Wednesday, February 29, 2012

How to Use a Flatbed Scanner to Reproduce a Print?

Artists, publishers and others have several methods available to perform art scanning to preserve their work, including photographing artwork or having it scanned with a drum scanner. However, a flatbed scanner also provides a suitable method for art scanning. From a business perspective, it's very important to scan your artwork to preserve it to reference for future projects or to market your work..

Following are some tips you can use for art scanning prints. Of course, you will need to have a flatbed scanner connected to your personal computer.

    Make sure the scanner glass is free of smudges and fingerprints. Avoid using liquids, such as glass cleaner. Clean the scanner glass with a lens cloth or similar product.
    Place the print face down as flat as possible on the scanner glass. Make sure the print is straight and lies parallel to the edges of the scanner to ensure scanning the entire print.
    Start the scanner software. Depending on the type of scanner you have, it may have a scan button. Some devices have an import function on the image processing software. In some cases, you may have to initiate a separate scanning program.
    Conduct a preview before beginning the scan. Some software will do this automatically and then proceed.
    Evaluate the preview to ensure you do not have a skewed image. Make any necessary adjustments and preview again.
    Outline the scanning area of the print you desire with the mouse.
    When you use Photoshop or another image manipulation software to reproduce prints, scan images in the "millions of colors" mode. If you are using some other method, employ this mode or other color option. Scan the print at 300 pixels per inch or the desired print size. When scanning a print for use on the Web, scan at 72 pixels per inch.
    Start the art scanning process with the auto exposure feature if available on the software. Make manual adjustments for contrast and brightness as required. On some flatbed scanners, set the exposure to the factor defaults. For color prints, reset the color controls to the default settings.

Take advantage of settings on your scanner that allows the user to enhance shadow separation. When art scanning prints, save them as.BMF,.PCX or.TIFF. Do not save the scanned print as.JPEG.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Video Production

The foremost phase in video production is the Pre-Production. Like for a sturdy building, you need to have a strong foundation, similarly for an outstandingly amazing video, it is very important that the idea and script should be dealt with utmost care and novelty, as these two elements serve as the base for a magnificent video. A never heard before idea is something which can ensure a huge success for the final video. It is one of the most difficult tasks and it might take a full-fledged team of people to come up with it. Once the idea is conceptualized; then comes in the very creative task of writing a script. The one who writes a script needs to weave it beautifully around the idea. He needs to visualize the scenes and put it in words. Thus, it is a challenging task and at times involves more than one person to give it proper shape and direction. In the pre-production stage, the unit or the production team would also decide the locations and most importantly the budget of the video. Budgeting is a very critical aspect since the next two stages are entirely dependent on it. Budget helps to streamline the resources. A good video production company will make sure that it designs a budget that perfectly fits your pocket and meets your needs.

Once the Pre Production phase is over then comes the exigent phase of production. Like the soldiers take onto the battle field during the time war, similarly, the production team takes onto the location to shoot the video in production stage. Shooting a video is an art, which is not everybody's cup of tea.

While shooting, the whole crew has to work like one strong team. They need to keep coordination, which is maintained by the director. He instructs the whole crew, be it the camera person, the actors or the lighting man. Only if the footage during the production phase are shot efficiently can one hope for the final product to be brilliant. The shooting might be conducted outdoors or indoors, depending upon the demand of the script and the budget. A good production unit will not only comprise a great team but also latest equipment involved for shooting, such as high-definition cameras, various shooting lights and digital audio aids.

Once the field job of shooting the video is over, the last and the final stage comes in light i.e. the post production stage. Under this final stage, the footage shot during the second stage are reviewed again and again and the best shots are chosen. Through the help of latest techniques and software in Editing, the video is edited. A good editor will have a perfect blend of creativity and technical knowledge. He will make sure that the video has perfect harmony and sequence and delivers the core message efficiently and effectively.

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Source of Beauty, Prestige and Heritage

Have you ever noticed the impressive effect that a bronze plaque lends the character of a business? Bronze plaques add something to an office, home and other institution or establishment. A medical, dental or legal office takes on a new perspective and level of prestige when graced with quality plaques outside the business' entrance. It tells passersby that we have been around for quite awhile. When you invest in this kind of plaque, it also indicates that your firm intends to be around for a long time into the future as well.

Such plaques do more than advertise businesses. The entrance to a private, gated community of homes is often preceded by them stating the name of the community and decorated with an appropriate symbol, like an oak tree, lion or other logo which adds status as well. Important churches, city hall and other buildings of vital importance often have them with pertinent historical and civic information.

In the same way, a golf course or country club will often use signs and plaques in basic geographical shapes, most commonly rectangular but occasionally shield or oval-shaped. No matter which style you choose, they are really something special. It is probably a true statement that a small bronze plaque will make a greater impact than a huge futuristic billboard that can be seen for miles around. A single one whispers notoriety, class, and substance. If you are admitted within its walls, this means that you are a person of notoriety and class as well. This gives members a source of pride and status without ever having to speak a word.

Bronze plaques have a long history behind them. Kings and queens of old often used them to commemorate the site of an important happening lest it be forgotten in history. In modern society, we continue to use them to commemorate a location where an important battle was fought, where a historical person was born and at the foot of a statue. Rich and famous people also used to bronze their baby shoes - but that is another story!

In everyday life, these plaques provide a service in a variety of normal ways. When an individual or a sports team wins the championship, the winning team or school often receives a bronze plaque to hang up on the wall! Speech contest winners, runners-up and others who have reached a high level of education and notoriety may receive such special plaques.

Men and women who have given years of excellent or extraordinary military service, recipients of the purple heart and even law enforcement / police officers who went beyond the call of duty are often given bronze plaques commemorating their contribution to the police force and to the society they serve.

Ornate or plain, they are attractive to look at and will last a long time. They may contain a raised up design, like a quill pen or a single initial. The logo of the parent organization (the one dispersing of the bronze plaques) may also be included. This is as if to symbolize the relationship of trust and appreciation between the giver and the receiver. Photographs may be included on bronze plaques to give further recognition to the recipient. Because they are made to last, perhaps generations later the child or grandchild of the recipient will lovingly refer to it as a source of pride and family heritage.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Now Have Veterans of a New Greatest Generation

We now have a new generation of veterans. I'm calling these new vets, The New Greatest Generation. They have been at war longer than in any of our wars. We cannot tolerate as a country the venom and hate that was directed toward our Vietnam Veterans. That was a horrible stain on our country. I gave three special events last year during Veterans Day week where I spoke about my involvement in WWII as a 5 year old tap dancer with a Big Band, Kay Kyser. We entertained at the VA Hospitals in Southern California.

I saw men on those wards that perhaps a small child of 5 should never have seen. I found people I spoke to who were touched by the experiences of the older adults talking how it felt to be in a war when they saw my preview clip and heard my story. The audience had their own stories to share. Many of the older adults told me they hadn't thought about those early years for many years. One woman came to me as I left the venue and told me she was from Denmark. Her story was that her Dad left their home each night, she knew he slept with a gun beside his bed, and returned home by morning It was only later in life that she was told he was a member of the Danish underground who used fishing boats at night to transport Jews out of Denmark to safety. She began her story in tears, then went into a sense of pride about her father and what her country had gone through in the war. That sense of fulfillment can be rekindled by supporting our veterans as we did after the end of WWII.

History needs to be shared, and how wonderful to hear from the people who lived it. Many people today know nothing about WWII, really don't even know who was in it?? Unbelievable? The "war effort" as we called it inspired us to experience loss and sacrifice, willingly. The same effort and support can be put toward building a bridge between the adults now in their 60s and 70s who had the experience of WWII and the new veterans. They will come home to a new country where there is less opportunity, and less funding for the veterans organizations. It is my passion and purpose to close that gap and to educate, entertain, and inspire everyone to step up one more time and create a new attitude of support toward our veterans. One that reaches out with hope, help, and gratitude.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Art of Card Flourishes

I am passionate about sleight-of-hand card magic; the dexterity, subtleties, timing and fluidity make it poetry in motion.

But as a general rule, the better sleight of hand is performed, the less you see. Perfectly-executed techniques should be invisible, so that the audience is left with the impression that they have witnessed real magic.

This of course should be the goal of any magician, but I sometimes feel that it's a shame that so much hard work is put into cultivating skills that are often as beautiful and amazing as the magic tricks being performed, and yet are never seen.

Magicians Penn and Teller made the point that sometimes magical methods are actually more entertaining than the tricks they effect, an idea they put to good use in routines such as their cigarette trick, or when Teller was run over by a truck.

Cardistry - the beauty of prestidigitation

An exciting development has been the rise of cardistry - the performance of elaborate card cuts, shuffles, spreads, fans and other displays of prestidigitation, as an art in their own right.

Cardistry is in contrast to magic, in that the techniques are far from being hidden, rather they are the entertainment. However, cardistry and magic can complement each other. The grace of flourishes sometimes makes a magical performance more pleasing to watch, and adds to the sense that the magician is capable of doing amazing things. There are also people who perform cardistry in its own right, without combining it with magic tricks.

Cardistry is not new, you can see photos of Houdini performing cuts and card spreads. Before specialising in escapology, Houdini was famed for his sleight of hand and was known as the King of Cards.

But in recent years, cardistry has been taken to new levels, with a growing number of practitioners developing increasingly skilful moves. The rise of the cardistry community has created a healthy competition that drives members to develop more impressive flourishes. The highly visual nature of cardistry, and its fast and flashy moves, have led to it being dubbed the magician's equivalent of extreme sports.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Various Types of Modeling

The modeling career involves more than posing in front of the camera or cat walking on the runway. Many people view modeling as a glamorous field, which is true, and thus they wish to become models too. The field is not just for super skinny models because, recently many male models have joined female models in the industry. Since the 1980's, male models have become as popular as athletes, rock and movie stars. Male modeling is regarded similar to female modeling. The only difference is that most male models are required to pose topless so that they show their toned bodies. The industry prefers female modeling to that of males. This makes the industry competitive for all those men who wish to become one.

A male model should be ready to accept low paying jobs at the beginning of his career. However, after working with professionals in the field like photographers, stylists and designers they end up boosting their careers. They get to show different sides of their professional life. They are required to be between the ages of 18 years to 25 years, and they should be between 5'11" and 6'2" tall. They should have fit, toned and lean bodies and weigh between 140 to 165 lbs. due to the high competition in the male field, men have to work harder than female models to get well-paying contracts and jobs. However frustrating this may seem, you should have a high level of patience and the right attitude, so that people notice you and recommend you to other clients. A male model should show flexibility when it comes to choosing jobs because the field does not involve a regular schedule of 9-5.

For both male and female models, there are requirements which are more or less similar. For example, they all need to be in perfect health, have unique and appealing looks, have strong presence at the stage and be fit physically. Female models should be tall and slimmer than normal women. They should be photogenic and also possess qualities like dedication, confidence, high self esteem, willpower and discipline. They should be ready to take criticism and rejection positively, be role models in the community and live healthy lives.