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Saturday, January 30, 2016

"Celtic Orange" - Postcard

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This week’s Sunday Postcard Art challenge was "Orange."

I wasn't sure if this was a color or fruit challenge, so I went with color.

I started with two old book pages that I combined into one. Next, I added text strips about the moon and night from a white old book page. Then I added Celtic related orange text strips. I used an orange blank old book page to cut out stars that I placed throughout the postcard. I completed the piece by adding the birds and flowers.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Last Friday night (actually Saturday starting around 1am) into Sunday morning, I got about 1 foot of snow where I live, from the Blizzard that shutdown the tri-state area. But by the end of this week, a lot of that snow has melted down.

"Birds / Love" - Postcard

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I created a bird/romantic collage vintage piece.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from the Graphics Fairy (blue birds on branch) and an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Sherwood Island State Park - Photograph

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I took these photographs at Sherwood Island State Park in Westport, CT this past week.

Last Friday night (actually Saturday starting around 1am) into Sunday morning, I got about 1 foot of snow where I live, from the Blizzard that shutdown the tri-state area. But by the end of this week, a lot of that snow had melted down.

While I was at Sherwood Island State Park, I spotted a group of Red-breasted Mergansers swimming around.

The second photo is my entry for the following:

Wild Bird Wednesday
Camera Critters
I'd Rather Be Birding
Saturday's Critters

Friday, January 29, 2016

"January" - Tag

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I created this for Tim Holtz's 12 Tags of 2016 - January challenge.

After struggling for quite awhile on this, I finally came up with something. But I made mine slightly differently than what he did.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Because my artwork is digital, and Tim Holtz's challenge is intended for people who buy his products, I don't usually post my tags on his site.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

"Scraps - Blue Birds" - Postcard

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This week’s Moo Mania challenge was "Use Your Scraps."

I started with a search for "blue bird" in my stash of vintage images. I found some images that I had already "cut out" (converted into PNG files) but not yet used, and others that had not been cut out yet. I created a collage of these "scraps" that I don't think I've used prior to this.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

This piece is also my entry for the following:

Tuesday's Treasures (second entry this week)
Friends Meet Friends

"Patchwork Planets" - Postcard

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I created this experimental vintage piece starting with the red and blue marble strip. I used a second strip to cut out circles that I placed on the old book page background. I added celestial "clouds" and varying size blue stars around the "planets." I completed the piece by adding a sun face with radiating sun spokes.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

"Football" - Postcard

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I made a Football theme piece, now that the Super Bowl teams have been determined from the playoff games this past weekend. All of the images are from old books in the ~1900 to ~1910 era about American Football, which is similar to Rugby. The rest of the world uses the term Football for what we in the US call Soccer.

Because everything on this is old, I decided to enter it in this week's Tuesday's Treasures (which seems to be very slow responding, at least for me).

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Monday, January 25, 2016

"Frame" - Postcard

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This week’s Take a Word challenge was "Frames."

I made a mottled green, gold and white pattern over a gold blank old book page. The inner frame is a cut out from another old book page. I smudged gold paint along the inside edges of the frame. I inserted a Harrison Fisher painting of a woman who appears to be lost in thought, and sad. I completed the piece by adding an outer edging border over the frame opening.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Pierrot / Couple - Week 05 - The Book of Days

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The week05 theme for my Book of Days was Pierrot / Couple.

The vintage images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

I created a romantic piece as part of my lead up to Valentine's Day.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

"Man in the Moon" - Postcard

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This week’s Sunday Postcard Art challenge was "Man in the Moon."

The moon is one of my favorite themes. I recently found some "moon face" images in the "Merlinus liberatus" almanacks on the Internet Archive and used one for this.

I started with two full page gold borders that I combined into one. I masked out (erased) some of the border to give it a worn look. To add some color, I used an old book page next, and set the text to dark blue. I masked out (erased) some of the text, to give it a worn look. I also added text strips about the moon and night from an old book. I set the layer opacity of the strips to make it look like they were translucent tape. Then I added a few images, including an astronomer looking at the moon. I completed the piece by adding brown and blue stars.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

East Coast Storm / Blizzard of 2016: Below is NOAA's snow storm total estimate (as of 11:39am EST) for how much snow the tri-state area could get from the Blizzard that is currently hitting us.

I live in coastal Connecticut right on the edge of an area that could get either 12 to 18 inches of snow, or 18 to 24 inches of snow. This is a much higher estimate than they originally forecast less than 24 hours ago. At 2:30pm, a travel ban will go into effect in New York City. Bridges and tunnels from New Jersey to New York City will also close as part of the travel ban. (I'm posting this shortly before 2pm.)

When the storm is over, I'll try to take some photographs and post them. (It's currently forecast to end around 7am tomorrow morning.)

Tri-State Area: Blizzard Warning Added For Coastal Connecticut

NOAA added my area (coastal Connecticut) to the Blizzard Warning. I'm also now forecast to get 8 to 12 inches of snow in the next 24 hours.

While none of this might sound like much snow to people living in certain parts of the US and the world, clearing the roads is the problem in this area due to the density of roads.

According to a 2006 CT DOT Public Road Mileage report, Connecticut's total land area is 5,121 square miles and it is covered with 20,892 miles of roads. So when we get this much snow in this short amount of time, the end result is second and tertiary roads may become impassable (because they don't get plowed).

I'm just hoping I don't lose electricity.

Friday, January 22, 2016

What Scares Me (is secret) - Week 11 - The Book of Days

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The week11 theme for my Book of Days was What Scares Me (is secret).

The vintage images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

I created this for this week's Three Muses challenge to journal what "I'm Scared Of."  I took a somewhat facetious approach to the theme. I decided to keep my actual fears secret.

It looks like the Winter Storm/Blizzard that is affecting the Eastern Seaboard of the US is moving faster than they originally forecast. It's already snowing in Baltimore, Maryland (at 4pm Eastern Time) so it might get to me sooner than they said. Washington, DC is the bull's eye and forecast to get the highest snowfall totals. I'm on the northernmost fringe of the storm, and currently forecast to get 4 to 8 inches of heavy wet snow. I just hope I don't lose electricity.

Tri-State Area: Winter Storm and Blizzard Warnings Posted

NOAA has gone to the Warning stage, for the storm that is forecast to hit my area about 24 hours from now.

I copied this information from their Winter Storm and Blizzard Preparedness Information link:

Winter Storm and Blizzard preparedness information...

Winter Storm and Blizzard Warnings have been posted for much of the tri-state area. This means hazardous winter weather conditions...such as heavy snow and blizzard conditions due to winds of 35 mph or higher with snow and blowing snow reducing visibility to less than 1/4 mile for at least 3 hours...may affect the area in the next 24 to 48 hours...but its occurrence...location and timing are still uncertain.

Before the storm strikes...be prepared.

At home or work the following items should to be available:

* flashlights and extra batteries.

* canned food and a manual opener...bottled water and essential medications.

* a first aid kit.

* sufficient heating fuel.

* a working fire extinguisher and smoke alarm.

* salt and sand.

* a battery powered radio.

make sure your pets have plenty of food...water and shelter.

make sure your vehicle is fully checked and winterized. carry a winter storm survival kit including blankets...cell phone...a flashlight with extra batteries...a shovel and a map.

if you become stranded in your vehicle...ensure the tail pipe is clear...then stay inside...run the engine 10 minutes each hour for heat...keep your window open to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning...and from time to time exercise body parts to keep blood circulating and to keep warm. tie a colored cloth to your vehicle.

if caught outside...try to stay dry and cover exposed body parts.

for additional information on preparing for winter storms...please visit...weather.gov/nyc/winterweather.html

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Month of January - The Book of Days

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I created a Celestial Time theme art journal page for the Month of January page of the weekly planner/journal that I'm using for my Book of Days.

The images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

Winter Snow - Week 03 - The Book of Days

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The week03 theme for my Book of Days was Winter Snow.

The images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

I created this after the week had already passed. It was the first time this Winter that we got snow that covered the ground where I live. It was just a dusting, but it was the first time everything was turned all white. Now they're calling for a Nor'easter this coming weekend (Jan 23-24) but they're still unsure of where the bull's eye will be.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

"Hand Made Paper" - Postcard

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I created this experimental vintage piece starting with the background, which I thought looked similar to hand made paper. (It's hard to see that in the finished postcard.) I created the background by overlaying one blank old book page over another. Then I added text from a few old book pages. I intentionally gave one text section a faded look, to make it look like it was being seen through the page from the next page in a book. I completed the piece by adding a few old images. (The girl holding flowers is from the Graphics Fairy.)

Because everything on this is old, I decided to enter it in this week's Tuesday's Treasures.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Monday, January 18, 2016

"Dance" - Postcard

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I created this experimental piece featuring a ballerina.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

The words in the background are from The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe.

The font is Jane Austen.

The foreground font is Aharoni Bold.

"Gold Purple" - Postcard

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I created this experimental piece after finding the gold and purple background image. I didn't add much to this, but I liked how it looked.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Sunday, January 17, 2016

"Art" - Postcard

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I made this piece for this week's Take a Word challenge "Art."

I used an image of an angel handing paint brushes to a dryad as my focal point. I wish I could sketch, draw, paint, but I lack those talents. So instead, I combine digital images to create some of the ideas that my imagination creates. This piece is more of an homage to art itself, and is not necessarily depicting anything specific.

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Full Wolf Moon - Week 04 - The Book of Days

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The week04 theme for my Book of Days was Full Wolf Moon.

The images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

"Some Like It Hot" - Postcard

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This week’s Sunday Postcard Art challenge was "Fire/Flames."

I struggled to come up with something for this theme. In the end, I had to enforce a time limit on myself, and declare "paint brush down!" (I'm not completely satisfied with how this piece came out.)

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The words are from the song Some Like It Hot by Robert Palmer.

The Devil is from the Codex Gigas (the Devil's Bible). (Note: I added the tail and the fire in his hand.)

The "Rocket Bird" and fires/flames are from the Franz Helm "Rocket Cat" Manuscript.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

The font is Cambria Bold.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Statue of Boy Fishing on Stone Dock - Photograph

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This is 1 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

This statue of a boy fishing on a stone dock is at a house next to the path. He fits in perfectly here.

The first photo is my entry for the following:

Weekend Reflections

Red-breasted Mergansers - Photograph

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This is 2 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

There were at least two groups of Red-breasted Mergansers swimming around. A few times there were brief confrontations between some of the males.

Ash Creek Open Space - Photograph

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This is 3 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

These are some of the sights here. Someone brought their dog to play chase. Winter has been unusually mild, so there is still some green in the grass in spots. Most of the boats have been pulled from the water, but a few remain. I didn't take photos of it, but they cut down a bunch of trees for some unknown reason. I always saw birds going into those trees.

Partial Albino American Robin - Photograph

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This is 4 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

I noticed white feathers on one of the American Robins that was among a group of them here. I thought it was unusual. When I got home and did an Internet search, I discovered this was a partial albino American Robin, which I didn't know existed until now! I was very fortunate to get photos of this unusual occurrence in the species!

The first photograph is my entry for the following:

Week That Has Been
Wild Bird Wednesday (my second entry this week)
Camera Critters
I'd Rather Be Birding
Saturday's Critters

Updated Jan 17, 2016: It is possible this was a leucistic American Robin because now I'm not sure about the type (partial albino or leucistic). This American Robin had normal colored eyes (not pink), but it had white feathers in its chest (mottled red and white chest) and on its back. When it took flight, the back feathers were pure white. I need to return to this park to get more photos of this bird.

American Robin - Photograph

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This is 5 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

There was a group of American Robins here. I used to think they flew South for the Winter, but apparently they remain here along coastal Connecticut.

American Wigeon - Photograph

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This is 6 of 6 posts of photographs that I took in the Ash Creek Open Space walking area in Fairfield, CT this past week.

I think this was an American Wigeon couple.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Valentine's Day Tag Banner - Tag

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I made some tags to spell out VALENTINE to use for a decorative banner. After I put away all of the Christmas decorations, the room suddenly looked drab and barren, like Winter. I wanted to add some red color back, and I came up with this idea.

I created the tags using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

"Love Birds" - Postcard

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This is 1 of 2 similar pieces that I made for this week's Three Muses challenge "Vintage Collage."

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

This is also my entry for Tuesday's Treasures.

"Winged Woman" - Postcard

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This is 2 of 2 similar pieces that I made for this week's Three Muses challenge "Vintage Collage."

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)

Arctic Blast - Week 02 - The Book of Days

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The week02 theme for my Book of Days was Arctic Blast.

The images are from an Internet search.

The master index for all of my entries is here.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Male Belted Kingfisher - Photograph

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This is 1 of 2 posts of photographs that I took at Mill Hollow Park in Fairfield, CT this past week.

I finally got some in focus photographs of a Kingfisher! I have seen and heard this bird at this park almost every time I have visited it, but this is the first time he remained in the same spot long enough for me to get some good pictures of him. And after hearing his bird call in person, I am now also 99.9% sure there is another Belted Kingfisher living in the woods behind my house. (That one continues to elude me and my camera!)

Ken over at Rosyfinch Ramblings told me these birds won't necessarily migrate south for the Winter if they have access to open water, and that is the case, in January, for at least two Belted Kingfishers that are living here in coastal Fairfield County, Connecticut. The nights have been cold enough to form a thin layer of ice in places where the water remains relatively still, but solid ice doesn't start forming here until later in Winter. The river that runs through this park is relatively close to Long Island Sound, so it could be brackish, also.

The first photograph is my entry for the following:

Wild Bird Wednesday

Mill Hollow Park - Photograph

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This is 2 of 2 posts of photographs that I took at Mill Hollow Park in Fairfield, CT this past week.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

"Beauty" - Postcard

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I made this piece for this week's Take a Word challenge "Beauty."

I created this using GIMP 2.8.16.

The vintage images are from an Internet search. (See the side of my blog for links.)