Lois Reynolds Mead

Art and a pink monkeyflower in a native plant garden…


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Heart day…

Husband gave me a four-pack…chocolate hearts, just like Paris…from an artisanal chocolatier in San Francisco… happened to be cleaning out the side board so placed the chocolates on old-timely hand painted plates with lots of flowers…played with iPhone apps…cinnamon hazelnut praline, caramel with passion fruit, caramel with strawberry, and caramel with lavender…Happy Valentines Day!

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Moved on…

We moved from Florence to a vineyard between Montalcino and Buonconvento. The only wifi is at one restaurant so I cannot blog except to check in tonight and wipe the pasta sauce off the iPad.
This is our place

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Not, really, we are in the apartment down below

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Terry likes his car

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This is what we look at

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I will tell you all about our day trips when I get home…they have been amazing!


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Traveling companion…

On our recent road trip to Canada through Oregon and Washington, I took along a travel journal that I made as a result of taking an on-line class from Mary Ann Moss (her blog is here). The class was called Remains of the Day and the book has a soft cover made from scraps of fabric and has pages of scrap papers sewn together using a sewing machine. The fun thing was that on our second stop my niece, Katura, gave me a bag she had gotten from a street vendor and it was the perfect size and an incredibly coordinating fabric with the book, which then got to travel the rest of the way in style in it’s own little container.

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What did I learn from this soft travel companion?
1. When you are my age and you drive six hours on a day, run around and see all the sights that you can, find dinner and then settle in to journal or blog, it is probably not going to happen. I finished blogging about the trip two weeks after I got home and three weeks later I am just now finishing up the journal.
2. I wish I had figured out before the trip that the Diptic app creates a great size image for the size of this journal (6×9). I thought I would use 4″x4″ images but when I started glueing things in I needed some to be smaller in order to fit more. If you create a four box image in Diptic each image is 2″x2″ and they can be cut out individually or cut in a horizontal or vertical strip depending on the kind of pocket you want to slip them in. Wish I had created a Diptic image each evening of the four best shots of the day so they were all ready to print when I got home. My journaling would have been faster. So now I know.

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Maps and brochures fit in clear sheet protectors sewn so they are pockets. I do not think this journal will ever be complete, I see myself adding things forever.
The point of this journal was to chronicle what we saw and visited, but now I am working on one that is strictly going to be visual. Another Mary Ann Moss class (called Full Tilt Boogie). I am behind, of course, so although the class has now completed I just finished my first book today. Found a really ratty Victorian photo album on eBay for cheap (the wooden frame inside the cover velvet fell out when I removed it from the photo frames-what is that horsehair it was padded with?) Anyway, recovered it, made a page block, and made a closure because only half the clasp still remained. Light pencil writing indicated it was given to someone on Christmas 1891. Couldn’t save the name, but wanted to keep the date visible. Now to fill it…

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iPhone Photo Friday…

A day late for Friday (seem to be having trouble with schedules) but I did get a new battery for my watch (that I haven’t looked at since I retired a year and a half ago). I am somewhat conscious of getting things done on time…

I went to get my haircut again and my friend Betty had changed her window display to an antique mannequin that included opera glasses and ballet slippers. She says it is her homage to “Black Swan” and has a little twinge of Valentine’s Day thrown in. I thought the image lent itself to experimentation with a newish app I have call iDarkroom. The app includes nice textures (canvas and sand) and bokeh effects as well as multiple colorizing filters and frames. Betty’s window is very small and there was too much glare from the glass if I was outside. I tried to go all the way from the top of the mannequin to the shoes but there was not much room to maneuver. I loved her concept, though, so I did my best with the room I had.

I thought it needed more cropping, but then I lost the shoes.

This is the canvas texture and grunge effect in the iDarkroom app.

The black frame from iDarkroom and the “faded” filter with canvas and grunge effect.

Bokeh effect…

The vivid filter in iDarkroom.

The Diptic app with its black frame…

and its white frame with a finishing pass through PicGrunger to tone down the white.

My variations on a theme, or maybe theme and variations on an etude or pas de deux across the stage…


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August/Fun…

I went to talk with the director of the local community arts organization about teaching some art classes for kids in the winter and spring and I had a great idea when I got home. I needed to send him an email describing what I thought the classes should entail and I wanted to illustrate some projects. I didn’t want to load down the email with lots of images and sometimes it is difficult for me to send more than two photo attachments at a time and I didn’t want to send more than one email. It dawned on me that the iPhone was my best friend and it solved my problem. The Diptic app was the solution because I could create one image with four sections:

Top left is a one page instant book. One sheet of paper is printed on the computer and then folded into a book with eight pages. Top right is an accordion book made from a map with pockets that hold small photos and it has playing card covers. Behind that is a water-color accordion book with pop ups and windows. It has paste paper covers. Bottom left is a rolled up scroll book and bottom right is the scroll book open. It has a conglomeration of types of papers and small prints of my iPhone photos. I have all sorts of empty handmade books I’ve made over the years. I never filled them until I started taking iPhone photos and needed a place for all the little test prints I was accumulating. Now my books are getting filled. Such fun…maybe I will progress to putting some words in the books, too.