Cardiff Calling

Yesterday I joined the ranks of those who have been interviewed by Marie Irshad for Knitcast and it was quite enjoyable! She has a lovely voice (mine, not so much…) and it was my first time using Skype. I was very high tech with a headset and microphone, and we ended up chatting for over an hour and a half (she will edit, so hopefully my stuttering, wheezing and errant coughing will not appear in the final version!) She’s going to try to get the interview up in a couple of weeks- I’m crossing my fingers because it would be cool to have it online while I’m at TNNA!

However, I woke up in a cold sweat last night when I realized that in my entire interview I did NOT mention Drew even once. I feel like slime. In my defense, there was a real echo on my end (everything I said was repeated back 3 seconds later) and that threw me off, but there is no excuse for forgetting such an integral part of the book. I’m sorry, Drew.

Likewise, we spent an inordinate amount of time talking about Vogue, and not much time at all talking about Interweave Knits – which I feel is such a wonderful and strong magazine for the knitting world! I’m sorry, Pam!

Computer Decisions
So I’m sold on the ibook G4. The powerbook is really tempting – especially the sturdiness of the case – but I honestly feel for my meager needs the ibook is probably overkill. Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who gave their excellent and well reasoned opinions, I appreciate it greatly! I would LOVE to go to tekserve, but it’s such a song-and-dance to get into the city when the Apple store is at the Short Hills Mall. Love the mall. If it were summer and I didn’t have a lot of work on my plate I’d take the time to go into Manhattan, but I really need to get this purchased so I can get comfortable with it before I leave next week for TNNA!

Photoshop
I take most of my own photos (it’s very apparent, n’est ce pas?) and I also photoshop them to give them a drop shadow when I’m displaying a finished item or technique.
• The way I do it is to photograph the image in front of a plain white background (actually, my peeling dining room door, it’s quite lovely…)

• I open the image in photoshop and copy the background layer so I can work with it.

• I cut out all of the white (background) parts. If the contrast between the item and the background is great, this is quite easy with the magic wand tool, if not I have to outline it and clear the background.

• I copy the layer with the image and increase the contrast and reduce the brightness so that it’s a totally grey image – I make sure this layer is behind the actual image.

• I use the gaussian blur filter on the shadow layer to blur it a bit.

• I nudge the shadow so that it’s a little to the left or right, above or below the original image.

• I reduce the opacity of the shadow layer until it looks the way I’d like it to look

Then all I have to do is flatten the image and crop it. I’d written this up as a script, but I found that each individual image had so many variables that it was a better to just do it myself individually. Hope you enjoyed the Photoshop tutorial!

Men are GONE!
Last night I packed up the last 4 sweaters for Men Who Knit – 2 men’s sweaters and 2 doggie sweaters! They’re out the door, I’m FINISHED for all intents and purposes with the actual knit item portion of the book. Now Drew and I just have to finish up the profiles and I need to write the stuff between the patterns (intro, notes, glossary, tips, etc.)

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