Winter Photoshop Actions

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Winter Photoshop Actions Winter Craze 2014 for cs3+ and CC users Beautiful and integrated action collection enhancing the tones of winter. get the collection HERE 21 color and tone actions *cool night *fire side * warm cocoa * wintergreen * … Continue reading

Painted Skies – KML Creatives Overlays

KML Creatives Painted Skies Overlays

overlays for the creative soul

kml creatives, sky overlays, cloud overlay

 

These sky overlays were created to be used to help add a little drama to your images. Whether it’s to take a boring sky and give it life or if you are digital composite artist. These sky overlays are a little different from KMLC’s previous overlays in that they are more of a painted look. It took me 6 months of watching the skies daily to find the right look that I was going for. I have compiled my favorites in this collection and love the painted look each of them has. There are 15 all new skies, each one with 2 tones for a total of 30 sky overlays. In the images below you will see how I used one of each of the 15 different skies. The first is the original sky used in my fine art piece titled “Carried Away”. I just wanted to show each of the overlays in use so you can see how they work within the image.

The Painted Skies Overlays will be available for purchase 7/31/14. Want a chance to win the collection? Share this blog post on your facebook page with a link to the KML Creatives facebook page, come back here and leave a comment that you did so. You can get another chance to win the collection by going the KML Creatives facebook page and click on “share” this image here and leave a comment under the image that you shared. Do both and your name will be entered twice into the random drawing. Name will be drawn Friday 8/2/14, so that will give you from the time of this blog post until 11am on Friday. You can share once a day, today. tomorrow and Friday morning. Just be sure to leave those comments so I know you shared. The more you share, the better your chances are of winning the collection. If you purchase the collection before the drawing and your name is picked, you will be reimbursed or you can choose a store credit for the value.

That’s it! Easy as pie 🙂
Thank you and many blessings,
Kristen Marie ♥

Want to follow me where I play – just follow the links below

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Family Time – A personal post

“I sustain myself with the love of family.”
― Maya Angelou

It was a beautiful day. The temps were mild, not quite warm enough to use our pool, but not so cool we needed sweatshirts. My husband and I decided we would take our youngest to the school playground so she could get some exercise, work on those large motor skills and just have some fun. As we were getting ready to leave I went into my 15 year old’s room to tell him we were leaving, he gave me a look that only a mother would recognize. See I didn’t think he would want to go, being he’s 15 and if you’ve got teens, you know that they just normally wouldn’t want to hang out at the playground with their parents and little sister. Back to that look, I could tell he wanted to go, never even had to say it. I told him to get ready and we would wait for him. Lesson learned for this mom, ask the teenager if he wants to go and never assume he won’t want too. I am so glad he wanted to come, it really never feels complete when he’s not with us and I truly enjoy this young mans company.

It was a nice time. My daughter had fun running around, climbing and hanging upside down. My husband even got in on the play time action and was climbing and went and sat on the tire swing. My son, of course, had to do some insane crazy things that could really hurt him….he’s an adrenaline junky and for him the more risky, the more fun.

We don’t get the chance to get out much together and just relax and have fun. When we do, I cherish them. Family time is so vital. It is the life blood that shapes our lives, it is what fills our memory banks that can be shared in future generations, it is the very foundation on which we build. Our Children, once they are adults, don’t look back and remember the things we bought for them, the cool toys, the fabulous designer clothes. No, they remember the moments, the times spent together, the time given, the way you listened, the way you loved, the laughs, the hugs, that is what sticks with them through their life. The memories are their home and they will take home with them wherever they go.

Blessings,
Kristen Marie

7

“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof.”
― Richard Bach

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Shatter the Silence – Child Abuse Awareness

The silence on child abuse MUST be shattered!

If you’ve been following my series, thank you and if you have just found it…thank you as well for taking the time to read.

I have no tolerance for child abuse. Children are beautiful and innocent, they are a gift. There is no reason in this entire universe that would make hurting a child ok in my book. I was abused as a child, emotionally, physically and sexually. I know this topic is not comfortable or easy for anyone to talk about or even acknowledge. I know there are some people who will question why I would even “confess” that I was abused. My answer is quite simple, by remaining silent I remain a victim. I am not a victim, I am a survivor. Did it effect me, change me, alter the way I view the world? Yes!!!! It absolutely did! It changed my path in life, it put me in a new direction. However I had a choice to either let it destroy me or to strengthen me. I chose the later. I faced it, I spoke of it, I released the guilt and the shame. I even forgave my abusers. Not for them, for myself. Forgiveness has nothing to do with the offender, it has everything to do with you choosing to let go of bitterness and hate. Not forgiving is only holding onto toxic feelings that only serve to destroy yourself and in by doing so, those that hurt you win. I was not ever going to let the people that hurt me win. It is my life and I was determined to take it back….they could not have it. I will never forget it, it still effects me, it still has an impact on how I see the world. However, it’s what I choose to do with all that that matters now.

From an early adult age I wanted to reach out and help other children, to show them that abuse does not have to define them. They are not the abuse, they should not feel guilt or shame. They didn’t do anything to bring it on, they were not less because of it. Abusers prey on, they hunt and feel out their victims, they manipulate, they are predators ….a child has NO control over this. It is NOT their fault. I wasn’t sure how to reach out and help, but I didn’t let that stop me from trying. At the age of 18 I took a job in a women’s shelter and I worked with the children every day. While Mom was away looking for a job, getting assistance or working on building her own self up to get out of her own abusive situation, I spent my days loving these children, each and everyone of them. I understood them, I related to their acting out, to their tears. I wanted nothing more than to take away all their fears and pain, I did all I could with what I knew to do at the time. I later took a job at a girls group home. Full of teenage girls with demons. Each of them had endured some type of abuse in their life. Because of their anger, shame, guilt and pain they acted out. They knew no other way. Society often looks down on these children as throw aways. Nothing but trouble, put them away, lock them up and toss the key. These children are not toss aways. They need to be loved through their pain, shown a new way, given tools to over come. Both of these jobs (I call them blessing jobs) were tough….it was hard. There were days I didn’t think I could go in and see their pain anymore. I felt their pain as if it were my own…..it was my own pain. I knew their hurt to the very core of me. I can admit, it did become to much for me. I was still in the infancy of my own survival skills. I knew that it was affecting me so much that I was no longer the strength I wanted to be for them. So, I took a very long break. I went and lived my life, moved all over the place, trying to get everything I could out of life. I never forgot, it was always there….they were always there. It was and to this day still is a constant in my life.

Then I became a mom……

Old feelings and fears reared their ugly head with an intensity that took my breath away.  This was a combination of new and old fears.  I was now a mother and it was going to be over my dead body before I would ever allow anyone to harm my child. With motherhood came a hyper awareness of all children. I was always on alert. I was being called back to do something! I just wasn’t sure how or what. I’ve always been an artist. I’ve always been in love with photographic images that told a story. Fast forward a few years and the idea of doing a fine art photography series grabbed me. I put it off and put it off. I let what others might think of it keep me from doing it. I let my own lack of confidence that I could even do it the way I felt it needed to be done stop me. I dug in deep, I reminded myself that I am a survivor, a fighter and that the abusers should never win. I told myself that if it made people uncomfortable then that was a good thing, You can not ignore this away. By remaining silent I was in fact letting the abusers win, I was allowing it to go un-noticed, I was part of the problem. I could not live with myself knowing this. I want to be a voice and part of the solution. This is my way.

This is a very ugly subject, but my pieces needed to be pretty. I wanted the viewer to be captivated by the innocence and beauty of the child, to be drawn into the image, to feel peace while laying their eyes on the beauty and then to get slapped with the reality of what the story is behind the image. I strive very hard to do this with every piece. My latest one, for me, is my most  important and the one with the most impact so far in this series. If I could only do one single image, this would be the one. This one has it all wrapped up in one.

The title is – Don’t  See, Hear, Speak
What I am trying to convey with this image is 3 fold. The way society reacts to child abuse by ignoring it, pretending it’s not happening and not listening to their own inner voice when they see or feel a child is being hurt by doing nothing. The child who is manipulated, threatened and groomed to remain silent and put on a faux face that everything is right as rain in their world. The abuser who puts on false charms and fools everyone around that they are kind, giving and would never harm a child. They are masters of disguise. This piece is meant to challenge that, to acknowledge, to say NO MORE. Take the blinders off and see what is right in front of you, uncover your ears… listen to what a child is saying and what they are not saying…believe them, remove the gag from your mouth….speak…use your voice, say something. By remaining in a state of denial or because you simply don’t want to get involved…you are part of the problem. Don’t be a part of the problem….Shatter the silence. Let your voice be louder and make yourself heard.

I am putting in a link here to a story I found about America’s first recognized child abuse case. It is not an easy read, but an important one. We have come a long way since little Mary Ellen’s case, but we still have a long way to go. You can read her story HERE.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read. I welcome your feedback.
Many Blessings to all of you,
Kristen Marie

 

child abuse awareness, kml creatives, kristen marie artistry

 

Keeper of Dreams – Child Abuse Awarness – KML Creatives

My daughter and I were making photos for another piece that I was planning. She had asked if I would get one of her just looking down at her flower. I, of course, complied. When she is helping me I am more than willing to give her something she wants. I kept staring at this image, knowing it was to sweet, to innocent and to beautiful with the stillness of it that I HAD to do something with it. I could not just let it sit without giving it the love that it so rightly deserved. I wasn’t sure where I was going to go with it, but I just dug in. I started building the room, I placed her in it and it all came to life. My daughter is my beautiful dreamer, her imagination is boundless and she is forever telling stories. Anything we see as an ordinary object, she see life it in, animates it, gives it a personality and a story. Sometimes when she is off in one of her little worlds, I just listen without her knowing, I absorb her, taking all of her into my heart. This whole piece is based on her and her imagination, her light.

kml creatives. photoshop textures, textures, photoshop actions

Now, you may be asking how I can attribute this piece to my child abuse awareness series. I can and I do because this image represents the dreams and imaginations of all children, especially those who are afraid and being hurt. Knowing my daughter and her giving and kind little soul, if she could, she would reach out and save everyone of those children, take them into her world with her and let them feel the freedom that she feels inside her imagination and dreams. She of course can not do that, so instead what she can do, is to imagine that she is saving and keeping all those dreams and hopes alive and safe, letting them out when the time calls to do so. She is the keeper of dreams.

This was not a planned piece, but it has become my favorite of the series. Sometimes plans are not needed, sometimes we just have to let go and listen….listen and feel and let the world breathe life into you. I just love the quietness of this image and the life I feel from it.

Thank you for stopping by, many blessings to you and yours.

Kristen Marie

If you’d like to see other images from this series, you can find them here,

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Artistique Collection – Actions and Textures – Freebie

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Artistique Collection

It is really and I mean really cold out!!! Blustery blizzard like conditions where I am. *shiver* I don’t do cold very well. Do you? Well, I wanted to do something to warm myself up and hopefully you too! I know some of you are patiently waiting for the new Artistique Collection to be released and it will be, but I can now say for sure it will be in early February. So, to both warm you up and tide you over, not to mention thank you for your patience,  I am releasing a sneak peek into the collection, for FREE!!! Yeppers…FREE! The first 50 people to grab it get it! So get ’em quick! Sharing is caring, so by all means share and tell your friends, let them get in on the fun too!

Look over the samples and the link to download is below the images!!!

Have a safe and WARM weekend everyone!!!!

Blessings,

Kristen

* and special thank you to Melissa DeWitt Photography for the use of her images, you can go check out her awesomness HERE

 photoshop actions, photoshop textures

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Follow the link HERE to go to the download and enjoy! ♥♥♥

Story book – A Fantasy Picture Story

My beautiful little girl LOVES to tell stories, to make little books and just about anything where she can use her very vivid imagination. This can prove to be very helpful when I want to make some images of her. I pick the places, pick her clothing and a few props and she takes it from there. She goes off on her adventure and I am there as just a witness to capture it all on camera. Of course now and then I have to interrupt and have her turn a little this way or that way or give little suggestions to add into her story that I think will translate in images.

We did this shoot last year and it took me a whole year to actually get to the images and get them processed. I was planning on getting them all printed in a book with her story (her words) as a keep sake for her to always remember to hang on to her imagination. However while I was processing and getting close to getting the book ordered, she stopped me. She has requested that we go back out to the same spot and get more images to add to the book. Of course we now have to wait until the weather breaks and it’s once again nice and warm. However, if we every get a fairly warm winter day where there is still plenty of snow on the ground, we just may have to take advantage of that as well. At some point I think I will have to stop her and say, lets finish this book and you can start another.

Here are a few of the images from her story book. It’s about a little girl who wandered into a fairy forest….and I will let your imagination take you away with her imagery and story telling just by her expressions and actions.

No More – Child Abuse Awareness – An Artistic Journey

I am continually updating this post as new pieces are complete.

Some of you may remember my post awhile back about me starting this series. I had very high hopes that I would finally be able to get to it after wanting to embark on this journey for so many years. I had managed to get one image done and it became a bit overwhelming to me. So many stories to tell were just flying around in my head and I couldn’t slow it all down enough to pull them out and tell them the way I needed to. Plus, I can admit that I was afraid. Afraid of how people would take it, or tear it down, criticize the story. It’s so personal to me, it’s my story, it’s your story, it’s a loved ones story, it’s a story that NEEDS to be told. Children are hurt every minute somewhere, by someone and just one more child having to endure this kind of pain is just to much. So many of us turn a blind eye to what is happening, sometimes right in front of us. With some encouragement from a group I am in, I had a new fire ignited in me to get back to it. If only for myself. I found that once I got started with new focutinues of child abuse, the pain, the fear and the innocent hope that all children find a way to hang onto through all of it. My daughter agreed to be my model for the pieces. I explained to her, as best as I could for an 8 year old to understand, why I was doing this. She liked the idea, but because she has not been touched by this in her life yet, she doesn’t grasp the full understanding of it. She looks at the images with her beautiful innocent soul and makes up her own story. She sees the sadness, but also sees the hope and light. I will let her keep her innocence, she deserves it, all children do. To many have had their innocence robbed from them and if my 8 year old is not as “worldly” as some others her age, I am wonderfully ok with that.

My husband asked me how many of these I was going to do. My answer, “when it’s done”. I really don’t know how many images will be made, I guess until I feel I have told the story the best I possibly can.

Here are the first 3 of the series. I felt I needed to put it out there, get over my own fear and tell the story. I will add more as they come to life. Feel free to share if you would like, I would be honored if you did and I know if just one more person can be enlightened, there is a child who would be grateful.

**Edited to add – 3 more images have been added. The “Isolated Dreamer” sequence was added. The sequence is about a little girl feeling isolated in her suffering, fear and pain from the abuse…yet she dreams and hopes for better days. My daughter requested the last image with the dove. She is my muse and reminds me daily why I am doing this series. While it may be hard and not the most pleasant of topics, it is one that should not be ignored. I look at my children and know that there are far to many who are missing out on the love that they know. If I can help it, they will never know the fear, the pain, the shame and the feeling of being alone that I once felt as a child. It has to stop. So, while I know this is not a pleasant topic, as uncomfortable as it may make me or any of us…..it is NOTHING compared to the children who suffer.

Many Blessings –
Kristen Marie

Lost and Found

The Light that Shines

See No Evil

Isolated Dreamer Sequence



Here is the next image in my child abuse awareness series. Titled – Healing Reflection – a child learning self healing, self preservation, self love.

“There is a moment in our healing journey when our denial crumbles; we realize our experience and it’s continued effects on us won’t “just go away”. That’s our breakthrough moment. It’s the sun coming out to warm the seeds of hope so they can grow our personal garden of empowerment ~ Jeanne McElvaney”

Healing Reflection

Safe in Daddy’s Hands

No Escape

Caught between seeking the light and the innocence of childhood and the never ending reminder of the gripping pain.

Keeper of Dreams

You can read the story behind this image here

kml creatives. photoshop textures, textures, photoshop actions

Freedom Surfacing

Breaking free of the effects of abuse and becoming a survivor. Letting go of being a victim.

kml creatives, textures, overlays, actions, photoshop actions

Thank you for taking the time to read and hear my story ♥

Artistique Collection – Photoshop Actions, Textures, Overlays – KML Creatives

Coming later January to early February the new Artistque Collection.

I am simply am in love with this collection already and I am far from being done with it. I have a huge love of old portrait paintings. I could stare and just get lost in them for hours. I am not a very good painter on a canvas, so I am creating this collection to help bring a little of the texture, smudges, the bumps, the light and soft tones so they can be added to photographs. I am enamored with what these tools so far help me create.

Here are a few samples.

Amy McMaster – Featured Artist

Featured Artist – Amy McMaster

KMLC- What was it about photography that drew you in and made you decide to pursue it?
AmyA friend shared pictures of her kids back in 2006. I thought they were so gorgeous. She shared some close ups- where the eyes were just amazing. The light in them- they just sparkled and drew you in. I’d never seen anything like it outside of random magazines shots. I knew I wanted to capture MY kids like that. I wasn’t sure how and I started asking questions. A lot of questions. My friend was most gracious in answering everything I asked. .

KMLC- Define your artistic style?
Amy – I think my style is more of an approach. I want to capture what is really real. What is actually going on. I love using a more journalistic/documentary style approach to the bulk of my work. I love the imperfections. The off the cuff way you have to shoot. Unexpected results sometimes because you are not always in control of the light or the subject. I like that. I am extremely fond of black and white photography. Rich black and whites with a lot of contrast. I do like some color though. Not usually bright color- but warm with a subtle flat finish is my preference.

I use this approach when shooting pets, farm animals, kids…or families.

KMLC- Where do you find your motivation to grow, be creative and unique?
Amy- I am generally a pretty thought-filled person. I love to deep think. I love to pull apart ideas and talk them to death. I love to figure things out- the who and the why and the how. But when it comes to my work I literally just feel. I don’t find myself spending 30 minutes thinking about a set up, the lighting, what lens…I shoot. I shoot what interests me in the moment I am in. I think this always challenges me to be on my toes.

Another thing I think that helps ME grow, be creative and sometimes…unique is that I do like to challenge myself with lighting, pushing my camera, and when I get the opportunity to try something new- I usually take it. Even if it’s NOT my usual style. I might come away from the experience with something that just furthers me along in my personal journey.

KMLC -Being a business owner can pose many challenges, tell us how you find balance between your business, art and your personal life.
Amy – I am going to be frank on this. It’s very challenging. I personally found it very difficult to balance business, art and my personal life. I managed for three years and finally chose personal life and art…and let my business go this year.

It was hard. But I am a homeschooling mom to 4 young kids. That is my 9 to 5 during the week. Plus two ago we started a small farm. I love it. I love everything about the life of a farmer. I couldn’t balance them all anymore. So I made the choice that was best for my family. I am STILL shooting. I shoot for friends, I shoot my farm, I shoot my kids and I just shoot life. I share those things with others. I am enjoying going back to my roots of shooting what I love and what is happening.

In a few years, I will revisit this decision and decide if it stays or I want to venture back out there as a business. But for now, I am happy.

KMLC- Tell us about these images.
Amy – These images are simply a collection of my eclectic life. They are everything I love about my life. My images do not always show the tears or sweat that comes with this life. I hope it is implied. Farm life, being a mom, a wife…just being ourselves…it’s just flat out tough stuff. But I love to capture the things that remind me of why I love my life so much. Why I pick up my camera and shoot it all in the first place. Chaos amidst chaos and all it’s raw beauty..

KMLC – We all want to know, what’s in your bag?
Amy – My bag is simple. A Nikon D700 and a small arsenal of simple, inexpensive lenses. My work horse the 50 1.4, 24 2.8, 15mm Sigma Fish Eye, 60 f2.8 Macro and for length I have a 105 f2 (no, not the macro) and my handy dandy humble 70-300 VR zoomie. Oh! And for a break from the norm – a Lensbaby with a slew of Optics for funsies! I carry all this in a cheap but sturdy bag I got off Amazon. I have an old Speedlight I use sometimes, a ring flash that I rarely use but it’s fun to play with and that’s really about it.

Look on to see a sampling of Amy’s amazingly pure images!

Thank you so much for sharing with us Amy! ♥♥♥

to see more of Amy’s work, be sure to check out her website HERE