In four days, the Alphabet Challenge “T” Stories voting round will end. I post the reminders because there have been late-round voting surges which seem tied to the deadline approaching . . . probably people who enjoy the thrill of working to a deadline.

. . . although this isn’t really work, or shouldn’t be . . . .

If you’re a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge T-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon, Chicago time, on November 27th.

As usual, let me know if something goes wrong with the voting . . . and today I decided to process a few more Nikon D100 photos, but transitioning from flowers to other stuff.

Those look like Black-eyed Susan flowers but they’re actually a wildflower that looks similar. Or, maybe they are Black-eyed Susan from seeds that had been blown into a natural setting. We’ll never know.

The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories seems to mirror another race that’s going on, with the lead changing hands almost daily. For a while, only one point separated the three stories. As of this writing, two points. As I wrote this, one story surged ahead and taken a three-votes lead. Impressive move this late in the round.

Regardless of who wins this round, it’s nice to see a good turnout at a time when people’s lives have many other pressing considerations.

I’ve been meaning to let all the procrastinators know of the impending deadline, but I’ve been putting it off . . . until now.

At noon tomorrow, this race will be called. If you plan to vote, please engage your posterior and get a move-on.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon (Chicago time) tomorrow.

Yesterday I posted a few “Westernized” photos. The bold colors are a big part of the characterization . . . but would they still be Western landscapes in monochrome? Well, let’s see . . .

Western scenery in monochrome
. . . You know what? It still do looks kinda Western-like . . . in fact, it reminds me a bit of the Tex Willard(link) comics I used to read.

The voting for the best of The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories poll continues to be close. This either means the stories are near-equally good . . . or near-equally bad. 

Regardless of who wins this round, it’s nice to see a close race. For them keeping track, there are two more days before this round’s voting closes in two days.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

I’m going to post a few “Westernized” photos. I mean, the post-processing is such that it gives the photos a “Western” look (or so I imagine).

Colorado scenery - fence and some red rocks
. . . Don’t know if I succeeded. I mean, the photos are all of Western scenery (Colorado), but I don’t know if these conform to people’s idea of Western paintings  . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “R” Stories voting round is undergoing its usual midway stall in what has become a regular pattern . . . half the votes come at the beginning of the voting period, and the rest as we near the end of the voting period. 

Regardless of when, if you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge R-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on October 20th.

I’m still kind of busy, so this will be yet another short post.

Within, I hope to offer calming photos for people to contemplate.

small tiered waterfallThis serene scene is found along hwy. 24 heading up to Woodland Park from Colorado Springs.

The action for the Alphabet Challenge “N” Stories voting has been hot and heavy these last few days. A good thing to see and likely due to Sunday’s noon deadline, when the poll will close.Just a friendly reminder that — if you want to participate — you have until then to vote.

And, no, not by mail because The Orange Blob is continuing his efforts to turn the once-mighty USA into a Banana Republic, this time by deprecating the Post Office. As a nation, we’ve come a long way down from our lofty ideals.

For example, we once thought a functioning and reliable Post Office was crucial to our country’s future . . . now, not so much, at least if you listen to certain people. Like I said, every day, there is less and less to calm the nerves and soothe the soul (I mean, if I had a soul, which I don’t). 

I still somewhat trust the security of the poll, so if readers have yet to do so, they can still — but not for long — read the stories and cast a vote for their favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge N-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

So, Western Landscapes and sights . . .

Sometimes I’m an idiot. (Hmm . . . Only Sometimes?!) I really like that processing but I forgot to save the finished product as a preset, and I don’t remember the exact steps for that “look”.

Note: while I won’t show all of the images in the body of the post, all of the images are included in the gallery at the end. I don’t know how fast galleries load, and I don’t know how fast your internet is. However, if you just want to see the photos, they are all HERE and they might load faster. Once there, click on any to see them larger.

In October 2008, we loaded up our then-brand-new Tahoe and went on a color tour. I believe it was our first color tour of Colorado. We were both working at the time, so it was basically a long-weekend tour. We drove the Million Dollar Highway, slept one night in Ouray, slept one night somewhere else I don’t remember, and included a drive through the Colorado National Monument.

At the time, I was shooting the Nikon D100. Also, I was using Lightroom 7 and Photoshop 3. I liked the photos I took, but I was never happy with the processing. If you want to compare the original processing to what I’ll show below, you can click HERE for what I could do with the tools available ten years ago. Mind you, the photos don’t suck but my processing tastes have changed. For instance, let me show you the processing for the first photo.

Before:

Now:

I don’t know if the tools were not that good for correcting color cast (probably the White Balance setting was off) or if I was still ignorant as far as processing photos (most likely true) or if the tools are now much better than they were. Probably a combination of all three, but you can formulate your own opinion. I also don’t know which one is closer to what I actually saw. 

For them interested in what the landscape looks like when the Aspens are turning, read on.