Photoshop Before Photoshop Existed...

These days, photoshop is almost part of everyday life.  Digitally based editing programs can change everything from pictures to video and can alter almost anything in it in every possible way.  Before photoshop, doing such editing was strenuous mixtures of exposures and lots of trial and error.  Here are some of the most unbelievable images that you won't believe aren't real!

General Ulysses S. Grant:

Gen. Ulysses S. Grant in front of his troops at City Point, Va., during the Civil War. 

Researchers at the Library of Congress say it isn't real, instead it is a composite of three separate prints. The head is a photo of Grant, the horse and body from a photo of Alexander M. McCook and the background is a photo of Confederate prisoners captured at the battle of Fisher’s Hill, Va.

Abraham Lincoln:

This nearly iconic portrait (in the form of a lithograph) of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln is a composite of Lincoln’s head and the Southern politician John Calhoun’s body.


In this photo by Mathew Brady, Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman poses with his generals. Gen. Francis P. Blair, far right, was added later. The image on the left is from the same sitting, which Blair did not attend.

Cottingley Fairies:

Elsie Wright and Frances Griffiths, two young cousins, took a photos that appeared to be of fairies. The public, including Sherlock Holmes creator Arthur Conan Doyle, loved them. It was decades before the two admitted the images were photos of cardboard cutouts of drawings, and they continued to maintain they had actually seen fairies.

Herbert Hoover & Charles Curtis

This famous campaign photograph showing Herbert Hoover with his hand on the shoulder of his running mate, Charles Curtis, was manipulated. One of Hoover's press directors, Edward Anthony, explained in his autobiography, that two separate pictures were used and the hand was painted in by an artist.


Stalin routinely had his enemies air-brushed out of photographs. In this image, a commissar was removed from the original after falling out of favor with Stalin.


The doctored photo is on the left, and the original is on the right. Adolf Hitler had Joseph Goebbels (second from the right) removed from the original image.

Originally spotted at:

What I'm Currently Working On....

I always have something that I am working on, or something that I want to work on.  In fact, I have a ton of projects that I made for Christmas that I have yet to share on here, and can't wait to do so (but need more time in my life!).   For now, I am working on projects for myself and my daughters that I didn't have time to do last year.  I wanted to share a brief glimpse of what I have been working on (at a personal level, anyway) and this will give you something to read while you are eagerly (I know I'm a bit conceited) awaiting all my new patterns and pattern reviews from Christmas and leftover from last year.

First up, I just completed this hat:

Insulate Hat by Amy Van de Laar on Ravelry
Which I love love love!  I plan on writing a full review as part of the My Pattern Experience Series, but just want to say it was so much fun and I can identify all of my fellow Whovians from the moment they recognize my Daleks.  Plus, it's warmer on the inside!

I'm currently working on  the awesome scarf worn by the fourth Doctor (Tom Baker), and this is a beast of a scarf!  Designed at at least 12' long, this is truly a work of passion by a Doctor Who fan (myself).

Here's a WIP picture:
This is about 100 rows worked, with about 774 rows left!  Expect to see more pictures of this over the next few days, weeks, or more!

What I want to work on soon:

Tardis Afghan (knit) by Hedonknitstic on Ravelry
Tardis Socks by Gina Waters on Ravelry
Whovian Mittens by Paula Trumble on Ravelry

Now you might ask- is there anything NOT Doctor Who related on your wish list for crafting this year?

Yes, there is.  Doctor Who falls at the top though.

Totoro Norwegian Mittens by brella on Ravelry
I also want to make things from Totoro.  Like these mittens.... 

or this awesome cat bus for my kids:

Cat Bus and Small Totoro Patterns by Sojala on Ravelry

which would not be complete without a whole army of Totoros to put inside.

I also plan on replacing all of my childrens plastic play food with crocheted play food that I can throw in the washing machine! ;)

After that, it's more tiny animals for my daughters dollhouse (I won't share pictures of these until the patterns are ready, as those are my own creation)

I'm also working on the creation of a really unique household decoration!  (Also a secret until the reveal, but it may be one of my most involved self-created patterns!)

Of course, there's a whole selection of things that I haven't shown here, but those are the main up and coming crochet/knit items!

What projects are you working on right now?

Anthill Art

I always knew anthills were large and complex, but I had no idea that they were like this!  Check out this "casting" of an anthill and be amazed at the vast complex these industrial insects inhabit!

Beauty from Garbage- Landfill Harmonic

First World Problems, they always seem so trivial, especially when you encounter something like this.  This community lives near a landfill and they recycle the garbage and sell it for money or make interesting things from it... like this:  


Impossible Art

I just discovered this photographer today, and he’s amazing!  If you like optical illusions, fantastical photographs and unique concepts, you need to check out the work of Erik Johansson.  He uses composite imagery to create these unbelievable photographs that will just blow your mind!

Macro Snowflakes

If you’re anything like me, you hate the winter.  When I say hate, I really mean it.  I hate the cold, I hate the snow, I hate winter coats and hats and gloves and boots.  If I could have it be any of the other seasons all the time, I would.  (Which makes me wonder why I live in Iowa and not near a beach somewhere…)  I do, however, love things that are beautiful.  Even though I hate snow, I am forced to admit that these snowflakes are truly beautiful and am just amazed at their unique and striking beauty.  Please enjoy today’s Atmospheric Noise!

Starry, Starry Night

For millennia, humans have been looking to the stars- for life, to travel, to dream.  We have built telescopes, spaceships, and devoted billions of dollars into researching the universe.  I myself have always been interested in the sky, from clouds to stars to moon, though I’ve never been very good at photographing them.  I guess I really should invest in that telephoto lens someday- especially after seeing these images.  These amazing images are done two ways- the first is by doing a single frame long exposure (which is really tricky because you really have to know your camera and plan ahead for the long night of exposing your image) or by doing a multi-image composite.  (I only know this because of my photography background, with my nighttime photographs being a particular influence in this knowledge)  However they’re done, you’re going to be amazed and awed… this I guarantee.

Surreal Landscapes

There are a lot of times that I wish I could do more traveling- there are so many outstanding places in the world that are such a part of nature that you rarely get to experience.  I’ve been compiling a list for a long time of all the fantastic locations that I have found and would love to visit in my lifetime, I hope you enjoy them as I have!

Tufa columns of Mono Lake at sunrise

Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park in Gansu Province, China

Tunnel of Love in Kleven Ukraine

Door to hell Karakum Desert

Beautiful green thermal lake called Devils Bath in Wai-O-Tapu Wonderland, geothermal area at Waiotapu, Rotorua, North Island, New Zealand

Tianzi Mountains in Wulingyuan, China

Spotted Lake near Osoyoos, British Columbia, Canada

Lake Hillier, on the Middle Island of the Archipelago of the Recherche in Western Australia

Salar De Uyuni

January Marks....

The start of 2014's Christmas Crafting Season!  (Yes, this is a season for me that lasts all year long)  

In November and December when I start showing off sneak peeks of Christmas gifts I have made, I always get the same comment:  "I don't know how you do it all!"

Well, this year, I thought I would share my technique for crafting for your gift list instead of buying.  My secret is that I really start in January!  Now, this is not to say that I get it all done in January and have the rest of the year to do whatever, but instead that I start planning and every month I set a goal for what to accomplish off of my list that I make in January.  

Would you like to craft your Christmas this year?  Follow along with me as I provide my tips, challenges and inspiration on my Facebook Group:  

January's Mission has already been posted!

Do You Wish....

You could do more for others?

So do I!

Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of money and can't really go blowing it around town.... so instead, I craft for others!  Some of the time my crafts aren't very useful, but other times they are.... and I'm about to show you how....

Crocheting for Charity can be one of the most rewarding things there is!  In the past two years, I have donated over 50 hats to Halos of Hope, an organization that donates hats to hospitals and clinics for cancer patients.  I believe that a little bit of the love you used to create this item is passed along to its owner, and besides, isn't a handmade hat better than a store bought one?

This year, I've pledged to spend at least 24 hours crocheting for charity.  (I will more than likely go over that, but it's my goal for right now)  It works out to be just 2 hours a month, which is pretty easy to do.  I've created a facebook group to document the venture, and invite everyone who reads here to come and join us!  The first month will be a simple one, but you'll have to head over to the group to find out about it!

Why are your eyes so Stupid?

Lets face it, sometimes the parts of our body can't fully reconcile with our brain- we sometimes speak before we think, we move before we look, and sometimes we perceive something different than we're actually seeing.  Your eyes are tricky and as this video points out, they're also stupid.