Today is the day of the launch of the new Cricut E2 - the updated and improved model of the Cricut Expression. I stayed up Monday night to watch the launch on the Home Shopping Network and the machines were selling fast - over 4000 shortly after 2 am (yes, I should get to bed earlier!).
This image is from the Cricut.com website and you can read lots more about the machine HERE. The E2 is exclusive to HSN and will be shown at 12am, 1am, 2am, 6am, 7am, 11am, 12pm, 3pm, 4pm, 7pm, and 8pm EST. Here is a LINK to the HSN website where you can purchase the E2 (until supplies of this limited edition run out).
This machine has four cartridges built in - Cricut American Alphabet, Just a Note, Cricut Decals, Cricut Essentials. The handbooks and sample sheets have not yet been posted in the Cartridge Library or added to Design Studio so you'll need to look at them on the Gypsy if you have one.
All of the winners of the Cricut Cruise will be receiving an E2 - I don't have mine yet but I am looking forward to trying it out when it arrives (soon I hope!).
I want to thank all of you who left comments or sent emails with compliments on the photos I share here on the blog. I do enjoy photography and digital manipulation of my photos. Here are some answers to a few of the questions that I have received.
I use a Nikon D40 camera with the basic kit lens that came with it when I purchased it about three and a half years ago. I don't think that this model is in the current line. It was the most basic digital SLR when I bought it and I believe the current equivalent would be the D3000. I generally keep it on the automatic settings but I sometimes get adventuresome and turn those off. There is a macro setting (the little flower) which I use for close ups of cards and details.
The editing of digital photographs can make an enormous difference in the image. Some of the photos I share are not changed much but sometimes I do a lot of changes with contrast and light to get the look I want. I use the Creative Memories Memory Manager 3.0 software to edit and organize my photos. This software is very user friendly and has a quick editing system but also allows you to get very advanced with your changes to the images.
This was the image of the spiderweb straight from the camera - the contrast is low and the spiderweb is not very obvious in the photo.
I cropped and altered the contrast and the light to produce the photo I posted yesterday - it is much more dramatic.
Here is another example of the original photo before editing...
...and after cropping, sharpening and adjusting the light levels.
One more example of the before...
...and after. Cropping in on the most interesting part of the photo makes such a difference.
I use Creative Memories StoryBook Creator Plus 3.0 to get more creative with my photos and turn some of the images into digital embellishments that I can use over and over again.
I use the cutting tools and the "magic wand" in the program to isolate my flowers, dropping out any background and saving them as PNG files in my digital content. Then they can be resized, recolored, and altered as I please.
I can take my isolated flowers and resize and recombine them in all sorts of groupings and then save the grouped images as additional content. It can be very interesting to try different combinations and I find it relaxing to work with the images this way.
I don't have any photographic training but I do take hundreds of photos and work with the software nearly every day - so I have lots of practice time logged! If you have more questions or would like me to organize an online demo time to show you how I do this please be sure to contact me via a comment or email. If you are interested in the software that I use, I am a Creative Memories consultant and would be happy to help you if you don't have a local consultant. The link to my website is in the left column.
What do you think of the new Expression 2? Will you buy one?
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