Digital Backdrops – Where to Use Them

Digital backdrops have become an indispensable tool to many photographers toady as it has many advantages. The value of an attractive background and what it can do for your photographs can not be emphasized enough. This is the reason why more and more digital photographers are turning to digital photography backdrops. In addition, this backup enhancement of photos are convenient, less costly and unlimited in their range.

Digital backgrounds are available in many styles, color combinations and themes. So, choosing a backdrop to suit a photograph is done mainly by the photographer keeping in mind what the final result should look like. It is all about the photographer's ability to bring out the best in the subject with the background as a base.

Digital photography backdrops are used in many places. Where digital backdrops can be used best is with images that have been taken with a blue or green background. But, it can be used practically with any background.

Where digital backdrop use is warranted is easy to find out. These are usually used to create eye catching pictures out of other awkward photographs. A normal photograph can be made to look except with the right digital background giving the photograph a new lease of life and dynamism that was missing from it. The whole mood can be altered in this manner.

Another instance where digital backdrops come in handy is when you need to shoot at a certain location, but find it impractical to do so. For example if you need to do a photo shoot in the English countryside but can not spend on airfare then you can use digital backgrounds with the English countryside in your photographs later on. Many commercial artists find this a very easy solution to a variety of problems that face their line of a work.

Family photographs are another area where digital backdrops can enhance the quality of the final product. You can have a lot of fun with fantasy backdrops, fireworks or celebrity themed backdrops. There are also special ones designed for kids. Where more serious backgrounds are needed the grunge range or similar backgrounds can be used to bring out details in a photograph such as a portrait. The facial features will be brought out with greater effect with a solid color background and allow the onlooker to focus on the face and not on any distracting background. In a similar way romantic, pictures, wedding pictures and other pictures can be enhanced with ease using digital backdrops. …

Digital backdrops have become an indispensable tool to many photographers toady as it has many advantages. The value of an attractive background and what it can do for your photographs can not be emphasized enough. This is the reason why more and more digital photographers are turning to digital photography backdrops. In addition, this backup enhancement of photos are convenient, less costly and unlimited in their range.

Digital backgrounds are available in many styles, color combinations and themes. So, choosing a backdrop to suit a photograph is done mainly by the photographer keeping in mind what the final result should look like. It is all about the photographer's ability to bring out the best in the subject with the background as a base.

Digital photography backdrops are used in many places. Where digital backdrops can be used best is with images that have been taken with a blue or green background. But, it can be used practically with any background.

Where digital backdrop use is warranted is easy to find out. These are usually used to create eye catching pictures out of other awkward photographs. A normal photograph can be made to look except with the right digital background giving the photograph a new lease of life and dynamism that was missing from it. The whole mood can be altered in this manner.

Another instance where digital backdrops come in handy is when you need to shoot at a certain location, but find it impractical to do so. For example if you need to do a photo shoot in the English countryside but can not spend on airfare then you can use digital backgrounds with the English countryside in your photographs later on. Many commercial artists find this a very easy solution to a variety of problems that face their line of a work.

Family photographs are another area where digital backdrops can enhance the quality of the final product. You can have a lot of fun with fantasy backdrops, fireworks or celebrity themed backdrops. There are also special ones designed for kids. Where more serious backgrounds are needed the grunge range or similar backgrounds can be used to bring out details in a photograph such as a portrait. The facial features will be brought out with greater effect with a solid color background and allow the onlooker to focus on the face and not on any distracting background. In a similar way romantic, pictures, wedding pictures and other pictures can be enhanced with ease using digital backdrops. …

Retirement Gifts

Do you know someone who is about to retire, a boss, a friend, or a family member maybe? Giving them retirement gifts may help them remember the day they'll stop the routine that eats most of their time. Have you ever wonder how would they really feel when they retire? Are they really happy about giving up the job they have loved for so many years? Or, will they feel glad, since finally they can relax and unwind without worrying about the work they have left behind?

It is worth knowing the answers to those questions, because you can get retirement gifts ideas from them. Also, just by knowing the person is enough to come up with retirement gifts that match the recipient's personality. It's not enough to give any gifts without considering how the gift would suit the recipient. To be able to come up with unique ideas for retirement gifts, consider the following:

-Give the most unique and memorable retirement gift possible

-Give a retirement gift that genuinely helps retirees in their new lifestyle

-Give the retirement gifts that touches their heart and soul

-Give a gift that shows you really care

-Give the retirement gift that no one else give

Sometimes, we give gifts that can be pretty humorous to let the person feel the light or funny aspect of retiring, or simply to make him smile. It may work, but it's not too meaningfulful. If you want to do something that will be remembered and appreciated like no other gifts, then you better start your mission now. You may start your research over the internet where you can find a wide range of gift ideas. I once found a nice and beautifully designed framed retirement poems for a retiring person who loves poems. There's another thing that should not be forgotten – the Farewell retirement signature boards. These fun boards allow friends to write smart quotes that will be remembered for years. Buy one with a design that could be adorned. But, if you prefer something traditional, there are beveled glass plaque or picture frame, pocket watch, and many more.

Whatever you decide to give as retirement gifts, bear in mind that someday you will have to go through the same stage. If you think that way, you may change little things in someone's retirement party. You would not want to spoil the fun of opening gifts by receiving something without importance, would you? The thoughts of the gifts we received are as important as the money you have sent for them. So, make a difference by giving the best gift. …

Mueller – Austin’s Largest Urban Development Project

When Austin’s airport moved to its current location at the old Bergstrom Air Force base, the Robert Mueller airport became 711 acres of land just east of Interstate 35 ripe for developing.  The city of Austin, along with the Catellus Development group, have created a master plan that includes a variety of housing styles, private businesses and retail stores, and are attempting to make the entire “city within a city” as green as possible. 

This area, now referred to as the Mueller development, has three housing types available in their first phase of building: yard houses, garden court houses, and row houses.  The prices for the first phase range from the $180,000s to the $600,000s, and are 900 square feet up to 3,700 square feet in size.  Though 350 homes will be built in the first phase, the development is planning to build 2,200 in total.  Six different home builders were chosen to participate during phase one, including 3 locally based builders, Saldana Homes LLP, Streetman Homes Inc. and Muskin Co. 

Though some of the homes may be a little cookie cutter in appearance, others are built in a traditional Austin bungalow style, and seem to fit in with their new central location.  None of the new homes are built in the currently popular modern style, but it’s possible that different builders will be chosen for future phases of building, to diversify homes as much as possible.  All homes built in the Mueller Development have alley ways behind them, with garages built on the backside of houses leaving the fronts garage-free, with more room for larges porches. This also makes the streets and sidewalks more pedestrian friendly.  

The initial phase of homes created a large amount of interest, and Catellus Development set up a lottery-style system by hiring a company to randomly create a priority list of buyers.  To keep in line with the development’s vision of a mixed income neighborhood, a certain number of homes were set aside for families making at or below 80 percent of Austin’s median income.  All of the “affordable housing” homes were sold, and 265 total homes were purchased, with the remaining homes offered to the public. 

Many of the businesses in the Mueller Development opened before any residents moved in.  Some big box stores are already open, such as Best Buy and Bed, Bath, and Beyond, but other private businesses are also moving in.  Seton Family of Hospitals is building their 165,000 square foot headquarters in the development.  Not only are they the second-largest private employer in central Texas, but this will also be the first headquarters of a large company to move east of interstate 35.  Seton’s new facility, the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas, will open next to the new headquarters in 2009. 

One of the Mueller Development’s major objectives is to be as green as possible from the ground up.   They will have shops, recreation, entertainment, jobs and transit close at hand, in hopes that driving will be …

Dog Food Aggression

Dog food aggression is one of those dog behavior problems that is difficult for us humans to fully understand. It just doesn’t seem to make sense that your dog would consider you a threat to his/her food resource. I mean you gave him the food in the first place, and if you feed your dog’s the same kinds of foods that I do, it’s not all that appealing anyway!

But, what is your dog thinking?

If your dog glares at you, snarls, growls and positions himself between you and the food he is actually saying to you “this is mine, go away, find your own”. He is basically telling you that he considers himself as the leader or alpha dog in your household. Dog food aggression (sometimes called canine possession aggression) is a dominance issue, it is serious and needs to be addressed immediately, it won’t just go away.

We’ve all made the mistake of laughing and even encouraging our feisty little dogs when they first display the “cute” signs of dog food aggression. Don’t fall into this trap! Food or toy aggression in dogs should never be tolerated as you never know when it can escalate into something more dangerous for you or a family member.

Why Does Your Dog Display Dog Food Aggression?

Canine possession aggression can be triggered by any number of factors but in most cases it can be attributed to one of these common causes:

– Your dog is desperate for this food, in his mind he doesn’t know if or when he will get more food. Therefore he protects or guards his food, just like he would have done in a pack situation in the wild.

– Your dog may begin to see you as someone who is always taking good stuff away. He comes to view you more as a threat than a provider (you’ve got to turn this thinking around).

– Dog food aggression can be part of the general confusion regarding who the leader is in your owner – dog relationship. Often it is not an isolated incident, it’s something you need to rectify.

– It’s possible that your dog doesn’t even understand that his dog food aggression is unacceptable behavior. In such cases there is an obvious communication breakdown between human and dog.

General Rules For Correcting Food Aggression In Dogs

– If your dog is directing his aggression towards other dogs the best solution is to simply separate them at meal times. Feed them in different rooms or in their crates.

– Involve all of your family members in this dog food aggression training.

– Take control of feeding time. You control the time and place of dinner time – own the food!

– Make your dog earn any food. Just simple tasks like sit or a down stay is fine.

– Make it clear to your young puppies that it’s good to have people around when they are eating. If you do this from day one you will …

A Brief History of the Nintendo

Let's start off with the history of Nintendo the founding company of the Wii and many other popular games systems like the Nintendo 64 and gameboy and Nintendo DS.

Following is a list point form of the companies origin and growth spanning over one hundred years.

1889 The companies founder Fusajiro Yamauchi, who is the great grand father of the present day president of the company, began manufacturing card game called "Hanafuda" He set up his small business in the Japanese city of Kyoto.

-1902 The original intent was to manufacture the card game, to export to different parts of the world. The game was a success abroad as well as in its native land Japan.

1975- Nintendo and Misubishi Electric developed a kind of video game system and they introduced the microprocessor into video game machines for the first time.

-1977 Nintendo started to create video game systems for the home user together with Mitsubishi.

1978 Nintendo started selling coin operated gaming machines, using their micro processors. They then shortly thereafter started a separate division for manufacturing their coin operated machines.

-1980 Nintendo came to America for the first time, they created the branch Nintendo of America Inc.

-1981 Was their defining year for Nintendo they developed the coin operated video game "Donkey Kong" This video game became the hottest, most watched after, video game in history.

1985 Nintendo started to sell the first Family Computer Entertainment Systems in the US. The unit included the famous Super Mario Bros, with Mario the worlds most famous little moustached plumber.

-1987 By this year Nintendo was the first to reach sales of more than one million units in the video game manufacturers.

-1996 Nintendo launched the Nintendo 64 It was the first of it's kind with a 64 bit processor. For a home video game it was unimaginable for many. In the first day alone more than 500,000 units were sold. Later on that same year Nintendo shipped some 350'000 units to North America, the entire shipment was sold out in less than three days.

1998 Nintendo released game boy color and host of new games The Legend of Zelda, Pokemon, Donkey Kong Country 3, Perfect dark etc ..

2001 the gamecube was released, which was the sixth generation of the Nintendo Entertainment system (NES).

2006 On April 14th 2006 Nintendo released the seventh generation of the "NES" the aptly named "Nintendo Revolution". Despite protests from video game manufacturers and the Press Nintendo changed the name to "Wii" The name at first received much ridicule from many constituents, stating that the name appeared to convey a sense of childishness. Nintendo responded and said "Revolution as a name is not ideal; it's long, and in some cultures, it's hard to pronounce." So we wanted something that was short, to the point, easy to pronounce, and distinct. That's how 'Wii, 'As a console name, was created.'

Since it's launch the "Wii console" has sold more units than it's competitors (xbox and playstation) combined. …

Raccoon Stuffed Animal

Like the real thing, a raccoon stuffed animal is adorable to look at, but, unlike the real thing, it’s never vicious and wouldn’t ever think of harming you. Raccoons are a wild animal that are best left to their own devices, without any human intervention, but a raccoon stuffed animal needs loads of love and attention.

While it’s true that watching a raccoon family is a terrific sneak peek into the wild, the fact of the matter is, these animals can and often do come into conflict with owners of property and residents. There are six species of raccoons, plus the more familiar North American one. They can be found living in forests, prairies, marshes, and even urban areas. They are omnivores and eat insects, small rodents and other small animals, eggs, fruit (such as grapes), vegetable (like corn) and nuts. With their very quick paws, in the wild, much of their food comes from the water where they catch frogs, crayfish, and other types of aquatic creatures. They will also dine on garbage and composts in urban areas. Essentially, they will eat just about anything they find. With the use of their skillful and competent front paws and long fingers in which they are able to pry things open (like garbage can lids) and even turn knobs, they can quite easily feed on anything they want. Once they find a free meal, they will keep coming back again and again. In urban settings they are quite fond of gardens and lawns, especially after a good rainfall. At that time, both larvae and grubs come near the surface and raccoons will dig small holes (and even roll up chunks of sod) to get at them.

Raccoons are mostly active at night throughout much of the year, although through periods of long cold snaps or deep snow conditions, they may lie dormant. Their dens include chimney’s, attics, hollow trees, groundhog dens, garages, porches, and under decks. While it’s preferable that they stay in the wild, that’s not always the case. Loose shingles on a roof, openings in attics, garages, sheds, and uncapped chimney’s, are all open invitations for raccoons to make a den. They can (and will) tear off shingles and chew holes in buildings. Removal of these and other wildlife are always best left to the experts such as commercial wildlife removal companies.

Luckily for you, a raccoon stuffed animal poses no threat to your home – it will sit or lie quietly on a shelf, a bed, or perched on a pillow, until such time as it’s needed. In addition, the food habits of the real thing aren’t a consideration for a raccoon stuffed animal which means it won’t be digging anything up in your garden or garbage diving inside a bin, anytime soon.

Copyright Shelley Vassall, 2010.…

Lego Blocks – Why Have They Successfully Endured The Test Of Time

Lego blocks were originally patented on January 28th 1958 – that’s more than 50 years’ ago. Yet, did you know that you could still use any Lego building bricks you might have bought from that year with the company’s current-day bricks?

In to-day’s throw-away society, very few products can boast such a remarkably long shelf-life, and the durability of these attractive, colourful blocks is just one reason out of many for their outstanding popularity. But, before we consider the other reasons, let’s take a brief look at the beginnings of this renowned plastic brick…

Origins Of Lego

The original founder of today’s colourful plastic building brick was a Danish carpenter named Ole Kirk Christiansen who, at first, concentrated on making wooden toys.

In 1934, the carpenter named his company “Lego”, from the Danish “leg godt” which, roughly translated, means “play well”. However, it wouldn’t be until the year 1940 that the company started to offer plastic toys. And, it wasn’t until nearly 10 years’ later – in 1949 – that interlocking bricks were introduced, sporting the now-famous round studs on one side, and rectangular hollow on the other.

Reasons For Their Success

When originally introduced, the little building bricks were not particularly versatile. Also, plastic was not considered in a particularly favorable light when compared to wood. However, the Company, with its motto of: “Kun det bedste er godt nok”, or: “Only the best is good enough”, continually worked on and improved its toy.

Nowadays, it’s renowned Worldwide, perhaps being fairly unique in the fact that it pleases both children and their parents: kids derive hour upon hour of fun from it; whilst Mom and Dad recognize that playing with the toy is developing their offspring’s creativity, dexterity, as well as problem-solving faculties.

Here are just a handful of other reasons for the never-ending popularity of the bright little bricks:

• Safe, suitable, and fun for children of all ages… adults too!

• Versatile – most ranges are compatible with each other.

• Durable – you can even pass them on from one generation to another.

• Value-for-money – once purchased, they could last longer than you!

• Easy-to-clean – just wash in warm, soapy water.

• Easily-obtainable – from local stores, the Internet, or eBay.

• Environmentally-friendly production and marketing.

• Many different styles – from the ordinary building bricks through to boxed, up-to-date themes such as Harry Potter, Star Wars and Space Police, which include all people and items to fit the particular theme.

The Company continually strives to improve its product. Nowadays, you’ll even find Lego Education Centers, complete with qualified instructors, and fun, Legoland Parks, where you and your family can enjoy castles, dinosaurs, pirates, wild animals, and even water parks.

Fads come and go but, one thing’s for sure… Lego blocks are definitely here to stay!…

Playing Doctor For Children 4 to 6 Years Old

It is lovely to see children playing doctor and they will even start when only 4 to 6 years old. By that time they will have seen real doctors in the surgery when they go for check-ups and if any of their siblings are younger than them, they will have also most likely visited their mother in hospital during the confinement.

Playing doctor is a time-held tradition amongst kids. Nobody knows how long playing doctor goes back in time but we would think that for as long as mothers and children have been looked after by nurses and medics they will quite naturally have been playing this game.

Playing hospital is just as much fun as playing doctor or any other role playing game, but it also gives a child who loves dolls the opportunity to set up imaginative situations where the child has complete control to work out some simply daily tasks like eating, washing the doll, and of course playing out a doctor's visit possibly along the lines of a recent visit to the child to the clinic, or watching someone else in the family.

Playing doctor is for kids, and doctor play is simply fun is not it? Playing doctor when there is no authority is also nice for the child as they can take an adult role and one which they will look up to the Doctor figure as a role model.

Playing animal doctor is also something that kids do when they have a family dog ​​or cat. They will lean over the animal to use their make-believe stethoscope It's a natural parallel for exploration.

Kids know what a doctor is, they know what it's like to go get a checkup from a doctor. They can give their doll a pretend tablet of medicine, and mock the doll if the doll supposedly does not take the medicine, and this allows the child to distress the situation many have experienced when asked to take medicine which they do not like the taste of. Parents watching may see themselves imitated by the child when playing doctor and find this highly amusing to watch.

Playing doctor can be made challenging, for the child if the parent gets involved and plays with them.

In additional to traditional imaginative games of which playing doctor is just one example, the new computer role playing types of game are becoming increasingly popular with children. Of course all these games need to be very adaptable to cater for all skill levels, but the newly selectable difficulty levels it one particular game are known to make the game much more accessible to the average player than it once was. In fact, if playing the game with a child you can bump down the difficulty for a tough operation and then raise it back up very quickly for the next one.

Girls will always be more willing to play hospital games, like playing doctor than boys, interestingly these sorts of games both act as indicators …

Humorous, Meaningful and Overdue Look Into Emergency Services Worker Experiences

Sherry Jones Mayo has written a tremendously informative and humorous book about the daily experiences of emergency services personnel, whether paramedics, EMTs, doctors, or nurses. After twenty years in the field, Mayo reveals multiple aspects of the job from caring for people who need emergency care, to experiencing tragic losses, difficult and often humorous patients, and coping with fatigue, emotional breaking points, and personal issues.

Most books about trauma are written for the victims and their caretakers-so the caretakers (counselors, responders to an emergency, even family members) can help the victims. Although television dramas pay homage to the courage of emergency services workers-especially in the ER-these programs tend to treat the situations as heroic and dramatic rather than showing the actual real effects-the emotional and physical toll-these experiences have on the workers. Mayo provides multiple aspects of how emergency services personnel respond to trauma, most of it becoming their everyday work, but the deaths of children, cases of child abuse, or situations that resonate with their own personal tragic experiences can require immediate counseling and crisis intervention to protect the workers. Burnout is common, but so is the deep feeling of reward when the greatest efforts pay off.

This book is rich in a variety of experiences ranging from doing emergency care on an airplane to helping overweight people out of their homes, and an emergency services worker experiencing an accident and then seeing things from the patient's side as her co-workers care for her . Mayo shares her own experiences throughout, but she also shares the stories of co-workers, her daughter who was inspired to follow in her mother's footsteps, and numerous other first-person accounts of helping in an emergency.

While "Confessions of a Trauma Junkie" has numerous telling and moving stories, what I appreciated most was the humor. The humorous passages actually made me better understand how emergency services personnel respond to the most difficult situations, the boredom they have to deal with, and the need for humor as a coping mechanism. The workers also do not always receive the appreciation and respect they deserve. They become rightfully irritated when treated like servants, when they are threatened with lawsuits, or when the lazy try to take advantage of them, refusing even to sit up by themselves because a worker can pick them up. While Mayo's experiences occur in the greater metropolitan Detroit area, and a larger economically and socially challenged population exists there, I imagine emergency services workers need to deal with rude and inconsiderate patients constantly, whether in rural or metropolitan areas.

The humor in this book was so rich that I would recommend it to any emergency services personnel simply as a way to cope and relieve stress with a good laugh. Among the many humorous passages, one of my favorites was the response received from a patient when the admitting nurse asked for her name:

I'm too sick to talk. Ask my husband what my name is … can not you see I'm sick? What's …

Exotic Farm Animals – Questions and Answers about Alpacas as Pets

Wondering about raising alpacas as pets? Well, wonder no more. These sixteen questions and answers will help you decide if raising exotic farm animals will work for you.

1. How much room does an alpaca need?

One acre will keep five alpacas healthy and happy.

2. What kind of fencing and shelter are needed for camelids?

Alpacas will not challenge a fence. A fence is needed to keep predators out, especially the neighborhood dog. It must be a fence that a camelid can not stick its head through and get stuck, too. 2 x 4 no climb fencing works well. Be sure a dog can not dig under the fence or gate. A three-sided shelter is plenty in most climates, in really cold areas you may want a barn.

3. What does an alpaca eat?

Hay. They will, also, need some feed supplements.

4. Are children safe around alpacas?

Yes. Children can learn basic skills of caring for a pet with these animals as they are very gentle creatures. They can, also, use these exotic pets for 4H or FAA activities.

5. What other expenses are involved in caring for camelids?

These farm animals must be sheared once a year. You need to worm them and vaccinate them depending on the area where you live.

6. Can I own just one?

Alpacas are herd animals and you should keep a minimum of two otherwise they may become stressed and unhealthy.

7. Are not alpacas expensive?

Not if you purchase geldings or pet quality females. The price ranges from $ 500- $ 1000 each.

8. Can alpacas be trained?

Yes. Alpacas easily learn to lead with a halter on. You can train an alpaca to perform simple tricks if you take time to work with them.

9. What can you do with an alpacas fleece?

An alpacas fiber is very fine. It can be spun into yarn for knitting or crocheting. Or you can felt the raw fiber into garments, rugs, and other items.

10. Besides feeding an alpaca, what other routine care do they need?

Alpacas toenails need trimming about every two months. You'll need to shear and worm them as mentioned before.

11. How large do alpacas get?

An adult alpaca weighs from 120-180 pounds on average.

12. Do alpacas spit?

Mostly at each other, rarely at humans.

13. What climate is best for alpacas?

Alpacas are hardy farm animals and do well in most climates.

14.Can I show my pet quality alpaca?

Yes. There are show classes for fiber / pet animals.

15. Which type of alpaca is better as a pet, the hucaya or suri?

Hucaya alpacas have crimped fiber that makes the alpaca appear puffy. The suri has straight fiber that hangs from the animals body giving it a dreadlock appearance. Suri's are rare and it may be hard to find a pet quality priced suri. Either animal would be a great exotic farm animal pet.

16. Where can I purchase an alpaca pet?

Search the …