Graphics Favorite: PicMonkey ♥

So as y’all may or may not know I love designing graphics and novel covers. Well I always have my favorites and today I am writing about my favorite image editing website, PicMonkey. Now, I will admit that PicMonkey is not my absolute favorite for image editing but ever since Picnik closed down their site I have been using this one. It serves all the purposes graphic artists need and it has some pretty cool features.

The first stop on our little tour of pic monkey is the place where you actually do the image editing. There are of course three sample images they give you to optionally edit, but I always use my own. When you go in to edit your picture it can be a little confusing as to where certain options are but once you get the hang of it you’ll like the program. The first screen you will come to once you choose the picture you want to edit will be one with your picture on the right and effects buttons on the left.

The above is what I will refer to as the “task bar” since I am too lazy to see if it has an actual name 😉 My two favorite and most used features on the site are the ones I circled above. The “Touch Up” feature is circled in red and the “Text” feature is obviously the one circled in blue. These are my two favorite features because, 1. They are easy to use, and 2. They are just plain awesome.

I like using the touch up feature when I want to do things with photos of myself. Say I wake up early in the morning and have a sudden urge to take a picture of my messy face (not likely). Well I would use the touch up feature to cover any acne, blotchiness, whiten my teeth, and take the bags out from under my eyes. You may be a little worried that all those tasks will be difficult for you but it’s so easy a monkey could do it (Maybe that’s why they call it PicMonkey?). A side comment on the acne coverup is that I don’t think their blemish fixer works THAT well so instead I use the wrinkle remover tool. It may sound weird but once you get the hang of it, it works like a charm.

The text feature is the one I use most when designing covers for my own pieces of writing or for people who request them via my figment page. Though the selection of fonts is very limited compared to Picnik, I still think they have a good variety for a majority of projects you might be handling with this program.

So…that was my little review on a very cool image editing website. I hope you all check out my little nerd heaven and I hope to see you soon!

-Lydia ♥

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Writing Website Favorite: Figment ♥

I have mentioned the site figment.com a little bit on my blog, but trust me when I say that I will never be able to do that site justice with my mentionings and reviews. Oh well…

Figment.com is a website geared towards young adult writers (Ages 13+) who want a community of other writers for support, critique, and more. I have been a member on figment since May 2011 (http://figment.com/users/33988-Lydia-D-Sharpe-Kony-2012-) and think it is the greatest site ever for writers to connect. Figment has so many things you can do on the website that the possibilities are endless. They have an online newsletter I read daily that has interviews with authors, actors, actresses, publishers, and other celebrities who all have on thing in common: Writing/Reading. The daily newsletter also gives you flash fiction contests, random links you may like, and really just cool stuff for writers. It is definitely my go to place when I have writer’s block.

Another really cool feature on the site are their Contests page. Now these contests aren’t your ordinary “here’s a cup of soup as your prize” contests, they have interesting and fun topics to write about and prizes ranging from scholarships to being on TV. One thing I will say I don’t like on the contests is that some are judged by actual judges and some are something they call “heart contests”. I don’t tend to enter heart contests because unless you have a really great following and you get a zillion people to heart your entry before the deadline (which in some ways is against site rules) you don’t have a chance. Even with a great following there are always 10 or 11 people who always win because the heart contests are easily rigged.

Now on to another feature on the site, Groups. Groups is a new feature that was introduced by Figment late last year. The whole idea of the groups is so that figmenters can have a chance to come together and talk on topics they have in common. You’ll find about 1,000,000 different groups to join (you can join as many as you like) but only about a tenth of them are popular and have activity going on within the group. A lot of the groups I have joined are more like a “badge” sort of join because when you join a group it shows on your user page it just sorta lets everyone know you support that topic.

Your user page is pretty much like any other user page you would get with things like MySpace or Facebook. You can have a user photo, about me, and even have people message you on your page. On your user page it also displays your badges which tell the world of all your figment accomplishments. The page also displays all of your novels, poems, short stories, etc. You can put a password on your writings so only certain people can read your stuff, but if not anyone can read your work. When someone reads your work they can “react” to it, comment on it, review it, or just give you a heart (this is sort of a way of seeing how popular that story was).

Now the rest of the site is pretty self-explanatory but I do think I should inform you on something that happened very recently. A couple of months ago the well-known publishing company “Harper Teen” sold the rights to their own writing community called “Inkpop” to Figment which made the community even larger. If you go on the forum boards you may or may not see that this brought a lot of drama since the Figment people were like “Yay!” and the Inkpop people were like “You suck!” for no reason. So if your confused as to why people have a badge that reads “Inkpop User” or they put “Inky Foreva!” in their username it is probably because they came from that site and have some weird Inkpop pride thing going on 😛 Anyways, since Inkpop joined Figment there have been some pretty cool changes happening. One thing Figment is still working to provide is a security system. A lot of Inkpop users complained about Figment because on Inkpop they used a system that blocked any way of copying and pasting stories. So it makes it a little harder to steal your work, either way I still put passwords on my archives account.

So there you have it folks! The amazingly awesome world of Figment is just one click away. Why not look around? If you have any questions go on and drop me a comment 🙂

Wanna visit my Figgy account? http://figment.com/users/33988-Lydia-D-Sharpe-Kony-2012

-Lydia ♥

What’s coming up: Websites Reccomendations and Book Reviews Galore ♥

So what’s coming up in the next couple of weeks on my favorite things?

5/1- Writing Website Review

5/2- Image Editing Website Review

5/3- Newly Released Book Review (Of Poseidon)

5/4- Favorite Fashion Trend

5/5- Book Review (The Luxe)

Hopefully I will actually keep up with this little schedule of mine, but you know how teenagers can be 😉 Our speciality is procrastinating!

-Lydia ♥

 

Poetry Favorite: Peter Pan, Teach Me How ♥

I absolutley love poetry and I find that I keep going back to this one poem when I need inspiration, a little uplifting, or just a good ol’ poem to read. The theme of the poem is how much things have changed since we were little girls and boys. Everytime I read this poem I keep thinking of this one song by a girl who calls herself LIGHTS (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7nN-xiBlGk) that has the same exact theme to it…listen, read, enjoy 🙂

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7nN-xiBlGk

Figment: Peter Pan, Teach Me How

-Lydia

Favorite Photos: My month in photos ♥

So I thought something cool to do at the end of each month is sum up my month by showing you all my favorite photos I collected over the course of the month:

Accessories Are an Outfits Best Friend:

I love all the accessorizing going on in this photo. Fedoras are always a plus and I think they will still be the go to hat even in the summer. This photo also shows good use of the technique of layering. In the Spring I love to layer because you never know what the weather might turn into during the day, and the layering of jewelry gives a boring t-shirt some extra pizzazz. (http://weheartit.com/entry/27475607)

Cutest Couple ♥

This whole month has been quite the adventure with getting back together with my boyfriend, facing drama at school, and finishing up my classes at the local college all at once. I like this picture because the whole time I was going through all of this I was still floating on cloud nine because of my wonderful boyfriend Alex 🙂 (http://weheartit.com/entry/20009930/)

Short And Sweet Quote

I like this quote cause it’s short, sweet, and totally true haha (http://weheartit.com/entry/27243934/)

Funny Quote

SO many times this month have I referred the idiots in my life to this quote…mentally of course haha 😉 (http://weheartit.com/entry/26652764)

Wonderland

Everything about this post is so whimsical! I love it! Her hair, her dress, her pose, and the scene just make this photo one of my favorites of the month. (http://weheartit.com/entry/27250643)

Favorite Summer Fashion Trend

I can’t wait to try out the rompers trend we will be seeing this summer. I think I like this romper the best because of its modern yet vintage feel, and come on her sunglasses, clutch, and belt really make this outfit even more to die for. (http://weheartit.com/entry/25282069/)

-Lydia ♥

 

Party Song Favorite: The Wanted – Glad You Came ♥

I can not stop listening to this song! I highly recommend it for those nights where you just need to dance or those nights when your chillin’ with friends. Even at a 1.29 on Itunes (don’t get me started on how much the price change annoys me) it is totally worth the good beat to dance, clean, or sing to 🙂

-Lydia ♥

My Favorite: Shoes ♥

So what are my favorite pairs of shoes? Unlike most items this one is easiest to pick because I absolutely love these shoes, and the compliments that come with them (free of charge) 😉

No…your not dreaming. Those are actually my boots, they actually exist, and yes they are made of Lucky Brand jeans 🙂 My jean boots are my absolute favorite shoes for a lot of reasons. For one, they are completely different and I haven’t seen any others like them. Also, I got them for only 7 bucks at the local thrift store (cheap buys are always the best). When you buy from your thrift store you not only can get some really cute stuff but you also don’t feel guilty like you do when buying those $30 shirts from Macy’s. I know a lot of people who get all of their clothing from stores like Goodwill and Savers (I get most of mine there), but I know a lot more people who are afraid of wearing other people’s clothing. The only thing I can think of when I hear this is, Yay more for me!  But of course I feel bad since they don’t realize all you have to do is throw it in your washer/dryer and it’s as good as new.

Now, not only are these my favorite boots but they also double as a nice to place to store my things. Both boots have fully functional pockets which I normally store my phone or iPod inside. They’re comfy, they’re cute, they were affordable, and they go with everything. I like throwing them on when I am just wearing some skinnies and a tank top, or dressing them up with a cute dress. The possibilities are endless…

-Lydia ♥

Website Favorite: Pinterest vs. We Heart It ♥

I’m sure that by now you all have heard of either Pinterest or We Heart it which both have sort of the same concept; Image sharing and finding within a community. Now don’t get me wrong, both sites have certain features I like and dislike, but I always have my favorites.

Now, first up is pinterest.com in this battle of the websites.

The whole idea of Pinterest is to have your own “Pinboards” were you post images you like from your computer, the internet, or the site itself. The layout is very appealing and the idea of being able to get organized by putting my fashion photos on my fashion board and my book photos on my book photos board is very cool. But there are some things I would change about this site:

For one, you have to wait to be “invited” to the site. It took exactly two days for me to officially get my “invite” in my email, and the time spent waiting was not worth it. The site also requires that you set your account up with either a currently exsisting facebook or twitter account. This made it very difficult getting a pinterest account since I don’t have a facebook and had to borrow my friends to make the account. I of course promised I would unhook her facebook from my account once I got it made, but of course the sites “Unhook from facebook” features and buttons not only did not work but none of the account features like “Delete this account” worked. Another feature that is difficult is there “Pin it” button which attatches to your favorites bar in your web browser. The “Pin it” button is supposed to be easy to click on any website you find a cool picture or acivity and then the button will find any or all of the saveable pictures on that page. Only problem is that the button never found the pictures I wanted to save on the page 😛

In short, I think this image sharing website can be fun to look around on since there are a lot of cool ideas for crafts, designs, outfits, etc. And the site is really only appealing to certain people who wish to take a lot of time putting together pinboards,  But I wish it would let me delete my account since I no longer use it.

Our next competitor is a site called weheartit.com which is my favorite of the two.

On We Heart It you simply just click on the photos you like ont he website, choose which folder you want to add them to in your account, and then surf the web using their “Heart it” button saving whatever pictures or gif’s you want. The layout is not as appealing or clean cut, but it’s easy to use and understand.  With We Heart It you’ll find more just creative photography, gif’s, and quotes put on the site. So of course if your looking to more organize pictures of your wedding or how to design your room then Pinterest is recommended.

Instead of pinboards you have something called “Sets” which are just little easy to use folders that you can name and organize the photos you like on the website and across the web into. You can have as many of these as you would like, and my friend I actually share and account since you can have more than one person logged in at a time. We share one since we both have the same tast in art and photogrpahs and it makes it easier for us to see what the other hearted. Though you can always just follow people so you can get updates on what they like, you can also make your account private which means they have to send a request to follow you (this can sometimes be a hassle when both of you have private accounts). I like the privacy feature since sometimes I don’t want complete strangers knowing what photos I like.

**Warning**: We Heart It does have some images randomly placed among the site which are innappropriate. My suggestion is that you go into your account and put up the security setting which blocks most of these images, and only search for specific things when looking for new images. Avoid roaming the site looking at newly added stuff if your worried of seeing some of these things. People can be preverted sometimes… 😛

So really I do have my favorite which is obviously weheartit.com, but it all depends on the person and what they are looking for in an image sharing website. I hope you enjoyed my reviews and go explore the image websites talked about today.

-Lydia ♥

Fashion Trend Favorite: Flashdance ♥

On trend this season more than ever is 80’s fashion, or more Flashdance fashion. Flashdance was a popular movie in the 80’s that brought trends like leggings, leg warmers, loose fitting sweaters, and off the shoulder tees. If your looking for a laid back but stylish look this is def the look for you…

The above outfit was styled with a relaxed afternoon in mind. You can be comfy and stylish all at once with this outfit, and seperate the pieces by incorporating them into other outfits. I chose the RonJon off the shoulder sweatshirt because of it’s comfiness but also versatility. This sweatshirt can be worn in this outfit or thrown over a tanktop and jeans when in a hurry. The added color from the logo adds just enough color to this otherwise basic outfit. Leggings are always a basic need in a closet and I buy mine at Walmart or Old Navy. The reason why I do this is because you get a good enough quality for the small price you pay. The black leg warmers could be bought anywhere but I  like these because they are cheap and black goes with everything 🙂

Above we have a coral off the shoulder crop top inspired by actual Flashdance fashion. If your uncomfortable showing too much skin you can always through a black tank top under the shirt but still have that subtle Flashdance feel. For the pant I went with a coral belted yoga capri which is not necessarily keeping on track with the Flashdance theme, but it will still compliment your top while still being comfortable. If your feeling really 80’s you can always go with a capri legging and some basic leg warmers. When you wear the leg warmers be sure to scrunch the warmer small enough to cover only your ankle and then stretch/style to your liking. Don’t forget to add your favorite tennis shoes and scrunchie your hair up 😉

Don’t have enough money to shell out for these outfits?

Here’s an easy way to turn that thrift store sweatshirt into an 80’s top: http://www.ehow.com/how_5507880_make-flashdance-costume-80s-party.html

Nix the leotard & spandex, and add a simple pair of workout pants or leggings. With the help of my styled outfits you’ll have yourself a Flashdance inspired outfit in no time.

-Lydia ♥

Hello world!

“Never be bullied into silence.

Never allow yourself to be made a victim.

Accept no one’s definition  of your life;

Define yourself.”

                                       -Robert Frost

My purpose of this blog is not only to inform people of the newest trends and tips that I adore, but also to define myself. I’ll be writing about books, movies, fashion trends, and posting cool pictures but in the process of it all you will also be standing by watching me grow into a young adult (creepy yet fascinating). Come along with me as I journey through the crazy mixed up torture we all call high school, and I’ll try to humor you along the way 😉

Now a little bit about me…

I am a hopeless romantic.

I am a passionate writer.

I  absolutely love poetry.

The Hunger Games will forever be my favorite book in the world.

I hate my school, but mostly because of the people in it.

I like cool quotes (I even put one in this post).

I still haven’t the foggiest as to who I am as a person (just who my parents want me to be).

I am working towards getting my degree in Contemporary Journalism.

My pen name is Lydia D. Sharpe, and I am only 14 years old.

So now that a bunch of people know about me how about I learn about you? Comment on my post 🙂

I hope I’ll be seeing you soon,

Lydia ♥