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New an amazing!!!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Sea scallops fish tacos


 I always loved fish tacos, and this time I wanted something different, and most important I wanted to use Canadian sea scallops, big juicy scallops from Nova Scotia.

Ingredients, for 4 fish tacos

  • 400 g/ 1lb of large sea scallops cleaned and dried up with paper towel
  • 2 - 3 red, orange, green or yellow bell peppers, shopped in diagonal
  • 2 cups of  celery shopped in diagonal
  • 1 large onion shopped, 
  • I avocado sliced
  • black olives
  • Medium chunky salsa
  • 1 cup of shredded aged cheddar cheese  
  • 4 soft tacos, I used whole wheat soft boat shape tacos
  • spices, I used peri peri, hot hot hot
  • Rice oil or any high temperature oil.
Saute scallops in hot oil for about 3 min. adding your favorite spices, high heat setting.

  I put them on a plate and kept them warm in my oven

My fabulous electric wok, the best of the best!

I Stir fried vegetables for 3 to 4 min.

I added 1/2 cup of chunky medium salsa,

I turned down the heat to medium and mixed the ingredients for 1 min.


 I added my scallops back to the wok

I mixed all ingredients at medium heat to warm everything up

This wine was amazing, "perfect pairing"

I filled the tacos with the mix and added slices of fresh avocado

I added salsa

I added a lot of cheese, sharp-tasting!



I added black olives and served it with a green spinach, kale and tomato salad




It was amazing, and very healthy,

My wok is a Breville Hot Wok Pro, the best I ever used.


Saturday, September 17, 2016


Amazing chance to win great price, On1 Photo Raw Sweepstakes, Enter Now to Win!                     (Only for US Resident)


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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Sleeklens Lightroom Presets and Brushes Trial

 I received an offer to try Sleeklens base landscape package for LR,  51 presets and 30 brushes for landscape editing, for more info follow this link  https://sleeklens.com/product/landscape-lightroom-presets/ and https://sleeklens.com/product-category/lightroom-presets .

 Sleeklens was founded in 2015 by the current CEO and CoFounder Daniel Chabert. He started Sleeklens after being dissatisfied with the quality of products on the market. He would often end up with Lightroom or Photoshop products that were designed to be a “quick-fix” or an “all-in-one” solution. You will find no such products at Sleeklens. Our goal is to provide you with a product that works “with” you, not “for” you. Our growing company is currently based in Copenhagen, Denmark and employs talented experts from around the world.

To do the test I used one image that was part of a series of images in the Andes, this one was the darkest one, I wanted to see if I can use Sleeklens to bring back details and lights into it. 

It work very well and very fast too, 

The process image using Sleeklens,

Image processed using Sleeklens LR presets and brushes
 Original raw image directly from camera

Original Image From Camera Raw
As you can see the original is very dark, I was exposing for the sky, setting my camera to do a series of photos for hdr. Using Sleekens for LR I found out that I may not need to shoot 3 to 7 images "hdr process" to get all the details that I want.
My first concern when doing this kind of work, retrieving a lot of details in the shadows is the noise effect, and I was very please with the low noise found in the processed image.

How it worked, after installing the presets and brushes to LR, I imported the raw image and under the develop module, I started using the presets, I stacked 4 presets, (all presets can be modified)
  • All in one Shine into the Sunset
  • Base Basic Film
  • Base Hdr
  • Tone Desaturate
The result was great but I needed some touch up, to do so I used 2 Sleekens brushes,(all brushes can be modified)
  • Cloudy Sky Definition
  • Neutral Haze
To finish it I edited the image in Photoshop I always use PS to check my saturation and color cast.

First I used one of my favorite Nik Color Efex Pro "remove color cast" I don't use it all the time but for this image I had too, I always had problem with too much color that's probably why I like to do black and white, but anyway that's another story! Ok after using Nik, I checked my saturation level, to do so I used Gamut Warning, and for sure I had to lower down the saturation.
It looked pretty good but as a final touch I cropped the image to a 16 x 9 format.

After saving the image, I decided to try Topaz Impresson 2, using Edward Hooper modified.

Topaz Impression 2, Edward Hooper Modified.

 I found that using Sleeklens improved the process time and result, to learn more about the process visit their site https://sleeklens.com/

Or one of their tutorial on youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GG0ebFPfQX8


Sunday, August 28, 2016

Topaz Impression 2 and Topaz Glow 2

Following my last post and experience with Topaz Impression2, I decided to go back to the same location as the sky was a lot more interesting, I wanted to do a square format, to show as much sky as possible to balance the image.

Following the same process as I did for the last post, first I cleaned the image in Photoshop, took out the people and houses, and cloned more flowers. After the cleanup I made 3 copies of the clean layer opened the first one in Topaz and used Over paint saved it, when back with the second copy and this time applied Swirly lines that I modified saved it and finally went back into Topaz and this time used Knife and oil.  To finish I used layer mask to keep and discard what I wanted from each layers. I flattened the image did another copy and used Liquify filter and Topaz Glow 2 graphic 11, I kept only few interesting line from this filters.

And as always to make sure that my saturation was not overboard I used Photoshop Gamut Warning and lowered down the saturation.

Topaz Impression 2 and Glow 2 final Image



Cropped Original Image directly from Camera




To get Perfect Effect 4 for Free click on the link on the right of the page

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Topaz Impression 2

 I have been using Corel Painter for a long time, I love that software, but it is very expensive and time consuming, every year they come along with an update that is quite deep in the pocket, and now with the exchange for US currency it is getting too expensive, I am still using my old version but in the mean time I like to speak to you about Topaz Impression 2.

Topaz Labs have a lot of different program at a fare price,  https://www.topazlabs.com/impression, it's not cheap but it's fare and you can always try it for 30 days, same with Corel Painter, when I have more time I am going to test the new Corel Painter too.

This is an image that I did using Topaz Impression2 you can see the original photo directly from Camera, below the painted image,

Topaz Impression 2

Original Image from Camera

I especially shoot this photo thinking about the effect from Topaz Impression 2, first I cleaned the image in Photoshop, took out the people and houses, and cloned more flowers. After the cleanup I made 3 copies of the clean layer opened the first one in Topaz and used Saturated Watercolor saved it, when back with the second copy and this time applied Georgia O'Keefe that I modified saved it and finally went back into Topaz and this time used Chiaroscuro 3.  To finish I used layer mask to keep and discard what I wanted from each layers. I flattened the image did another copy and used Liquify filter to change the aspect of the tree, and as I always do check my gamut, using view gamut warning, that is extremely important if you want to print and not over saturate your image, using hue and saturation I lowered the saturation where needed. The full process took me less than 30 minutes a lot less than doing the same work manually.

I don't have any affiliation with Topaz, but I sure use it a lot!!! If you have questions about it please use the comment section.