I’ve been going through a handful of old pictures and starting to upload them to my computer. A lot of them needed fixing due to over or under exposure. I thought you all might get a kick out of the string of Golden Retrievers throughout these pictures…

The Rusty years….

RustyNan copy

The Shasta years…


Shasta Bone

ShastaNan copy

The Arthur years…

Burke, Nancy & Arthur (Dog)



The Bruce years…



It feels good to carry on the tradition. :^D

I’m also trying to fix some older discolored pictures. It is not as easy as it looks. Actually I’ve found it to be more difficult to get the hang of than any of the other Photoshoppy things I’ve taught myself.

Here are a couple of before and afters:

Here is an old picture of my Mom and Dad. I LOVE this picture. They are the cutest!!


Mom and Dad 1969


Mom and Dad 1969 RETOUCHED

Here we (The Pastor and I) are on the night of our engagement. This was a picture taken with B&W film and really over exposed. Not an easy one to fix… it’s still not too good but this is as good as I could get it.


engagement night


engagement night fixed

The Baby Pastor:


Baby Shawn BEFORE


Baby Shawn

And last of all, one of my favorite pictures of my brother and sister and I when we were little… Doesn’t that fire in the background look Oh So Realistic?!?!




SandyPhilNanMEMORIES copy

9 thoughts on “Picture talk…

  1. Nan,
    You always do such a great job on your photos…I’ve been trying to learn PSElements and have been posting some of my work as a result of viewing yours for so long now. See? You inspired me!

    Question for you…do you notice that sometimes your photos look great to you in your editor but then translate differently on your blog? If so, any idea why?

  2. Thanks MamaBugs. It’s such a steep learning curve isn’t it? But it’s so much fun.

    I have never really noticed a difference in quality between my editor and my blog but if your pictures are much smaller on your blog, they may appear darker than they did in your editor… that’s not a scientific fact or anything… just an off the cuff theory. I do know that unless I remember to change the color settings from RGB to CMYK, they do look much darker in print than they do in my editor. Fwiw… :^)

  3. OK. I have adobe elements. Can I do the same things? Do you read tutorials online to learn how to do these things? If so, where?
    Can’t wait for Pioneer Woman to get hers up and running. I’ve learned something new everytime she’s posted her “tutorials”.

    leah belle’s last blog post..A Dry Erase Education

  4. Hi Leah, several of these things I have just taught myself. For instance… the one of my parents. I scanned the original image and opened it in Photoshop (now, I don’t know what all you can do with Elements since I’ve never used it but I think you can probably do this…) I made most basic color adjustments like fixing the exposure and the brightness/contrast with just the original layer. Lots of people like to make these adjustments by clicking “Layer” and then “New Layer Adjustment.” Then when it looks as you want it, you can flatten the image by again clicking “Layer” and then at the bottom of that menu, “flatten image”. I tend to just work with the main layer though and click “Image” and then “adjustments” tweaking all of the settings until I like what I see (if I do anything that I don’t like I just hit control/command Z and it undoes it… Once I have the very basic changes made, I then duplicate the layer by right clicking on the layer itself in the layers palette and choosing “duplicate”. It then makes another copy of it.

    On the copied layer, I wanted to adjust just the color of the sky and the yellow color of the carwash building behind them. So I went to Image/Adjustments/Selective Color, chose blue at the top and amped it up… I did this with Cyan too. I actually do a lot of fiddling to get it just right. I figure everything I do that makes it crazy wrong teaches me something so it’s never a loss or a waste of time. When I got the sky the color I wanted it and the carwash building the right shade of yellow, I went and selected the eraser tool. I made it large initially and made it a very soft brush with no hard edge. I then basically erased everything that was not sky or carwash building or the cars or the tree actually… they all still looked better with the color adjustments so I left those parts of the layer visible too but I did erase the pavement part as it looked too blue in that top layer. I didn’t worry about the power lines. In spots where there was a lot of detail required I made the eraser brush much smaller and hardened it up a bit when I was getting into really tight places. On that second layer I went to my layers palette and (see where it says “normal”?) I went through the gamut there until I found that I liked the look of one of them the best… it was probably soft light or hard light… can’t remember… and then adjusted the opacity of that layer to where I wanted it.

    Once the sky looked perfect I flattened the image again.

    Then I wanted my Mom’s dress and hat to be less dull… slightly brighter pink — but not too much… So I used the quick selection tool (not sure if you have that in Elements) and I selected her hat and dress, refining the edge as I went to be as perfect as possible. Then I created a new layer, made sure I had that new layer selected and then I right clicked on my selection area and chose FILL. You can also go to Edit/Fill. Then I clicked “COLOR” and selected a good shade of pink… I had to do it two or three times to find one that I was satisfied with. Here I went and selected my mode (over where it says “Normal”) and I went to what I thought was most likely going to look best — either OVERLAY or SOFT LIGHT. Again, I adjusted the opacity down to a level where it looked natural and not overwhelming or too strong. When it looked realistic and I had zoomed in to make sure that I hadn’t overshot my mom’s actual dress when I made the selection (I had to do a bit of soft erasing while zoomed way in to clean up the edges a bit, I then flattened the image again and called it done.

    So that is a brief overview of how I did the one of my parents. Do a lot of playing. Also Go to Lynda.com and do their free tutorials…. or do a search on YouTube… there are a lot of tutorials on there too… They are all over the internet so you should be able to find plenty of free tips and advice.

    HTH! :^D

  5. Thanks for you lengthy answer. I appreciate you taking the time to do that…it was very helpful. I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to do all of that with Elements….just needed it explained. Again, thanks a lot.

    leah belle’s last blog post..A Dry Erase Education

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