October / November Challenge – “Places of Worship”

Written by Hockomock Joe on . Posted in Monthly Challenge

For the next two months the challenge will be to capture a place of worship – church, chapel, synagogue, temple, wherever people gather to worship. Growing up in Dorchester some of my friends used, “Joseph’s Donut Shop,”as their preferred place to hang during the Sunday Mass. Those of us who did go would share the priest’s sermon and the church bulletin with them. Sorry, no breakfast nooks or other such places will be accepted! 


1. Joe’s “Guardian Angel Cathedral, Las Vegas” 

Guardian Angel Cathedral, LV












2. Stephanie’s “Cross of St. Joseph’s Church

Stephanie Spyropoulos St Josephs cross










3. Jac’s “Eaton, NH Spiritual Setting

Eaton NH










4. Phil H.’s “Dove from Above

Dove From Above












5. Ron’s “United Parish of Carver

United Parish of Carver














6. Ellen’s “Portiuncula Chapel”

Porticunula Chapel













7. Lynne’s “Peace Abbey

Peace Abbey













8. Phil N.’s “Long Plain Meetinghouse











9. JIm’s “Earth, Sky & Water, Falmouth

Place of Worship (1 of 1)






 10. Jeff W.’s “Fall in the Cemetery”

fall in the cemetery










11.  Mariann’s “Buddhist Thai Temple

Buddhist Thai Temple













12. Cindy’s “San Jose Mission

Cindy San Jose Mission









13. Ed’s, “Episcopal Church, Whitman 

Ed Episcopal Church Whitman
















August / September Challenge – Portraiture

Written by Hockomock Joe on . Posted in Monthly Challenge

Seeing that we have exhausted the “Creative Sunflower” tweaking for the past two months, portraiture was our next theme. 


The only stipulation is that it must be shot anytime after July 31st. Size it as you would for HDP Competitions and send it to Joe.


1. Mariann’s, “Sam and Me, a Selfie!

Sam and me a selfie













2. Joe’s “Eden. . .














3. Jac’s “Starry-eyed Selfie















4. Jim’s “The Lesson

The Lesson













Phil H.’s “The Hiker

Phil's Hiker












6. Ruth’s “You Are my Smile” 













7. David L.’s “Are You Talking to Me?

Are you talking to me











8. Ellen’s “Red“ 














9. Ed’s “Cindy

2014-Portrait-10 b













10. Cindy’s “Ed

2014-Portrait-11 b














11. Rick’s “Erin and Jon

Erin and Jon




Summer Challenge “Creative Tweaking”

Written by Hockomock Joe on . Posted in Monthly Challenge

We tried this type of challenge last year and had some fun with it. I have posted an image and you are asked to creatively alter it. Remember, your final look should be recognized as coming from my original.


I’ll have Phil attach it to the Musings so you should have a good size to work with. Take notes on what you did to your tweak and send them along with your finished image (sized correctly) to me.


Here is the image you will be tweaking. . .

May June Challenge



And, the tweaks are off and running. . .

Enriched Sunflower












1. Joe’s “Enriched Sunflower


Camera RAW

-       Processed for white balance, lens correction and basic tweaks

 In CS5

-       Selected the sunflower, inverted the selection and then desaturated the background

 -       NIK Plug-ins

-       Passed through to get to NIK Plug-ins

-       In Viveza to enhance the colors

-       In Color Efex Pro IV to extract more of the details

-       In Silver Efex Peo 2 for a final color enhancement 

In CS5

     -  Sharpened 


Ed May June Challenge W












2. Ed E.’s “Sunflower Rendition


In Lighroom:
- Used “Crop Overlay” to eliminate some of the background on bottom of photo
- Used “Spot Removal” to eliminate hot spot on lower right of photo

In Perfect Photo Suite 8
- Added “Light Leak” filter
– Added vignette


May June Challenge EB Pencil Sketch












3. Ellen’s “Pencil Sketch

In Picasa

  – Used “pencil sketch”, and “graduated tint”.


sun painting on the wall rd












4. Ruth’s “Sun Painting on the Wall


In Photoshop:

- Selected the flower and cut it out.

- Used the oil painting filter in photoshop on the flower and layered it on an image of a painted wall to make it look like it was painted there 


How sunflowers are made












5. Mariann’s “How Sunflowers Are Made!


In PS Elements:

- I started with a new canvas, painted it and added a lens flare,

After that it was a series of cut and paste – simple


challenge final (1 of 1)












6. Deedee’s “Oil Painterly Sunflower



 - Added a layer and used Blur Filter

 - Added another layer and used Oil Paint Filter

 - Cropped it

 - Added layer mask to bring back focused green underside

In Lightroom

- Increased clarity, vibrance and then adjusted orange, yellow, and green sliders.


Rich Reynolds_Sunflower












7. Rich’s “Fabric-backed Sunflower

In CS6
- used selection tool to select just the flower and stem
- deleted background
- rotated flower to a pleasing angle
- cloned in additional stem
- cropped image
- went into Nik Color Effects and used detail enhancer to bring out the details in the stem and petal
- used color contrast to both darken the yellow and extend its range into the oranges – saved
- back in CS6 added a background of blue painted cement which I then placed under the sunflower layer
- added a background of canvas
- went back and activated the cement layer and created a mask and revealed some of the canvas around the edges
- went back and activated the sunflower layer and duplicated that layer
- used the oil paint filter and created an oil paint version of the flower
- went back to original sunflower layer and created a mask and revealed the stem and green back as the oil painted section.
-  saved and flattened image resized and formatted














8. Jac’s “Sunflower with a Twist

In Picture Window Pro

 - cropped picture
 - Transformation — Special Effects — Edge
 - Transformation — Special Effects — Spiral
 - Transformation — Composite  2nd inside of 1st and minimized


May-June-Challenge  marian-1













9. Marian’s “Kaleidoscopic Sunflower


In Picture Window 32

-       used special effects-kaleidoscope 12  

-       edge method-lapacian

-       lightned

-       color space-HSV


Pat Iimage









10. Pat I.’s “Framed Sunflowers“ 


In Photoshop Elements

 - Made several layers with a wet glass filter applied

 - Manipulated size and orientation of sunflower in each layer.  

 - Added the window frame as the top layer


Bi-Monthly Challenge – “Purple!”

Written by Hockomock Joe on . Posted in Monthly Challenge

March / April Challenge, 2014 


P U R P L E!


It’s been a while since we have featured a color so PURPLE ends that drought! Size as you would for competition and send it to Joe. The ONLY rule is that the image must be shot from March 1st to April 30th of 2014!


The January/February Challenge of Utensils had eleven submissions.


1. Joe’s “Need I Say More?

Color Purple













(this idea was NOT taken from Lynne’s comment the other night as I had checked the book out on 2/26)


2. Jac’s “Purple Haze over the Town River“ 











3. Marian’sPurple Potato Slices














4. Steph’s “Mardi Gras Wannabe Beads!“ 











5. Jim’sPurple Door

jim Purple Door (1 of 1)













6. Kathy K.’s “Lenten Purple

Kathy K Purple













7. Ruth’s “Edible Purple Asparagus

ruth asparagus











8. Deedee’s “Purple Threads

Deedee purple













9. Al’s “First Crocuses of 2014″

al Purple-Crocuses_











10. Mariann’s “And, Now a Word from Our Sponsor!

purple challenge small











11. Jeff W.’sBirdhouse for Peeps!

Jeff t purple