Final days of the Halloween Hop and…travel photos #giveaway

Happy Friday!! Thank you to everyone who joined my newsletter, liked my Facebook page, and voted on my Monochrome Madness photos.

It seems like all-of-a-sudden I’m super busy. The truth is I know how I became so busy. I procrastinated…after all I didn’t have to go out and take photos of Lake Tahoe, but then again, I sort of did…know what I mean?

The pressure is self-imposed and comes from trying to clear the decks for National Novel Writing Month, which starts on Sunday. I (hopefully) will be writing the first draft of a new novel called…drum roll…Work in Progress! 😉 In terms of clearing the decks, so far it seems that the faster I go the further behind I get, which was not part of my project planning!

Today I thought I would share with you a few photos from an amazing place. You may have seen these before, but in a way they’re different because I processed them in Lightroom, which is new software for me.

I will start this off with a question for you as a prompt; remember comments get you into my giveaway contest (details below). Is there any place in the world you dream of visiting? Have you been there? Do you plan to go?

For me this place was Easter Island which must have been the earliest place I’ve ever dreamed of seeing. I learned about it in grade school and when I saw those giant stone heads and learned of the mystery surrounding how they were moved from the rock quarries on the mountainside down to the various shoreline positions, I thought it was the most mystical place on the planet. I was lucky enough to get to visit Easter Island in 2012.

Here are some photos of those famous statues. They are in a gallery for you. If you would like to see larger images, just click on one of the photos and you can scroll through.

By the way you can always view travel photos on my Travel page, which has a button at the top of this blog and is also here. They are grouped by place in alphabetical order.

Snarkology Halloween Blog Hop 2015Now for the Halloween hop with Melissa Snark. The giveaways on the main site are:
(1) $100 Amazon or B&N Gift Card or
(1) $50 Amazon or B&N Gift Card or
(1) $50 Amazon or B&N Gift Card or
(1) $50 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

Here is a direct link to the prizes:
Halloween Hop

Comment here on Nicci Carrera Romance to be entered for: a copy of Love Caters All by me, a copy of Left of the Rising Sun by John Holland,  or a copy of Dynamic Range, Leanne Cole’s photography magazine. (You can see this in the side bar on her blog.)

The (art) education of Nia Simone, GIMP

Blogging brings new people and new things to try, like learning art, for now a self-education, but one day, who knows?

Today’s discovery: How to tone down the green after auto-enhancing the color in header photo.

Original photo:

Original header
Original photo (cropped out of a photo to fit the header shape)

To increase pop, perform Colors->Auto->White Enhance then Colors->Auto->Color Enhance:

Experiment 1 with auto white balance, then auto color enhance. (Tongariki on Easter Island.)

Too green. But… better than the washed-out original.

A week later, notice something called “Fade Color Enhance” appears in the Edit menu, but only after you have performed a color enhancement. If you perform a color enhancement, close the file and re-open it, you do not get this operation showing in the Edit menu.

Use Edit->Fade Color Enhancement to tone down the color on the whole picture. It gives you a preview and a sliding scale so you can see what the adjustment is doing. Get the undesired color down to where you want it, then tone up the colors you want to intensify. 

In this example, select the other colors (non-green) one at a time by using Tools->Selection Tools->By Color Select, then Colors->Auto->Color Enhance.  

When all the colors are done, use Select->None to eliminate the selection dashes so you can see the results. If you like it, File->Export it to JPEG. Otherwise, use the same process to intensify more colors. 

The result is at the top of today’s post (and in the new blog header image). There is not so much green on the statues.

Did war really destroy Easter Island?

The Rapanui, the ancient people of Easter Island, the old theory went, committed ecoside, chopping down all the trees and bashing each other over the heads with them. True?

Maybe not. Read my favorite book, The Statues that Walked, by Terry Hunt and Carl Lippo, and decide for yourself.

The ancient Rapanui rocked! (Literally.)


Modern Rapanui are funny. What’s wrong with this picture? Hint: ancient Rapanui didn’t have rebar.


Modern Rapanui are handsome and very smart. (Christian, tour guide and historian:)


What negative stories of places or people did your travels debunk?