The voting for Round 6 of the Title Writing Prompt Challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, September 6th. If you are interested in reading the stories and voting, or if you’ve read the stories and have yet to vote, there’s no time like the present.

You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post, and also — as a service to lazy readers — the stories, with their associated blurbs, linked below.

As mentioned in the last reminder post, both Perry and Gary wrote pretty good stories, and their heated votes battle reflects that fact. Of course, it would be nice if readers made a point of reading all our stories, but I’m suggesting their Round 6 stories are worth the effort. Mine? Nah.

E. J. D’Alise submission<<link
Edwina never dreamed she’d have to defend her choice. Now, she’s doing just that in justifying her antinatalism view.

Perry Broxson submission<<link
Jack, recently divorced, starts his second act. He finds a great new lady, only to lose her…inexplicably, to suicide. He has to know why, why, why she took her life. But that information will cost him dearly.

R. G. Broxson submission<<link
What makes a family uproot and risk everything for a new life? Follow a boy from Honduras as he and his mother and unborn sister make the treacherous journey to the land of opportunity. It won’t be easy. Hot on their heels is Satan, a ruthless gang banger that can’t afford to let them testify against him. Will they survive? Read and see.

Now, then . . . . Samsung Note 20 Ultra. I’ve not been posting many of the photos I snap, other than the results of me using Photoshop Mix and Paper Artist.

But, today, I share photos from April. Not all, mind you, but some.

I begin with a panorama of the Southern Illinois University Campus lake.

I happened to have spent a fair amount of time around that lake. Sometimes walking with Melisa, sometimes fishing, sometimes riding my bike, and sometimes just sitting. I was surprised to learn that bikes are no longer allowed on the paved path that goes around the lake.

Why was I there so much? Well, to the right of that first photo . . .

The stories for Round 6 went live late on Sunday evening. That means that by the next morning — when people woke up and frantically grabbed their phones to make sure they didn’t miss anything unimportant — the links to the story posts were likely buried among tons of other links.

Meaning, some readers might have missed the publication posts. This I say because we’ve not gotten many views. That, of course, could also be due to the world going down in flames, and reading stories might not seem important. This, then, is a brief reminder that, yes, it is important. If not these stories, then read something else, but read.

The voting for Round 6 of the Title Writing Prompt Challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, September 6th. If you are interested in reading the stories and voting, or if you’ve read the stories and have yet to vote, there’s no time like the present.

You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post.

As a service, I’ll link the stories below.

I do so because Perry and Gary both have stories that deserve to be read. A nod to Gary for writing what will likely and easily be the winner this round. You can pass mine up as I’m sure many people won’t find it worth reading and, should they read it, won’t like it.

E. J. D’Alise submission<<link
Edwina never dreamed she’d have to defend her choice. Now, she’s doing just that in justifying her antinatalism view.

Perry Broxson submission<<link
Jack, recently divorced, starts his second act. He finds a great new lady, only to lose her…inexplicably, to suicide. He has to know why, why, why she took her life. But that information will cost him dearly.

R. G. Broxson submission<<link
What makes a family uproot and risk everything for a new life? Follow a boy from Honduras as he and his mother and unborn sister make the treacherous journey to the land of opportunity. It won’t be easy. Hot on their heels is Satan, a ruthless gang banger that can’t afford to let them testify against him. Will they survive? Read and see.

Now, then . . . . Paper Artist.

I’ve shared some of Photoshop Mix creations that have then been modified or further processed using Paper Artist. After you globally process a photo, Paper Artist has the option ‘erase’ portions of the current processing to reveal another processing under it. I generally show either the one or other processing in their entirety, but I can also ‘write’ on the top process to show parts of the underlying one.

It’s easier to show than to describe. The orange with black dots treatments is the top process . . . I then used a brush to ‘paint’ away some of the top layer and show the bottom processing.

Sure, I can draw faces, but I’m more likely to draw patterns.

Here’s an example . . .

As a reminder, the voting for Round 5 of the Title Writing Prompt challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, August 16th. That’s in 5 days. If you are interested in reading the stories and voting, or if you’ve read the stories and have yet to vote, there’s no time like the present.

You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post.

We had a small bump in votes after the previous reminder, but we’ve since again stalled. I suggest voting as early as possible before all the good votes are taken.

Now, then . . . . AI Digital Art Generators. As predicted, I wasted a bit more time with these tools, and I have some thoughts about them.

Before we get there, let’s begin with NightCafe.

Can you guess the prompt for this creation?

Before I go on, other than the last of my efforat with NightCafe, the images are fairly low-resolution and small because I only enhanced the last one.

Anyway, here’s the prompt I used to generate that image:

rainman detailed matte painting Pendleton Ward detailed painting majolica silver nitrate photo r/Art firey dystopian 8K 3D 

You needn’t try to interpret the prompt other than to know I was trying to generate a graphic for my contribution to this round’s title offering, Rainman. The first effort with each generator consisted of just giving the title. The rest of the stuff are things that affect the look of what’s generated.

Obviously, I can’t see much applicable to “rainman” in the above graphic . . . maybe this next prompt might generate something more like what I had envisioned . . .

rainman in arid landscape hyperdetailed photorealism digital illustration 3D shading thunderstorm landscape beautiful

As a reminder, the voting for Round 5 of the Title Writing Prompt challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, August 16th. That’s in 10 days. If you are interested in reading the stories and voting, or if you’ve read the stories and have yet to vote, there’s no time like the present.

You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post.

We had a small number of initial votes after publication, but we’ve since stalled. I suggest voting as early as possible before all the good votes are taken.

Now, then . . . . Photoshop Mix.

For this post, a new original Photoshop Mix offering based on one of my doodles, a photo of some palms (the plants, not the PDAs), and probably some flowers. The first offering is the ‘worn and washed’ look . . . it’s OK, but I’m not partial to faded treatments.

That said, this might look good hanging on the wall of a fabric store.

There are a few elements of the mix that I don’t recognize but rest assured, they’re all my photos.

Here’s another Paper Artist treatment . . .

As a reminder, Round 4 of the Title Writing Prompt challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, July 19th. If interested in reading the stories and voting, tomorrow and Sunday are good days to do so . . . ’cause you know Monday will be busy, and there’s not enough time on Tuesday.

You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post if you have any inclination toward reading the stories and voting.

We had a small surge of votes after the last reminder, but we’ve once again stalled. Suffice it to say, the race for first is hotly contested . . . the race for third has already been decided.

Now, then . . . . Photoshop Mix.

For this post, a new original Photosho Mix offering, one that includes a starfish. . . a concrete one that sits on our patio . . .

Kind of neat, no?

As usual, this then gets the Paper Artist treatment . . .

As a reminder, Round 4 of the Title Writing Prompt challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, July 19th. That’s a week from today, so if you’ve been procrastinating, this is a gentle nudge to let you know tempus fugit. You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post if you have any inclination toward reading the stories and voting.

As is, the voting has stalled and it’s waiting for the last-minute surge we seem to always experience as we near the deadline.

Now, then . . . . Photoshop Mix.

For this post, I’m continuing the series from the last reminder — the combination of three photos; my backyard, a shot of some winter Aspens, and a photo I now don’t recall — and adding a fourth photo of a lattice, giving it a ‘looking out through a window’ look . . .

Then, I once again sent the above to my Paper Artist app . . . another app that’s no longer available but that’s hanging on to life on my phone.

And I did it multiple times . . .

The Round 4 stories went live this past Tuesday. As a reminder, Round 4 of the Title Writing Prompt challenge closes at Noon, Tuesday, July 19th. You can find the poll and stories links in THIS post.

Now, then . . . . Photoshop Mix. As previously mentioned, the app was retired, but if you have on your phone, it will keep working. However, if Adobe takes their clues from Google, at some point they will deprecate it and make it unusable. Since I don’t know long it will keep working, I’m playing around with it a fair amount and generating stuff I can use in the future (saving the output as JPGs).

For this post, I’m using the combination of three photos; my backyard, a shot of some winter Aspens, and a photo I now don’t recall blended together to generate this . . .

Then, I sent the above to my Paper Artist app . . . another app that’s no longer available but that’s hanging on to life on my phone.

I have a few favorite effects, so I keep using them and then, but I should try to blend them to see that I get . . . maybe next time, but for now . . .

On a recent comment, oneowner and I discussed Topaz’s Legacy plugins . . . which prompted me to play with a few I haven’t used in a while. The photos I used to play with the plugins were those of the recent bird post (HERE).

The first candidate was the Gray Catbird . . .

My aim was to transform photos into drawings. I think the above is me using Impression 2. I liked the results, so I continued.

This is a continuation of yesterday’s post, namely, the monochrome versions of those shots. Typically, I would lump those photos together — color and monochrome — in one post, plus add a bunch more semi-related photos.

Unfortunately, all that takes time to compose and read, as can be experienced by reading THIS post.

Anyway, let me recreate the previous post in monochrome, starting with . . .

I vacillate between thinking chromatic is the better choice and monochromatic as the way to go. Of course, it depends on the subject, one’s preference, the skill of the photographer in processing each version, the preference of the reader (typically fickle and affected by their mood), and, obviously, the current moon phase.

The SDS “Sloth” voting round has come to an end.

Here’s the updated logo . . .

If you want to know more about the SDS challenge, THIS Post <<link explains it.

If you want to read the Seven Deadly Sins stories submitted for the Sin of Slot
h and see the results of the vote, THIS POST <<link is what you want to visit.

On December 11, 2021, I shot this image of the moon with the Nikon P900. I cropped the sides a bit, and output the image with a maximum dimension of 1200 pixels (for the purpose of what I’m posting, there’s no advantage in viewing the original size).

This has no processing other than mentioned above.

Yes, the sky was blue because I shot this a little after 4:00 pm, when it was still light. Let me show you two versions, one post-processed with Topaz DeNoise AI, the other with Topaz Sharpen AI, and then both processed using Lightroom to turn them into Monochrome images.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

That’s yet another ice disk I pulled from one of my birdbaths following a partial thaw of the ice contained therein. I’ve shared such disks before, like, for instance in THIS post.

That was from two years ago, and I then had only one birdbath . . . I now have four, and I’m sharing the discs from three of them. The fourth birdbath is roughly heart-shaped, and I broke the ice before it dawned on me to photograph it.

The SDS “Pride” voting round has come to an end.

Here’s the updated logo . . .

If you want to know more about the SDS challenge, THIS Post <<link explains it.

If you want to read the Seven Deadly Sins stories submitted for the Sin of Pride and see the results of the vote, THIS POST <<link is what you want to visit.