From Family Photos to Art


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Never on a Sunday!

I was always told growing up that you don’t work on Sunday’s. You get up, you go to church, you go back home, you eat dinner with the family and sit and twiddle your thumbs all day till time to go back to church that evening. Heaven forbid you mow your grass or wash your car or hang your clothes on the line for the whole world to see. What kind of Christian does that?

But I’m a big girl now. I have the freedom to choose for myself what’s right and wrong. Besides, times have changed; not that God is too old-fashioned, but that I view things differently now that I’m older. Still, those deeply ingrained values of yesterday keep tugging at my heartstrings today.

But we’ve got this renovation thing going on and our house is a wreck and our lives are turned upside down and we’ve been slaving for months and we’re old and worn out and want to get finished before we roll over and die! So yes, we worked on Sunday.

And guess what? The roof didn’t cave in on us and the walls are still standing, and we didn’t fall through the floor. We did need a marriage counselor, though. Hubby yelled at me for burning his hands with the hair dryer while heating the linoleum, and I yelled even louder at him for yelling at me and jerking the hair dryer out of my hand. I stormed off into the bedroom, slammed the door and didn’t come back out till I became human again. But we’re okay now. Hubby’s nose stopped bleeding and I don’t see double anymore.

All jokes aside, pulling up three layers of glued-to-stay down-forever linoleum in our tiny laundry room has been a pain. Number one, hubby’s a big man with PTSD and claustrophobia and thinks he’s gonna die of a heat stroke if he gets too hot.  And the only way to make the job easier and faster was to heat the linoleum with a hair dryer. Number two, I’m just plain crazy and twisted when I get too stressed out.

In all fairness to us both though, we’re not just taking up linoleum and laying new flooring. We had to replace a rotten board due to water damage. We also painted the walls and cabinets and moved the dryer into the dining room. And today we’ll move the kitchen cabinet out so we can finish painting and pulling up linoleum.

Conclusion: I think our Sunday working days are over.

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Click on the following links to join us in our house-renovation-journey:


Digital Art: Caricatures

Every now and then I let all my people out as long as they promise to behave.

I created my caricatures from photos. I don’t like pictures of myself, but I love distorting them into something humorous.

Using PaintShop Pro 2019 Ultimate, I first erase the backgrounds from the photos. Then, using the Warp Brush I manipulate the facial features. When I’m satisfied with the character I wish to create, I use plugins and other special effects to give it the finishing touch.

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Photos Before and After


Below are before and after photos that I took over the years to use in my digital designs. At the time I created these images I was using PaintShop Pro X6. I have since upgraded to PaintShop Pro 2019 Ultimate.

Back Porch

Back porch before

This is our favorite spot in the spring and summer. We enjoy the sites and sounds of nature.

Back Porch

Back Porch after

In this design, I used a photo of my back porch. The teddy bear is a picture tube that I added for interest. That’s what I love about digital design. You can add or remove whatever you choose.


Front Porch

Front Porch before

Front Porch

Front porch after

As you can see, I added several picture tubes in this design. With the right program you can turn your photo into a dreamland, and get lost in it!


Crepe Myrtle

Crepe Myrtle before

My main focus was the Crepe Myrtle hanging over the Azalea’s and Heavenly Bamboo.


Crepe Myrtle

Crepe Myrtle after

Now the photo has a homey feel.


Flowerbed before

I had to do some cropping and enlarging to achieve the look I was after in this one.



Flowerbed after

So, I cheated a little. Okay, a lot. But it works. I took out a bunch of stuff I didn’t want and added things I enjoy: a hummingbird, bird nest and eggs, and a little note with a pretty bow. Now everyone’s happy.


Birdhouse before


What I like about digital design is I can fill in the bare spots of my flowerbed with beautiful flowers if I choose. Or I can leave it like it is and focus on the birdhouse as I did in the following design.



Birdhouse after

See how easy that was?


First Snow

First Snow before

And last but not least, our first snow. Living in the south, we don’t get a lot of snow. But when we do, I love watching it come down. Sometimes my husband and I bundle up and sit on the back porch with a steaming cup of coffee, giggling like a couple of kids. That’s what makes life worthwhile.

First Snow

First snow after

For several reasons, we don’t decorate the outside for Christmas. One year however, we went all out and strung garland and lights on the banisters, put a big red bow on the light post, and hung wreaths on every window. And that’s where everything stayed till the following Spring. When my husband finally got around to taking it all down, birds had built nests in the Christmas wreaths! So the decorations you see here are all picture tubes.