AI photo editing

Artificial Intelligence photo editing is getting scary good.

Here’s a recent photo of myself on a good day. Followed by one IMPROVED with the old Lensa photo editing app.

Processed with Lensa with Auto Adjustments & PT2 filter

Bigger, brighter eyes. Smaller nose. Fewer wrinkles on the face, if not on the neck. 😀

This is the regular Lensa app on MacOS. First 4 photos are free.

All the rage as I post is the Lensa AI app on iPhone and Android. U.S. $35.99 a year, with an extra charge of $3 to $12 for packs of avatars. Price has been going up.

You might be able to try it for a week, not continuing with the annual subscription.

I haven’t tried it. …. YET. 😀

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Visiting Seville, Spain 2022

This was actually my 3rd time stopping in Seville. It’s the essential transit point between southern Portugal and Andalusia, Spain.

I really do enjoy the city.

Seville got very, very rich after being named the royal monopoly port for trade with the growing Spanish colonies in the Americas and the influx of riches from them.

I’d walked the famous Cathedral in the past, so this time signed up for the rooftop tour. Very cool.

The technology in how they made this massive structure is fascinating.

I’d recommend rooftop over the regular tour as you actually do walk through the Cathedral coming and going to the top, as well.

My guide swears this is the REAL tomb of Christopher Columbus. But there’s another in the Dominican Republic. One or the other might be the brother of Columbus.

Wikipedia list of largest largest church buildings in the world:

  1. St. Peter’s Basilica (Rome)
  2. Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady Aparecida (Brazil)
  3. Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba
  4. Milan Cathedral
  5. Seville Cathedral

Liverpool Cathedral is in the top 10, as well.

On this short trip I spent the most time at the magnificent Plaza de España and surrounding parks.

The building was built 1928 to showcase Spain’s industry and technology at the Ibero-American Exposition World’s Fair 1929. What a legacy!

There are free Flamenco shows all the time at this plaza.

Another highlight of this visit was getting some fog, quite unusual in a city that has near non-stop sunshine.

I don’t shoot many creative shots, thinking myself more of a Fauxtographer than Photographer.

But I will try to play around more with urban black & white. I do like the feeling they give me.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Liverpool PHOTOS

Liverpool was once one of the wealthiest cities in the world.

A major shipping port — including being implicated in the slave trade.

Over time, many warehouses were abandoned. The citizens impoverished. Thatcher and the Conservative government were seen as being indifferent to the industrial decline in Merseyside.

The Beatles started a thriving music scene.

And in 2022 Liverpool is one of the most popular tourists cities. There’s much to do and see.

Click any of my photos below for a larger version. They may take a while to load as they are high resolution.

Lisbon photos 2022

BACK in Lisbon to have a tooth implant installed, I posted some Instagrammy pics on Instagram.

Having visited most of the major tourist sites last year, I looked for less visited photo ops this time.

For example, I caught the ferry over to the former industrial suburb city Barreiro. I saw no other tourists wandering the streets that day. Augusto Cabrita, local photographer, cinematographer and film director is celebrated with this massive wall portrait.

Like last year, I took most of my larger meals at Time Out Market.

Many of my photos are of street art. I tried an experiment taking pictures of street art alongside REAL LIFE. One example.

The installation of my tooth implant was delayed by a couple of weeks. So I’m still not smiling in any photos prior to June 9th.

World’s oldest bookstore – Livraria Bertrand – Chiado, Lisbon

I finally got out to the Cascais beach area, about 45 minutes by train from the city centre.

Last night in Lisbon.

I feel more like a local than tourist.

Here are my Lisbon photos and video from November 2021.

iPhone LIVE Long Exposure Photos

There are many ways to create long exposure photos, but none on iPhone are as super easy and quick as LIVE:

  • use the native iPhone camera
  • make sure LIVE photo is ON
  • use tripod to keep it solid
  • set the self-timer so the camera is not BUMPED when you click the button
  • using a 10 second timer you could put yourself into the long exposure (don’t move!)
  • once the photo has processed, in your camera roll click the photo. Click the LIVE icon. Choose the Long Exposure option.
  • you can edit to Long Exposure either in the iPhone or in the EDIT mode of the Photos app on a Mac (easier to see detail on the Mac)

Top Bridge Park, Parksville B.C.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Curves Adjustment Tool for Photos

I’m enjoying experimenting with this way of editing photos in Pixelmator Pro

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube

It does feel easier and more precise than other tools. 

Actually I start with the default Machine Learning quick fix. Move to Curves Adjustment IF I want. Finally I might tweak specific colours. 

This pic was much improved, for example, using Curves Adjustment. Cluttered, I played around to make the texture of the art work on the wall more 3D.

Here’s the photo before being uploaded to Instagram. The Instagram version is compressed. Lower quality.

I’m still using the Apple Photos app to move pics from cameras ➙ to folders ➙ to my Flickr master archive.

In fact, Apple Photos is a surprisingly good photo editor now. Less powerful than Pixelmator, but fast and easy for those I’m not posting online. It does have Curves Adjustment, as well.

In fact, Apple Photos has an Extensions tab where you can quickly pull up all the Pixelmator tools without opening that more powerful app. Cool.

DJI Mini SE Drone Test #1

I tried and failed to fly a DJI Spark drone when it was released 2017. Did not once get it off the ground. It was a dead weight on my Patagonia trip that year.

In 2021 the (Mavic) Mini SE is their entry level model. CAD $349. … How long before I break it? 😀

I’ve either gotten a lot smarter — or their drones are much easier to operate now.

Click PLAY or watch the 1st flight on YouTube.

My 2022 Workflow = Notes & Notion

Cooped up in my unheated garage WORLD HEADQUARTERS, I’ve been experimenting with BETTER ways to create NOTES and TO DO lists.

When on the run with only my iPhone, I’ll use Siri or jot down a quick note from the Lock Screen.

Click PLAY or watch how to edit the Lock Screen function to your phone on YouTube.

Once in a while I’ll take a photo (or scan) with my phone and save it as a Quick Note.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

If I’m on my laptop and want to take a quick note, I’ll either use Siri — or move my cursor to the HOT CORNER of the display I’ve set up to launch the app. (That works even in full screen mode.)

OK … ALL those methods put my quick notes into a folder in the app called “Notes” via iCloud.

From there, I’ll file them into the best of the folders I’ve created. It looks like this right now.

Done. Notes will archive my brain farts.

Any of those whims that become ACTION PROJECTS I’ll move over to the NOTIONS app.

It’s much more complicated Project Management software.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I don’t like Instagram

I’d avoided this Facebook social media alternative — until the pandemic. It’s very popular with outdoor recreation folks so I started posting near daily on @BestHikeVisuals.

Day 1 was November 9, 2020.

It’s shocking how limited Instagram is compared with Facebook. For example:

  • until recently, it was super difficult to post from a computer
  • Instagram images sometimes don’t show on browsers with ad blockers installed
  • you have no control over the sizes of thumbnails. They often look stupid.
  • Instagram videos are often poor quality and look bad when viewed from a computer rather than a phone

I’m up to over 300 posts now. And it is rewarding to quickly scan all of those. And there are some very good photos.

But many of the coolest influencers in 2021 are posting less to Instagram. Looking to TikTok and other social media.