We pose for each other all the time,

offering our best, our most attractive side,

our best self,

hoping people will like us.

But we’re so many things.

We are quiet and loud and sexy and ugly

and smart and dumb and loving and spiteful.

All of which doesn’t play on camera,

but that’s the thing.

You can tell a contrived image a mile away,

but a shred of honesty

circles the globe.

Show yourself today.

Stay you =)

From Selfie to Saber Master, or Fun with Digital Art

Screen Shot 2015-06-25 at 12.56.02 PM

Hello friends,

I hope this note finds you well!

Today, we will walk through how to turn your average selfie pic into an epic Star Wars spectacular.

Things you will need: smart phone, Camera + app (or comparable Samsung equivalent), mirror, adequate lighting, and robe (the one featured here can be purchased at Robe Factory via Amazon).

First, we begin with a bathroom mirror and a smart phone.

Second, take a selfie. Note: the photo shown here is not even my own picture, but rather one taken by Mrs. Alyse Pierce, an amazingly talented model and overall cool person, and shared with her express permission.

Third, add the desired filter. (I used the “Emo” filter to get the nifty shadows and strong contrast shown here.)

Fourth, email the retouched photo to yourself and start up your computer.

Fifth, download GIMP onto said computer. What is GIMP? “GIMP is the GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed piece of software for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring.” (GIMP website) It is available for both Mac and PC, is completely safe, and completely free. This is the program you will use to add the desired lightsaber effect.

Sixth, follow the instructions provided here by Micah Matt via Youtube. I personally own a Mac, but could follow his Windows instructions easily enough. What you will essentially be doing is creating two different background layers with varying degrees of blur and then changing the color saturation on those backgrounds so that your newly created white saber transforms into any color blade you want.

Seventh, export the GIMP .xcf file into a more user-friendly .jpg or .png file.

Eight, share and savor the fruit of your labors.

That’s it! You made it! I’m pretty green myself, yet this nifty technique only took me an hour or so to pick up. So, adventure, experiment, and I pray your edits turn out ABSOLUTELY AWESOME.

Blessings to you in Christ,