How It All Began
by Lois Lee Bravo
My name is Lois Bravo. I have always had what some might call a good imagination. Growing up on a farm in Northern Minnesota, I spent many hours alone, roaming about with the dog and the many cats that populated the farm yard. I would employ my fertile imagination in making up all kinds of make believe situations in which I was invariably the heroine.
I also have for most of my life enjoyed doing things that could be considered creative. I began sewing my own clothes very early in life and became quite adept at it. I also discovered that I enjoyed decorating and at one time wanted to be an interior designer. As years passed I also discovered that gardening was a favorite activity.
The one thing I could not do was draw or paint pictures. It seemed I had no talent whatsoever for this kind of artistry.
Fast forward to the year 2005.
I had decided early in the year to put up a web site that would expand on a prayer journal that I had written which encourages praying for the future generations that will follow us down to the end of time. Later I put up another web site as a family photo site. Knowing very little about computers and nothing at all about putting up web sites, I had my work cut out for me, to say the very least.
In August, I had progressed in my learning to the point where when I saw an interesting cursor effect on another web site, I decided that I wanted to use something like it on my family photo web site for the entertainment of the grandkids. So I began hunting the WWW for instructions on how to do this.
After some time and quite a bit of searching, I discovered the Dynamic Drive web site. This is a company that makes available, for free, scripts for various kinds of cursor effects and scripts for other design effects that web designers might find useful.
So I copied the provided script and pasted it onto the web page that needed a 'cute' cursor. And it was cute, except the effect wouldn't continue when scrolling down on the page. So I emailed the company about the problem, but received no reply. Three times - no reply.
Finally, I discovered that this company had a help forum for people that had a problem with one of it's scripts. So I took a deep breath and stated my problem and waited for someone, anyone to reply and give me the answer.
John Davenport Scheuer was the someone who gave me the answer. John is now the web master of the 'lois images' web site and has become my good friend. Also during the month of August (I call August 2005 cursor mania month) I needed John's help with the several cursors that I was using on my family photo web site. And so we began to get to know one another via email.
In September I began to think about the upcoming harvest moon. On my original web site, I started planning to incorporate some things having to do with this annual event. I decided to take pictures as the harvest moon would be just rising in the east. Not knowing much about night photography, the pictures I took turned out poorly. I was very disappointed.
To try to salvage something from the harvest moon event, I started 'fooling around' with the moon photos, doing a little enhancing here and there. Thinking that it might be somehow humorous, I had John take a look. He didn't think it was humorous, but did suggest that I might try some other techniques that I was not familiar with. This prompted me to start using the Adobe Photoshop software that I already had but up until then had been avoiding learning how to use.
Well, folks, this is where it all started. As I began to explore the techniques that John suggested, I found a whole new world of art opening for me. Somehow, and very quickly, too, I began to discover that in this medium with my imagination and creativity I could draw and I could paint.
And so the 'lois images' were born around the beginning of October, 2005. All because of my failed harvest moon photos and John Scheuer's advice. Thanks, John, you handed me the little key that opened this whole new world of art to me. I'm forever grateful.
And now we have begun the year 2006. There are many, many lois images already, with more on the way and a new art gallery web site. I wonder where we will be a year from now?