Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Milestone 300th Post - 1955-56 Chevy

Three hundredth blog post! It is my pleasure to have been able to have this blog. And I hope you have enjoyed it thus far. I have done my best to provide an interesting and informative narrative, with high quality images.

I plan on continuing to bring you more informative content and images.

Today's image is a 1955-56 Chevy Convertible. I used similar graphic techniques as other recent images. The photograph was taken at the Frankenmuth, Michigan Auto Festival 2009 by Kent M. Gatzka.

I used Paint.NET for the Ink Sketch look and KPT's Collection Lens Flare for the highlighting the gleam of the sunlight. In PhotoPaint I re-sampled the image and added a small black frame. I also used the Tone Curve to give more depth to the colors.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - Polly Come Home Cover

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Blast from The Past - Twin Pines Milk Truck

Those of you who grew up in Southeast Michigan may remember this gem from your youth. This "Twin Pines Farms" milk truck reminds me of the days of milk delivery to our home as I grew up. That's when milk came in glass bottles and had cream at the top of the bottle when you opened it.

This photograph was taken by my brother Kent M. Gatzka at the Frankenmuth, Michigan Auto Festival 2009. I opened the photograph in PhotoPaint and heavily cropped it to show the details of this memory. I saved the file and reopened it in Paint.NET to apply the Effects> Artistic> Ink Sketch filter, boosting the color and keeping the ink outlines clear.

Saving that I opened it in PhotoPaint again and using KPT's Collection's Lens Flare I added a yellow-orange lens flare to the image. I used the Adjust> Tone Curve> to bring depth of color to the image which was slightly over exposed due to the bright sunlit day. This placed the emphasis on the focal points of the lens flare across the image and the bright yellow and green's of the truck.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble - Love Struck Baby

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

1954 Kaiser-Darrin Convertible

Another car with a flare is the 1954 Kaiser-Darrin. Here is a represen-
tation created from a photograph by Kent M. Gatzka at the Frankenmuth, Michigan Auto Festival 2009.

A two seater, white convertible with a red soft top, this is one interesting vehicle. For more history about the Kaiser-Darrin click here on

I created this image using Paint.NET and PhotoPaint and various filters and maskings. The unique car is show at a pleasing angle that gives the viewer an idea of it's interior and sleek body style.

In the musical area I have completed writing, "The Last Good Cowboy," song I have been working on and now I look forward to recording it. I haven't decided if I will use any lead for the song yet, but that usually comes with experimentation while recording. As I play back the basic song, singing melody, lyrics, and playing the 12-string I try to discover an interesting lead for the song. If I don't discover one I leave it simple with perhaps back up vocals tracks added.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Tim McGraw - The Cowboy in Me

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Buick Interior Circa 1970's

A Buick interior from around the 1970's era, this image is only slightly mani-
pulated. I wanted to show as much detail as possible with just a touch of creativity.

This is from another photograph taken by Kent M. Gatzka at the Frankenmuth, Michigan Auto Festival 2009. The large steering wheel, and speedometer and controls are truly amazing compared to the newer digital displays and functionality of today's interior dashboards.

If you recognize this dash and the interior let me know what year and model you think it is, leave me a comment on this page.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars

Friday, December 18, 2009

Hot Orange Hot Rod Sedan

This photograph caught my eye while viewing images in Picasa 3 on my hard drive. I love the hot orange paint job and the vintage look and feel of the older hot rods.

I applied similar techniques as I used on the last couple of image entries on this blog. Increasing Tone depth and color and adding a Lens Flare for an accent to the Ink Sketched image.

I was up late last night and got out my 12-string and began working on a song entitled, "The Last Good Cowboy," using a basic chord progression of:

C2 G
Am7 D

Of course it is still in the writing phase. I need a few more lyrics to flesh it out. It feels good to be writing again. Another song I was working on is about feeling "Raw," emotionally during times of duress. Hoping for an empathic ear while dealing with such feelings.

Two different types of songs, and emotional depth. Great time working on them.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - I'm RAW

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

1958 Ford Edsel Convertible

One famous folly was the Ford Edsel. It's unique design and lines are unmistakable, you always know it's an Edsel. In my estimation it was a car before it's time. Especially this model shown here.

I selected the photograph taken by my brother Kent M. Gatzka and cropped closely to highlight the uniquely designed car. It needs little customizing, it stands out on it's own. I used PhotoPaint to do my cropping and saved the file.

I opened that file in Paint.NET to apply the Effects> Artistic> Ink Sketch filter. Again boosting the color and minimizing the black ink lines a bit. I saved it again and reopened in PhotoPaint, selected KPT's Collection Lens Flare and added one to the image to increase color and interest.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Afro-Celt Sound System - Seed

Monday, December 14, 2009

Red 1962 Chevrolet Impala SS

This car of all cars is my favorite Custom Car. Why? Because the very first car I owned was a 1962 Chevrolet Impala, though it was not an SS model like the two pictures here.

Yes, I owned a '62 Impala, with a 283 engine, two barrel carburetor. It was Burgundy Red quite like this car captured at the 2009 Frankenmuth, Michigan Auto Festival.

These photographs were taken by my brother Kent M. Gatzka. I opened them in Picasa 3 and selected the nicest of the photos. I opened them
in PhotoPaint and heavily cropped each image to focus closely on the details of this beauty.

Using Paint.NET I applied the Effects> Artistic> Ink Sketch to both, boosting the color and minimizing the black ink outlines. I saved those files and gave them more treatment in PhotoPaint. I used the Tone Curve to add depth to the color.

Then using KPT's Collection Lens Flare filter I added the flares to each image according to my preference of placement. This made them shine like the special car they depict.

This 1962 Impala was channeled to lower it closer to the ground and has a wonderful red paint job which gives it that "take me home," look. More than ever before I wish I had kept my first car so as to still own a beauty like this one.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - The Waiting

Saturday, December 12, 2009

This Corvette and attendant pickup trucks began as a photograph taken by Kent M Gatzka, my brother. It is also from the 2009 Woodward Dream Cruise in Detroit Metro.

I opened the photograph in Paint.NET and used the Effects> Artistic> Oil Painting> filter using an average brush and a high coarse setting. Then I applied the Effects> Ink Sketch> filter with very light lines and full color selected. I saved this large image and reopened in Painter 8. I applied the Woodcut filter, adjusting the black lines to fewer and used the multi-colored palette to posterize the image.

Saving this file I reopened it in PhotoPaint to adjust the saturation, and the Tone Curve, brightening the colors. I then cropped the image to focus more closely on the main vehicle the Red Corvette. I selected the Mask> Select all> and using Effects> 3D Effects> Bevel Effect> I added the frame.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - Still It Eludes Me

Friday, December 11, 2009

Cool Cuda - Woodward Dream Cruise

Here is another Custom Car image done in Painter 8 and PhotoPaint. The original image is from a photograph again taken by my brother Kent M. Gatzka.

I used the thick bristle clone brush on the car and applied a Digital Watercolor brush to the background and filled in other details with a different clone brush.

In PhotoPaint I cut out, masking the Cuda and used a Scatter filter on the background for a painterly look and feel. This style is a bit more realistic as requested by my other brother Karl M. Gatzka. He likes cars as much as Kent does. So with some of his suggestions I created this piece.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - Spending the Afternoon - Original

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Dream Cruise Revisited - Simplified Grunge

I received a CD of photo-
graphs taken by my brother, Kent M. Gatzka from the 2009 Woodward Dream Cruise in Detroit Metro. I decided to do a few new car images but to keep them simple.

Here I selected a texture file from Mayang Free Textures online. They have a wonderful collection of many types of textures. I used here is a painted rust texture as the background. I copied and pasted the car photograph into PhotoPaint over the background. Then I applied the Little Ink Pot's Thredgeholder filter to the car layer for the sketchy lines. I merged the layers together.

I selected the image with a mask surrounding it and applied the Effects> 3D effects> Bevel Edges> to create the frame for the image.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - Like I've Never Been Refused

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Guitar Series XII - Picasa 3 Collage

This image will conclude the current series of guitar images I have been creating. I chose to do a collage of some of the photographs in Picasa 3.

In PhotoPaint I used the Effects> Artistic> Crayon> filter to give the softened look and feel to this image. It contains some of the images I used to create the series, before they were manipulated.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this series and hope that you the reader of my blog have as well.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - Something Amazing

Friday, December 4, 2009

Guitar Series XI - More Concrete Grunge

This image began as a photograph of mine. I opened it in Paint.NET and applied the Effects> Artistic> Ink Sketch> filter and then the Oil Painting filter. Saving that I opened it in PhotoPaint and opened a concrete texture background which I rotated and then reopened the image I had created in Paint.NET.

I overlaid the guitars upon the grunge texture and change the property to Multiply to allow the texture to show through. I then upped the saturation of colors to fifteen for more depth of color.

Using text I added a chord progression for verse, chorus and bridge, and a snippet of lyric. I also added the paint splatters using the font WC Rhesus B bta and the dripping, Effects> Distort> Wet Paint>.

This is number eleven in my Guitar Series which gives me one more to make it an even dozen in the series.

Musically I have been too busy to write or play for a time now, but I continue to listen and enjoy a variety of genres.

Now playing on Windows Media Player: Kirk Mathew Gatzka - When the Stars Go Blue Cover