Friday, July 28, 2006

12 Steps to Beautiful OR Photoshop Magic

This is a very interesting demonstration of what magazines deisgners do with photos before the photos make it to the covers of magazines. Both of the above pictures are the same. The one on the left is the original, and the one on the right has gone thru about 20 hours of photoshop retouching.
  1. Eyes: Eye color is changed to bright blue, whites of eyes are brightened, eyebrows are moved up higher and cleaned up.
  2. Teeth: Gaps in teeth are filled in and whittened.
  3. Lips: Creases and wrinkles are removed, glossiness enhansed and upper lip made bigger.
  4. Nose: Width of nose is decreased, pores are removed and skin smoothed out.
  5. Facial Creases: Shadows on cheeks and bags under eyes are removed.
  6. Jawline: Jaw is reshaped, pimples and moles are erased.
  7. Cheek Shadows: Dark shadow alongside the cheek is added to make face look thinner.
  8. Hair: Hair color is changed to a blonder shade, gaps in hairdo are filled in with more hair.
  9. Shirt Creases: All creases and wrinkles in shirt are smoothed out, shadows removed.
  10. Breasts: Breasts are pumped up by adding shadows and patches of light.
  11. Waist: Both sides have been taken in to create a thinner, curved waist.
  12. Shirt Color: Color of shirt has been made more vibrant.
Check out the 12 steps for yourself here:
Click the "retouch website" link when you go to the page to see before and after pics at every step.

Friday, July 21, 2006

New hotel logos

For some reason, the hotel industry has been changing their logos recently. Here are 3 new ones placed next to the old ones with some comments.

Comfort Inn:
Here is the new Comfort Inn logo. I like the new color scheme (blue vs the black background), and I also like the increased size of the circle and the wavy lines instead of the straight. It gives you a more relaxed feel and also feels more like a sunset (which I think that is what it's supposed to represent). I am not a fan of the typography on the new logo. I like the font and the word "comfort" but I wonder why they chose to make the word "inn" in all caps.

Red Roof Inn:

I am not really a fan of the new logo. The only part of it that I like is the little roof top at the top of the logo. The crayon type font just feels too silly, and doesn't feel like a serious hotel. It completely changes the feel of the hotel chain, and I don't know if that is a good thing or not.

Four Points Sheraton:
This is the only one of the changes that I really like. I think that the change gives it a very modern look which is good for that hotel. I love the font and the little icon.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Quite a Storm

Quite a storm hit the St. Louis area last night. Gimlet and I almost went to the Cardinals game (we had tickets) but after finding the air conditioning in our house not working when we got up and getting a flat tire on the way to work we decided to just go home and relax after work. Are we glad we did! Downtown St. Louis was hit with 84 miles per hour winds. Windows were blown out of buildings (including the Millennium Hotel and old Dillards building downtown). Part of the airport roof was blown onto highway 70. Semi trucks were blown over on highway 370. Much of the area is still without power right now. The pictures above show the Switzer building right on the St. Louis riverfront in the Landing. The first picture is from March 2005, I took it for my thesis project that I was doing at the time. The second picture is from this afternoon. The building collapsed due to the wind from the storm.

Gimlet and I were lucky, considering the only damage we sustained were some sticks, twigs and leaves from the trees that came down. Our neighbors lost part of a tree in their back yard (see picture), just a bit of it came over the fence into our yard. I'll be doing the clean up tonight, it'll probably only fill a couple lawn waste bags. We headed to the basement when the sirens went off, chinchillas in tote. The poor little things didn't know what was going on.

Reviewing the rules of the road...

For those of you who have forgotten, here is a review of the rules of the road:
  • When the light turns red, stop.
  • When changing lanes, check your blind spot.
  • Keep your hands on the wheel. On the highway is not the time to refill your coffee mug from the thermas that you brought (I actually saw this on hwy 44 this morning).
  • When a lane is closed, do not speed around the other drivers patiently waiting to get thru, only to cut into their lane in front of them.
  • At a stop sign, you must not only stop, but also let any cars already stopped at the intersection take their turns.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

LIVE on the Levee

Elizabeth and I went to Live on the Levee on Friday night. There was some good, some bad, and some awesome fireworks.

Friday night's shows were Sister Hazel and Better than Ezra. We didn't end up seeing Sister Hazel because we were searching for food...we walked down to the arch, realized that the supposed "good" food was up on "Eat's Bridge" and walked all the way back up to the Eads Bridge only to find out that the food up there wasn't any better than the food sold down by the riverfront. St. Louis, don't advertise a big thing happening on the bridge if it's really the same as the riverfront, and seriously, I spent the whole night watching traffic crawl over the Poplar Street Bridge, would it have made more sense just to keep the Eads bridge open for commuters??

We found ourselves a seat on the stairs overlooking the riverfront in time to see Better than Ezra take the stage. We were almost to the top of the stairs, thinking that we were far enough back not to have our ears blasted with loud speakers....wrong! If they'd turned the speakers down just a little we would have been able to hear the words to the songs! They did have a sign-language interperter which was really cool to watch. She really got into the music, and the signs were beautiful flowing to the music.

After a few songs we headed to the other side of the arch and sat and talked where we could hear each other without screaming. We headed back over to the arch when the fireworks started. The fireworks were awesome! I've never seen such a good show!

So all in all, Live on the Levee is not a bad idea, but it needed some tweeking to get people to come back - especially in the "Eat's Bridge" vs the riverfront. We walked about 4 miles total throughout the evening.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Professional Wedding Photos!

Our professional pictures are in! There are 765 photos total, and some really great shots!

You can view all the pictures online by following the directions below:
• Go to
• when entering the site, log on as a "guest"
• enter photographer name: Kuhlmann
• session name: Heinz-Kyle Wedding
• password: hk_G_60 (case sensitive)
• the pictures will remain online through September 12th, 2006

The photos are by Brent Kuhlmann Photography.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

I Love Fireworks!!!

I got to see three fireworks shows this year. On Sunday night I went to Webster Groves with Liz, and watched their pre-preview fireworks show. It was a great show, quite a display. We were really close to the action (close enough for me to end up holding a crying baby who was scared to death of the fireworks, while his mommy took pictures of the fireworks - however she did get some really good pictures). Then we put the baby on some carnival rides - the little cars and boats that go around in a circle, a little kiddy train that goes around on a little track, and the carousal. By the end of the night he was waving to us as he went around in a circle on the ride. It was a fun night getting out of the house and doing something different.

Monday night Gimlet and I accidentally ran into the Twin Oaks fireworks display while going to get ice cream at fritz's. We enjoyed frozen custard and watched an impressive show for a town so small.

Tonight we went to see the Manchester fireworks. I brought along our digital camera to try my had at shooting pictures of fireworks (the best one is the one I put on this blog entry). It's a lot harder than it looks. It's hard to know when to hit the shutter button because while the firework looks neat when you hit the button, by the time the picture is shot, the firework is gone. The Manchester fireworks display left something to be desired. The show was really short and they shot the fireworks really slow. Just one at a time and waited until the sky was completely empty to send up another one. Finally right before the finale they started sending up two at a time. I think we'll try Ballwin's fireworks next year. We could see their show way off in the distance and it started before Manchesters, and ended after. Oh well, at least the rain held off during the show.

Monday, July 03, 2006

New Car (soon)!!!

So...I might be getting a new car soon!!!!! This is pretty exciting. My current car (1994 Nissan Sentra) is getting a bit too old for my driving habits...taking short cuts thru the ghetto, driving to Chicago for a weekend, etc. Not to mention that the A/C is current not working, the plates are expired and it failed the emissions test not once but twice.

My husband and I went to test drive cars for me today. We drove a new Honda Civic and a new Nissan Sentra. The Civic was a nice car, but the styling is just a little too "space age" for me. Both Gimlet and I agreed that we liked the Civic from the steering wheel back, but disliked the front end of the car (picture here). The dash could be in its own zip code, and you can't even see the hood of the car from the drivers seat. Makes parking a bit of a challenge when you can't see where the front of the car stops.

The 2006 Nissan Sentra was almost identical to the Sentra that I currently drive. There were a couple of improvements, but for the most part, it was just a newer, more expensive version of my car.

After exploring new cars, we ventured to Huey's Honda and took a peak at a 2004 Honda Civic (completely different styling from the new ones). I love it. It is black, has just over 24 thousand miles, and could be mine in just a couple days. Here's a picture: