So many awesome contests!

So I believe this had to become a blog post because really, people don’t normally read notecards and not everyone is on plurk and not everyone watches Flickr religiously (like I do…I get lost for hours *eep*), but anyway there is so much awesomeness of contests happening!

I highly recommend trying them out. Not only will it help in development of photography skills, but it can really get you out there and win you some awesome prizes!

1. Mon Tissu – by Elie Spot & Anouk Spot

New Blogger Search! Fashion Editorial Photo Contest!

What can you win? -

GRAND PRIZE: You will be added to our official blogger list which gets you free Mon Tissu releases for life! In addition, you will get a 1 hour private shopping spree (you pick the date!). During your spree, we will join you at Mon Tissu and assist you in any way you need, passing anything you ask for. The sim will be closed for this hour, so it will be completely private.

TWO RUNNERS UP: 2500L Mon Tissu store credit each!

Who can enter? -

ANYONE! Unless you are already on our official blogger list!

How to Enter -

We want you to create a fashion editorial-style photograph, showcasing a look that you love. This look must include at least 3 pieces from Mon Tissu, and at least 2 of those pieces must be clothing items (shoes count as clothing). You can wear clothing from other brands as well, but your Mon Tissu pieces must be visible and easy to spot! We will be looking not only at your outfit, but also at the setting, the theme, the perspective, and the quality. We aren’t requiring any post-editing, but we welcome it! A breathtaking image is what we’re after. This can be achieved any number of ways, so be creative! We also want you to write a short paragraph to go along with your image. The writing should support the photography and assist the viewer in understanding the purpose of your image. You can talk about the clothing you’re wearing, you can make up a story about the subject, you can really take this anywhere you like! Let your text show the kind of writing you would pursue on your own blog. Under your paragraph, add your CREDITS! Be sure to credit every piece of clothing, your accessories, shoes, skin, hair, makeup, poses, props and location! Its important to let your readers know about everything you’re using, even if you don’t mention it in your article. Once you have completed your image, writing and credits, you should add your photo to the Mon Tissu Flickr Group ( www.flickr.com/groups/montissu ) and title it “Mon Tissu Blogger Search Entry – (Your Name)”. Paste your paragraph and credits into the description, and submit!

Rules -

You can submit a maximum of 2 entries. Your image(s) must be new, they can’t be recycled. Your text must be original. All entries must be submitted on or before September 19, 2012. If legitimate credits aren’t provided for each item being shown in your image, your image will be disqualified. Crediting is very important as it informs readers and protects creators. Entries must be submitted under the Second Life account name you intend to use for blogging, as all winning prizes will be sent to the account listed in the title of your entry.

*We will be accepting entries now through Wednesday, September 19th, 2012. Winners will be announced on Friday, September 21, 2012.*

2. [PXL] Skins by Hart Larsson

Got Faith?

PXL is proud to announce their very first Flickr contest!
The event will run from NOW until September 16, 2012.
With the winner announced on September 19, 2012 prior to SL midnight time.

The rules are simple but the prizes are awesome!!!

Prizes first:

1st place winner – 10,000L plus choice of a fatpack. AND that is not all. Your picture will be front and center at PXL store and you will also be picked to do a vendor pic for his next skin release!!

2nd place winner – 2500L plus choice of fatpack

3rd place winner – 1500L plus choice of fatpack

Now on to the rules:

- The theme is – Faith! Faith means a lot of different things for a lot of different people. Show us what faith means to you.
– The skin must be FAITH! The skin must be purchased and not a blogger review copy.
– No Nudity.
– Max 2 picture submission.
– Post processing is perfectly accepted as long as you do not make major changes to the skin, the skin must look untouched
– If you are chosen as a finalist, please be prepared to submit your transaction history.
– You must post the picture on the PXL flickr site ( www.flickr.com/groups/pxl_faith_contest/ )

3. FATE by Damian Fate 

FATEwear Photo Competition

The rules are simple, grab the FATEwear Subscription Gift “Carter” outfit from FATEisland take some photos of the outfit and submit them to the official FATEdesign Flickr group, and whichever photographer’s image is picked will receive the entire launch collection – and that is a LOT of items!

Looking forward to seeing your entries, good luck!

Designer Dish: Carrie Snowpaw

Carrie Snowpaw’s name is synonymous with creativity and elegance. Her Snowpaws designs are feminine, flowy and fabulous. I had the good fortune of meeting Carrie at a Flutter Fashionistas meeting for Petites a few weeks ago, and I’m not gonna lie, I was star struck and a little tongue tied, but she couldn’t have been nicer. She was so awesome, in fact, that she agreed to be my first Designer Dish interview for [SL] Blogger Support! Behold!

Carrie Snowpaw

Carrie Snowpaw | Snowpaws

Shiloh: Well, I guess I’m going to start with the obvious questions :) how long have you been designing in SL, and what inspired you to do so?

Carrie: I first became interested in sl clothing after being here for several months. I loved buying clothes but was never quite satisfied with what I had bought. I always thought I would like my outfit better if this part were different or that part was shorter. So that dissatisfaction is what put the idea in my mind. Why purchase clothes that I want to change? Just make the outfit I really want!

So I started trying to learn. That was over three years ago and there were several false starts before I produced anything that I wasn’t embarrassed to wear. I started with no skills at all – i could barely rez and move a prim. So it was a very steep learning curve. Luckily I had (and still have) some wonderfully supportive and encouraging friends who cheered me on and even wore my first not so great outfits. After several painful months I finally starting making pieces I was happy with and put them out for sale in December 2009. I don’t think I sold any of them, but that wasn’t really the point. The point was the creative challenge, learning the skills here to be able to make the outfit i had in my mind.

Shiloh: Did you have graphic or design experience before this?

Carrie: Yes, I studied fine arts, printmaking and graphic design. And I have been creating, drawing and designing my entire life.

Shiloh: What is your favorite thing about designing clothes in a virtual world?

Carrie: When an outfit I am working on finally clicks – that moment when it finally becomes a creation I imagined it could be at the beginning. For me, making a dress is like painting a painting. I have an idea at the beginning but I have to go through the process, the journey before it becomes what it is supposed to be. That moment is golden. But I guess that can be applied to any world, not just the virtual ones. The advantage of designing virtually is that I am not limited by any physical constraints. I don’t have to go looking for the right materials. I can make what I want and need. If I can imagine it, then I can probably construct it.

Shiloh: You recently started designing for Petite avatars, and your outfits translate beautifully! What made you decide to add Petites to your line?

Carrie: I decided I wanted to do petite clothing the moment I saw my first petite. Petite avatars are magical and I love them.

Shiloh: Is it harder to create for Petites? I mean, they’re so small! Working with the prims must be challenging!

Carrie: Thats very true and it is a challenge. Of course prims can be reduced, but they dont’ always reduce in the same way they were originally made. So often I will remake or change an outfit from its original large size so that it works better on a petite.

Shiloh: Well, we are a network of bloggers, so I think what everyone would like to know is what do you think makes a good blogger? What do you look for in bloggers that support your brand?

Carrie: A very important quality for a good blogger, in my opinion, is the ability to take great photographs. A great picture of an outfit can say more than any words. So I look for good photographic artistic skills.

Shiloh: Ok, now for the most important questions you’ll ever be asked!

Name your favorite:

  • Ice Cream – chocolate
  • RL designer – Monique Lhuillier for her beautiful gowns – Herve Leger for his sexy formfitting dresses. I want one.
  • Song – old song but its Fix You by Cold Play. (tomorrow it will be something else lol)
  • TV show – Network, True Blood (hard to choose)
  • Color – red

Thank you for playing along Carrie! <3

You can visit Carrie inworld at Snowpaws, or pop by the Snowpaws Blog to see what’s new!

Shiloh Selene | Unapologetic Second Life Fashion Blog | [SL] Blogger Support

Depth of Field Tutorial 2- Faking It!

Hi! Ok, so I wrote a DOF (depth of field) tutorial a while back, and one thing I have heard is that some people just don’t have graphics cards that can handle DOF. If this is the case for you, fear not! You can add depth to your photos by using Photoshop. It’s actually really easy and there are tons of ways to accomplish this effect. I am going to show you one of these ways. Stay tuned for other techniques in future posts, and feel free to share your own!

First, let me tell you that I am using Adobe Photoshop CS3. Second, let me tell you that I am NOT an expert. This is just one method I use. There are tons of methods, and lots are probably better than mine. I only hope to be helpful to my fellow SLers.

Ready? Let’s go! (All photos can be clicked to view larger.)

I will start with a photo that I have already begun editing. I have gotten rid of the lines, used liquify and smudge tool, and applied levels and color effects to get the look I want. To make it easier, I have flattened my image so that we are beginning with one background layer.

First, you’ll want to duplicate this layer. Right click on “Background” and a menu will pop up. Select “Duplicate Layer” from the menu. 

(Feel free to name this layer anything you want. I am feeling lazy, so Background Copy works for me. We will only be using two layers for this method, so it’ll be pretty easy to keep track of the layers without using descriptive names.)

Now you have two layers.

Making sure your “Background Copy” layer is highlighted, go to the top of your screen to the menu bars and find “Filters.” When the menu drops down, select “Blur,” then “Lens Blur.”

This will bring up a new window.

Use the “Radius” slider to achieve the amount of blur you would like for your photo. I put mine at 20. Then, press “OK.”

Now, you will have a blurry photo on your screen. Don’t worry. Again making sure you have the “Background Copy” layer selected, click the icon at the bottom of the Layers panel that looks like a rectangle with a circle inside.

A blank rectangle will show up in the the “Background Copy” layer. Click the white rectangle.

Then, go to your tools menu and select the Brush Tool.

I use the Basic Brushes, and I set the opacity at 50% to start. You can use whatever opacity allows you to get your desired effect.

I also keep my brush soft, because I don’t want any hard lines.

From your color picker, choose black as your foreground and white as your background. We’re ALMOST ready to get this show on the road.

NOW, just paint the black onto the areas of your photo that you’d like to have sharp.

What you’re basically doing is hiding, or “masking” parts of the blurry (Background Copy) layer, so that the sharp Background layer shows through. It’s SORT of like erasing, but the awesome part is that if you make a mistake, you just switch to painting with white and you can paint over the black to modify your mask.

If you click the little eye next to “Background” in the Layers panel and hide the Background layer, this is what you’d see:

Notice how some parts are more visible than others. I changed the opacity of my brush at times to mask the blurry layer a little more or less.

Here is my finished product (click to view larger):

I hope you have fun trying this technique! Any questions, comments, or suggestions are welcome!

Top: Tres Blah- Half Tucked Tee
Shorts: Mon Tissu- Cuffed Denim Shorts
Boots: Leverocci- Range Boots
Headband: ur.favorite.one- party in ur badroom
Hair: Burley- Julia
Skin: Glam Affair- Giselle
Shape: Mine
Pose: Don’t Freak Out!
Location: The Pixel Bean