tropical flowers

pink flowers, Canon 300D

This photo is the result of a happy accident. I played with the “tv” setting on my camera and the photo came out extremely underexposed, (very dark; the image was almost invisible) but when I set the auto levels in photoshop, this image emerged. I love the effect. It reminds me of the Lomo camera I’ve always dreamed of getting. The flowers look like they were plucked out of the rainforest, and not sitting in someone’s urban garden only inches away from broken bottles and traffic.

Can anyone explain to me how this effect happened?

Off to visit my friend Jen in Chicago this week! We are going to experiment with night photography in her garden…

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Hi, I’m Andrea

On this blog you’ll be learning with me how to use our voices, share our creative superpowers and live life in full color.

As an artist, photographer, life coach + mentor, I’m redefining what it means to be a SUPERHERO — ‘cause in my world, it’s got nothing to do with capes, spandex or sidekicks and everything to do with tenderness, intuition & baby steps of bravery.



  1. jin

    Two of my fave gals online..!
    Looking forward to seeing the results of your collective nocturnal adventurings in the garden!
    This one is stunning.
    Have the best time in Chicago.

  2. Valette

    i do not know the answer to the mystery of the “tv” setting, but i recently played with that setting as well (i have a canon g3). all of my pictures came out horribly overexposed, and there wasnt much i could do in photoshop to reveal the picture. but i did really like the abstract blips of color.

  3. Dawn

    Andrea – I visit you on a daily basis and am inspired by everything I see, almost touch and taste! This might be perceived as an odd first message, but I can’t resist the opportunity to have something delivered to Jen. Would you please give her a hug from me and tell her it is from Dawn the Stalker (a joke I think she will laugh at).
    I dream of times with my friends like those you share with Jen. Have a gentle and stimulating time. Safe travels.
    Thank you for the inspiration.

  4. jenn

    have a wonderful time in Chicago. I loved the photos from her trip to SF, can’t wait to see the new photos.
    beautiful picture on the website.

  5. jenn

    have a wonderful time in Chicago. I loved the photos from her trip to SF, can’t wait to see the new photos.
    beautiful picture on the website.

  6. jenn

    have a wonderful time in Chicago. I loved the photos from her trip to SF, can’t wait to see the new photos.
    beautiful picture on the website.

  7. Donavan Freberg

    Lovely effect!
    Lomo-like indeed…
    Auto levels is fun to play with, it kinda rolls the dice on color and contrast.
    Sometimes you get lucky, as in your delightful flowers.
    It’s all about being brave enough to experiment.
    Too bad life doesn’t allow us to hit command-Z.

  8. Emily

    beautiful photo!!! and have SO much fun in chicago!! One of my best friends is spending the summer out there with his girlfriend and he is loving it!! and how lucky to spend the week with such a gentle soul! ENJOY!!

  9. Deanna

    when using the auto functions in photoshop, there is no rhyme or reason. its coolest to use the manual functions-ie where you can move the slider yourself with your mouse choosing color, density, saturation, levels etc.
    as for the setting on your camera, i suspect it might have been a video mode which may require movement or much light to properly record a subject just by holding your finger down on the shutter control or telling the camera to start and stop at a certain point.
    photo jargin, its what I do, what can I say…
    not sure if any of this helps, but thought I would try.
    excellent pic, and have fun on your trip.

  10. wendy cook

    lovely! please let me know what discoveries you make in the garden as i am always interested in new techniques.

  11. lena

    ooh nice! we’re actually having a lovely summer here in chicago, as i am sure you’ve heard. not too hot or muggy yet with very sunny and bright skies.
    i hope you have a wonderful trip of lots of friendship.

  12. mademoiselle a.

    The magic lies in the way both your camera and PhotoShop calculated the picture, the tv filter left aside. PhotoShop auto corrections calculate according to the nature of a picture (like dark-bright balance, hues…) and then just apply precoded values. This is why sometimes the result is magically right and sometimes just worse than the original. Auto correction works best in pictures with average color, contrast and density.
    Other than that, the manual options are much more empowering (and powerful).

  13. Julia

    “Happy accidents” seem to result in the best art. Your willingness to see the unusual and the beautiful in everyday objects, wonders of nature, and people on the street, inspires me everytime I check in on your blog. Have a delightful time in Chicago, and I can hardly wait to see what you and Jen come up with together. 🙂

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