Thursday, April 22, 2010

6th Photo Challenge ~ FUN!!!!

Mortira over at Inspirational Beading, invited me to participate in a candid look at the past in a "photo challenge"... What fun! How could I resist?
The idea is to go back in blogtime to your earliest posts and identify the 6th picture you posted. The next task is to critique your own photo, explain what you would do differently now, and then pass on the challenge to 10 other bloggers. I'm not big on passing along, because of the sense of obligation that might be felt, so the challenge is extended to anybody who's interested!
I started blogging in 2006... (Yikes! Time flies!)... My 6th photo appears here in my 3rd post, dated May 9, 2006.

The post is about a 4-day workshop I taught at Valley Ridge Art Studio in Wisconsin... Beads, Books & Paint was all about creating a hand-bound book with painted decorative papers and bead embroidery inset into the cover. I still vividly recall the glorious time we had. Exhausted and exhilarated, all of the students left the last day with a finished book, which you can see here (worth the time to look - they're fabulous!). And below is picture #6... my students victoriously holding up their finished books!

book arts class by Robin Atkins
Wow! This is bringing back so many wonderful memories for me!!!!! What a treat to see these smiling faces and review the beautiful books they made. We were utterly exhausted, having worked all day and well into the evenings for four-loooong-days. Yet, we all had a great time, got to know each other and felt a huge surge in our creativity as we worked together. How can I critique this photo when it is brimming with such realized potential?

Not easy, yet there's much I've learned in nearly four years about photos and blogging... Looking at my 6th photo, here are a few pointers that come to mind:
  1. Save a LOT of frustration by centering photos and not trying to format them in blogger like books with text on one or the other side of the photos.
  2. Size photos before uploading to 105-200 KB at 72 dpi, so that they will be click-to-enlarge. I wrote a post about taking, editing and sizing photos here.
  3. Learn Photoshop or Elements or some other photo editing program. Take a class or on-line tutorials so that you can crop, correct errors, sharpen, delete background shadows, etc.
  4. Add photos to a post AFTER it is written and spell-checked. I add them in the "edit Html" mode, as they are easier to place without Blogger inserting automatic code that flubs up the spacing.
  5. When taking photos, allow time to pay attention to details. Remove distracting elements. Be sure your primary subject is well-lit but not in glaring light.

Just for fun, I returned to my original of the 6th photo and re-worked it a little in Photoshop. It wasn't a great photo in the first place. I obviously didn't pay attention to details as two of the faces are hidden and the back lighting in the room did nothing for the photo. Below is the revision (the best I could do with a poor original image), which unlike my 6th posted photo, is sized correctly. I also used shadow/highlight and the dodge tool to lighten the faces a bit.

book arts class by Robin Atkins, revised image
OK, now it's your turn!!! If you're reading this and have blogged for a while, please accept the challenge to take a look at your 6th posted photo!!!! And if you have a moment, leave a comment here that you've done so... With pleasure, I'll come take a look!


  1. I will be posting my 6th photo today. How fun is this?

  2. What a great tutorial! I'm in the process of writing my 100th post and now I have something to talk about! Thanks!

  3. I like your tips for blogging with photos - especially using your own HTML. There are so many little things you can do with basic HTML that work wonders for a blog.

    Isn't it fun to take a peek into the past?

  4. Robin, I did it and it was much fun, thank you !

  5. Interesting challenge! You did well!

  6. Thanks for your comment -- I did it -- this would be a good thing to do every so often, just to remember what we've learned!

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  8. Sorry I had to self-delete my first comment...I'm typing in the dark, made a lot of typos and didn't spot them until after I hit I'll try this again.

    Talk about being fortuitous, I happened upon your blog while looking up Martex and/or Conso cord for beaded crochet and there amongst and several other bead supply shops was a link to your blog post on "Finger Weaving" from back in 2007. Being a blogger and a beader and, well just out of curiosity (I think I must be part cat) I had to check it out.
    What a great blog you have, lots of good advice and great information, not to mention lovely photos. How could I not follow you? :)
    Though I must admit I'm not sure I really want to go back and dig up the 6th photo that I posted on my blog...I'm afraid of what it might look like.

  9. A few of my blog friends have been doing the 6th photo thing so I thought I would give it a go. I have just posted mine. It dates back to January 2008.

    Looking for my 6th photo actually made me read a few of my older posts which was quite fun - not only to see how my style of writing has changed but to reflect on times with family and friends and also some of my older bead creations.


  10. Anonymous7:05 PM

    I started blogging in May 2006, too. Ha. My sixth photo is pretty weird. I'm sitting on a frog.

    Thanks for making me think about whether I should go back to wearing bangs again or not. Every couple of years, I let them grow out and swear to never cut them again.


Thanks you for joining the discussion on this post today!