I have to admit just writing that title “to mask or not to mask during a pandemic” gave me a weird feeling in my stomach. Yet, there is quite a bit a controversy over this topic. I like to think of myself as having an open mind so I listen to what people are saying on both sides. The Webster definition of pandemic is “a widespread outbreak of disease.” We have heard from Dr Fauci and other Medical professionals COVID-19 is highly contagious. This only makes me want to wear a mask more when in public, especially any indoor venues. Especially with the increase in number of cases.
Obviously, my number one reason I wear it is to make every effort to protect myself and others from COVID-19. I also strongly feel I have a civic duty to provide this protection. It is the one very small thing I can do to help contain the virus and help society reopen, heal and move towards being fully operational. I fully believe masks and social distancing is the path to recovery for our economy.
In addition, I can’t forget and I hope you won’t either all of the doctors, nurses, EMTs, medical and hospital staff and the other essential workers. They put their lives on the line for us throughout this pandemic. Wear a mask for them and so they do not have to go thru what NYC did. Wear it for your local hospital if you won’t wear one for yourself.
The reasons not to wear one are varied and on several I agree. Sure the mask is uncomfortable and it often fogs my glasses. Sometimes I do feel stupid in it. And often I have a little stuffy nose after wearing it, but that is a small price to pay for helping society and the economy.
Thanks for reading and more of my work can be viewed on my website.
Like everyone in America and throughout the world everyday we cope with changes due to Covid. We fill our day with work, research and projects that are on our lists. After awhile watching TV becomes old, worry becomes exhausting and making masks boring. This is the time to get creative.
Going thru my WIP folder, I found a photo project named Hope, I started six months ago that got derailed by other projects. Happily I had a piece to complete and exercise my creative muscle.
This piece shot in studio used a macro lens and studio lighting. The concept is to create a repetitive patterns of objects that can be easily found. However, I also want depth of field, so multiple images were taken using different focus spots. Keep in mind, the height of the objects is only one inch or less so attention to detail was important. In post processing, my favorite stacking software was used, Zerene Stacker, to merge all of the different images.
This software is easy to use and does a great job lining everything up and permits edit of the stacked composite image on the different source images. Of course, use of a tripod to shoot all images helped tremendously.
After the stacking process, I took the image into Photoshop for my final edits and to apply the different colors to the different squares.
Here is the image I call “Hope”
I love this piece because I was able to combine many of my favorite aspects of photography. One is working in the abstract with a physical subject and the many technical considerations from lighting to composition. Another is being in the studio, where I have all my toys and tools available. And of course the post processing is vital step and truly makes each piece unique.
Prints of graffiti art when used for home decor can be very interesting. Throughout my travels I am always on the lookout for graffiti to photograph that will translate well into art prints. Some of the criteria I look for is an interesting subject matter that is relatable to the viewer which would be me, vibrant colors and also somewhere I can access. I am not much into climbing wire fences or walls that may line a freeway to photograph graffiti art.
There is one place in St Louis, just south of downtown, that I often visit called the wall. It has been around for decades and often some very interesting images can be photographed there. Initially, a single layer of graffiti was on the wall but over the years graffiti artists have painted over other art on the wall and now it is layers and layers of graffiti that often yield interesting art and relatable stories. I like to capture it because to me it appears so fleeting changing each time I visit. And much of it is very unique and interesting.
Here is a photo of the wall taken many years ago.
The image below is titled “Female Studio Sound” and it recently sold it again. As you can see it is very vibrant and tells a story. It is an interesting piece of art that would look good hanging in any home or office.
“Female Studio Sound”
Another popular print is “Neon Teddies”. Very fun art to hang on the wall.
Just remember to keep your eyes open for graffiti art, especially in urban areas. It could be worth your stopping. If you are looking to add some prints to your collection, please check out my portfolio at https://susanmcanany.com.
As the doldrums of summer set in I am once again in the studio. Today I am experimenting with macro work and combining water and oil. I have worked in this medium before and find it to be really helpful for creating abstract work. In addition, it also strengthens my technical skills.
The set up first requires the mixture of water and oil in a glass container. This container is then situated on plexiglass, elevated around 12 inches. Below the plexiglass is a multi- colored cloth or paper to create the colors in the water and oil mixture. To create the bubbles, the mixture needs to be gently agitated by either moving the container or stirring the mixtures.
My camera is on a tripod and a fast shutter speed is used to freeze the moving water and bubbles. Conversely, a slower speed creates more blurred or abstract images that can be very interesting also.
Showing images of your art displayed in a room setting is a very useful tool for on line sales. By placing your art in different room settings, you give a potential buyer a visual representation of how your art could look hanging in their home or office.
After doing a little research, I was able to achieve this with several on line sites where I sell art prints by using free and purchased room “mock up” images. Here are some quick and easy ideas for creating images of your art placed in a room setting.
Find some free stock images of interior room or room mock ups. Do a quick Google search and you will find many websites where interior room images can be found and downloaded. It takes some searching to find sites that are offering free images, but they are there. Often the author would like recognition for use of there image.
Purchase some images on line. There are stock images sites such as Fotolia, iStock Photo and others who offer images for purchase. Often the images from stock images sites require a subscription I wasn’t interested in or the per image price for me was too expensive. A good resource for per image purchase is Etsy. I found several sellers that sold interior room images or mock ups for a very reasonable price. Again, just search Etsy’s site for “interior room images” or “room mock ups”.
Once you have secured photos of stock images room interiors, you will need to use a photo editing software to place an image of your art on the wall and size it accordingly. I use Photoshop for this process and also I often place my art in a frame prior to placing it in an interior room stock image.
3. One last resource that is helpful is the website Oh My Prints. This site allows you to place an image of your art into a variety of room settings and save them as jpeg files. The only downside to this program is the image size the program generates. It is often smaller than recommended gallery sizes on several sites. But they do have a variety of great looking interior room images.
Thanks so much for reading and seeing just how easy it is to display your art in a room setting. View more of my work at my website, my Etsy Store or Saatchi Art.
Easter is fast approaching and if I have some wonderful Easter stock images. These are high quality jpg images photographed in studio. The images are instant downloads and available as soon as your purchase is complete at my Etsy store. There are both religious themes and commercial bunny and egg themes.
Here are a couple of examples:
The image is a high quality Royalty Free jpeg (.jpg) file and may have the following uses: on your website, blog or in a creative or personal project. You may resize, crop, print or manipulate the image and sell it as part of a new product you create. You may not sell, resell, give, loan, share or transfer the image or jpeg file to any third party. Susan McAnany maintains the original copyright and is the sole owner of the image.
If you have any questions be sure to contact me.
I you get a chance, hop on over to my Etsy store and check out all the Easter stock images and other stock images available via digital download.
Recently I had the need to create a straight line in Photoshop CS6. I wanted to see how outlining an entire image would look. So of course after pouring through the tool bar looking for a line tool, I finally found one under the box tool. Graphic artist are probably much more familiar with vector files and how to create lines and shapes in Photoshop. As a photographer, I am usually more concern with exposure, colors and composition. However, for this application I needed the line tool and found that in the tool palette.
Once the Line tool is selected you have the option to adjust the width, color and weight of the line. You could also assign the width and height. For my application I changed the color or Fill to black, used a 3 pt, and Weight of 05 cm.
Once you have your parameters defined you are ready to draw the line. Photoshop will automatically create a new vector layer and place your line on that layer. This is great because chances are it will take a couple tries to get it looking like you desire. With the line isolated on it’s own layer, it is easy enough to delete the layer and try again.
To draw a perfectly straight line in Photoshop CS6, just simply hold down the shift key while drawing the line. Again, Photoshop will create a vector layer and place your line on the layer.
As you can see this is very easy and soon you will be an expert at drawing a straight line in Photoshop CS6.
Thanks for stopping by. To view more of my work, visit my website!
Embracing the beauty of simplicity in today’s world is a much need. In my daily life for 2019 I started by reducing my internet time starting with the number of google searches, twitter feed reviews and Facebook contact. My personal life goal is to reduce the number of plastic bags I use. I know this is a small step, but very important for the environment. Now, I am taking it to my art.
How to make something simpler and find the beauty of simplicity? Many options are available with photography beginning with zooming in on your subject. Yes, fill the frame with your subject!! If zooming is unavailable or you want to simplify an existing image, you may try cropping the image. So many sensors offer incredibly large files and frames, that cropping is easy to do and you still have a big, beautiful file for posting on line or printing.
Removing lines from a composition is another option for simplification and finding beauty in the simplicity. Also, this will allow the image to take on a more abstract rendering. Moving from subject reality to a surreal rendering.
Another option to simplification is to reduce the variety or magnitude of color. This can be difficult, especially of me, when vibrant colors are one of my signature traits. But it can also be a way of seeing differently. It will also help you find the leading line or composition high point you want to stress in your work. I have seen this work very successfully with some beautiful black and white work.
For me, finding beauty in simplicity required I combine all of these techniques; zooming in, reducing lines and eliminating color. I started with looking at the human body and here are some pieces that are in my pipeline.
Untitled Female Nude
Thanks so much for stopping by and heres to looking for the simplicity in life to find beauty! More of my work can be viewed on my website.
Active now on my Etsy store are some new and exciting Valentines Day photo clip art. I know you may be still recuperating from the December holidays, but finding photos and clip art for your February Valentine’s Day projects is just a click away. These Valentines Day photos and clip art are terrific for enhancing your website and allowing you to bring in the romance, friendship and love spirit alive. In addition, they are also great as artwork for making your own cards or invitations, especially those sent electronically. They do, however, print wonderfully.
Shot in studio the photos and clip art images are sharp and colors are vibrant. There is nothing like a splash of red to liven up your webpages or projects and, in addition, provide an overall happy and positive feeling for the viewer. Delivered via instant download they are ready for your use immediately.
The Valentines Day photos and clip art images are high quality Royalty Free jpeg (.jpg) file. It may be used on your Etsy shop, website, blog or in a creative or personal project. You may resize, crop, print or manipulate the image and sell it as part of a new product you create. You may not sell, resell, give, loan, share or transfer the actual image or jpeg file to any third party. Susan McAnany maintains the original copyright and is the sole owner of the image.
You can check out more Valentine’s Day Photos and other stock images and clip art at my Etsy Store.
As we say goodbye to 2018, there are so many things to be thankful for and happy anticipation for the projects and events awaiting this new year!
So thankful in 2018, I was able to travel on several occasions not only to capture some great images, but I am also grateful for the experiences that travel provides. Any trip whether international or domestic gives opportunity to open up to world different from the one we work and live in everyday. And if you are taking pictures, like I usually am, it is a delight.
I am thankful for the love and support and sales I received for my art this year. Nothing validates an artist more than sales. And when they are not there, love and support keeps me going. Thank you to my family, friends and of course clients!
I am thankful for my health and the health of my loved ones. I keep loving and positive thoughts for friends and family not doing so well. May this year be better for you.
I know 2019 will bring a host of new opportunities and experiences for me and hopefully you. And along the way, lets make some great photos!