Color Me Happy

September 27, 2010

I am learning Photoshop Elements, which I bought a month ago during my KERF Theme redesign. It is SO FUN and also SO HARD. Almost everything I’ve learned about blogging, photography and WordPress have been through self discovery and Google searches, so it takes time to learn. The Pioneer Woman has some awesome Photoshop tutorials that have been immensely helpful.

Here is some of my playing, before and afters. Everything is more vibrant!

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This makes me want to touch up EVERYTHING!

I ventured to yoga today. I didn’t want to go because it’s raining and I had to drive. But once I put on my yoga pants, I got in the groove! I’m glad I went because Faith was there and the class was nice and sweaty. Now I’m happy to be back in jeans and a hoodie [and FLIP FLOPS!]

I ate a whole bag of tortilla chips while making lunch – they’re the perfect "just a few to tide me over 5 more minutes because I’m so hungry" food. And by perfect I don’t mean best habit!

I threw together a fantastic salad of leftovers with a few gourmet additions

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Spinach, green pepper, tomato, avocado, broccoli and sunflower seeds tossed in Garlic Gold Lemon Vinaigrette with 1.5 leftover salmon patties from our Saturday night dish.

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Last night Stephanie, who is a major foodie, gave me samples of two of her favorites: Truffle Salt + Herb Salt. Both smell incredible!!

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A sprinkle of this added so much dimension to my salad!!

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On the side, a family of figs

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MORE chips

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And a jar of homemade iced tea I brewed yesterday with a few loose leaf varieties and a little stevia

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See you on the other side of the day!

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{ 81 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jessica @ How Sweet September 27, 2010 at 2:31 pm

The pictures are looking great! I agree – photoshop is SO hard. I still can barely figure it out.


2 Pat Kilmain September 27, 2010 at 6:03 pm

Photoshop and Photoshop Elements are different programs. Both take a bit (okay a lot) to learn, but Elements is slightly easier, less expensive, and for most photographers has what they need.


3 Jil September 27, 2010 at 2:31 pm

I love playing with photos! …though I only have the basics in iPhoto. haha That salad looks so delicious, and those salts sound wonderful.


4 Holly @ couchpotatoathlete September 27, 2010 at 2:31 pm

I don’t know anything about photoshop but I’ve heard it takes a while to learn — I’m sure there are plenty of things you could change about one photograph!

You look so tan in the first few photographs. Maybe I should get photoshop to help my ghostly skin :)


5 Kristina @ spabettie September 27, 2010 at 2:32 pm

great photos!! I recently got photoshop and have not yet tried it… I think I’m scared! :)


6 megan @ whatmegansmaking September 27, 2010 at 2:32 pm

I have a copy of photoshop elements but haven’t even put it on my computer yet. You’re inspiring me to try it out. It’s so intimidating, but I’m guessing it will be fun to play with :)


7 Tina September 27, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Those look so great! I love upping the contrast a bit and increasing the saturation to make pictures a bit more vivid. You’re right that it really does liven up the photos. I love what you did with all of these :)


8 barefootgirl September 27, 2010 at 2:34 pm

pics look great!! I keep meaning to play around with it.. but i am so intimidated :(


9 Jackie September 27, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Photoshop! I had no idea how expensive photoshop was until I started dating my boyfriend (who just so happens to be a web design major). Luckily he got a student discount…


10 Stacey (The Habit of Healthy) September 27, 2010 at 2:34 pm

The retouched pictures look nice – as does lunch!


11 Estela @ Weekly Bite September 27, 2010 at 2:35 pm

I love using photo shop! It takes your pic to a whole other level!

Yours look great!


12 Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg September 27, 2010 at 2:35 pm

Wow– very cool to see the difference that photoshop makes!! I still just use the software that came with my camera…I’d love to try photoshop, but it’s an expensive leap to make, ha!!


13 Freya (Brit Chick Runs) September 27, 2010 at 2:35 pm

I love the difference between the pictures – it’s amazing what a little photoshop can do! It’ll be so addictive 😛


14 Natalia - a side of simple September 27, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Playing with photos is so fun! I use Picasa (read: free) but I’ve used Photoshop in some of my communications classes. Good luck learning it! It looks like you’re well on your way =)


15 Heather (Heather's Dish) September 27, 2010 at 2:37 pm

my husband is great at photoshop…he teaches me a little thing every week! it’s a great way to learn and then practice too :)


16 Maren September 27, 2010 at 2:37 pm

I haven’t used elements yet but I was using photoshop lightroom and loving it. Your pictures look amazing!


17 steph September 27, 2010 at 2:42 pm

This post reminded me of my birthday gift from last year – my boyfriend took the time to frame and photoshop a few black/white pictures with colored highlights (similiar to your pic holding the drink). I was really impressed – he highlighted blue stars on our Cowboys jerseys, a green dress in picture of us, etc. However in the b/w series there was a picture of my dog and I – where of all things he highlighted the pup’s tounge to red and made the dog look like a demon dog. I think the oringinal intention was a pink tounge, but who knows, lol? I still hung up the pictures, but now every time I walk by the demon dog I chuckle a little bit.


18 Rachel (Two Healthy Plates) September 27, 2010 at 2:43 pm

I would love to learn photoshop but I just don’t have the patience. I love your photos though!


19 Christine September 27, 2010 at 2:50 pm

I use PaintShop Pro — it’s way cheaper and easier than Photoshop. I’ve been using it for years — I even insist of keeping the “4 versions ago” edition on my computer along with the new one. That old one is like a comfy old pair of sweats. So familiar and reliable.

That said, I know Photoshop has more power–if you can tap into it!

I was wondering what your thoughts were on Stevia — I’ve searched in on the blog — but you haven’t really used it in a while (until now!) Is it just like an “everything in moderation” type of philosophy?


20 Kath September 27, 2010 at 3:47 pm

I rarely used sweeteners at all – I don’t think food or drinks are supposed to taste sweet. But they do taste BETTER sweet to me (except coffee – I have learned to dislike it sweet) so I added a tablespoon of stevia. On rare occasion I’ll add a sweet n low to an iced tea in a restaurant. I think the less you use sweeteners the better. But they are fun every now and then.


21 Hillary September 27, 2010 at 2:50 pm

I can only imagine how addicting Photoshop Elements to be. I’m addicted to my simple editing program as it is.

I totally know what ya mean about chips. Food Should Taste good bags don’t last more than 3-4 servings!


22 Marina September 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm

Photoshop is awesome, i wish someone photoshoped me 😀


23 S @ September 27, 2010 at 2:57 pm

That’s totally what I was thinking: once the software has been mastered, it’s THE EASIEST diet *ever*, right?


24 RhodeyGirl September 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm

That’s exactly the touch my photos need, I just don’t have the time or patience just yet to do it. I am excited that I’m taking a photography class in a few weeks. I figure I should learn to use my camera first, edits second.

You’re definitely better dressed than I am. Currently wearing sweats, tank, sweatshirt, and house slippers. And while I took a shower without my hair and put on some nice face and body lotion this morning, I have not yet actually brushed my hair yet today.


25 Erin September 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm

Gorgeous! I use Photoshop at work but at home just retouch all my photos with iPhoto. It’s amazing how a little tweak here and there makes a huge difference.


26 Samantha @ Bikini Birthday September 27, 2010 at 2:56 pm

Great picture editing! I’m far to lazy to do any of that with my pictures. I just hope that I take good ones.


27 Alice September 27, 2010 at 3:00 pm

YAY! Playing with photoshop is so much fun!!! You will be addicted in no time Kath!!!

A question, is that a jar you are drinking from? I have noticed a few people using similar ones on their blogs and I think they look awesome!!! I’m from Australia, and have not seen anyone do that here before, but just looking at all the amazing coffee and tea pics from my favourite Americans blogs has me wanting to give it a go. Somehow they look so much more refreshing in a jar… haha I’m a nerd I know! :-)



28 Kath September 27, 2010 at 3:48 pm

They’re Ball jars, which is a brand of mason jar that you can find in hardware stores all over.


29 Kylie @ A Hungry Spoon September 27, 2010 at 3:06 pm

Nice work with the photo shop tinkering–I have the hardest time with photo editing, as I’m one of the least technologically-inclined people I know (well, under the age of 30 at least!). I admire your initiative to self-teach!

PS–Your lunch looks splendid :)


30 Melissa @ HerGreenLife September 27, 2010 at 3:11 pm

I thought I spied some figs in the salad. My husband loves them and really wants a fig tree, because it’s hard to find properly ripe ones to buy. I like them, but they’re almost too sweet for me. I can’t eat more than one at a time.


31 Valerie @ City|Life|Eats September 27, 2010 at 3:11 pm

I love retouching pictures to make them more vibrant, but truth be told, I don’t do it often (I use the flickr pro editing tool because I don’t want to invest in photoshop knowing I would use it so seldom).

Great lunch!


32 Hands in Namaste September 27, 2010 at 3:12 pm

I wish I could reach through the screen and grab those figs!! That salad looks incredible!


33 Mary @ Bites and Bliss September 27, 2010 at 3:16 pm

I had photoshop for a while but lost it when I got a new was so much fun! But yes, very hard at the same time. I’d be on there forever and still not be able to use it to it’s full capacity! Some people can do incredible things..I just stuck with contrasting and what not 😛


34 [email protected] September 27, 2010 at 3:17 pm

OOO fun! I love playing with photos on photoshop. It does take a while to get the hang of it though.


35 lynn (The Actors Diet) September 27, 2010 at 3:21 pm

i love seeing the difference photoshop can make! i’m pretty happy with the iphoto tools that my apple has too


36 Brittney September 27, 2010 at 3:28 pm

I just got a DSLR and Photoshop Elements too. I am planning to get this book by Scott Kelby that’s supposed to be awesome in walking you through everything, which I need. My father-in-law is a photographer and great resource, but I want the book in case I need help at a moments notice. Your pictures look great though- looks like you’ve already got it down!


37 Alyssa September 27, 2010 at 3:30 pm

I want to be wearing jeans and a hoodie so badly right now! Tonight when I get home from work…on go the jeans and hoodie :-) (for about an hour, then go the PJs :-))


38 Lauren Slayton September 27, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Wow, I am impressed when I upload a picture now I have to touch it up? Kidding. I love the workouts you don’t want to go to and end up enjoying. I also loved that you mention the munching while cooking. We all do it and it’s fun.


39 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) September 27, 2010 at 3:35 pm

I rarely ever edit my photos because it takes long enough to load them and blog as it is! I wish I had the time to make every photo beautiful though–it makes such a difference. Once you see it brighter, you don’t wanna go back!


40 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) September 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Playing with photography is so much fun! I am in jeans, a long sleeve tshirt and flip flops! My favorite time of year! Have a great afternoon!


41 Heather September 27, 2010 at 3:41 pm

love how vibrant the pictures look! I would love to be able to do that with mine! hhmm


42 sweetersalt September 27, 2010 at 3:44 pm

Nice work. I’ve used photo shop here and there and it is super fun. I’m trying to convince my boss I need it now, I’m sick of using free programs!



43 Food & Other Things September 27, 2010 at 3:51 pm

I’ve had to use Photoshop for a few of my college classes and I still don’t really know what I’m doing…the effort is worth it though your pictures look great!


44 Laura @ Blogging Over Thyme September 27, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Were all the photos in this entire post edited using Elements? They look great, not that they don’t normally, but they definitely look more vibrant. I’m so jealous! I might need to splurge and get it one of these days–they have a huge student discount which I didn’t realize!


45 Kath September 27, 2010 at 3:53 pm

Yeah :)


46 Erika @ Food, Fitness, & Fun September 27, 2010 at 4:02 pm

I love editing my photos – it just makes everything look nicer! (Of course it takes a bunch of time…) Your salad looks amazing! So many delicious components! :-)


47 Melissa September 27, 2010 at 4:03 pm

The photoshopping definitely made a difference in the photos of you in Matt! Beautiful pictures!


48 erica September 27, 2010 at 4:13 pm

i am horrible at photoshop! hahaha. but it’s amazing what that can do for photos!


49 Lee September 27, 2010 at 4:14 pm

I use photoshop all day at work so when I get home, it’s the last thing i want to do! Makes a huge difference in your photos though, i probably should use it at home.


50 Brittany (A Healthy Slice of Life) September 27, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Your pictures look fantastic! It makes me want to get photoshop… maybe one day :)

& Salmon patties… YUM! :)


51 haley September 27, 2010 at 4:29 pm

Wow, great photos! And yummy food too :) As always, I love reading your posts!


52 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) September 27, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Love all the Photoshopping! It gets REALLY addictive; it’s so much fun!!

That salad looks scrumptious. I’ve never eaten a whole fig before, just Fig Newtons and The Girl and the Fig! :)


53 Lisa @bakebikeblog September 27, 2010 at 4:56 pm

OOOOOh I must start playing around with my photo shop a little more :) Great pics!


54 Dynamics September 27, 2010 at 5:27 pm

The best book to learn Photoshop is “Classroom in a Book” It makes the learning process so much easier.


55 stacey-healthylife September 27, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I always get in the mood once I don the uniform of workout clothes.


56 Simply Life September 27, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I love the difference a few touchups can make!


57 Rachael September 27, 2010 at 5:59 pm

I’ve never dabbled in Photoshop, but seeing what you’re able to do makes me game to try it.
The fig photos have me wishin’ they weren’t $4 a quart round here!


58 Mara @ What's for Dinner? September 27, 2010 at 6:02 pm

You really should try Lightroom… it’s by far the best photo program I’ve ever used!


59 Chelsea at Striking Balance September 27, 2010 at 6:03 pm

The touched up photos do look awesome! Soo vibrant.

I alwaysss grab too many snacky foods as I’m preparing lunch or dinner when I’m super hungry, and then I lose my appetite. You’d think I would learn, but I don’t! :)


60 Mellissa September 27, 2010 at 6:04 pm

The Adobe Website also have video tutorials for Elements and CS5. It is a great skill to have!


61 Dee September 27, 2010 at 6:06 pm

Ahh, I’ve been wanting Photoshop for FOREVER but I am so intimidated so I keep holding off. Those touch ups look sooo pretty!


62 Jessica @ The Process of Healing September 27, 2010 at 6:26 pm

Beautiful pictures! Crazy how much of a difference a little touch up makes..


63 Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef September 27, 2010 at 6:42 pm

I have photoshop (& the whole adobe cs5 suite) free from my university which is so nice. problem is- i don’t know how to use it & because it didn’t invest in it myself my motivation is lacking… now i wanna play with it!


64 Laura (Starloz) September 27, 2010 at 6:43 pm

photo editing is so time consuming & seeing as i’ve only got a point & shot, it’s not worth it.

lovely lunch, leftovers are incredible


65 Lauren September 27, 2010 at 7:13 pm

I would love to get more savvy with Photo Shop. It does wonders for online photo edits, especially when you invest so much into your blog as you do.


66 Katie September 27, 2010 at 7:14 pm

Please oh please do not use photoshop to touch up people in your photos. It is so unfair and the worst thing the media does to perpetuate body image issues.


67 Kath September 27, 2010 at 7:17 pm

I’m not going to change shapes or features – that is unrealistic. But I don’t think enhancing the quality of the photo colors or contrast is anything wrong.


68 melissa @ the delicate place September 27, 2010 at 7:28 pm

gahh my husband is so good at photoshop it makes me sick. i leave any editing to him! though i must confess, i have yet to use it on the blog. he’s a web designer with a graphics concentration so i guess it’s his trade haha. mmmm figs!


69 Michelle @ IronDivas September 27, 2010 at 7:29 pm

I have photoshop, but am so intimidated by it. I just started posting on my blog, and now I am more interested on how blogs works. I also want to eventually take a photography class/workshop. Your pics always look amazing!


70 Marla September 27, 2010 at 7:47 pm

could you tell us how much tea to water ratio you used forl ooseleaf iced tea and how long you let it steep?
Many thanks.Also I am thinking of making it UNsweetened (since I don’t sweeten any of my teas I drink hot)….do you think this will taste as good(have you tried it unsweetened?)


71 Kath September 27, 2010 at 7:49 pm

I used 3 packets of Rising Moon tea – so 3 “servings” or tea bags – for 40 oz of hot water poured on top. I added the steiva and let it steep for about 10 minutes and then strained it with a mesh colander. I’m sure it would taste perfectly fine without the sweetener, esp. if you like hot tea plain.


72 Marla September 27, 2010 at 10:08 pm

Thanks for your reply!!


73 Jamie @ Food in Real Life September 27, 2010 at 8:00 pm

I’m SO impressed!! The retouches look great!


74 Charmaine September 27, 2010 at 8:20 pm

That’s amazing what photoshop can do!!! For your tea, did you just brew some (I guess the flavour depends on indivual liking), add the stevia and let it cool?? I really want to make some home brewed iced tea!


75 Kath September 27, 2010 at 9:09 pm

See my response two comments up!


76 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey September 27, 2010 at 8:31 pm

Nice job with the editing! It’s more than I could ever figure out how to do!! :)


77 Hannah September 27, 2010 at 8:45 pm

Good quality, real salt can make such a difference! I’d be thrilled with just the salmon patty and figs though :)


78 Lauren September 28, 2010 at 8:44 am

Thanks for your awesome blog! I love it! You should check out this website…
Lots of classes about photography, photoshop, photo restoration, etc. for beginners and advanced “students”. I’ve taken a few classes and they were good for me as a beginner.


79 jen September 28, 2010 at 8:48 am

I use Photoshop to adjust the brightness, contrast and/or color on just about all of my photos. It’s amazing how much it can help out low light photos, which are becoming more of an issue for me now that the sun goes down at like 6pm. I’ve noticed a huge change in your photos over the years as you’ve gotten new techniques and equipment. They just keep looking better all the time. Today’s salad photos are really lovely.


80 Anne@ Food Loving Polar Bear September 28, 2010 at 11:23 am

I love the picture of you in black and white.


81 Rachelle October 2, 2010 at 10:30 pm

Love it!
I am **Trying** to learn CS4 in my “spare” time (ha ha hhhhaaaaa, I have a 2 year old, hence why I am posting comments so late!).
I recently tried some actions from totally rad actions.
I was always like, OH, right, I will just figure it out on my own. It may take a century, and at least this way, I can try to emulate the action when I see if I can copy it. Helps me learn.

So, how DID you bring out the blues in the clouds?


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