A Guest Blog Post: Sevenstyles Kittiwake Art by Pat Lillich « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

A Guest Blog Post: Sevenstyles Kittiwake Art by Pat Lillich

What’s Up?

I am currently leading a BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Cruise in the Galapagos archipelago. Basically, I will not have internet access until late in the day on July 29 so please refrain from e-mailing me at the traditional samandmayasgrandpa@att.net address until very late July. For mail order or other help please contact Jim by phone M-F at 863-692-0906 or via e-mail at the staffbaa address. To register for an IPT please contact Jennifer by phone during weekday banker’s hours at 863-692-0906 or via e-mail to our Verizon address with ATTN: JEN in the subject line. AS a side note, my right hand man Jim Litzenberg can help you with just about anything BIRDSASART.

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Selling Your Used Photo Gear Through BIRDS AS ART

Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog or via a BAA Online Bulletin is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charges a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly–I offer free pricing advice, usually sells in no time flat. In the past few weeks we have sold nearly everything in sight. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 500mm, the EOS-7D, and the original 400mm IS DO lens have been dropping steadily. You can see the complete listings here. The Used Gear Listings are quite slim as a slew of mostly intermediate telephoto lenses (mostly old 100-400s) along with a 300 II sold within the past week. There are still two old 100-400s priced to all along with some great super-telephoto lenses listed including a Canon 400mm f/2.8L IS and a Sigmonster.

You can see all of the current listings here.

Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM Lens

IPT veteran Sean Traynor is offering a used Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM lens, the “old five,” (s/n 24343) a very sharp copy in excellent condition for $4,499. The sale includes all of the original stuff such as the lens trunk (hard case) with keys, the front leather hood, the rear lens cap, and LensCoat, and insured shipping via either UPS or Fed-Ex Ground. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made. Photos available upon request.

You can contact Sean via e-mail or by phone at 201.696.1962 eastern time.

As regular readers know the “old five” was the world’s most popular super telephoto lens for many years. I owned and used one for more than a decade. Sean’s lens is priced to sell. artie

Canon EF 100-400 f 4.5-5.6 L IS USM Lens

Sean Traynor is also offering a used Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6 L IS in excellent condition for $699 including insured shipping via Fed Ex or UPS Ground to US addresses. The sale also includes the original tough fabric case, the strap, the front and rear caps, the lens hood, and the tripod ring. Your gear will be shipped only after your check clears. Photos available upon request.

You can contact Sean via e-mail or by phone at 201.696.1962 eastern time.

Both denise and I owned and used the original 1-4 for many, many years and made hundreds of high quality images with it with pretty much every Canon camera body in production. This one is priced to sell. artie

Canadian Sale Only

Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS II USM Lens

Jonathan Ward is offering a used Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS II USM lens in excellent condition for $2,000 CAD. The sale includes original product box and packaging, the lens hood, the front and rear lens caps, a black LensCoat, an Arca-Swiss compatible lens plate, the case and strap, the warranty card, the software disk and insured shipping via Purolator Ground within Canada. Your item will not ship until your cheque clears unless other arrangements are made.

You can contact Jon by e-mail or by phone at 416-932-2314 or 416-843-4474 EST.

I have owned and used this versatile lens for many years to create a mind-boggling variety of images. It is a favorite of many professional photographers working in various genres. artie


This image was created on the recently concluded UK Puffins and Gannets IPT with the hand held Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens (at 400mm) and the amazing Canon EOS 7D Mark II. ISO 500. Evaluative metering +1 stop: 1/800 sec. at f/9.

Sevenstyles Kittiwake Art. Image and Photoshop artwork courtesy of and copyright 2015: Patricia Lillich.

Sevenstyles Kittiwake Art by Pat Lillich

During the spectacular Puffin IPT in the UK with artie and denise we had an opportunity to photograph some gorgeous kittiwake nests on an accessible cliff. The photos were beautiful and i thought some of them would make wonderful paintings. I’ve been experimenting with some Photoshop actions by sevenstyles: you can find them here. At $5-6 they are inexpensive and they work really well. For this image I used Modern Art 2.

Bring your image into Photoshop–it needs to be at least 3000 pixels the long way–in 8-bit/channel mode. Do your cleanup and then merge all layers leaving just the one called “Background.” It needs to be exactly that name with the capital B. Now add a new empty layer (Control + J) and name it “brush” (with a lowercase b.). Decide what part of the photo you want to be the focus of the painting and then use the Quick Selection Tool to select that. In this case I selected the two birds, the nest, and some of the hanging tendrils. You could use Brush Tool instead but on my laptop I was better able to make my selection with the Quick Selection Tool. Fill in the selection with any color of your choosing. You will now have two layers, the top one a blank layer with the outline of the birds and nest filled with color over the bottom layer, Background. Run the Modernart 2 action and wait; it takes a while because it is creating about 20 different layers for you. Once it has finished go back to the various layer and start experimenting, turning some layers off and refining others with Layer Masks. To get the birds to look as they looked in the original, I masked the main Modernart2 layer group and painted in the beaks and other outlines. You can change colors, remove lines, and do lots more. Have fun abnd be creative. Sevenstyles has really good, detailed how-to videos linked to each action on the site.

Pat Lillich and husband Alan have been on about a zillion IPTs. Alan recently was named most helpful participant (of many) on the UK Puffins and Gannets IPT. Both Alan and Pat are excellent photographers and Pat is an amazingly talented artist and sculptress. When I saw her working on the Kittiwake image I was immediately struck by its beauty and told her, “That’s a guest blog post for sure!” Many thanks Pat.

Thanks also to Denise Ippolito or helping me refine Pat’s text.


Images and card design copyright: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART. Click on the card to enjoy a spectacular larger version.

2016 UK Puffins and Gannets IPT
June 27 through July 4, 2016: $5699: Limit 10 photographers/only 3 spots left. Two great leaders: Denise Ippolito and Arthur Morris.

Please call or e-mail while I am in the Galapagos to see if this workshop is sold out. We will keep a wait list. You can get Jim by phone M-F at 863-692-0906 or via e-mail at the staffbaa address or reach Jennifer by phone during weekday banker’s hours at 863-692-0906 or via e-mail to our Verizon address with ATTN: JEN in the subject line.

Here are the plans: take a red eye from the east coast of the US on June 26 arriving in Edinburgh, Scotland on the morning of Monday 27 June no later than 10am (or simply meet us then at the Edinburgh Airport–EDI, or later in the day at our cottages if you are driving your own vehicle either from the UK or from somewhere in Europe). Stay 7 nights in one of three gorgeous modern country cottages.

There are 5 days of planned puffin/seabird trips and 1 morning of gannet photography, all weather permitting of course.


Images and card design copyright: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART. Click on the card to enjoy a spectacular larger version.

The Details

We will get to photograph Atlantic Puffin, Common Murre, Razorbill, Shag, and Northern Gannet; Arctic, Sandwich, and Common Terns, the former with chicks of all sizes; Black-headed, Lesser-Black-backed, and Herring Gulls, many chasing puffins with fish; Black-legged Kittiwake with chicks. And two species of castles 🙂 We will be staying in upscale country-side lodging that are beyond lovely with large living areas and lots of open space for the informal image sharing and Photoshop sessions. The shared rooms are decent-sized, each with a private bathroom. See the limited single supplement info below.

All breakfasts, lunches and dinners are included. All 5 puffins boat lunches will need to be prepared by you in advance, taken with, and consumed at your leisure. I usually eat mine on the short boat trip from one island to the other. Also included is a restaurant lunch on the gannet boat day and a farewell thank you dinner.

Plan to fly home on the early morning of Monday July 4 or to continue your stay or travels.


Images and card design copyright: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART. Click on the card to enjoy a spectacular larger version. Scroll down to join us in the UK in 2016.

Deposit Info

If you are good to go sharing a room–couples of course are more than welcome–please send your non-refundable $2,000/person deposit check now to save a spot. Please be sure to check your schedule carefully before committing to the trip and see the travel insurance info below. Your balance will be due on March 29, 2016. Please make your check out to “Arthur Morris” and send it to Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL, 33855. If we do not receive your check for the balance on or before the due date we will try to fill your spot from the waiting list. If your spot is filled, you will lose your deposit. If not, you can secure your spot by paying your balance.

Single Supplement Deposit Info

Single supplement rooms are available. To ensure yours, please register early. The single supplement fee is $1575. If you would like your own room, please request it when making your deposit and include payment in full for the single supplement; your single supplement deposit check should be for $3,575. As we will need to commit to renting the extra space, single supplement deposits are non-refundable so please be sure that check your schedule carefully before committing to the trip and see the travel insurance info below.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance for big international trips is highly recommended as we never know what life has in store for us. I strongly recommend that you purchase quality insurance. Travel Insurance Services offers a variety of plans and options. Included with the Elite Option or available as an upgrade to the Basic & Plus Options you can also purchase Cancel for Any Reason Coverage that expands the list of reasons for your canceling to include things such as sudden work or family obligation and even a simple change of mind. My family and I use and depend on the great policies offered by TIS whenever we travel. You can learn more here: Travel Insurance Services. Do note that many plans require that you purchase your travel insurance within 14 days of our cashing your deposit check of running your credit card. Whenever purchasing travel insurance be sure to read the fine print careful even when dealing with reputable firms like TSI.

We do hope that you can join us. artie and denise


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9 comments to A Guest Blog Post: Sevenstyles Kittiwake Art by Pat Lillich

  • avatar Pat

    hey Artie and Denise – it was such a great trip – loved the birds and the place we stayed was great! Glad you enjoyed the quick photo with the Sevenstyles action – they are so much fun to play with. Can’t wait for the next trip…

  • avatar Jeff Sielski

    Pat, Beautiful work!!

  • avatar Catherine Costolo

    Thanks, Pat, for sharing. It is really lovely.

  • Pat, this is beautifully created! And thanks for the info on the Sevenstyles PS actions.

  • avatar wtlloyd

    Pat was the “stealth” photographer, very quietly working with little commotion unlike the rest of us chatterboxes…then we’d later look over at her laptop, and go ‘whoa!’

    Simply one of the most enjoyable trips I’ve ever been on!

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks Bill. Agree with your accurate assessment 🙂 I have ordered my 400 II and have a borrowed one with me right now. artie

  • avatar Kathleen Hanika

    Love it! I’m a “long time lurker, but hardly ever poster.”

  • Pat, this is a wonderful piece of art. Your vision and your talent go way beyond the ordinary. Excellent work!