Curt's Best Shots Slideshow

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Hey All!

Here I am. . .seems like I'm getting later and later with these posts!  Sorry about that.  But this post is BURSTING with photos!  So there is lots of eye candy for you tonight!

First, the results of my first poll were great!  Thanks for so many of you participating.  I was a little surprised by the top answer.  The question was "Where do you get most of your card ideas?"  Almost 50% of you stated you get your card ideas from surfing other blogs!  My vote went to the second most popular answer which was "places like SplitCoast Stampers".  I had over 90 people vote!  Tonight's new poll is up and has to do with this blog post tonight, so go vote over there on my sidebar!  I love learning about my readers.

OK, on with the post!  Here is my first card to share:

Isn't this image cute?!?  This is a Hambo digital image.  The inside sentiment says "Thought you might need a little lift".  LOL  Cute huh?  I colored it with my colored pencils and oms. 

Next card:

Another incredible Hambo digital image.  Again, colored it with colored pencils and oms.  The sentiment is computer generated.  I really can't tell about this image, but to me, it looked like they are wearing little knitted sweaters.  So that's what I went with when coloring them.  I came up with the sentiment and since I used the term "spring chicken", I went with fun Spring colors.

Here's my last card to share:

And again, another Hambo digital image.  I love whimsical, and this is such a fun image.  I used an MS punch for the grass there at the bottom, and I cut out an extra bunny (yellow sandals) and popped him up on dimensional tape.  I also made these images a little larger than most images (a real plus for digital images).  I wanted these great images to be dominant on all the cards.

If you noticed, all my cards have several things in common tonight.  They are all square cards, they all use Hambo digital images, the are all animal themes, and they are all colored with colored pencils and oms.  I normally don't use digital images.  I find most of them to be not well drawn (some almost look like they were drawn by very young children).  I'm also not a real fan of simple line drawings which most digital stamps are.  But there are some companies out there that really produce quality work.  Hambo is definitely one and so is Mo's Digital Pencil Too.  

OK, that's it for the cards.  HOWEVER, I wanted to share with you some photos I took today while I was out for a walk with the boys this afternoon.  These pics were taken along the same trail that you "walked" with me and the boys this past Winter.  Take a look at what we saw, I call this group "Signs of Spring":

I have no idea what type of plant this is, but that little bud in the center pops out this dark burgundy colored flower.
I don't know what this plant is either, but I loved the variegation and patterns on the leaves.

I don't know what these are either but they are so pretty and are popping out everywhere on the floor of the woods.
This little sprout growing in a hole of a tree trunk reminded me of the sentiment "Bloom where you are planted".
And this is a sure sign that Spring has sprung.  Love the perfect coil keeping itself warm.  It was about 58F here today with a brisk wind.  I read in an old Almanac some time ago that you can count on no more hard frosts when you see snakes out and about.  Here is a pic of this one's sibling which was not more than 5 feet away from this one:
Again, coiled up keeping warm.  I did "bother" this one with a stick because I wanted to see how long they were.  This one was about 3 feet long.  I believe these are common rat snakes and are not poisonous.  I have heard that for the most part, if a snake has a slender, long head (like this one) they are generally not poisonous.  If their heads are more square shaped they usually are poisonous.  But I would imagine there is always an exception to the rule, so I don't mess with them much.  I tend to keep my distance whenever possible.  I used a very long stick on this one and my camera's zoom lens is exceptional.
I love how this little cluster was huddled up in this cozy little alcove at the base of a tree.
And finally I just found the rippling roots of this tree covered in this beautiful green moss so interesting to look at.

So, you can consider those an extra dose of the "Pic of the Week".  Hope you enjoyed them.  I'm loving seeing the daily changes as Spring takes hold.

OK, hope you've enjoyed this edition of my blog.  I so appreciate you coming by and I'm so glad that you do.  I always look forward to your comments and coming to see what you've been up to this week.  I appreciate you so much!

Hope you are all well.  Hugs to all of you!


Curt O'Brien

"God, please help me be the person that my dog's think I am."


Sharli said...

Hi Curt! Great cards, I just love the spring chicken image - it made me smile with those darling chicks in their warm fuzzy sweaters!

Your photos from the walk are a reminder of the miracle of spring. I sometimes forget how special it can be (living where it is perpetual summer!) and am enjoying seeing your version of this time of year - so full of hope.


Sue said...

Hi Curt
fab cards as always, luv the spring bunnies great image. lovely piccies so nice to see signs of springs, as for the snake never see any of them here. Was like summer yest i had to get me shorts n t shirt on!!! Oh can we go on a spring walk with you??? i did enjoy me winter one. Have good day, hugs, sue.x

Shirley-anne said...

Hello Curt Happy Spring to you . Love your cards so bright and cheery and fun . Happy to cast my vote .
NO LENS could focus at the distance I would be from those snakes ...never the less I'm quite content to see the pics you took . What a grand walk you must have and how blessed you are to have nature so close . Thanks for sharing all .

Jan Scholl said...

Your second photo might be an astilbe. There are so many colors and variations...just like with hostas. If you can go back in a month or more and see if it has a feathery spike of flowers vaulting from the center, that is what it will be...astilbe. google that name for many colors and types.

I haven't seen any spring here in mid michigan...still mountains of snow and all dirty too. I didnt get the chance to reseed the lawn last fall where the dogs decided it was okay to kill it all by the deck. I hope I can' do it this spring before water rates change. Gotta get a haul of top soil delivered plus enough for raised bed gardens. First...we gotta warm up, dry out and get some sun. TGIF in 21 hours.

Lauri said...

Hey Curt! I agree about digital images...I love some of them (like Hambo!) I have that same Spring Chickens image! and so glad spring is springing there! But I give you credit for even poking a snake with a stick. I would be running the other way! Hope all is well in Curt-land!

Diane said...

Fun digital images...those springy bunnies are my favorites, but the pig made me laugh....I have bought a few digital images, but lost them when my last computer went to ahh "heaven".....still love to just have that stamp in my hand! The Spring pics are great, but seeing those snakes made me wince...was hoping to work in my weed infested garden (snake garden as I call it)..and had hoped to beat the smakes to not so sure...but was fun seeing "SPring" pop so ready for the "boys" bother the snakes...several years ago my Nick dog passed away from a years fight with a snake bite...great cards....voted on the poll!

Anonymous said...

Wow Curt you do have lots of eye candy!!! Your outdoor pics are GREAT! Came to the one of the snake and my eyes popped a bit......wasn't expecting that! Love your cards but my favorite is definately the pig, especially after I got on the scales this morning. Could have used a lift after reading those numbers. LOL
ps hope your sling has arrived?!

Dee in N.H. said...

Great post Curt! Love those Hambo images! Cute cards! Also enjoyed the little peak of spring. We are still mostly white but the stuff is finally starting to melt!

Heide said...

What a fun cards Curt. I also love whimsical stamps. The Chickens with sweaters on is so very funny. Great Photos too. Great seeing all the green again.

Glittered Paws said...

Love all your cards this week - especially the Easter bunnies - hopping all over the place. Great coloring on all your creations this week, pencil and OMS - good job. Love the spring walk - it is that time here in MO. too - we are finally able to get our "girls" out for nice walks again. Has been a long winter this year.

Ted said...

Curt, I'd have to say my favorite is the "flying pig" card. I can picture an outside sentiment: "Know how you've always said, WHEN PIGS FLY...?" Inside: "Well, you're in trouble now!" ;) Cute card!

The snake photos actually had me audibly say "Whoa!"...because I had been scrolling through the foliage. I'm sure they were as curious of you as you were of them. ;) Happy Spring, buddy! :)

Patti J said...

All of your cards today made me smile! You know what I love most about your work? For the most part, it's always colorful and happy stuff!!! Thanks for another wonderful post, and such beautiful photos (except for the snakes...ewwww!). Makes one think there is hope that spring is around the corner! Okay, off to check out your poll :) Have a great weekend, dear friend! Today is our 38th anniversary! Gonna go make DH a card :)

Jackie said...

Your cards are adorable, you are a master with the colored pencils and OMS. I haven't ever used a digital image, but I am seeing more and more of them out there. Your photos are wonderful, thank you for sharing them. I think we are all so ready for Spring, I know I am! I even love the snake photos. You are correct about the shape of the head and the snake being venomous or not. The eyes are another way to tell - if they are round, like these are, they are usually not venomous. I know you are careful, especially with the boys running around out there.

Danielle said...

Super fun cards Curt! Love the bouncing bunnies ... just too cute! And thanks for sharing those gorgeous spring photos .. although I have to say seeing the snakes kinda made me jump ... you're very brave poking one with a stick!! I wish we were seeing those signs of Spring here in Ottawa ... hopefully the warmer days will be here soon!
Hugs, Danielle

Bonnie Weiss said...

OK ... so next time you post photos of snakes, could you please sending a warning ahead??!! My one HUGE fear and aversion in life is SNAKES and I definitely was not expecting your photo to be of one. Your Spring walk was so nice...up to that point. I would have turned and high-tailed it out of there so fast and would probably have had an angina attack by the time I got home!

Your cards are adorable especially the little chickens with the sweaters. You always know just the right colour combos to use.

Spring is truly a wonderful time of the year, especially when you live in a climate where we have the 4 seasons. It's such a new beginning of nature and just looks and feels so good to be able to enjoy it.

Dawnll said...

I was happily reading your blog post- enjoying the wonderful cards, not a care in the world.
Then you show some wonderful pictures of spring beginning- how delightful to know it is actually starting here in the Midwest- and wham!
Pictures of snakes? You use a long stick?
EWWWWWW- there isn't a stick long enough for me to get near.
Curt you are hilarious
Thanks for always inspiring and Amusing me!

Becky said...

Hi Curt..
Your cards are just adorable. Love those Spring chickens.
Wonderful photos, I hate snakes.

I own few digi's, I am not crazy about them at all, they are to limiting, you have to have the right printer, you can not use copics. I do agree Mo's images are fabulous, and I own a few, but since she has rubberized them :) I chose the rubber.

Gail said...

Hey Curt!
Great post!
Of course for the first card you were much nicer than I! I would've used it sarcastically, "When Pigs Fly"!
Love the Spring Chickens, and the Hoppy Spring bunnies!
Your pics of the week are wonderful, but you can bet I'd have been 'running' the other way when I saw the snakes!
Hope you, Jay & the boys are well!

Susan said...

Wow,Curt! Your post was definitely worth the wait! Your cards are delightful, as always. Those whimsical images have me sitting here and giggling. And I loved our little spring nature walk. The photos are spectacular (and I love all of the little plants which shall remain nameless). I am sure that your boys had a delightful time on their walk (and I love their new spring picture, as well). I must add that your Wednesday evening posts have become a very important part of my week.

Jenny Gropp said...

Cute cards Curt! I especially liked the flying pig!
But --- ohhhhh the snake pics -- you gave me shivers up and down my arms. More pretty flowers, less snakes please! LOL!
Happy Spring!!!

Krissy said...

I love your cards! Hambo images are so stinkin' cute - I haven't tried any yet, but it's on my never-ending list of things to do!

Thanks for taking us all on your walk! I love the "Bloom where you are planted picture" - so sweet!

Hope you're having a good day!

Gina Wrona said...

OMG, eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek snakes! Weren't you scared? I sure would be and wouldn't be that close to take a pic even with a zoom lence, imho.

On the other hand, loved all your creations, you sure know how to make me laugh, when pigs fly!


Erin Morley said...

I can't vote on your poll this week because none of the options applies. My usage of digital images is never. I'm a stamp girl and will probably stay that way. Great photos, wish I could help you identify some of them but my mind is blank right now.

Anonymous said...

Hi ya Curt!! :) Oh how I adore your cards on this post!! The Hambo images are just darling and you've got them colored to perfection!! I really love how you've popped out the bunny in front on your last card!! Very sweet!! Thanks for sharing and I get most of my ideas from blog surfing too...just thought I'd mention that as I didn't vote. :) Smiles, Vicki

Sue from Oregon said...

Funny cards are always the most memorable for me...we all need a good laugh! Darling use of these Hambo images...I will have to pop on over and take a peek at their digi's. I do love digi's, although I was a slow starter I now have a quadzillion of them! Thanks for sharing these happy cards, but the snakezzzzzzzz........eek!

DeeDee said...

WONDERFUL cards my each and every one.....but when I reached the snake pics I was a bit freaked out that you would even stay in the same area as those nasty creatures.....Eeeeeeew! Thanks for sharing all your lovely photos, you are one "camera wielding nature capturer" Sir! HUGS!

Audrey Frelx said...

Hi, Curt!!! Glad you made it -- better late than never! I couldn't stand you not getting here at all!!!

As always, your cards are so lively and full of fun; I just love all of them!!!

Now, as for the snakes, my son would really love those! LOL!

Kathy said...

Your cards are fun. I always love to see what direction you will go next. You are very creative, and a good colorer! I love your nature photos so much! Makes me want to walk that trail. I think the first plant with the 3 leaves is a trillium. There are different varieties of them- so pretty! I think the plant with the white flowers is bloodroot. I think so anyway. Gorgeous..thanks for sharing:)

Connie Lambropoulos said...

Loved your cards and spring pics. I think the flowers in pic 3 & 4 are Blood Root (an awful name for such a pretty flower!) When the flowers are picked, they have a red sap giving it the Blood name. The snakes reminded me of a friend at Boy Scout camp - the boys found a snake under her tent platform but she was totally unconcerned - her comment was that at least she wouldn't have mice in her tent!

Carol's Ink Spot said...

Excellent cards! Wonderful coloring too. I just started to use digital images this year. I found Mo's back in January and love what she draws. Glad to learn of another site to go too. Thanks for the 'walk' and I'm so glad not to have those snakes where I can see them here!

Tertia said...

Love those cards this week! Those chickens are adorable and the bunnies, well lets just say you hAve cost me some money this week :)
Love your photo's, but I am afraid I am so not a snake person. Very few things scare me, but snakes???? No thanks, they even scare me on photo's :)
I am very late commenting this week, because I just got back from a 4 day school camp and was exhausted, so slept most of yesterday afternoon. Is that a sign of old age? I did take some great photo's while out on a quiet walk though. I just have to download them and see whats there. Schoool breaks up today, yay! then I will have time to play again.

Jane Wetzel said...

Great Spring pics Curt! We NEED to see them! lol I totally agree bout the digi images...most anyways..and tho I LOVE LOVE LOVE to color I dont care too much for the "coloring book" looking "big head" images. I DO ADORE THESE images here and I actually have the bunnies hopping image :) thanks for reminding me! Gotta dig for it for Easter! Great cards and coloring here as usuall!

lisa808 said...

Such fun cards today. I especially like the hopping bunnies.

p.s. Snakes are on my mile-long list of fears! If you get a call in the middle of the night tonight, that will be me just waking from a 'snake'mare :)

Linda said...

Love the cards. I getting to really like digi stamps. I love Wax Fruit and By Lori Design. I love that you can change the size.
I really love the nature pictures. They are my favorite to take. The info on the snakes was interesting. They are great pictures. The flowers are wonderful. I really enjoyed all the pictures.

Ann Schach said...

Hi, Curt!

I feel so useful...plant number one is a Trillium, so named because of its three leaves. At one time, like 40 years ago when I was taking my Vascular Plants class in college, they were endangered in many parts of their natural habitat. Besides the burgundy varieties, there is a creamy white one. They are beautiful shade loving flowers! As for the digital stamps, although the Hambo ones are incredibly well done, I would miss the feel of the wood (or acrylic block) in my hand! LOL But you are almost making me take the plunge and try one! Your coloring, as always, is impeccable! And you have selected adorable images. I am a fan of square cards. The Twins are mesmorized by any type of wildlife, and will even attempt to climb trees after squirrels. I know they would LOVE snakes. I am sure that they are quite envious of the Boys and their Nature Walks. Have a fabulous weekend, Curt!

Debbie B said...

Hi Curt!!! Cute cards - I love the bunnies. Made me laugh. What is OMS?
Really liked your pics of your walk except for the snake. Snakes scare me!!! But getting a picture of it coiled up was pretty neat to see!
Thanks for sharing!!

Debbie B

Lee said...

I adore those cards,soooo cute,great colours too.Love the pics,glad it wasn't spiders you took pics of lol,snakes no problem.Beautiful trees and plants.Hope you are all doing ok.Hugs xx

Shirley said...

Okay, first, I have to say how cute your kid's hats are. Second your cards are sensational and sure to lift the spirits of anyone who receives them. Third, where are you walking to find those snakes out. Gad are they really that big. LOLOL Thanks for sharing in the Spring. It has hit here too!

Elaine M said...

Loved all the cards today - but my favorite is the Spring Chickens - those cute little sweaters are such a kick! Thanks for taking us along on your walk today - enjoyed it very much

Celeste said...

I love Hambo designs and I love what you did with them. I think the first pic is called a toad lily, not quite sure not seeing the flower. It might be a trillium too.

Susan (rainy) said...

Cute. Cute. Cute. All three of your cards are darling. Now the snake... well okay he(?) was kinda cute, too. Oh and I voted this week, too. This time I was with the majority. :)

maryr917 said...

love those hambo images-and you have colroed them so wonderfully-I am practicing with my prismas & oms-arent you the brave one to mess with snakes in the woods

Stacie (craft-princess) said...

Cute cards....they sure gave me a chuckle!! I love the pig with balloon! And great pics too!! Have a great week!

Anne Marie said...

HI Curt! What a great post! First of all, your cards instantly brought a smile to my face. I ean, how can you go wrong with flying pigs, bunnies in sandals and chickens in sweaters? Haha! Awesome colors on each, so perfect to welcome spring!

Your photos are gorgeous! I think you were a wee bit close to those snakes...Eeeek!! I'm getting the heebie-jeebies thinking about it. I do NOT like snakes! Can I ask what kind of camera you have? and what lens you prefer to shoot with? You really take amazing photos! Hope you are having a great week so far! {Hugs!} :)

cw said...

I don't know how I happened on your blog, but I'm glad I found it. Your dogs are beautiful (i have 3 fur boys), love your photography and your cards are fantastic. I'm a quilter, not a cardmaker, but I appreciate the work you do and have become a follower.

America said...

Fab fun cards CUrt!!! AND WOW-oh-WOW PHOTOGRAPHY!!!! WHAT AN Amazing eye for details. You've got to publish some of these pics!!!!

Ellen said...

Wow! your blog is awesome! I could just sit and look at your pictures all afternoon! Dogs and papercrafting...I just couldn't get any better than this!!I will be stalking you blog often!
Thanks for all the inspiration!