Studio Shoot – Fairy Princess

I recently did an online course with Brooke Shaden, her artwork is totally amazing and inspiring. And feeling inspired I really wanted to get back into some creative concept stuff……..I love coming up with the ideas and playing with each aspect in my head and my journal and then seeing it come together in my camera. Sure my art is nothing really compared to Brooke Shaden, we are quite different in our styles, but I love her method in creating her art. We have very different Photoshop techniques as well, but I love HOW she gets her ideas and puts it all together, nothing fancy, just a few simple props.

Fairy Princess-2

The Fairy Princess

So this is one of the shots, I did three slightly different. Taking the main (or blank shot) then having my model sit (or lay or stand) and do a basic pose. I then took multiple shots fluffing up hair, dress, throwing loose flower petals, feathers etc. Once I had enough to work with, the magic comes to live in Photoshop, making a composite of all the images with various layers and masking out what I don’t need.

So I end up with images that appear almost 3D, soft, flowing, movement in hair and clothes, as well as floating flower petals and such.The model in essence becomes a character, not just a model.I tend to make the faces more painterly and less realistic in my digital art and add a punch to the colour of their eyes, cheeks and lips. When that is all done I had more mood and drama through various textures and filters, I especially love using various Topaz Labs filters; Impression, Adjust and ReStyle.





I love how it is now no longer just a photo, but a piece of art. A fantasy world that doesn’t exist, but in my imagination, brought to live on the screen, perhaps on a  canvas or print. I love the Fairy Princess the most, something so soft and luminescent about it, my model (Rachelle James) said it is one of her favourites as well, she has always wanted to wear angel wings.

I have more shoots lined up like this in the coming weeks, can’t wait to really spread my creative wings…

~ Julz

Manic Mondays

Not so Manic this Monday, more just tired. I actually had 4 day weekend (I know, lucky me right?) due to the renovations. Mind you I did spend two days giving the house a good Spring (or is that Summer) clean. It was mostly relaxing and I have been spending a bit of time creating some art, I did a couple of soft, flowery images of my nieces.

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Flower Fairy



See, not everything is dark and moody!

Last night Moth, Daughter No.1, Myself and some friends did a late night Ghost Tour of Pentridge Prison (Now closed) but it housed many infamous characters and criminals, but more on that another post; I promise. But it did mean we did not get home until very late, and then rising early this morning for the builder to complete the last areas of the deck (well I hope). I then had to come to work 😦

Anyway this week, I will post the usual challenge posts, it is my first week hosting CoverMakeOver (I do hope everyone has a try at it). I haven’t really got much else to say……..I will do a post on Pentridge, once I have had time to go through the photos (I wonder if I got any ghosts?). And perhaps maybe a post on the deck. Meanwhile here is another composite image, this one has been VERY well received, I hope you like it.

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The Grass is always Greener

Til next time, happy snapping (yawn)…



I mentioned a little while back that I have signed up for the extended photoshop artistry course run by Sebastian Michaels – AWAKE! I must say it is a fabulous community to be apart of, just alone the Facebook page where you can ask questions and bounce ideas of some VERY creative people. You can also get great constructive critism on images, as well as helpful hints and tips along the way.

Then there are the tutorials, the videos, cheat sheets, bonus content and everything else that goes with it. Honestly it is worth every cent, as was the Basic Photoshop Artistry grunge course and the Creative B&W course I am also doing through out January. Sebastian, gives so much in depth knowledge and information in each and every video. My art has grown expedentially in just a few short months, I cannot wait to see what happens in a year from now.

I will leave it here for now with my few bigger pieces so far for the year, was not sure whether to call the first one What dreams may come or Never give up.


Never Give Up


Home (with my Grandparent’s wedding photo)

Moon Serenade

Moon Serenade

Industrial Disease

Industrial Disease


Creative B&W Photography

Angel of LightI was playing around in the studio with a friend’s daughter, who had graciously agreed to help me out on a little project. I wanted to play around with some different lighting styles and effects.

We kept it very simple, a full moon backdrop, and then just the simple brick wall of the studio. A softbox and a light with umbrella, as well as a reflector (my daughter was my assistant), no flash. Obviously I had my camera on a tripod. It was a pleasant way to spend a morning with the girls.


Granted not all are B&W, but some are so desaturated there is almost no colour left. I wanted a dramatic, moody, low key effect. The lantern shots were actually the most challenging, we tried using the little tea light as the only light source, but Caity found it difficult to hold still……..hence the pencil sketch effect. The final image I used Photoshop to add the glow in.



I was sort of going for old 50’s police line up/gangster style Hollywood; I know weird combination. Lost, forlorn, dramatic, artistic. I was quite happy with my shots………after spending the rest of the hot summer afternoon in the AC on the PC!


One Four Photo – September Review

I did not really like the image I worked with in September, but I thought I saw potential. I was not overly happy with any of the edits I did, perhaps because I did not like the original as much as I thought I did, or if I was just having a flat month. But I persisted, when possibly I should not have. Eventually I ended up at Week 4, most least disliked for the month.

So now I have attempted another edit, this time I went a little off track, just for the fun of it. Let my imagination run wild.


I thought for something different I would go through the thought process behind this image.

  1. I wanted to take it into Topaz Impressions to give it a Painterly feel, I was thinking Monet (I adore Monet), but instead I ended up with Cezanne (I like his too).
  2. Then I attached it to a botched canvas image I have and masked out some of the corners to act as the ‘canvas’
  3. Then I thought it looks like a painting, perhaps I should put it on an easel. So I went looking for am image of an easel.
  4. I  do this thing with my hands sometimes, pretend to mould and or paint something I am working on, this kind of got me thinking that the I could put the easel in my hand.
  5. So I put the easel on the hand and ran that through Topaz Impression, I used a Painterly effect and tweaked the settings.
  6. Something about it reminded me a little of Van Gough’s Starry Starry Night, so I added a abstract night/stars image I have and applied a Van Gough Filter to that as well (Topaz Impressions).
  7. I then masked a few areas out on the hand and painting, creating a glow around the hand.
  8. Added a slight drop shadow around the painting, then added my Moon Dreaming watermark.

I love the whole effect, but I still don’t like the original image much! Oh Well, there is always January’s edit.

To see the original 4 edits you can visit here.

Til next time, happy snapping………



Photoshop Artistry – Part 6

Well, that’s it, I am finished. Mind you I will be back from time to time, brush up, re watch videos and stuff. The best thing about this course is they are always adding more tutorials, videos and bonus extras. Just recently I found a whole heap of new tutorials on Topaz Impressions, which is great as I have just recently started using Topaz Labs!

Anyway here are my last few assignment pieces;

Challenge 24  – Creative Advertising
Challenge 25  – A Beloved Pet
Challenge 26  – Designing a 2-Page Magazine Spread
Challenge 27  – Create Promotional Images for an Emerging Artist

I think I still want to re visit a few challenges that I have already completed. It’s only now after completing the course and I have put this new found knowledge into action that I can really feel myself ‘growing’ as an artist. As per usual we are our own worst enemy, but I feel so inspired to try new avenues, mediums and techniques. I feel that mixed media is something of great interest and I will be dabbling and displaying some more images soon.

I will soon be creating my new website and online Portfolio. I will keep you updated.



2 Horses, 1 day of Magic – Revisited with Photoshop Magic

A fellow Blogger, Tom von Kapherr from Back Home in Bromont, wrote an interesting post, with some truly lovely images of a model with some horses; 3 Horses, 1 day of Magic. I love horses and these images sparked something creative in me I guess and I presumptuously offered to create some photoshop magic on a couple of them (only half jokingly). Tom liked the idea and sent over a few images, so I guess we have a collaboration in the mix, original images by Tom von Kapherr and Post Production done by Me! Hence the ‘Moon Dreaming’ logo on two – which I altered considerably! Of course they are still Tom’s photos, but now I guess they are mine too 🙂

I wanted to create a soft dreamy feel to them, which I did in version 1, then I took them a step further and brought in a fantasy type feel, with different forests (one in Australia & one is Free stock photo). One I warmed up dramatically (the model looked quite cold lol) the other I added a further haziness and dreamy quality.

I always worry about going too far, or not far enough with someone else’s images, my vision, may not match theirs (often it does not) and I do not want them to feel I did not like their images; of course I do, they sparked something to begin with! It’s so nice to get images that I would normally never get to play with, and with the photographers blessing to fiddle with the images.

So thank you Tom, it was wonderful, I hope you like them……………I hope to collaborate with you, and perhaps other photographers again soon. Don’t forget to visit Tom’s BHIB Page for more wonderful images.

Til next time, happy snapping……….