Tag Archives: radlab

Still Life: Coral Peonies

Hi there! How has your week been? We are doing very well here,  just getting ready for summer and enjoying lots of warm sunshine. Grace asks everyday, “How many more school days till Summer?” I remember that feeling – you can hardly wait to have lazy mornings in your pj’s, endless afternoons running around the neighborhood with friends, hoping to hear the ice-cream truck approaching. No homework. Picnics in the park. Going to the beach. Wearing your swim suit all day. Childhood summers – I have many fond memories…

Nowadays, filling the house with fresh peonies is a sure sign that summer is around the corner. Friends and family have been bringing me bouquets almost weekly! My two little Peony bushes only gave 6 blooms this year. I hope next year will produce a larger bunch. Let me know if you have any tips on making more pop!

I have been challenging myself to arrange some still life compositions to shoot outside of the product shots I take for the shop. This series featuring three amazing, King Peonies in coral was such a delight to photograph. I had to cut myself off. Enjoy…








In case you are wondering, the backdrop is a vintage map of Rome and the other props are vintage goodies I have laying around my studio. It was fun to pull objects together and find harmony and balance in their arrangement. I did my editing in Photoshop using the Rad Lab plugin and I shot with my Canon XS Rebel with the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens.

Have a lovely Thursday!





Filed under Art, photography, Still life, Styling, vintage

Winner of RadLab

Hi all! Just wanted to pop in really quickly and announce the winner of the RadLab giveaway! It’s…

********ANDREA B.********* Woo!

Check out the video below to see what RadLab can do for your photos…

Introducing RadLab from Totally Rad! on Vimeo.

Thanks Andrea for visiting the blog and entering to win! Have fun with RadLab! For everyone else, please remember that if you want to get RadLab use this code to get a 15% discount : GRACEANDIVY (this code expires in 2 weeks) If you want to test drive RadLab go here to try it free for 30 days!

I’ll be back later with a beautiful interior to share with you.



Filed under Art, giveaway

More photo fun…with RadLab

Hi everyone,

How was your weekend? Ours was busy, as usual…but good. After a thorough cleaning of the house on Sunday, I felt ready to start my online class (Blog Boss) today. Felt so good to put Claire down for her nap, make a cup of tea, light a candle and sit down to class. I’ve got some homework to get to and I hope you will all be patient with me as I continue to “renovate” my blog. My goal is to share more with you and teach some of the things that I have learned along the way.

Wanted to show you another little RadLab makeover photograph today. Tomorrow, I will be drawing the lucky winner who will get RadLab for free! There is still time to enter…just go here and leave a comment about why you want RadLab.

Okay…so here is a floral shot from Grace’s birthday gathering last year. One of my favorite flowers – Ranunculus. While the shot isn’t dreadful, it could use a little love…

Rannuculus before

After RadLab and few layers of textures, I was able to give the image a dreamy quality.

Rannuculus after

Here is the RadLab recipe:

{RECIPE: Lights On 100% – Oh, Snap 80% – P.O.S. Lens 100% – Edge Blur 100% – Divine Light 65% – Claire-ify 39% – Prettizer 100% – Get Faded Winter 80% – The 600 100% – Flirt 18% – Boutwell Magic Glasses 88%}

I used a few textures to further add to the mood of this image. One layer is from the wonderful, Kim Klassen, who shares layers, textures and tutorials! She is such an inspiration. The next two layers were from Deviant Art – where you can find a vast array of free stock layers and textures to download and experiment with.

Please remember, that just because we can tweak a photo with photo editing programs, it is still important to compose your shot. You have to begin with a good photo or at least a decent one to truly get a magical end product. So don’t let those eyes get lazy, always take time to adjust lighting, camera settings and composition. Also, learn when to stop editing. Just like a painting, a photo can become overworked. Of course, like any art form this is subjective to the viewer but try to trust your instincts. I often switch a layer on and off within Photoshop and ask myself – “Does this layer/texture/effect truly add to the image?” If it doesn’t delete it.

Go check it out these fantastic resources and get inspired!

Have a lovely Monday.



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Filed under Art, Digital Art, Photo tips, photography, RadLab

Photo Love : RadLab Giveaway

Hi everyone! You all know I’m kinda obsessed with my camera and I find so much joy in not only taking pictures but “making” pictures too! I love the versatility and endless possibilities available when using Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. Experimenting with layers, textures, filters and brushes brings me much happiness and I have to tear myself away from the computer at night! Creativity gives me a caffeine like buzz!

Anyway, my latest favorite tool in conjunction with PS is RadLab! It’s a plug-in that works within PS, PS Elements or Lightroom that you download and oh my goodness – it is addictive! It makes editing photos so super easy (seriously) and I love that you can save what you did in a “recipe” and then apply it to another photo. This works out brilliantly when I’m editing photos for the shop and I want to achieve a consistent look. RadLab makes my post-production SO much faster!

I love it so much that….TODAY I’M GIVING ONE LUCKY READER RADLAB FOR FREE!!!! (worth $150.00)  Yah! To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment and tell me why you want RadLab. The winner will be randomly selected and announced on March 5th! ***Please be aware that you NEED Photoshop Elements 7 (or later) or Photoshop CS3 (or later) to use RadLab.***

I wanted to share a snapshot I took of Grace last summer. It’s not a great shot by any means but with a little RadLab magic it can become something so much better!

grace first shot

Here is the shot after RadLab…

grace summer touched up

Here is my recipe for this effect:

(if you don’t have RadLab then this won’t make much sense to you, so bear with me.)

{RECIPE: Lights On 100% – Oh, Snap 100% – Punch Out 49% – Contrast 5% – Cool as a Cucumber 70% – Claire-ify 25% – Vario-tone 100% – Iron Mouse 31% – The 600  63%}

Note: I also did some sharpening of her eyes with the sharpen tool and brought more light into her pupils by using the dodge tool.

Voila! A much better pic with better clarity, high-key drama and fresh, crisp color!

Of course, I couldn’t stop there…I went on to do a digital collage piece with this photo. Here it is…Grace helped me and picked out the flower for her hair! :) I’ll show you how I did the digital collage another day.

grace summer collage

Had a blast creating these. I hope this encourages you to experiment with your programs no matter what you may have. PicMonkey is a fun, free editing tool to learn on and Photoshop Elements can be purchased for under $80.00, (which is a steal compared to Photoshop) but offers plenty of power to get creative with your shots. Oh and the fabulous folks at RadLab gave me this 15% off coupon code just for my readers! Enter – GRACEANDIVY  at checkout.

Now go play!


***Full disclosure – I do get a small affiliate cut if any of my readers buy RadLab, just so you know. However, I am promoting it because I truly LOVE it and not for the money. This is the first time I’ve ever had an affiliation with any online product or business.***



Filed under Art, Digital Art, family, giveaway, Photo tips, photography