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#photorehabcovermakeover Week 21 The Conjuring © Sarah Vernon

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 21 The Conjuring © Sarah Vernon

Week 21? Who’d ‘ave thunk.  I didn’t have a chance to take part in The Photo Rehab Cover Makeover last week. Run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday, the challenge this time is to re-imagine a cover for the horror film, The Conjuring. No, I’ve never heard of it either and probably won’t rush to see it as I’m not a particular fan of horror, unless it’s the subtle variety like The Turn of the Screw.

In 1971, Carolyn and Roger Perron move their family into a dilapidated Rhode Island farm house and soon strange things start happening around it with escalating nightmarish terror. In desperation, Carolyn contacts the noted paranormal investigators, Ed and Lorraine Warren, to examine the house. What the Warrens discover is a whole area steeped in a satanic haunting that is now targeting the Perron family wherever they go. To stop this evil, the Warrens will have to call upon all their skills and spiritual strength to defeat this spectral menace at its source that threatens to destroy everyone involved. IMdb

The main image (luminosity mode) is a bad iPhone photograph of a painting showing a house — somewhere in Herefordshire, I think — that used to belong to my mother’s family. If you ignore the dirty marks of the mobile’s screen, the residence looks rather grand. What I wouldn’t have done to inherit it!


The underlay (normal mode) is part of a texture by 2 Lil’ Owls.

I sharpened edges and adjusted contrast on both images in Photoshop before adding the text.

‘From the director of Saw and Insidious’, ‘Based on the true case files of The Warrens’, the actors’ names and ‘directed by James Wan’ are all in Sukhumvit Set Semi Bold. The title font is Catharsis Requiem Bold, which seemed rather appropriate with its nod to the Gothic. I also gave the title and the actors a bevel and emboss, drop shadow and inner glow style.

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 21 The Conjuring © Sarah Vernon

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 21 The Conjuring © Sarah Vernon

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!



Tearing Green Paper Abstract © First Night Design

Tearing Green Paper Abstract © First Night Design

There’s nothing I like better than playing around with photographs and textures and colours to create something.  This is a preview of my most recent ‘playing’, an abstract work which includes part of a photograph of rocks, a free texture that you may remember my posting a few weeks before Christmas.  I do hope Tearing Green Paper appeals to you.  It may or may not be finished yet — watch this space!


Talking of free textures, I’d like to challenge the creative souls among you to make something with the rocks [also shown below] and I will feature my favourites in a future post that will be publicised on FND’s Facebook page, Linked In, Google+ and Twitter.  My top favourite will be highlighted in a future edition of my online newspaper, First Night Design Times.

Rock Wall 1Rock Wall 1 © First Night Design—Some Rights Reserved

You have until 12 midnight GMT on Sunday 17th February 2013 to submit your entries for the challenge.  Please send your creation [no larger than 500 pixels on its longest side] by email to Please make ROCK CHALLENGE in uppercase your subject line.   Thank you.  I’m greatly looking forward to what you come up with.

Take care and keep laughing!

About Sarah & First Night Design

Taking Tea with Clara Butt was created in response to a challenge from the RedBubble group, Music of the Spirit, the only rules being that it should be in black & white and involve the stage in some form.

The sheet music, tea tray and piano are from The Graphics Fairy. Other sheet music from comes from DigitalCollageImages on Flickr. The flourish to the left is from VintageArtDownload  and the vintage postcard of Clara Butt is in my own collection.

Known as ‘The Voice of the Empire’ or ‘The Voice of the Century’, Dame Clara Butt (1872-1936) was born in Sussex and brought up in Bristol. She became one of the most famous and beloved of English recitalists and concert singers. A ‘booming’ contralto, she was remarkably imposing at 6’ 2″.

Dame Clara was not loved by all. Some who considered themselves as superior, serious musicians tended to dismiss her; one famous comment that has passed into folklore came from the conductor Sir Thomas Beecham who is reported to have said, “On a clear day, you could have heard her across the English Channel.”  I like the sound of that kind of voice!

She was made a Dame of the British Empire in 1920 for her charity concerts during The Great War. However, nothing could have made up for the sadnesses in her middle and later life. She had three sons by her husband, baritone Kennerly Rumford, but the eldest died of meningitis, the youngest by his own hand. The singer was diagnosed with spine cancer in the 1920s, which ultimately contributed to her death in 1936 at the relatively early age of 63.

Winifred Ponder’s biography of Butt, published in 1928 while the contralto was still alive, includes this paragraph: “She stands out head and shoulders from among her contemporaries in personality as she does in stature, and the amazing range and power and beauty of her voice have placed it beyond comparison with all others. That superb voice alone must inevitably have won worldwide fame for her. Yet to Clara Butt her voice is only a means to express something greater than any voice—greater even than music herself—a spiritual force that must have found expression through her by some means even if she had had no voice at all.”

[Research: Encyclopaedia Britannica;; Wikipedia;]

Take care and keep laughing!



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