Category Archives: Animals

Artsy Quails

Just messing around with an App called Photomania. It’s a very simple App, with set filters, no way of modifying anything, no undo or redo buttons. Handy for on-the-fly photo editing, but not for any “serious” mobile photography art. Some of the effects are quite good, I must say.

I’d taken some photos of a few of my Japanese Quail today, in preparation for them going to a new home. The lady meant to collect them let me down, so I’ve still got them in my aviary. I did get some pretty good close-ups, though, so I thought I might as well put Photomania through its paces and see what the results might look like.

Here they are:

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Artist Inspiration : Terry Jackson

Teresa “Terry” Jackson currently lives nowhere and everywhere, on the Seven Seas, a boat travelling around the great big continent of Australia.

In Terry’s own words, from this site:
“I’m a self taught wildlife artist from beautiful South Australia. I began drawing in 2005 and never really stopped. My favourite medium is graphite but I also work in soft pastel and coloured pencil”.

This amazing artist’s favoured medium is a graphite pencil. Sometime using just ONE single pencil, and hours of intense concentration, mixed in with a whole lot of love for wildlife, Terry creates wonderfully detailed photorealistic drawings such as these:

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“Pride and Joy” by Terry Jackson

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“Tiger” by Terry Jackson

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“Feeling a little cocky” by Terry Jackson

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“Dos Lobos” by Terry Jackson

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“Tanklet” by Terry Jackson

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“Nice Scarf!” by Terry Jackson

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“Oh hey!” by Terry Jackson. Graphite and pastels.

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“Zac” by Terry Jackson. Pastels. Commissioned work.

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“Owl Whisperer” by Terry Jackson. Graphite and pastels. Wild Whimsy series.

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“What a Galah!” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

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“Fennec Fox” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

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“Mouse Opposum” by Terry Jackson. Wild Colour Series.

Just amazing!! Check out Terry’s website Drawn Wild, where you can find out more information about her, including where to buy prints of her truly amazing work.

My dog Scruffy

Scruffy is my terrier-mix dog who emigrated from Ireland to Australia with me in December 2010. He was abandoned at a horse fair in Drumshanbo in 2008. I brought him home, and he’s been my constant companion since.

In October 2012, when we first got our pit bull puppy, Shelagh, Scruffy was her nursemaid. He may not be the sharpest tool in the box (the only trick he knows is “Sit”), but his heart is in the right place. He’s best friends with Shelagh now (he used to try to hump her every opportunity he got, until we had her fixed), and they’re inseparable.

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I don’t rightly know what breed Scruffy is, I think there’s perhaps some Border Collie (the white and black colouring) West Highland Terrier (the tufty ears and bearded muzzle), and possibly some Setter (small spots of black underneath the white). I love his unusual colouring. Even the main black patch on his body consists of a mixture of grey, black and white. Behind his ears he has little areas of brown. Scruffy has the most beautiful eyelashes!

If anyone can shed light on what breed Scruffy is, I would be ever so grateful. When anyone asks, I simply say he’s a “Lots-a-bitsa” :-).

Here’s an artistic impression of Scruffy, that I made while playing with the App Arto. I love the “patriotic” colours.
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Pit Bull Art

Photo Artista Oil is an App by Jixipix, available on all platforms (computer, iOS and Android). You don’t have to know how to wield a paintbrush, this App will turn your everyday photos into classical works of art with a few simple pushes of the button.

What I love about Jixipix is how the developers utilise a uniform user interface across most, if not all, of their Apps. If you have already experienced working with one of their Apps, you already know how to use their other Apps.

I woke up one morning and decided on a whim that I’d love to design and wear a t-shirt with my pit bull Shelagh’s photo on it. Perhaps with a funky slogan extolling the virtues of pit bulls. To this end, I’ve been experimenting with Photo Artista Oil. If this works out, I’ll be putting up my designs on my Society 6, Red Bubble and Etsy store pages.

Here are some of the results so far. Enjoy!

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This is the original photo of Shelagh.

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I used Repix to paint out the backgrlund and foreground. I used my favourite brush here – paint drips.

Then, I ran the image through Photo Artista Oil . Here then are several incarnations of Shelagh.

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My Pin-up Poster Girl

I’ve had such a lot of lovely compliments about my pit bull girl, Shelagh, when I pinned photos of her on my Pinterest board. She’s quite the pin-up girl now lol.

So, today I’ll share with you here a few more photos of Shelagh. For those of you who don’t know already, Shelagh’s my 2-year-old pit bull dog, and the sweetest, smartest thing ever. I’m so inspired by her photogenic looks lately that I’m creating some t-shirt designs featuring her. I will share that with you all tomorrow.

But for now, here’s my sweet Shelagh.

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image Shelagh with her best friend, Scruffy

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Idle Hands…

What do Kim Kardashian’s recent nude bottom photos and these obviously Photoshopped mutant animals have in common?

Idle hands and creative minds, that’s what.

Never mind the big hooha over KK’s ample backside, we all know every pic that gets into a glossy mag has been Photoshopped and airbrushed to perfection. Take a look at these imaginary mutant animals, and wonder at the inventiveness of their digital creators. They may not be in the tabloids, but they’re certainly more interesting and newsworthy than recent events. (BTW I didn’t see That photo, just a parody of it using a coffee machine. Disgraceful! I don’t even know who KK is, as I don’t read the tabloids, however it IS very hard to escape these things on Facebook!)

Just goes to show you can’t trust what you see with your own eyes these days. (All photo credits and copyrights belong to their rightful owners, there are too many to cite here. You guys and gals are soooo talented!).

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My Favourite Pit Bull Quotes

Curated from Google Images. Let’s give Pit Bulls the love they deserve! If you’re looking for a dog to adopt, get a Pit Bull, you won’t ever regret it. Cesar Millan has Pit Bulls, and he knows a thing or two about dogs, I reckon!

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Watch this heartwarming video montage of Cesar Millan’s 2 Pit Bulls, Daddy and Junior, created by a fan. I dare you not to cry.

Pit Bulls : Never judge a book by its cover, or a breed by its name

Pit Bulls don’t deserve the bad reputation they have. They are the loveliest, best natured dogs one could hope for in a family. There is a good reason they are nicknamed the “Nanny Dog”, or “Nursemaid Dog” and that’s NOT because someone thought that Pit Bulls deserved some good press for once.  It’s because they truly are wonderful and gentle with children and other animals.

Are Pit Bulls vicious? To answer this question, we simply have to ask ourselves this other question : Are People violent?

According to the American Kennel Club (AKC): “There is no AKC recognized Pit Bull breed. Breeds that are commonly referred to as Pit Bulls include: American Pit Bull terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Bull Terriers, American Bulldog, Bull Mastiff, Boxer, Dogo Argentino, and Olde English Bulldogge”. (Source: http://www.austinhumanesociety.org/pitbulliq)

The Dog Whisperer, Cesar Millan, keeps Pit Bulls, and that should be saying something about the breed. Watch this heartwarming video about one photographer’s campaign to make more people aware of the beauty of the breed, and to stop Breed Specific Legislation (BSL):

Anyway, I for one love my Pit Bull, Shelagh. She’s the best dog I’ve ever had, and I’ve had several in the past, but only one Pit Bull. I doubt I’ll ever go for another breed. Today’s post is to celebrate the Pit Bull, so here I’ve curated some of my favourite photos of various Pit Bulls, from Google Images and my Pinterest board. How can you NOT love those faces? Enjoy!

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I ❤ Pit Bulls : Shelagh’s Story

We all know the saying “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people”. Similarly, Pit Bulls aren’t savage, it’s their owners who encourage them to become vicious. We humans have a lot to be ashamed of.

I wasn’t sure about getting a Pit Bull when I was searching for a dog to keep our terrier-cross dog, Scruffy company. And that was because I’d listened to the hype against Pit Bulls. What started out as the search to find a white or white-and-black, mature, un-neutered female dog to physically match Scruffy and possibly get puppies out of, became the search to get a Puppy instead.

The Universe must have had plans for us. We narrowly missed out on a West Highland terrier because we were in the wrong part of the city that day, and the lady letting her go decided she wouldn’t reserve her for us til we got back across the river, and gave her away to someone else. I had had my sights on getting a Westie, and even considered rescuing one, a male, that had been surrendered to our local pound…but that was over the weekend and by the time I rang the pound up on Monday morning, the dog had already been rescued by a member of the West Highland Dog Breeders Society.

I truly believe our Shelagh was meant for us to find her. I found a listing on Gumtree for 6 English Staffy-Mastiff puppies, $100 each, and the owner wasn’t too far away. So we hopped into the car to go see. The puppies were all absolutely adorable and only 6 weeks old. When we saw them, their doggy parents were watching intently from outside the glass sliding doors, neither of them looked like English Staffies. The lady owner said she believed the mother was an English Staffy x Mastiff, and the father was a Pit Bull x Mastiff.

Two of the puppies, a fawn and a brown one, had beautiful bright blue eyes. I couldn’t decide between the two. My son Jack and I were sitting crosslegged on the floor by the puppies. And then the fawn puppy clambered onto Jack’s lap, curled up and went to sleep. Jack looked at me and said “This one, Mummy”.

And that was how we got Shelagh.

Oh, she was a terrible puppy. She chewed her way through our entire dining room furniture set – table and chairs. She tore her doggy bed to shreds. 2 of them. Tug toys lasted 5 minutes with her. We ended up buying replacement furniture with steel legs, to deter her. We called her “Mrs Chew”, and Scruffy “Mr Yap”…on account of her enormous propensity for chewing everything, and his for barking at anything and everything. They were a team right from the beginning, and they are still inseparable.

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I’ve done research online and looked at hundreds of photos of English Staffies, Pit Bulls and Mastiffs. And I’m convinced that Shelagh has no English Staffy in her. And possibly little or no Mastiff either. The breeder may have been trying to downplay the dogs’ Pit Bull heritage, by mentioning the other breeds. But the more I look at Shelagh and observe her mannerisms, the more I believe she is a Pit Bull. She just grew and grew and now she’s twice Scruffy’s size, but she’s always gentle with him when they play.

Shelagh has the sweetest nature, is extremely affectionate, loyal and is super intelligent too. I love her low, booming bark, she’s an excellent watchdog. We have a lot of other animals on our property, and she’s very gentle and respectful with them. She’ll chase any birds that land on our lawn, but she gives our 2 hens a wide berth.

Shelagh’s favourite exercise is swimming in our pool. She has her favourite ball, which is sadly deflated, and she loves to dive into the water to grab it. Sometimes she’ll even fly through the air and catch the ball in mid-air, before splashing into the water. So, we have a dog that not only walks, runs and swims, but that also flies!

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I ❤ ❤❤ my Shelagh! Scruffy ain’t bad either 😄 …but that’s another story.

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