Poetic Winter Photography Challenge: Solitude
There’s nothing I find more freeing in life than solitude.
During those treasured moments of reflection and silence, my heart beats its loudest, my mind is free of noise and my eyes become clear.
And the muddy waters of ugliness in our world recede, revealing a beauty like no other.
I slipped away for a few hours the other day in search of solitude. I needed to be alone, to think, to quiet my soul. I headed for one of my favorite spots – Roby Lake, nestled deep within the Mark Twain National Forest here in small town Missouri.
It’s a quiet little spot, the perfect place to be still.
The perfect place to map out life’s direction, to be inspired. The perfect place to seek the truth.
Because in the midst of solitude, our distorted view of the world -and ourselves- falls away, revealing a beauty like no other.
Freebie and Photography Tutorial/Tip of the Week
Each week in the Poetic Winter Photography Challenge, we’ll bring you tutorials, tips, discounts and a fabulous freebie. This week’s freebie is a lovely, limited edition texture created exclusively for our photo challenge participants by none other than Kristy from Life-n-Reflection. Her shop is a hub of photography, design and texture inspiration. Simply click the image below to download the free texture.
Textures are amazing tools that have the power to really enhance your photos; taking them from drab to fab in minutes. With the help of photo editing programs like Photoshop Elements, textures deliver endlessly creative image-enhancing possibilities.
Using textures to enhance your photographs is a lot easier than you’d think.
Simply open your image and texture in a photo editing program, like Photoshop Elements. Drag your texture file onto your original image to add it as a layer and re-size your texture layer so it completely covers your image. Adjust the blend mode of your texture layer in the layer palette and experiment with different blend modes; adjusting opacity levels until you’ve achieved a desirable effect. Flatten your image in the layers menu and save.
The end result is a fabulous, subtly enhanced image.
(Mouse over to compare before and after images.)
Head on over to Kristy’s blog to see how the texture master herself created photo magic with this week’s freebie texture. And if you’d like more in-depth, step-by-step instruction on using textures to enhance your photographs, see my easy-to-follow texture tutorial.
Exclusive Discounts From Our Sponsors
Thanks to the following sponsors for partnering with us to bring you these fabulous deals; created exclusively for Poetic Winter Photo Challenge participants and valid throughout the month of February.
ClickinMoms is a community where artists, hobbyists and professional women photographers connect and learn from and with each other. Enjoy a 7-day free trial discount to the ClickinMoms forum with discount code RKAFTRIAL. Additionally, receive 10% off the lovely actions/presets sold in the ClickinMoms store with discount code RKAF10.
AdoramaPix is a great source for fine quality photo prints, photo books and all your photo finishing needs. Discount code pxwinpb15 gets you 15% off your next photo book order.
My Four Hens is your one-stop shop for Photoshop actions and more. Use discount code m4hfun30 for 30% off your next purchase.
Simply Photography e-classes are perfect for women on the go. Make the big switch from auto to manual shooting, learn how to photograph the children in your life and more with Simply Photography. Click here to receive the special discounted rate of $40 for any spring class.
I’m teaming up with Rebecca of Bumbles and Light, Alicia of Project Alicia and Faith of Sweet Violet for the Poetic Winter Photography Challenge – an inspiring 4-week photo challenge aimed at capturing the poetic beauty of winter through photography.
Just a few details:
All are welcome regardless of skill level, time commitment and geographic location.
Each Friday, we’ll have freebies, discounts to some of the hottest photography resources, photography tips and inspirational quotes or poems to get your creative photography juices flowing.
Share your favorite images inspired by the weekly prompt. The linky will remain open from 9am Friday – 9am Thursday CST. Link directly to your Poetic Winter blog post or Flickr photo, not your blog’s home page or Flickr Photostream.
Feel free to share your photos in our Poetic Winter Flickr Group as well and don’t forget to visit and comment on the previous entry in the linky list.
This time around, we’ll be pinning our favorite photos to the Poetic Winter Pinterest Board. Not on Pinterest and need an invite? Let me know in the comments section and I’ll be more than happy to send you one.
And last, but not least, don’t forget to grab our lovely button.