, and bad jokes. Again, what does that leave us with? 

Well, for some, plenty of justification to hate this series. You can easily call Kingdom Hearts a time waster. I don't think anyone would actually debate you on that. 


... and now, I'm wiling to bet a good portion of my watchers have dabbled in this exact kind of fanfiction before. Some of you have tried to write grandiose plots involving your favourite series, maybe even center it around your personal OC's. Some might even be doing it right now. Some might feel offended. Some might immediately leap to your keyboards and, well, you and I both know where that's heading. 

Here's where I turn things around. After spending all this time banging on about Kingdom Hearts and its general inability to tell a cohesive, frank, narrative... 

Here's where I save the day by saying, "And all of these qualities are what makes this series great." 

Or, alternatively, "There is nothing wrong with fanfic." 

Yes, it's in vogue to sneer down at fanfiction. That fanfiction has become a derisive term for low quality should inform you of its ubiquity. Popular writers like George R.R. Martin will say that using someone else's work is creatively limiting, stifling. But if Alan Moore or Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have taught us anything? They created two satires (one Juvenalian, one Horatian) built from the very foundations of works of fiction they loved. What is that, if not fanfiction?

Fanfiction is the literary equivalent of Lego. Take Emmet's speech from The LEGO Movie for a moment. 

"Look at all the things that people built. You might see a mess. For what I see are people inspired by each other, and by you. People take things from what you have, are making something new out of it."

Fanfiction can be just that; rearranging or implementing new designs into old works, precisely because some people - devoted fans, creative individuals, etc - were inspired by their love for those very works. Yes, most fanfiction is devoted to someone's personal sexual fantasy... to varying degrees of acceptability and/or tolerance... and to, let's be frank, somewhat nightmarish degrees likewise... 

... Damn, fanbase, what the hell is it with some of you and vore? Jesus Christ.


And yes, most fanfiction are written by young men and women still in high school, or college, and by God does it show. Yes, most fanfiction writers tend to have a loose grasp on the canon of their works. Yes, there are all kinds of crazy fanfiction writers who deliberately exaggerate or ignore elements of canon so they can cherry pick and form a collage of unconnected moments to support an insane ship or irrational theory (see: Harry Potter fans with most of their shipping, or the various "Dumbledore was the true villain all along! theories). Yes, even the non-ship fanfictions - most fanfictions - are rife with cliché. They lack of irony, a suitable hold on the concept of comedy and just about anything else one can learn in a creative writing class. 

... But for many, fanfiction can be a great place to start.

Fanfiction can be a place to start flexing those writing muscles. It can be a place to express burgeoning creativity, encourage it. Yes, you'll wind up writing something that isn't exactly Dostoyevsky, but every mistake you make is something you will learn and take to heart, if you have any smidgeon of humility in you. But more to the point, fanfiction - your fanfiction - means something to you. No amount of snark and criticism can take that away from you.

... And perhaps more importantly, fanfiction can be fun. That's not a shield against criticism. If the writer messes up or follows a questionably... irrational choice of narrative (see: every infamous fanfic out there about lame ass rape drama, forceful Christian conversion or any ideological indoctrination, etc), or anything that heavily disrespects the canon, don't be afraid to call them out on it. 

But if a writer demonstrates a talent for crafting a fun story? That in of itself has value. Encourage it. Foster it. Give it room to grow. Help along the way. That's worth something. 

And getting back to Kingdom Hearts...

Kingdom Hearts is dumb, bloated and the script is in dire need of an editor... and maybe a smarter marketing team. 

But it's fun. In fact, I dare say, it's its very stupidity that makes it such a wonder. Why? That stupidity betrays a genuine earnestness.

Have you ever watched any of the behind the scenes docs on the series? From Nomura to the voice actors, from the animators to the developers, so many are in it out of sincere affection. They love this thing they've created and are continuing to develop, no matter where it's taken them. Yes, there's that cynical exploitation of nostalgia at play here, Square Enix and Disney both are banking on it. But the actual creative team? True heart there. 

Kingdom Hearts is a bizarre hybrid of whimsical fandom and misanthropic marketing, that's what makes it so fascinating. And with its stupidity in check, it rather makes the whole thing... rather endearing. 

Heh. When you think about it, Kingdom Hearts is sort of like an otaku Forrest Gump. Where Gump walked through the best hits of 20th century American history, Kingdom Hearts walks through the best hits of Disney and Final Fantasy. Either way, both are dumb as hell and you wouldn't trust them to take care of the cooking, but you can't help but like 'em. 

And its in that stupidity where the story actually shines. See, Kingdom Hearts' plot is - as said - convoluted, over-complicated, but deep? 

Unintentionally so. Think about it! This series creates a whole slew of bizarre implications either hinted at or glossed over. Moving away from the story of Sora and co. for a moment, and realize that at the heart of this series... the story is actually about a crushing and nihilistic cosmic horror consuming vibrant worlds - worlds based on beloved films and video games - and reducing them to nothingness, draining away colour and imagination...

Refugees huddle in this one town, constantly under threat from invasion. Squall from Final Fantasy VIII - who has last his world and a good many of his friends and loved ones - becomes a weary community leader by necessity, having to burden the lives of everyone in Traverse Town on his shoulders, mounting a small and potentially futile resistance against the tide. Everyone else? 

Walk around Traverse Town in any of the games, and you know what I've noticed? All these citizens cheerfully going about their day, all of them in good spirits... seemingly. 

Here's a thought, what if they're repressing the horror and shell shock of everything they've witnessed, just to hold on to some scrap of sanity? 

This could easily be a gritty war/refugee story about a ragtag community struggling against inevitable entropy. All of this, hidden in a lighthearted Hero's Journey narrative. 

I almost wish Squall - or "Leon" - was the protagonist. Just think about the events of the series from his perspective; here's a guy actively saving refugees and bringing them to Traverse Town, one of the few holds against the tide of Heartless, while doing his damnedest to remain aloof and detached lest his empathy and humanity crush him into an emotional wreck. 

He's like Bogart's character in Casablanca, with a touch of Oskar Schindler. Holy shit, I would watch that. It's like Casablanca meets Lovecraft.

And think about all the other implications. In the first game, in Agrabah, all the human citizens are mysteriously absent, and its more or less implied this is a world where Aladdin never used any of his three wishes to become Prince Ali. The events of the movie might never have happened here. This is an alternative Aladdin where the Heartless consumed all the citizenry of Agrabah, Princess Jasmine has to hide out in the empty buildings of her people, and Aladdin is leading some minor resistance against Jafar and the Heartless. 

See, that's what makes this series interesting. In its stupidity, glimpses of brilliance shine through...

... And it helps compliment the sheer fun, whimsy and spectacle of the series. 

Again, accidental depth. 

Think to Axel, probably the most well developed OC in the series. His death? Moved people. It moved me. It was another case of an accidental bit of good writing, thanks to great voice acting and sheer accident. That was real. That emotion KH fans felt, with some comparing it to Aerith's death in Final Fantasy VII? Genuine. 

The series is dumb, but... rather appropriately...

It still has a heart. 

And I love it, the big stupid lug. 

It's the best example of the sort of fanfiction it is. Badly written, but more or less coming from a good place, from good intention and ernest affection. That's worth celebrating, I should think. 

It's okay to love something that's dumb. If it brings you joy and happiness, it's all good. 

+ the photographer + by maskqueraide

When your hobby becomes a profession there's a lot to think about. The most important thing that I've found is to get yourself some terms and conditions and a contract written up so that you can make sure you cover all basis. There's nothing worse than getting your ass bit in the first few months of stepping out into a 'profession' and having your confidence knocked. With Photography there are some specific bases that need covering. The below advice is assuming that you have a booking for whereby the client will write out dates, times, location, shots and so on. Below is the advice for the contract or terms and conditions, which should go out with your booking form...

-Booking Fee
-Health and Safety
-Provision of Photographs
-The Entire Agreement

I'm not legally trained and I didn't have a lawyer or 'attorney' look at my terms and conditions (yet). If it's your full time job then you will make it your business to get this sorted out because you can't afford not to. But for now here's a bit of guidance which might just help you through. Don't forget when working with models you will also need to sort out a Model Release Form.
photographer by mataikan

Payment; It's a preference and many people don't opt for it but I like to be paid in full before I undertake a big piece of work. I.e a Wedding or event photography. I totally realise that some shoots can be last minute and you have to put your trust in the person booking you, but when you're giving up a whole day to shoot someone's Wedding and hours afterwards editing and processing you do not want to not get paid. Set it out in your terms and conditions and make sure your customer is aware of what you want. My preference is 50% deposit on booking (non-refundable, we'll go into more detail about that later) and the remaining balance one month before the event date.

Cancellation; It's up to you how you want to play this, but strictly speaking in my contract in the event of cancellation by the other party, no refunds will be made. In the event of cancellation by me, full refund will be made. If I'm not available to shoot a wedding due to ill health or equipment failure (get insurance people!) then it's my fault and I will try my best to replace me with someone else. If that's an option write it into your contract. Set out exactly what you will give people back and set out exactly what they are liable for if they cancel. Don't make it flowery or cute, just write it as it is. People like the facts.

The Tired Photographer by Usra
Copyright; This is the part where you lay out how you are going to let your client use the photographs that you take. Here you can also talk about whether images will be watermarked when they go online and you can talk about how you might use the images for future promotional materials. It's important to quote acts, legal arrangements and so on here and these might differ depending on which country you're in.

Co-operation; It's all about your clients in the end, if you get some really stroppy people who don't want their photographs taken, it's not your fault. You can't make people pose and you can't make them smile. If you're a particularly sociable photographer you may be able to work your audience around a little but you need to make sure you state that you will not be held liable if Great Aunt Gertrude is pulling a frown.

Services; This section can highlight exactly what you're going to offer, whether a second photographer will be included and you can personalise it by stipulating timings. If Wedding photography (as an example), isn't your full time job then you may wish to be a bit flexible. I tend to tell my clients that I will be with them from Makeup until first dance and then give rought guide times. I reassure them that I won't run away at seven pm if things are running behind but equally that I won't be there at 10pm when the guests start getting loud and lairy!

Photographers; It's good to talk about your photographers. You can mention whether they are DBS checked (that's the disclosure and barring service in the UK which talks about police checks) or whatever is relevant to your country. You can highlight whether it 'may' be you or someone else and any other information that might be suitable.
the photographer by michellis13

Health and Safety; You need to include this bit because whilst it's great that you can lie on the floor, climb trees or whatever else to get a shot, you need to have limits and boundaries. You also need to mention guests and anyone else that might be involved. You need to talk about whether you have public liability insurance (and you should have it) in the event of a problem.

Provision of Photographs; This section lets your client know how you will be delivering their photographs to them and in what format. It also highlights how much you'll be giving them and what they can expect. You absolutely do not want to be showered with requests for all the RAW files that you took on the day. It's a headache. Trust me, I know.

The Entire Agreement; This is just a little line at the end that states; This contract is the entire agreement between (Name) and (Client Name) and anything agreed outside of this requires modification to be made in writing. It covers you both and if any other little things are mentioned or 'alleged' to be mentioned you can refer back to whatever is in the written and signed agreement.

Other Bits
I make sure all pages are linked together with page numbers and a unique watermark of sorts (header or footer). If you ever had a problem pages can easily be separated and clients can claim they didn’t have ‘this page’ or ‘that’ page so it’s important to get as much stuff as possible on one page and particularly at the end of the terms below have a signature box for both photographers and clients. It’s also good to include your watermark/logo at the top of the page. Makes it look good too.

Once again though, I'm not legally trained and this is just my preference. At the moment it works for me and it might just help you if you're ready to pay someone to legally set it all out. If you have any tips, questions or preferences of your own share them in the comments! Happy snapping!


Photo Manipulation Week

For the last week, I've reached out to you guys to find out what kind of tutorials you would be most interested in seeing! Once I collected the topics, I reached out to as many artists that I could find that were advanced in those topics to help write a "mini" tutorial full of tips and tricks for you guys.

"Overall Painted Look"


"My techniques is pretty much simple and the soft painted look can be achieved quite easily. What I do is:

Using a spot healing brush I remove spots, if any from the skin.
Then use a mixer brush over it using the following values:
Wet: 17%, Load: 15%, Mix: 17%, Flow: 18%, which not only smoothens the skin but also softens it.

At the end of it all, I dodge and burn wherever necessary. Alternatively, I use a white brush of low opacity somewhere between 30-35% and paint over the highlights, then apply a Gaussian blur of 15-16 pixels. and for the shadows I go over them with a much lower opacity with a black brush of around 5-8%.

In the end I would like to tell to any one who would read it that this is just one of the many ways of achieving this kind of effect."



"I try to focus firstly on a more broad lighting of the overall picture. I locate where my light source comes from, then start thinking about how it will effect other elements in the scene. I use a lot of clipping masks, which I paint with black and white (black on normal mode and white on overlay or soft light). Some times I will use multiply for shadows instead of normal mode, but only if I'm adding color to the darkness, as black on normal mode will act the same as on multiply anyway.

I also paint again with black and white over the whole image including the ones I put in the image, so the paint is on both the objects and background, I think this helps the light look like it's on everything equally. So this is a new layer over all the layers.

Try not to over complicate things with multiple light sources.

Be observant to lighting around you and even other peoples work.

Remember to add shadows !

Take advantage and experiment with different blending modes such as overlay, color dodge, multiply ect."

"Color Adjustments & Sharpness"


Color Adjustments
For me personally, my favorite tool when it comes to adding color to the overall image (or even individual stocks to help blend to the background) is the color balance tool. It's important to remember if your using the color balance tool that you switch between the highlights, midtones, and shadows, because adding separate colors to each will make your image pop a lot more. I find that certain colors go better together then others, but you can play around to see what you like. You can also use straight up the color adjustments, I personally don't use those too frequently. Sometimes when I'm still not happy with how the colors turned out, I will use a soft brush, with the layer on soft light, and just paint in some colors or I will also use the gradient tool until I am happy with the results.
There are a few ways you can go about adding sharpness to your image. A lot of people just use the sharpen options that Photoshop or any other program gives you, but I find that doing that can add a lot of pixelated noise to your image, so I avoid that tool at all cost.  I find that 90% of the time, I am able to sharpen images just using different color adjustments (especially using the Black & White tool feature). Another very common way to add sharpness to an image is by using the High Pass tool, which is located in Filter>Other>High Pass . To use the high pass tool, you create a duplicate layer of the image you want sharpened, go to high pass and choose as high or low as you want, personally I tend to stay on the lower end of the spectrum where the image edges (edges of object or model) look the most crisp.) and then just make sure you set that layer to overlay.

"Painting Hair"


Please click image for a larger view!

For the remainder of the topics you guys sent me, I found some helpful tutorials you can take a look at!


Simple tip for blending by sara-helblending backgrounds tutorial by ladynaeviaPhotomanipulation Tutorial  on blending by tamaraRTUTORIAL: Blending the Water by xBluepearlx


Laying of the textures - Tut. by ForestGirlManip Tips + Tricks - Textures by kuschelirmel-stockHow to be creative with textures (Forest) by ChristinaKingmatexture and border tutorial by WCS-Wildcat

"Perspective and Depth of Field"

Depth of Field Photomanipulation Tutorial Part 1 by kuschelirmel-stockPerspective and Light by archetype-stockDepth of Field Imitation Tut by bluefatimaDepth of Field Photomanipulation Tutorial Part 2 by kuschelirmel-stockHow to give DEPTH to your manipulations - Tutorial by HermitCrabStockWalkthrough "Perspective" 1 by kuschelirmel-stock

"That Perfect Rainy Scene"

.:The Rain Tutorial:. by MortequeRain Tutorial by Lady-TimaRain Photoshop Tutorial: Part 2 by thundybearRain and fire photomanip PS by peewee1002Sad , the melody of the rain ( Tutorial ) by Stan-CS30

There are tons of amazing tutorials out there for you guys, free, and right here on DA! Please go check them out, they are there to help you!…

Devious Journal Entry

Sat May 30, 2015, 4:10 AM

Video (crystal bowls project) me singing

Journal Entry: Sat May 30, 2015, 5:44 AM

Hiii everyone!!!

Soo here is the update on my recent music project, I am updating you with a video of my first crystal singing bowl and me singing with it! The recording is not perfect, so please forgive for whatever missbalance there is to hear, I did my best with the recording software as I could at the given time.
The recording was done in my office at home and was improvised, it was really lots fun :D and oh my gosh I am so overly nervous/excited by sharing it with everyone. It is very meditative at the moment as I have just one bowl and can variate to it with my voice. As I get more bowls there will be more variations coming.

I hope you enjoy it! I want to say once more... Thank you soooo very much for helping me achieve start into my project, without you it would not be possible!

Please help me achieve my goal.My dearest friends, watchers and lovely people who stop by my gallery,
For a very long time I have been searching for peace and purpose in my life with no success, until recently when I had an encounter with scary panic attacks which in the end helped me to change the course in my life and I started seeing things differently and more positively.
I have a very special project that I need your help with. This project requires me to get a tool (in fact it is an instrument) with which I will be working and helping others. I am opening a fundraising so I can accomplish my life's mission.
In return I want to give something to you for supporting me on this road. During the fundraising I will upload tutorials with explanations on how I paint, use colors, paint hair, how I approach light and shade etc.
You can get high resolution images from me (except commission work) for donations, you just need to contact me via e-mail
And if you wish to support me by giving little o

[link] <---- VIDEO

Untitled by Selenada

Here is the bowl <3

Skin by SimplySilent
  • Mood: Affection
  • Listening to: Edge of Tomorrow soundtrack
  • Eating: Fruits
  • Drinking: Tea
Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free 

MB2015-325 ... Object by Xantipa2

Bouquet of Flowers for Mia by surrealistic-gloom

Composizione2625 by claudio51

Little Sister by miincdesign

Every Which Way by beautifulchaos1

Sensual tulip2 by MDDahl

Alex by Vlad-Off-kru

Rusty refreshment by Hermetic-Wings

Love Discarded On A Forest Floor by Trippy4Uteefs by HippieVan57

Cherished by zisgul

Fractal5-8-2015b  (8mb) by Fractalholic

Riven by Xyrus-02

DiabloBOY : Colab with Marcin Rustecki by DanielGrzeszkiewicz

Flight Of Flares by crazyruthie

Spring'15 by pinkal09

for you Penny by BlueIvyViolet

The Long Journey Home by ManifestedSoul

Sing to me my love. by jennystokes

Ceci N Est Pas Une Rue by Thib77s

zevra abstract - camvas by johngiannis27

rescue   rings by GLO-HE

FA 357 - Sunday Morning Blues by Gerda1946

Chain II Round 12 Pong 92 - Day Of The Triffids by jim373

Aquarel by zisgulBlack-n-White Dream_11 by caddman

Fleurs de cerisier by SouHkman

Mandala Blue Night by heyday93

Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free Heart - Free
Lydia (Koili) will be here the 27th of June.

I finally have a job, and I got a sleep schedule down //finally//.

Some bad news:

I know for a fact her mother is going to get worse as these days go by, so PLEASE give her lots of love and encouragement. She had a bad feeling, one I didn't pick up on, but my mom did, and it was only there after Lydia's mom started screaming at her again. We know she'll get worse before Lydia leaves, so please go give her love and support while she tries to get out of there.

I'm gonna be busy with this new job until she gets here, and when she gets here, I'll turn in my two weeks notice, and go to work in the mornings and then come home with Lydia.
(For some reason, her mother was trying to convince her she'd be alone in our house for two weeks??? Like, Lydia can literally sleep while I'm at work since I'm only working 7-8 hours a day, and when I get back, we'd have the rest of the day to do what we wanted. Her mother literally thought I was going to leave her ALONE for two weeks, instead of working and coming home like a normal human being. I'm not living at my job, jeez.)
Until then, I'll be busy at work and I won't be here right away like I normally am, and she desperately needs support, so PLEASE talk to her when you can, and offer your help as a listener if she needs it.
  • Mood: Pain
  • Listening to: I Bet My Life - Imagine Dragons