During my long, conspicuous absence from blogging, one project that occupied my time was organizing my digital photos into meaningful categories, applying tags for easy sorting, and eliminating duplicates and bad shots. If one were to accumulate the hours I've spent on this task into a single block of time, it would amount to weeks, maybe even a couple of months.
I've made lots of progress, but the end still isn't in sight. For every photo I've managed to drag to the trash can, another one has pleaded to be rescued. I've pored over each of these ugly babies, searching for anything salvageable, and once in a while I find a little potential.
That's when I switch into "extreme ho-hum makeover" mode and go to work with Photoshop Elements. Sometimes it saves a nature photo that would be beautiful except for utility wires draping across the scene. Sometimes the cropping tool rescues the only interesting corner of an otherwise dull shot.
The filters tool is the one I've had the most fun with. I've taken so many photographs that looked good through the camera lens but turned out to be blurry when I saw them on the computer screen. The worst ones were discarded (well, not all of them; I'm apparently a photo hoarder), but application of an "artistic filter" to the slightly blurry photos made them look like little paintings.
Seeing a photograph that represents a beautiful slice of reality can take my breath away, something these little "painted" shots will never do. Still, I find them charming in their own way. When you see them posted here from time to time, you'll know a lot of love and tenderness went into making them blogworthy.