Friday, April 29, 2011

Flashing your cake...

That sounds kind of dirty but fear not. It isn't what you think it is. Or maybe it is? Anyway, I wanted to talk to you a bit about Flash photography. It can be a wonderful thing. Or it can be your worst enemy. It really does depend on how you massage that little light.

So, 1st I would like to know how many of you have a entry level DSLR? like a Rebel or a Nikon D5000? or any other kind of DSLR with pop up flash... if you do please take a hammer (the bigger the better) and smash that pop up flash as HARD as you can. That thing is the devil. Ok... wait... maybe no. Just promise me you will try to stay away from using that thing. Unless you want flat unflattering photos of anything you take. Or there is just nothing else to do about it.

Lets talk about why that pop up flash is so bad. Anytime you use a pop up flash OR a speedlight that is pointed the same direction as your lens that's called on-axis. And that's generally bad. It not natural. You don't walk around with a light between your eyes all day long do you? If you do you might want to seek medical help.

On-axis light will give you flat, boring, deer caught in the headlights kind of look. Which remainds me of that time me and my wife were having dinner at a nice restaurant and they were having this reception for a wedding. I saw the "photographer" taking photos of everyone (bride and groom) with her pop up flash. Ask my wife I could barely contain myself, I wanted to get up grab my speedlight put it on her camera pointed so it bounces off the ceiling to have something decent light for the photos but that's a story for another post.

Anyway, I went off on a tangent there. Back to the little light. Flash... Here is the issue. You don't want on-axis light for anything. You want light that is coming from the right, or the left, or the top.. or top right, or top left. Anything else will always look better than on-axis light.



Picture #1 was done with the pop up flash on a Rebel XT (old camera) . Picture #2 was taken by the same Rebel but with a little help of a Speedlight and my lovely assistant (my wife) holding a piece of paper.

Now, let's talk about what's happening to the light in the 1st photo the on-axis killer. (queue psycho music) The photons are generated from a small source, the pop up flash, which is about, an inch wide by 1/4 inch tall? So, all those photons are traveling straight from your camera into your delicious subject, the cake. Giving you a flat and harsh light because there was nothing for the light to go but in a straight line from the small source.

Now, here is a super detailed and totally to scale (not) diagram of the setup for the 2nd photo.

On the 2nd photo you have a speedlight pointed about 45 degrees to the right. The Speedlight surface area is already bigger which will generate a nicer light but not by much. It is still a small source. About 2 inches tall by 3 inches wide? Don't know the exact measurements. Now, I am not sending my photons straight to the cake shotgun style. No, I am bouncing my photons, it's like playing pool with a shotgun bouncing from the white sheet of paper toward the cake. Just simple printer paper... now the area that will light up my cake isn't a small as a speedlight. My photons are now converted, transformed into a much nicer and softer light thanks to the bigger area of the white sheet of paper. We are talking 8x11, which in turn will produce a much nicer light, softer shadows and on top of that directional light. And directional light is good!

Now, you might say. I only have a the pop up flash on my DSLR. Excuses, excuses... you have aluminum foil? yeah... that's right... put it right in front of the pop up flash angled at 45 degrees pointed towards the white piece of paper and voila! Same result. (might have to bring the flash compensation up....) 

Ok, so at the end of the day, let's leave this little post (yeah right!) with a few points.

  • Pop up flash is evil
  • Your speedlight can be evil if you shoot it On-axis
  • Bounce your light off anything that is white or warm colors.
  • Make your little light source (speedlight) bigger by using everyday object to bounce off.
Feel free to ask me any questions and I will happy to answer them.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Lights Are on But No One is Home

Ok so I promised a couple of projects this week and I mean to deliver. Last night I worked on my "As-Is" lamp from Ikea here. I got it for $19 can you believe it!? Originally $59. It was missing a harp and a shade. But hey I can work with that. Here it is in all its glory when I bought it.

And so I got started on it by, wrapping the post on the interior of the lamp that house the electrical cord.

Then i ceaned out the inside with a damp cloth and let it dry. Next I started spraying it with my fav new product the Looking Glass Spray from Krylon :)

Two coats and I was in love. The shade is just for pic purposes, I plan on getting it anther one. But I wanted you guys to get the full effect.

Hope you enjoyed this little tutorial. Now get out there and give it a try :)

Hugs and Kisses,

p.s. Im linking up to Tidy Mom and Smart and Trendy Moms

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Loving Mood Boards

I just wanted to share with you guys a mood board I have been working on for our family room. I made it on Olio Board, great website, you can even upload your own photos. I am loving grey walls and bright accent colors lately, blues, green, yellow, and even a dash of purple.

I own a couple of items on this board, such as the Kivik Sofa in white (which btw not a great idea with a 2.5 year, I also have the light teal lamp which I purchased at Lowes for $19 what a steal, and a DIY drum shade hanging from the ceiling.

So left on the list to complete the room:
Complete the nesting tables found here
Recover two accent chairs I recently purchased
Get the new cover for the sofa
Diy my own chevron area rug
Diy me some of those yummy pillows
And finally some black and white canvas photos for the wall behind the sofa

So what do you guys think, I would love some imput and maybe advice.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Upcoming This Week

I thought I would give you guys a run down of the projects in our home for this week before we started them, and some before pictures to look at.

First I bought this set of solid mohogany nesting tables at a thrift store this past Saturday for $20, can you believe it? Its in great shape with the exception of the top of the first table which has a glazed piece of leather on the top, that someone used as a stamp cant wait to make it over :)

Than, before the trip to the thrift was a trip to ikea to grab some pretty white these babies, at a steal!

They are the Ritva in 118" see our ceilings are 9' high and it was impossible for this cheapo girl to find curtains that didn't cost me a small fortune, that is until I saw these babies, and the come with stitch witchery to hem them perfectly! how awesome is that!?

While there we always walk by the as is section, I always score something I can use, the last time we went I found our Malm dresser in the brown black color, and its perfect for our bedroom for $75. This time I found this pretty pretty lamp for $19 originally $60, we tested it, it worked and I brought it home YAY! Cant wait to dress this one up.

Then we have a recipe for a cake that we tried and was absolutely awesome.

And finally the hubs is planning on a photo tutorial for you guys, on lighting and settings. I'm in the learning process too so it will be good to be able to go over it.

And know I probably through a couple of other posts in for good measure along the way.

So thats this week, hope you will follow along :)

Hugs and kisses,


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

Just a little note to say Happy Easter (or as my husband calls it Bunny and Egg Day) everyone! And God Bless.

Hugs and Kisses,

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Hookin Up with HoH

Just a little post to let you know tomorrow I will be Hookin Up at HoH on my DIY Antique Mirror.  Hope to see you there :)


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Dragon Cat is Coming Mommy

So just recently, my little man is shown his very creative imagination.  We where out to dinner one night, and he looked at Jon and said Daddy I scared of the Dragon Cat!  We both looked at him and said "What?".  And so he said it again.  That was 4 days ago.

Since then everywhere we go or even at home the dragon cat is always there.  And he begs us to make it go away.  I did some reading online, and some people say to play along and pretend to get rid of it for him, and others say to talk to him and explain it doesn't exist.

What to do?  He sees the imaginary animal all day and I don't mean to laugh but I don't want to mess up my kid and tell him the wrong thing.  I just keep telling him dont worry baby, mommy and daddy are here and we will never let the dragon cat get you.  Anyone have any advise?

Hugs and kisses,


p.s. this is what me and Jon think the "dragon cat" looks like from our sons description...


Almost There

Lookie lookie, or design is almost there, we just have a little more work to do :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

So remember when I told you guys I was working on something crafty here, well I had been waiting for part of my supplies to come in the mail.  And I finally received it.  Krylon "Looking Glass Spray".  I first saw it on The Nate Show.  And I thought how awesome is that?  So it came in the mail today, and I started on my project.

First I prepped and painted the Ikea Ung Drill Frame I purchased with Rustoleum Gloss Pure White.

Then I cleaned and dried the glass for the frame and sprayed it with the Krylon "Looking Glass"
here is before the spray.

And here is after three coats. Hanging over our entry table just so we can show you what it looks like now.  The lighting in the garage was not the greatest.

I love the antique look it gives to the glass and there is still one more thing I am waiting on to give it a personal touch, which should be getting here sometime today.

And then Hopefully I will be able to show you the completed project and where its permanent home will be.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Blessed to be a Mommy

You know recently one of the other bloggers I followed opened up to something personal going on in the lives, and it struck a cord with me.  It made me look at my life and appreciate what I have.  

We have had a rough two years, we had been trying very hard to have a second child.  Its put me on an emotional roller coaster really.  We have been able to become pregnant three times in the past three years, but all three times have ended in an early miscarriage.  And I don’t have any infertility coverage.  We have tried all possible natural remedies, except for acupuncture thus far.

But all in all it makes me SUPER thankful to god, that I have my beautiful healthy son, and realize how truly blessed I am to have him in my life.  Before me and the hubbs got married I was told I had a fibroid blocking the entrance to my uterus and that I would need to have a small out-patient procedure to have it removed.  Well I had it done on July 5th, and on August 18th we got married.  By October 3 we had found out we were pregnant with my beautiful boy.  Gods plan I tell you, could not have worked better....heheh

But now my little man is turning 3 in June, and we have been wanting to have another child, not only so that my son will have a playmate, confidant, best friend, and someone to always rely on, but also because I so wanted to hold another baby in my arms, and add to our family.  So now my question is this......How much longer do we try, I was married at age 34 pregnant at age 34-35 and now I’m 37 time is ticking away, and with it I believe so are my chances of another child.  

I’m coming to the conclusion lately that you know what, my son is my world, and weather or not I have another child, he will always be my world.  And I am blessed more than I could ever be, that I was lucky enough to be able to have him in the first place.  I thank god several times a day for him.  Especially when I look down and see this beautiful smile, and hear those words “ Mommy I wuv you”

I love you my little man, now and forever!

Hugs and Kisses
Mommy aka Ivette

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Silhouette Machine: theCREATIVEplace

Acetate cardUtensil holderThank-You CardHappy BirthdayHappy Birthday die cutCIMG4419
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2011-04-02 15-59-41_0114wm2011-04-02 15-59-34_0113wm2011-04-02 15-59-01_0112wm2011-04-01 11-35-45_0012wm2011-04-01 11-37-48_0016wm2011-04-01 11-35-35_0011wm
I'm getting really crazy excited, I just order a Silhouette SD :) Oh Happy Day. I have this whole plan in my head for invitations, party supplies, and decor for little mans 3rd birthday! I cant wait.

Anywhoo 'Im kinda new to all this and I just came across this great group in flicker called theCREATIVEplace, so inspiring and sooo many ideas.

April 18th cant get here fast enough for me :)

Hugs and Kisses,