Sunset Portrait

Some of my first portraits of the year! 

I'm pretty happy with how they turned out! I can't wait to do more, it was super fun. I'm happy to say Photoshop is getting easier. I'm liking it so far!

Check out my Instagram for regular posts!

-Penny

Expanding My Niche

A couple posts ago I listed some of the reasons why I think you should try out photography, in it I said that it's flexible to where you can try out multiple niches to find what you like most. Today I'm sharing with you my favorite niche and one I'm working towards!

A lot of dog photos, and then some!

My niche has mostly been animal photography, and by animal, I mean dogs, lots and lots of dogs (Definitely can't tell they're my favorite animal, right?). Dogs are so fun to photograph! I love it.

Portrait photography, the next adventure.

Although photographing dogs is my absolute favorite, the last few months I've started to take pictures of people! I've really liked it so far, just have to get more practice. I probably would've started taking pictures of people sooner but if I'm honest, it's kind of intimidating. After I've photographed people more I'll probably be laughing at how hesitant I'm being! I've been watching a lot of YouTube videos about portrait photography and they've given me a lot of good ideas/inspiration! I'll hopefully get to try out some of my ideas soon. Wish me luck!

What are some of your favorite things to photograph? Do you have a different niche you're wanting to try out?

-Penny

Photography Blogs & YouTube Channels You HAVE To Check Out

Hey guys!

Today I'd like to share with you most visited photography blogs plus YouTube channels! They're great and I know you're going to love them as much as I do.

Click it Up a Notch

This is the first photography blog I had ever read when I first started. Courtney has fantastic tutorials and photos!

Clickin Moms

Okay now this is the real deal. By far my absolute favorite! Their tutorials are amazing and I love all the different photographers that post there! You have to check them out.

Cole's Classroom

I just found this site and I love it! They have great tutorials and have downloadable presets. Give them a look!

Highlight Your Wrinkles Photography

They have a great YouTube channel, a lot of behind the scenes of her photoshoots! I love behind the scenes videos, I think they're very helpful and give good insight on posing, angles, use of landscape/props, etc.

Phlearn

Whenever I have a question on how to do something Photoshop related, I go to them. They are fantastic at explaining things and have a tutorial for just about everything! 

I hope you check these out! Comment below your favorite blogs and/or YouTube channels!

-Penny

Sarah from My English Shadow!

Hello Everybody!

Other photographer's insight can be pretty beneficial and fun, I'm excited to say I'm interviewing the lovely Sarah from MyEnglishShadow today! Keep reading to get a glimpse of her thoughts and advice. 

 

  • Sarah, What got you into photography?

 

"I remember my true passion for photography beginning in 4th grade when I got my first pet, a spunky rabbit I named Clover. I spent hours and hours over the next few years following her around trying to get the perfect shot. (With a point and shoot camera, of course). And it really just took off from there, wherever I went I was always taking pictures of animals and nature."

 

  • What do you like most about taking pictures?

 

"Capturing moments exactly as I see them. I've done a lot of drawing and painting in the past and was always frustrated at not being able to recreate as realistically as I saw it. Photography allows me to capture things just as stunningly as I see them."

 

  • Do you have a favorite lens?

 

"Definitely the 60mm. Love the bokeh and short depth of field it creates."

 

  • Do you have a piece of advice someone has given you that has helped you?

 

"Learn about light and how it works - essentially how to make it work for you in different situations!"

 

  • Canon or Nikon?

 

"I don't know if I could make that choice right now. This is actually something I've been debating as I am finally in the market for a camera for myself. I've been using my brother's dslrs for years - Nikon & Sony. And before that I used a Canon. All have pros and cons. I think it depends on what you are looking for and what you will be shooting."

 

  • What editing platform do you prefer?

 

"Definitely Lightroom. I also like to use Photoshop on occasion to take some photos further with editing."

 

  • What advice would you give someone just beginning in photography?

 

"Take as many photos as you can. Of different subjects, angles, lighting. Find tutorials online. Try it all. Find what you like and what works for you!"

 

  • Describe your editing style.

 

"I prefer to edit photos minimally, just adjusting shadows and brightness mostly but occasionally I go further. I like to make them feel light and warm. Sometimes I'll add in sun or a flare to help achieve that feeling."

 

  • If you had to shoot only one photography niche for the rest of your life, (landscape, portraits, animals, fashion, etc.) what would it be and why?

 

"Animals! They have always been a favorite to photograph. I love trying to capture their personality and quirks. Landscape and nature would be a close second but it doesn't give me the same feeling as when I capture the perfect photo of an animal!"

 

  • Do you have any unusual things you like to carry in your camera bag and what is their purpose?

 

"I usually just carry the camera, lenses that I know I want to use, and a cleaning kit. But occasionally I'll throw a ball in, helps to get multiple dogs looking at me at the same time. Although a stick works well too if I forget the ball!"

 

  • Are you partial to a specific subject/pose?

 

"My fluffy partner in crime, Xena is the subject I am most partial to. My favorite pose of her is a head tilt with a bit of tongue out. She took to modeling so easily and will tilt her head on cue - it's become our go to pose! I think it's my favorite because it really captures her sweet nature."

 

  • What is your dream photoshoot? Include every detail!

 

"I always dream about a field full of flowers at sunrise to shoot Xena and Orion in. But my actual dream photoshoot would be of a stunning Friesian or Lusitano horse at sunrise in a field of purple flowers with mountains in the distance and maybe a stream nearby..."

 

I enjoyed learning Sarah's favorite things about photography, it gave me some new ideas, I hope it gives you ideas as well!

 

Be sure to follow her on Instagram for gorgeous photos!

 

-Penny

Photoshop, the next venture.

I've started learning photoshop...again! I tried to learn it last summer, but kinda failed in the sense that I got frustrated, busy, and altogether uninterested in learning it. 

The last week I've been a bit unhappy with the way my editing was looking.  All the things I'm wanting to do, I can't with Lightroom, so I started watching YouTube videos on Photoshop!

I actually didn't think that Photoshop came with the plan I have, so when I logged in and saw it there I was so happy! It made my day, lol.

The past couple days I've been watching videos and writing a lot of notes. I edited my first picture with it today. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. Can't wait to learn more and start using it!

Check out my Instagram for regular posts and updates!

-Penny

Recipe For Friendship

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Friendship is such a blessing, that being said there's a lot that goes into a friendship. Here are a few things that are important.

Loving.

Being loving is very important. You have the power to show love, to make someone else feel good, use it. If you're in any kind of relationship and they aren't being loving, for example, constantly being rude or verbal abuse. That is not being loving and you need to get out of it or confront the problem.

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. -1 Peter 4:8

Forgiving.

Forgiveness is hard, but super important. You can't move forward in a relationship if you have bitterness and hold a grudge. You also do more harm to yourself than the person that hurt you. Really no one is perfect and there's going to be times where we ourselves even mess up and we'll  want forgiveness as well.

And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” -Mark 11:25

Edifying.

An edifying friend helps you grow as a person, be an encouragement, suggests a good book, video, music, and bible verses! 

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. -Ephesians 4:29

Honest.

Honesty is key! A good friend is honest, will give their good opinion whether you like it or not, will let you know whenever you need to change your attitude, give advice on how to fix a problem, and tell you whenever you should really not eat that fifth doughnut, lol.

Pray for us. We are sure that we have a clear conscience and desire to live honorably in every way. -Hebrews 13:18

Steadfast.

A friend that is steadfast and will stick with you through the good and bad times is one to hold on to. This goes along with forgiveness, you need to forgive to remain steadfast and not be bitter. If you're  steadfast in the Lord, then being steadfast with the people in your life will come easier.

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.                -1 Corinthians 15:58

Be this friend.

Even if you have friends that don't have all the qualities you'd like them to have, you should try and be this friend. Everyone needs one, and who knows, you might even inspire someone to be more loving, more forgiving, more edifying, etc. 

 

-Penny

Dog Photography - Tips and Tricks

  

I've been photographing dogs for over a year and I thought I'd compile a list of tips and tricks that I've learned!

Treats are a safe bet to get attention.

Always, always, have treats handy. The dog you're photographing may or may not want to pay attention. Having a treat in hand will help get them focused and make it more enjoyable for them, I've never seen a dog not be happy over food, lol. 

You want cute head tilts and focused looks, right?

I can't resist a head tilt, I mean who can???

Squeaker toys work fantastically! If you have a helper make sure they're directly behind you (if that's where you want the dog looking.) when they squeak the toy! Otherwise the dog won't be looking the way you want and you might miss your head tilt. 

Speaking of squeaker toys, one of our favorite Instagram accounts suggested taking out the actual squeaker and putting it in your lips then blow through it! Easy and hands free. I love this method because the dogs don't see it coming and it makes for cute expressions!

We've tried out duck calls too, it worked alright but not as affective!

If you have a helper, have them stand behind you and throw something in the air (treat bags work great!). 

This next one is a last resort. If all else fails make really weird noises with your mouth. I know, it's embarrassing, but it's all worth it when you get a head tilt out of it! So don't be afraid to be goofy. Just a side note, if you're being goofy and having a good time, the subject and whoever else is with you will too. Whistling also works pretty good too!

Put your happy pants on!

I cannot express this enough. Be happy!!! Under no circumstances lose your cool and get impatient, because then it will all go downhill. If you're happy, the dog will be too, and so will their owner. If the dog doesn't know you then set aside a couple minutes to let it relax and feel comfortable around you before you start! If the dog isn't behaving or simply isn't paying attention then take a break, let it run around, play with it, anything! It will help tremendously and it will help you too. Attitudes are contagious, make sure yours is a good one! 

Angles and composition matter!

When photographing dogs always get eye level with them! I even like going way below eye level sometimes and including the grass/sand/snow in the foreground to add depth! Getting eye level or lower (Don't ever go below eye level with people! Just talking about dogs/animals here.) is way more pleasing to look at than if you were standing and taking a picture above them. This is excluding the head shots directly above that shows off the puppy dog eyes of course, then it's fine. 

Helpers? You mean life savers.

You can do it by yourself, sure, but having a helper is going to save you a ton of stress. They are your extra set of hands you wish you had when you're by yourself! They can help position dogs where they need to be, they help brainstorm ideas for last minute shots, they can run and move that twig that is obstructing the view, and most importantly, they can squeak the squeaker for you when you're hands are full, lol! Seriously, they are the best kind of friend because you can both laugh afterwards at the things you have to do for that shot. 

 

That's all!

These are things I have had and like to use everytime I go shoot.  I hope you find them helpful!

 

-Penny

 

 

 

New Year, New Goals.

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2016 was so great! I had new experiences, spent a a lot of time with people I care about, met new friends, and had so much fun improving my photography!

One thing I didn't do this past year was keep up with my blog. I wasn't organized at all. I really wanted to blog, but had some writers block here and there. To be honest I think I got really overwhelmed. 

It was the same story with my Instagram page until a few months ago. Now that I'm more organized in the Instagram department I'm ready to get my blog up and running the way it should be!

One of my goals for this year is to have a post written and ready to go each week this year. I started writing down all the posts I want to write and I'm pretty excited about them!

Another one of my goals this year is to have more confidence and not stress if things don't turn out the way I planned, because in the end God is in control, He knows best, He isn't going to let me fall, and whatever happens is in His hands.

I hope your 2017 will be a year to remember, full of laughter, the things you love, and success!

-Penny

 

My Favorites - November & December

Some of my favorite pictures I've taken over the last two months!

Adorable bandana by Max Makes Bandanas!

Thank you for checking out this blog post!

-Penny

5 Reasons Why You Should Try Photography

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I started taking pictures with a Nikon DSLR in January of 2014 and haven't stopped since! It is a fantastic hobby that I enjoy a lot. I actually decided this summer that I wanted to pursue photography as a profession in the near future!

A few reasons why I think photography is a good hobby and why you should try it are:

It promotes good decision making!

You have to decide the location to shoot, what time of day is best for a shoot in that situation, what subject you're going to photograph, how you want the subject to pose (or not.), how you want the overall picture to look like afterwards, and many other things.

It makes you practice patience!

You might have a subject that just by golly is not wanting to cooperate. You can't get upset because if you are, they are too. Another example is if you are photographing a sunset/sunrise or are needing certain natural light, you have to wait for it. Before I started taking photos I was a bit impatient and photography has helped me learn to be patient and wait for the right moment to come along. 

Two words. Problem solving. 

It makes you think outside the box a lot! I can't tell you how many times I've had to throw a piece of cow pie or pinecones in a direction for the dog to look and perk it's ears. You have to improvise so much in some situations. At one point I was taking indoor photos and needed that extra bit of light. So my friends and I ended up wrapping tin foil over a big piece of card stock and curving it around the light fixture to direct the light towards the subject!

Exercises commitment and creativity. 

To be good at this you have to work at it. Nobody is going to be perfect the first time around, and really if we're honest we won't ever be the best because there will always be something to learn and improve on. Things can only get better the more you work on it! Also it makes you think creatively. Creativity is like a muscle, you have to use it for it to get stronger! Creativity is a big part of photography because that's how your photos will stand out in the crowd and what will make your picture memorable.

It's so flexible!

You want to do landscapes? You can! Portraits or food photography? You can do that too! There are so many different areas to explore. Night photography is especially fun! Don't be afraid to try out new areas because you just might find something you love! Even if you don't have a camera, you can still do photography with your phone. I've seen some really pretty photos come from an iPhone and a clip on lens or even without the lens, so don't let that stop you!

 

There you go! Five reasons why I think you should try out photography. 

 

Thank you for reading. Check out my Instagram for regular posts!

-Penny

It Was Freezing

It was so cold! So cold my lens kept fogging up. I couldn't figure out why until I realized it was because of my breath. Seems like that was the theme of the morning too. Fog that was actually dog breath, lol!

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Tiger always looks so serious in photos and I have no idea why.  Believe it or not he is so happy-go-lucky! You can't ever catch him in a bad mood. 

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Ike gets so jealous when he isn't in the direct line of attention (i.e. I'm taking pictures of Tiger instead of him.), he's so needy lol! We're working on the trick "Sit Pretty" now.  He's starting to figure out what I'm wanting so it's going well. He loves learning new tricks.

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I created a new watermark.  I made a different one because the "D" didn't relate to anything anymore (I used it on a previous blog). I'm so happy with this one!

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I hope you enjoy these pictures!

Did you know I was on Twitter? Check it out if you'd like!

-Penny

Three Things You Need To Believe About Yourself

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Number One

You are good enough.

You can do whatever you want to if you set your mind to it. Sure, it might not be easy but by golly if you want something you have to work for it. It's easy to be discouraged or want to quit when the journey gets tuff or an obstacle pops up but you have to push through it.  

God has the power to do anything, He made you, right?! So trust Him and go try this thing you're wanting to do. God's going to help you, whether He opens this door for you or guides you to a better opportunity by closing that particular door, He's got this! You have the courage and strength inside of you to try. It's going to work out even if it's not in the way you pictured it!

God sent His only son, Jesus, to earth to sacrifice Himself for us so that we may have life and opportunities and families. Most importantly, to have a life that gives the glory to Him so our sins can be forgiven through Christ.

He has a plan for you so believe you're good enough because if you weren't Jesus wouldn't have died for you

You go and work for whatever you want to do, God will help along the way.

Number Two

You're beautiful just the way you are.

First of all God thinks you are amazing, inside and out. He literally thinks you're to die for. 

Social media and our culture feeds us the constant message of what they conceive beauty to be, but have we thought of how God conceives beauty? God believes real beauty comes from the heart, being kind, loving, nurturing, a good servant to others, and humble, are a few of the characteristics that make someone beautiful. That is the kind of beauty we should strive for, it's the kind of beauty that will last your hole life. When you remember people, what do you remember most about them? Do you remember how good their hair looked that day? Or maybe how on point their makeup was? Those things don't stand out as much as how they acted towards you and others. For a lot of people they remember how somebody acts and how they treated those around them, so being kind, humble, serving, etc, is always a good idea.

I'm not saying that making yourself look nice, putting on makeup, or wearing cute clothes isn't something we shouldn't do, I'm saying that we probably shouldn't base your self worth off of these things entirely.

You are beautiful and fearfully made (Psalm 139:14) and shouldn't let anyone tell you otherwise. 

God made you and thinks you're wonderful. Anyone who says you're not as pretty as them have self esteem issues and feel they have to pull someone down or make someone feel bad about themselves to make them feel better.

Bottom line is God made you and you're one good looking person.

Number Three

Be yourself.

You don't have to act a certain way to fit in. In fact, God doesn't want you to fit in with the rest of the world, He wants you to be just as He intended you to be and represent Him in the best possible way. Fitting in isn't all bad, it's okay to want to match your BFF or something like that, I'm saying when you actually have to change your morals to fit in isn't a good thing. Being you is important. If you can't be yourself in a group of certain individuals then most likely those aren't the people you should be around or trying to win approval from.

God made you with your own personality and different quirks so you should express it! If the people around you can't see the beauty in your personality then they aren't worth you trying to make them like you, you will constantly feel exhausted and empty. Nobody can be like you, no one.

True friends aren't going to make you change your morals or make you feel less.

Do not sacrifice your values for someone who has none

Attitudes are contagious. Whoever you're around the most is who is going to impact you, and you'll start acting like them. If you hang around somebody that resembles Eoyor then guess how you're going to start feeling? Depressed, Stressed out, and all together unhappy.

So surround yourself with people that are encouraging, loving, and of good character. People that's going to lift you up and not drag you down. Find someone that will keep you accountable to be the best you, you can be!

A good rule of thumb is:

Be yourself,

Be uplifting to others,

Be joyful,

Be a good servant,

Smiling is always a good decision! 

 


Need Some Happy Songs?

I got you covered. Here's 10 songs that are pretty light hearted and fun!

Good To Be Alive by Meghan Trainor

Every Bit Of Lovely by Jamie Grace

Dancing In The Dark by Rihanna

Red Balloon by Charli XCX

Happy by Pharrell Williams

Better When I'm Dancin' by Meghan Trainor

Classic by MKTO

Geronimo by Sheppard

La Da Dee by Cody Simpson

Dancin' In The Rain by Shane Harper

 

Hope you enjoyed these! 

 

-Penny

My Favorite Instagram Accounts

Hey guys!

Instagram is an experience I've been a part of for a little over a year now and I love it! I like getting to see other people's photography and there are a lot of fun accounts that inspire me so I thought I'd share 7 of my top favorites with you today.

Her photography is amazing not to mention her artwork! I love how bright and adorable her photos are.

Her account is fantastic! I love how creative and cute her photos are and they inspire me a lot.

Their dogs are such cuties! They're one of the first accounts I saw when I came on Instagram and continue to be one of my favorites.

Her photography is gorgeous! One of my favorite horse accounts. She also does some pretty amazing farm animal portraits as well.

Her portraits are so pretty and inspiring! I love how she edits her photos. 

This account and blog is amazing. She posts adorable and stylish clothing inspiration that's modest!

This account is my all time favorite and her photos never cease to amaze me. I love how she edits and her subjects are so beautiful!

 

What are your favorite Instagram account(s)? I'd love to know in the comments below!

 

Check out these instagrammers and I hope you enjoy your weekend!

 

-Penny

Mules, Horses, and Family

Over the Fourth of July some of my family came for a visit! My cousin Pink Einstein wasn't able to come the year before so I was so excited that she got to come this year! We had such a good time. It was especially fun this time because now that we're older we can go places and have photoshoots on our own.

We took pictures of our mules and horses, our little sisters, and some of our dogs! 

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It was pretty cute, the horses loved Pink Einstein! They were constantly following her around and nudging her. Haha. 

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I can't wait for next time we get together! I loved the awesome music, the laughs and inside jokes, #AttitudeAnimalSquad, and of course the photoshoots. 

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Thanks for reading and don't forget to check out my cousins blog!

-Penny

DIY Scarf Camera Strap!

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Hey guys!

Over 4th of July weekend my cousin and I decided to do a collab! She has her post up so be sure and check out her Camera Filter DIY

Today I'm going to show you all how to make a camera strap cover out of a scarf that is super easy! 

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Supplies needed will be a scarf (I purchased mine at Walmart but any kind will work!) along with a needle and thread (You could also use a sewing machine if you wish!) 

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First thing you will need to do is cut your scarf to where you just have a rectangle, if your scarf isn't an infinity scarf then you can skip this step. I ended up cutting my scarf into a 3ft long rectangle because it was going to be too long. Next you're going to fold over an inch worth of fabric twice at the end and pin in place.

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Loosely stitch across the top of the fold until you reach the end.

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Once you reach the end DO NOT knot it yet! Gather the fabric and then knot. Repeat on the opposite end.

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Next fold your rectangle in half long ways with wrong sides out and stitch the sides together. When you reach the end turn inside out and slip it over your camera strap, you're done!

This is so simple to make and is very easy to customize to your liking! 

I hope you liked this DIY! Don't forget to check out my cousin's part of the collab over at Pink Einstein

-Penny

Puppies in May

Hey Guys!

I loved this litter! The majority of these puppies are at their new homes now. These are probably my favorite photos from our last photoshoot with them.

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I am so excited Kristyn is keeping this little girl! She is the sweetest puppy ever and you'll definitely be seeing more of her on my Instagram in the future!

 

Don't forget to check out Kristyn's website! She raises Golden Retrievers/English Cream Retrievers and the puppies photographed above are hers.

 

Thank you for checking out this blog post!

 

-Penny

Meet Tiger

Hello!

Today I would like to introduce the newest member of my family, Tiger. He isn't that new anymore since we've had him for five months, give or take but he's new to the blog!  Here he is!

It was the last week of December and some of the coldest weeks we'd had so far, it had been in the single digits multiple times. We found Tiger on an oil and gas location trying to keep warm. When we found him he was pretty much skin and bones, now look at him. A big, clumsy, and sweet hunk of a dork lol. 

He has come really far since December.  He's gained weight and has gotten over his timidness mostly. He's still afraid of men but LOVES children and ladies.  

We are pretty sure he is a Pitt Bull mix of sorts but as to the other breed(s) he is we have no clue. He is one of the sweetest dogs we've had.  He enjoys playing with dog toys which is pretty awesome, almost all of our dogs don't care about toys (They would much rather wrestle with each other or be loved on) so it's nice to have a dog that likes to fetch, play tug-a-war, etc. 

He is coming along great in learning new things! So far he has learned to Sit, Stay, and we're working on Down. 

He is so photogenic. He loves getting his picture taken, or rather he likes all the extra attention! Either way he is a sweetie and enjoys spending time with you in whatever you're doing (One of the reasons I think my dog, Ike, and him get along so well!).

His eyes! I can't get over how beautiful they are! 😍😍😍

I hope you all enjoyed Tiger! I can't wait to share more of our adventures in the near future. 

Check out my Instagram for regular posts! 

Tiger is modeling his adorable bow tie from Fuzzy Sheepdog Designs!

-Penny

May Puppies

Hey guys! 

Today I'd like to share some photos I took of my friend Kristyn's puppies! They're so cute. The below photo is of my favorite puppy from this litter. She is so cuddly! The puppies will be turning five weeks old tomorrow!

This little man kept following me around and ended up crashing on my lap at the end of the shoot!

This is probably my favorite age when it comes to puppies. I love it! They still want to be cuddled but also attempt to go exploring.

Thanks for reading this post and don't forget to check out Kristyn's website!

I post regularly on my Instagram and will be uploading more of these photos to it soon!

Learning Photoshop

I've been procrastinating about learning how to use and maneuver Adobe Photoshop for a few weeks. It's kind of intimidating. It's coming along okay but there is still times when it's frustrating because the undo button isn't undoing my mistake haha.

Anyway blown out skies tend to bug me when I take photos. So yesterday I decided to dive in and learn how to replace those white skies with new ones! The below images are my first tries in doing this. They aren't perfect but I like them. 

As I learn how to use Photoshop I'm happy to say it's getting easier. It can only get better from here right? 

 

Thanks for reading this post! Don't forget to check out my Instagram, I post new photos there on a regular basis!

-Penny

--Adorable bow ties by Fuzzy Sheepdog Designs--