From Ugly to Artistic–Don’t You Think?

calf having supper (640x426)calf having supper Isle of Skye near Neist Point Lighthouse 800x400 flattened textI took this photo on the Isle of Skye, overlooking the Neist Point Lighthouse and it was growing dark. We wanted to capture the sunset when I saw a plain old cow, as opposed to a beautiful Highland cow, nursing her calf. And no longer was it just a plain old cow.

I knew the picture wouldn’t turn out great because of the lighting, but I took it anyway, just in case I could fix it later. With Photoshop magic–brightening, sharpening the foreground a bit, then using one of the skies from the Pretty Photoshop Actions:

Vivid Skies Cloud Overlays + BONUS Cloud Applicator Actions

and the super easy Cloud Applicator Actions that turn a blown-out or washed-out sky into spectacular,  I was able to reveal the beauty. It’s like a painting, don’t you think? Ha! My parents were true artists, and never thought I could create works of art…

If only they could see me now. lol


Another shot that needed reworking was this one.

2 birds on shrub 900x6002 birds on shrub hazy sky Scotland Isle of Skye, text 900x600The photo was too dark, gloomy day, but with Photoshop, I was able to brighten it up, and then like with the other photo, I used Pretty Vivid Skies Cloud Overlay. I had tried other cloud overlays with this photo, but could never blend them in to make them work. I kept tossing out the revisions. But when I bought this new program, I wanted to see if that would make it work. It did! Like a charm!

I didn’t mess with the colors, they were all just hidden in the hills in the darkness of the photo. I sharpened the birds, and the seedpods. And that was it. This was on a walk to one of the beautiful castle ruins on the Isle of Skye. Sometimes something other than just a castle, can capture the imagination.

reflections in the glassy loch 900x600 no change text

reflections in the glassy loch image of clouds in loch darker 900x600

Using that same Cloud Applicator program, I was able to also add clouds here, and cloud reflection in the water. 🙂 I loved the reflections of the hills and trees in the glassy loch, but I think adding the clouds added more drama.

San Diego boys looking at water,  one on phone 900x600 text

San Diego boys looking at water,  one on phone with clouds text 900x600

I love this–it’s like a commentary on life as we know it now. Two boys are fascinated with the marine life. And the third boy is on his cell phone. In the past, I would have cropped a lot of the sky out, but with the Cloud Applicator program, it was so simple to use. I left a lot of the natural haze in and blended it with a new sky. Within in minutes, it had changed from so-so, to eye catching!

I’m off to write! 30,000 words to go! And then I need to figure out my next 3 books to pitch to my publisher for next year. What would you like to see more of? Or something new?

And if you have photos with boring skies, be sure and check out the video on Vivid Skies Overlays. Watching that sold me! Then when I began to transform my own pictures so quickly and easily and make a real impact on the way they looked, that was the real testimony for me!

boats, castle ruins reflections in loch (640x427)

This is an unretouched photo that I took of the clouds and boat reflections in a glassy loch, but note the castle ruins in the left-hand corner? When I have a chance, I want to do something with the boring skies in the background to hopefully bring more attention to the castle too! 🙂 But I’ll leave the reflected clouds just the way they are.

Have a super wonderful day!


“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”

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