Weekly Photo Challenge: Beloved


Hmmm… I struggled a bit in trying to decide what to post for this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Beloved – in life my family matters most to me, and I wanted to find something generic but representative of everyday family life, so I chose this image taken of me out for a walk with my middle grandchild, and art-filtered it πŸ™‚

I have five grandchildren altogether, three boys and two girls, and they are certainly most beloved to me. There’s something truly heart-warming about having yet another generation of little hands to hold, and about having those same warm little hands wanting the familiar reassurance of holding on to me too… ❀


JusJoJan: Fantastic

Knowing I enjoy colouring-in, a few weeks ago my husband bought me a cheap ceramic cup and two coasters set with black-edged designs printed on and felt tip pens provided in red, yellow, blue and green. I had great fun with the colouring in, then baked them all in the oven to set the ink. For what it is the end result is fantastic – close up it’s clear they are all hand-coloured, as each pen-stroke shows up even after baking, but from afar they just look bright and cheerful, and for under a tenner all in, it’s well worth it πŸ™‚

Coloured in and ready to go into the oven…


Close up after baking…




JusJoJan: Fantastic

A Tale of Two Blankets

A Tale of Two Blankets

Once upon a time I made a huge, heavy, multicoloured crochet blanket in popcorn stitch out of all the random odds and ends of leftover and recycled yarns I had lying about…


It kept me warm in bed for ages – too warm at times – so one day I decided I wanted to change it into a differently patterned blanket, and I took the plunge and unravelled it…


Soon I started all over again, creating a variation on a theme of stripey bed blanket, re-using exactly the same yarns as before but in a different stitch and with a slightly less random, more considered colour plan…


After a while I finally finished my redesigned blanket, so here is the new zig-zag version, slightly smaller in size but far more practical in weight, happy to be back on my bed once more…


And here is the little pile of still-leftover yarn from the original unravelled blanket I didn’t re-use…


The End… (or is it?) πŸ™‚

Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a theme

JusJoJan: Prediction

My prediction when my husband bought me a ceramic mug and two coasters for colouring in was that it would probably be fiddly, but fun. And sure enough, it is!


I tried completing the flat coasters first, to get a feel for the pens, then attempted the mug – but it’s surprisingly awkward colouring in a cleaned curvy, ceramic surface without touching the bits you’ve (a) already cleaned or (b) already coloured.


I’ve decided against colouring in the whole mug, instead I’ve been selective over which shapes to colour and which to leave blank, but so far, so good. They still need to be baked in the oven to set the ink, but I thought I’d best take a few photographs now, before they go near the heat, just incase of disaster…




There are only four colours of pen provided – red, yellow, blue and green – which is inevitably a bit limiting but I enjoyed the challenge πŸ™‚

JusJoJan: Prediction

Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a theme

I’ve been playing about with applying different post-processing art filters to images this week, and am exploring which particular filters work best with which types of image to help enhance the feeling prompted by the subject.

I decided to experiment with adding an art effect to this image of the skeletal frame of Brighton’s West Pier, the delapidated remains of which sadly burned down in 2002…


My first choice was a ‘grey’ effect filter, highlighting the sombre sadness of the scene…


And then I tried applying a ‘dark’ effect filter instead, to convey the ominous looming darkness of it all as the sun goes down…


Then moving on from that idea I chose a ‘flame’ effect filter, picking up not only on the memory of the fire but also to create the feeling of a glowing sunset at the end of the day, invoking the metaphorical end of something…


Personally I prefer the grey version, whereas my husband prefers the flame version πŸ™‚

Post-processing filter effects available online from LunaPic

Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a themeΒ 

JusJoJan: Colour


I’m in the process of re-making a recently unravelled crochet blanket, using only the yarn I had used to begin with. To add a further complication, the blanket that was unravelled was itself made up of odds and ends of leftover and re-used yarns from various past projects, so to say I have an odd hotch-potch of colours to work with is a bit of an understatement!

My new multi-coloured blanket design is going to look a bit less random and a bit more planned out in design than its two predecessors, but is still not in any way regimented. I’ve started with a kind of rainbow blend of zig-zag stripes at the bottom end, then have a pastel mid-section of lilac, turquiose and cream zig-zag stripes, and will finish off with a kind of reverse, mirror image rainbow blend of zig-zag stripes at the other end.

So far I’m just past the half-way mark, and I’m pleased enough with the way it’s turning out, but I’ve still got a long way to go yet… πŸ™‚


JusJoJan: Colour

One Pub, Three Impressions

A few weeks ago I snapped a quick photograph of the George pub in Wanstead, East London, captured through the front top deck window of a London double-decker bus as we went past. It was a dull day, and the bus window was grimy, so my original image looks a bit blah and lacklustre.

What it needs is a bit of oomph, so it seemed to be the perfect contender for playing about with some post-processing art filter effects, which is fast turning out to be my latest hobby. These three very different versions of the same image are all processed online via LunaPic, and are in the style of specific impressionist painters.

This first image is processed using a Van Gogh effect – it picks up the rusty-red brick and verdigris turrets of the old Edwardian building beautifully, although the concentrated blue everywhere else is perhaps a bit overdone. Still, overall it’s created a pleasing effect…


The second image is in the style of Gaugin – I really love the crisp, clear lines and the strong, unapologetic use of yellows and reds…


And the third impressionist image is using a Seurat effect filter – the reliance on muted greens and grey-blues and softer outlines give an altogether more sombre feel…



Daily Prompt: Candid

Much as I love the idea of street photography I’m not very comfortable taking candid shots of people. But today I suddenly thought – hang on, why don’t I apply a post-processing art filter to an image containing random strangers who may otherwise be close enough to the camera to be clearly recognisable as particular individuals. That way I can hide any potential identification in a generic blur of paint-effect?

So here is a candid shot of sunbathers at an open-air swimming pool, with the addition of the ‘Delaunay’ effect filter from LunaPic… I’m really happy with how it’s turned out… I think I actually prefer it to the original (rather bland) image πŸ™‚


Daily Prompt: Candid

JusJoJan: Liberty

I must admit I’m feeling a bit weird about using online art filter effects on my photographs…

I mean, I love playing about and experimenting with all the many different effects until I find the right one for each particular image – or at least the right one for the kind of colour/ style/ mood I want to create at any given time. But I can’t help but be slightly concerned that once I’ve applied an art effect created by someone else, I shouldn’t really be claiming the resulting image to be all my own work?

Yet on the other hand, a filter effect, whether applied online or in camera, is surely only that – an effect – and how it turns out is entirely dependent on the original underlying image it is being applied to. I still need to have created an appropriate image to start with – a good composition with a clear message. And I still need to use my own artistic judgement to make the right choice of filter to be used on any particular image – and it’s easy to choose wrong and end up with a right dogs dinner.

A highly distorting stylised filter needs something plain and simple and easily recognisable underneath, otherwise you can end up with an over-the-top convoluted confusion of colour where you all too easily lose sight of your original subject matter. Some images suit the addition of a simple generic oil-painting or watercolour effect, others benefit from the application of a particular artist’s style. Some look great with added warmth, others improve with a hint of coolness. But all change their overall impression, and that’s why I love trying out art filters.

I’m really enjoying seeing just how the same basic image can be altered so dramatically and so differently, and I think it has certainly opened up a whole new extra layer of creativity for me. But I do think I would feel much better about it all if it didn’t feel so much that I was taking liberties and behaving slightly fraudulently by using such an extreme all-in-one post-processing technique. At the end of the day, are my digitally-manipulated images still truly mine?


Leytonstone High Road at night, via the application of a Van Gogh inspired starry night art filter from LunaPic πŸ™‚

JusJoJan: Liberty