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I am enjoying my cell phone's camera function, really I am. I'm amazed at how much it can pick up inside, with just your standard ceiling lights. In contrast, it works poorly for bright things like flowers in the sun. They glow!

It's not altogether a bad effect, but you lose color and detail.

The mulberry is still producing berries (yum), and the peas are producing enough that I'm getting tired of them, and the spinach bottoms, faced with the knowledge that their seeds didn't have a chance to develop, are sending up new leaves to try again. I have more tiny green tomatoes, and some tiny green peppers (some bell, some hot), and lots of herbs. I was telling Foodie Friend about my cooking plan the other day (start the butter melting on the stove and take the scissors outside to cut some herbs, return to add the cut onions and herbs to the pan), and he drawled, "how French of you!" and I had to laugh. I wasn't trying for any particular style of cooking, just using what was in the garden and fridge -- and fresh-picked stuff tastes really good!

So, one of our visitors today was a dragonfly. We get a few every year, and every year I wonder why they're flying so far from Lake Michigan. I know it's a city, but there have to be other inviting gardens in the blocks between here and there! This guy sat still for two pictures where I can't see him at all; in this one at least he is visible.

This reminds me of one of my frustrations; this computer doesn't seem to have a program loaded onto it for cropping pictures. Don't get me wrong, I'm very glad to have this computer, as it is a LOT faster than anything else in the house. My kid's dad gifted it to us when he got a better one, and I'm trying to make every penny last as long as possible until I'm employed again, so a new one isn't in the cards for quite a while. But can anyone recommend a free program that does a good job at cropping pictures? I don't mind showing off my tomato plants, but the dragonfly would be much more visible if I was showing only him! And there are other pictures I'd like to reshape too, for one reason or another.

Another visitor, one of several, a small (half-inch-long or so) very white caterpillar. The head was a tiny black spot, and the underbody yellower than the top, in the slightly-green yellow range. Not sure what it will grow into, so I left it alone.

Another limitation of this camera is that if I get too close, it all blurs. Still, this thing wasn't designed primarily as a camera after all, and does much better close-ups than the cameras I used in my teen years, one of which was much better than it out to have been (enough so that people told me, to my face, that I was lying when I said the photos were not taken on an expensive 35mm with a filter).  I remain both amazed and frustrated by what I can (and can't quite) do with my camera!

I was going to post a picture of another purple flower that I'd love to know exactly what it is (besides a "weed"), but either my cell phone isn't sending it or aol is being its usual tardy self in processing the e-mail, and it's late, so maybe next time. Instead, the first daisies, so you can see how my camera handles the contrast between direct sunshine and shade.


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 7th, 2009 11:03 am (UTC)
I use The Gimp, which is open source and runs primarily on Linux. There's an installer for Windows at http://gimp-win.sourceforge.net/ and another at http://www.snapfiles.com/get/gimp.html -- the latter looks like it might be simpler.
Jul. 7th, 2009 07:57 pm (UTC)
How much memory/processing power does it use? This isn't the newest computer...

EDIT--a nice simple answer would be good for me here, more useful to me than a proper geeky answer with numbers and statistics. I enjoy many things geeky, but for me a good computer is one that does what I want without a lot of fuss and fiddling.

Edited at 2009-07-07 08:02 pm (UTC)
Jul. 8th, 2009 06:38 am (UTC)
It will depend on the size of the image, but it appears to be using a lot less space than, for example, Firefox.
Jul. 8th, 2009 06:41 am (UTC)
Well, this computer runs Firefox, so unless I'm close to the straw that breaks the camel's back, any of the three should, theoretically, work. I guess now I have to actually try them out!
Jul. 7th, 2009 11:42 am (UTC)
Photoshop Express is a web-based photo editor. Picasa from Google is another.

Both are free, and offer hosting/pic galleries.
Jul. 7th, 2009 07:58 pm (UTC)
Do you recommend one over the other? Or are they best at different things (and if so, what are those differences)?

Ooh, that sounds like an essay question on a test! I don't mean it that way, though.
Jul. 7th, 2009 08:21 pm (UTC)
I actually haven't used either, so I can't recommend one over the other! They are both supposed to be easy to use. I am a Photoshop user so I might choose to go with their program; on the other hand I am also a Google fan, so I might choose to go with Picasa for the sake of having one less login to remember.

I know more people who use Picasa than Photoshop Express, but that might just be a case of my data sample being skewed towards other Google fans.

ETA: A benefit of either/both of these is that they're web-based, so the processing power doesn't have to come from your computer.

Edited at 2009-07-07 08:21 pm (UTC)
Jul. 8th, 2009 01:39 am (UTC)
Beautiful botanicals! I love the picture of your rose. It's delightful.

I should take some pictures of my hopeful poppies that got a late start due to the April rains that stayed longer than we wanted them to. I have sage in bloom, and burgundy salvia this year.
I also put in Victoria Blue salvia, because I was told the hummingbirds would appreciate them. They are in my window-box in front of the kitchen window, obscuring the view. Hummingbirds are indifferent to them.
Jul. 8th, 2009 02:48 am (UTC)
Thank you. If you scroll back in my journal, I posted pictures of my flowering sage a week or so ago.

Sounds like the salvia should be moved to where it's a nice part of the view, so at least you can enjoy it!
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )


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