Archive for August, 2008

After declaring my incipient breakup with Photoshop, I realize I can't really live without it.

How else would I be able to put my huge ass landscape photos together?  My camera can't take the cool wide angle shots so I take photo after photo and stick it all together like fucking magic.

Now I just have to find a good printing place so I can mat and frame. 

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So a while back, a couple of friends and I went on vacation in Scotland.  Like…back in May.  And I am just now getting around to editing photos to make them prettier.  I am so lazy, DAMN.

Problem is, I've already uploaded an asstonload o' pics to Flickr.  The thought of going through my memory card, opening a photo in Photoshop, editing editing then editing some more, and then save the photo to re-upload to Flickr gives me an attack of the lazies.

So I decided to give Flickr's cool little widget Picnik a try.  I thought it would suck, especially since I'm using the free version. 

Dude. Picnik is kind of awesome. Easy to use, has all the settings/tools you need to edit photos (crop, rotate, brightness/contrast with some advanced settings, color/saturation) plus a cool feature where you can add effects like the one I used below (vignette – where you get that faded out border arond the photo).  The free version of Picnik has things like changing your photo to B&W, sepia tone, get a vignette effect, etc.  If you upgrade, you get MORE options.  I'm considering upgrading.

I bring you proof:

This is the original Photo.  It's nice, right?  I mean, it's decent.  Pretty and all that.  But it's missing something. It's missing OOMPH.

This is the Picniked photo.  Now that's more like it!

Another sample

Original photo, un-retouched.

Picniked Photo


Aaand another (ok, really, I'm just bragging now)


What's cool is that the photos can be saved at a high enough resolution that even when printed out and blown up to an 8×10, it still looks fantastic.  I liked them so much I went ahead and ordered prints for framing and picked up in an hour at the Target that is 5 mins away from the house.  Later that afternoon, I had 8 framed and matted photographs to display…

…which my mom immediately loved and stole.  They're all gonna hang on the walls of the condo in the Philippines. THANKS MOM.

Sorry, Photoshop.  Now I'm only gonna use you for serious re-touching action.  Otherwise, it's Picnik all the way!

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My jaw dropped to the ground after watching this and this.  I'm still reeling – sweet god almighty.

Even if you're not familiar with either Final Fantasy or Dead or Alive, watch themanyway.  I mean, holy FUCKING shit.   These are completely fan made – done out of love and affection and utter devotion.  montyoum, whoever you are, you are a goddamned genius and I wish to bear your extra geeky and brilliantly talented children.

I love Final Fantasy – loved the series since it was released for the original Nintendo box with the cute little sprites with like…6 colors.  Seriously, I'm fucking obsessed with the series – no matter how shitty the story line, no matter how repetitive, no matter that we're up to Final Fantasy MMCCXXVIII or whatever the hell.   Doesn't matter.  I even bought the Disney-SqueEnix mashup called Kingdom Hearts because it had some of my favorite FF characters. 

But, I always thought the female characters were weak. So.damn.weak.  I mean that pretty literally: they are usually the characters that not only take a million hours to build up to a decent level, they have semi-lame weaponry, and  cheesetastic ultimate-kill skills.    Why couldn't the girls be more…oh, I don't know, awesome?  Why couldn't they bring it?

Then I got into fighting games.  (Thanks, Daphne, for introducing me to the magic of The King of Fighters.Oh man, that shit is classic.)  Finally, FINALLY, girls that can kick ass and take names.

Except…man. Misogynistic much?  No matter how awesome a fighting game, no matter how physically powerful the women were, you get your two – and only two! – choices:  the dominatrix, or the cute little girl.  Double D breasticles or training bras.  Fully clothed in pink, or nearly naked in leather.  But they do have one thing in common: no story line to speak of.

Why can't I have the best of both worlds? Why doesn't montyoum have a software company that can make me this game?  Why why why?

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