Tennis talk: A recap on the blissful decade

The last 10 years seem to have flown by fast, especially when the tennis players who finished at the top then are still the ones finishing at the top now. Some chose to lead a simpler life off tour, trading their intense training sessions for business meetings and bridal showers.

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Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, and Novak Djokovic have still finished at the top in 2019, a familiar sight for tennis fans since 2009. After experiencing several setbacks over the past years, the three have emerged stronger and better than before. Andy Roddick and Andy Murray are still strong forces in the tennis world but for different good reasons, says Vijaya Prakash Boggala.

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With young contenders both in men’s and women’s tennis, the game has reached new levels. In WTA, Serena Williams never left the scene, for positive and negative reasons, while Venus Williams remains the more low-key winner in the family. Justine Henin had a tearful exit back in 2011. Maria Sharapova, undeniably the most diverse among the pack, was subject to a two-year suspension for doping. Finding the silver lining, Maria went on to train harder and make her sweets—Sugarpova—a global candy brand.

Young contenders such as Bianca Andreescu, Naomi Osaka, and Coco Gauff are set to make the next decade more exciting and high-impact for WTA. Alex Zverev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, and Nick Krygios have become household names in the men’s circuit. For loyal tennis fans, seeing Nadal, Federer, and Djokovic playing their best after many years is always a treat.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala writes medical abstracts. He is a huge tennis fan. For more tennis reads, visit this blog.

Focus on these things to improve your photography game

Whether as a hobby or a future career, photography should be pursued with excellence and commitment. There are many things one can do to improve their skills in photography. From actual shooting skills to editing abilities, there is always room for improvement.

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Find inspiration. Many beginner photographers follow professional shutterbugs to find motivation and inspiration for how they approach the art. While this can be controversial to some, it is a surefire way to get the creative juices flowing. Part of being a good photographer is being a confident director, explains Vijaya Prakash Boggala. To learn how to direct a model, one can be a model for a professional photographer first. Look closely how they interact with their subject. Take notes if possible.

It’s typical for a photographer to lean toward one discipline of photography; get out of the comfort zone. Shoot weddings, photograph wildlife, capture moments in sports. According to Vijaya Prakash Boggala, dabbling on one or two disciplines can give one fresh perspectives. Reading the camera’s manual is not a waste of time. This will help one learn the ins and outs of their camera.

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Apply what’s written in the manual. Shoot in manual mode, and make the most out of what the camera can do. Manual mode gives one the total control over their camera and their shots. Remember to ask for feedback. One must let others see their work, ask them for feedback, and receive them with a positive attitude.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala writes medical abstracts. He is also honing his photography skills, with action photography, slow shutter speed photography, and landscape photography among his favorite approaches. For more updates, visit this page.

Essential materials that should be in your arts and crafts kit

Crafters and DIY aficionados need quality materials to turn their vision into finished work. Medical abstractor Vijaya Prakash Boggala works as a medical abstractor. He spends his free time expressing himself through art and photography. For a more efficient storage area or workspace, here are some of the must-haves for a productive time dabbling in do-it-yourself projects.

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Cutting tools: Scissors, cutters, trimmers, and knives are some of the basic tools you must have in your toolbox. When working on DIY projects, sometimes it’s not enough to have just one pair of scissors, especially when working with materials other than paper. Using high-quality cutting tools will come in handy for different projects and everyday tasks.

Adhesives: Tapes, all-purpose glue, wood glue, sealer, and a glue gun should be in your kit. Tapes and all-purpose glue are good for kiddie crafts. But for those who want to work on bigger projects, stronger adhesives are required. And when assembling small parts, a glue gun might keep things in place.

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Brushes: For art enthusiasts like Vijaya Prakash Boggala, having paintbrushes of different sizes is a good investment for those who dabble in arts and crafts. Aside from painting, having different applicators can be useful in assembling and finishing projects.

Writing and coloring tools: Investing in good pencils, pens, markers, and coloring materials is a must. Instead of grabbing what’s available, it’s always better to have quality materials even when working on projects with little kids.

A successful DIY project depends on the skills of the crafter. Having reliable materials will make working easier and less time-consuming.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala is a resident of Greensboro, NC and a doting father. His interests include watch live sports, painting, photography, and DIY projects. For related posts, visit this blog.

Should you dabble on DIY projects?

Once in a while, it’s good to let go of all the pressures of leading a fast-paced life. Many successful individuals acknowledge their need for a hobby to stay sane amid challenges they face regularly. Dabbling on DIY projects can be one’s quick escape to relaxation and recollection.

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Yes, from time to time, it’s beneficial to “pull the plug” on your devices and help your hands find something more natural to do. For Vijaya Prakash Boggala, DIY is good for one’s wellbeing as it encourages them to leave their technological devices for some time. Focusing on manual tasks enables one to be free from the insanity social media and corporate emails may bring.

Nothing compares to the satisfaction one can feel when they finish a DIY project. Accomplishing work tasks won’t usually make one feel satisfied and rewarded, unlike seeing a DIY project come to life. In general, DIY projects make it easy for one to feel pleased with the outcome. Increasing one’s self-reliance is among the fortes of DIY projects. Practicality is also one of its strengths. Instead of buying manufactured items, why not build them?

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Vijaya Prakash Boggala notes that the hobby lets children have a connection with the “real world” and nature. Often, kids can be seen playing their favorite games on gadgets. DIY projects encourage them to be familiar with manual work and experience the challenge of building things with their bare hands with real tools, rather than having their avatars do the job for them.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala writes medical abstracts. He also enjoys a variety of arts and DIY projects. Head over to this blog for similar reads.

Roger Federer and rumors of his retirement

For many tennis fans around the world, Roger Federer is the greatest of all time or the G.O.A.T. His recent loss against Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon is making tennis enthusiasts wonder if he still has a few years in the circuit ahead of him. After all, talks regarding Federer’s retirement has been going on for years.

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Tim Henman, one of the players with the best serve-and-volley technique, believes Federer is entering the final phase of his long legendary tennis career. According to the former world No. 1, he played his best game during the Championships, a statement that all the spectators can attest to, including tennis enthusiast Vijaya Prakash Boggala. It must be noted that before taking on Novak Djokovic in the finals of Wimbledon, Federer bested his longtime rival Rafael Nadal.

Nadal, both Federer’s unrivaled friend and contender, always has the nicest things to say about the 20-time Grand Slam Champion. For Rafa, no one has ever played at the same level as Roger in the open era—a hard pill to swallow for some fans who think Djokovic, having beaten Federer at the 2019 Championships, is the greatest player of all time.

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Vijaya Prakash Boggala, who is a fan of the sport, believes that Federer still has a solid couple of years ahead of him. It may even be one of his goals to covet the elusive Olympic gold medal before he hangs up his racket for good. In all honesty, there is no retiring from the sport. Top players like Roger Federer are sure to dedicate their retirement years to expanding the scope of the sport.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala writes medical abstracts and has contributed to the 2011 article “A mortal case of moonshine.” In his downtime, he enjoys watching cricket, tennis, basketball, and other live sports. For more updates, visit this blog.

The basics of slow shutter speed photography

Slow shutter speed photography is great for achieving the best contrast between objects or people in motion and those that are unmoving. A camera’s shutter speed can be used either to capture motion and create sharp images or blur them, so that certain elements in the frame stand out for their unique, artistic look, says photography enthusiast Vijaya Prakash Boggala.

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Photographers slow down the shutter speed to come up with images that don’t really exist in reality when viewed with normal eyes. Though they look surreal, the resulting shots are nonetheless beautiful and often haunting expressions and photo creations.

Most professionals will simply utilize the shutter priority mode on their cameras when aiming for slow shutter speed shots. In Nikon cameras, this is done via the S setting; for Canon users, it’s called the Tv or time value. They’d have to experiment with the camera’s f-stop to get the desired effect, depending on whether the shoot is being done in the daytime or at night.

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Most experts would keep the ISO as low as possible in low-light situations, as the camera allows in more light when using slower shutter speed. Some would make use of the zoom lens to produce even more varied effects. All in all, slow shutter speed photography is fun and refreshing, making use of intentional blur to elevate photos from simple snapshots to what may amount to art in photography, Vijaya Prakash Boggala adds.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala has written a number of medical abstracts for scholarly journals. He likes working on DIY projects and doing photography during his spare time. More on Mr. Boggala’s work and interests here.

Photography basics you should master by heart

In the world of art, nothing is truer than the phrase “taking pictures is easy, but actual photography is hard.” Can you take a photo of a mesmerizing sunrise in less than a second? Sure, you can! But can you sell the said photo for a reasonable price? Chances are, no. The ability to take great images takes a while to learn. According to avid photographer Vijaya Prakash Boggala, you’d need to master the basics of photography to be able to come up with great looking photos. Here are just a few photography basics you should master by heart for you to get good at photography.

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Steady shots: A lot of photos are ruined by a sudden shake or a moving base. Some people find it very difficult to take images while standing still. This is why a lot of photographers use tripods and remote control devices to avoid all instances of shake when taking photos.

Be mindful when composing your shots: A shot typically has a subject, a foreground, and a background. Having a good balance can make the subject stand out while taking a photo of a subject with several distracting objects can take the focus away from the subject. Compose your shots carefully by trying out different angles, locations, or even waiting for the right time when the lighting is optimal.

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Abide by the rule of thirds: The rule of thirds is a great way of helping you compose your shots better. With most cameras equipped with a grid feature, photographers today can easily turn the grid on to make sure that the subject’s location is well within the boundaries of the grid.

According to Vijaya Prakash Boggala, learning photography is much like working out. The more time you put into it, the better a photographer you can become.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala has written a number of medical abstracts for scholarly journals. An artisan at heart, he also enjoys the arts and is particularly fond of DIY projects. More about Vijaya’s work and interests here.

Level up your photography skills in seven ways

Whether one is taking up photography as a hobby or a profession, leveling up in the discipline should always be a priority. Should you hit creative walls, remember that you can always find ways to improve your skills.

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Visit museums and fall back in love with art. Sometimes, all an artist needs is a new perspective. Art appreciation is important for photographers as this teaches them to become a student and an admirer of the arts. Use your gear daily. You don’t need an expensive camera to capture the best shots. For Vijaya Prakash Boggala, what you have is all you need. Read your camera’s manual to know its ins and outs. This is incredibly helpful as this would enable you to capture moments with ease and speed.

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Aspiring photographers often find themselves locked in their homes, with no proper subject to shoot. Begin a photography project, starting in your home, and sharpen your skills in composition. Shoot with intention, always. Shop your home for things you can sho0t, practice flat lay photography.

Follow a photographer whose style and work you admire, says Vijaya Prakash Boggala. Whether it’s a local photographer or one you only see online, pay close attention to their work and how they do it. Bring a memory card with limited space. This will teach you to minimize your possibilities and make you more aware of the shots you take. You’ll be more intentional and more focused on your subject.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala here and I write medical abstracts. I also enjoy a wide variety of arts and DIY projects, and I am the proud father of a four-year-old boy. For more updates, visit this blog.

What’s wrong with the LeBron-led Lakers?

As of this writing, the Lakers are sporting a 31-40 record in the NBA’s Western Conference, which puts the team 11 games behind the eighth-seeded Clippers. With but 11 games left in the franchise’s calendar and upcoming matches against playoffs-bound teams like Utah, Golden State, Portland, and OKC, the chances of the Lakers getting to the postseason is close to nil, explains sports enthusiast Vijaya Prakash Boggala.

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All eyes are on the team’s marquee player LeBron James, who this season decided to bring his talent to Los Angeles. While the experiment showed lots of promise early on, an injury LeBron incurred last Christmas led to the team’s downfall. In short, the Lakers simply could not generate enough wins while King James was sidelined.

In fairness, the team’s young players Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart tried to man the fort with the help of veterans Rajon Rondo, JaVale McGee, and Lance Stephenson. But aside from its inconsistency in offense, the team also suffered from a lack of commitment to defense that wasn’t helped by Ball also getting sidelined due to injury.

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This is the first time in 13 consecutive seasons that a LeBron James-led team will miss the playoffs. And the team has many issues it must deal with if it’s to be in contention next year. It doesn’t help that morale is low among the young players who were placed on the trading block in the failed Anthony Davis trade drama. Now, injured Ingram is also done for the year, and coach Luke Walton will most likely get fired at the end of the season.

If LeBron and company are to rekindle the franchise and relive its glory days, a roster overhaul this offseason is needed, adds Vijaya Prakash Boggala. And the new rebuilding will, for sure, begin with the acquisition of Anthony Davis.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala writes medical abstracts and enjoy watching cricket, tennis, basketball, and other live sports. For more on Vijaya and his interests, go to this page.

Three tips for cleaning an acrylic painting on canvas

Vijaya Prakash Boggala’s day job involves writing abstracts for published medical literature. During his spare time, he enjoys painting using oils and acrylics on different media, often on wood and canvas. For fellow artists and art lovers, here are some tips on cleaning and preserving acrylic paintings on canvas:

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Remove dust using a small vacuum brush or a soft shaving brush

Remember to remove the frame before cleaning the painting. This is to prevent dust from gathering around the edges. If the artwork shows no sign of peeling, you can proceed with cleaning using the vacuum brush. However, if the paint is beginning to flake, you can use a soft shaving brush to gently dust the surface.

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Use a cotton cloth dipped on soapy water

DIY enthusiast and painter Vijaya Prakash Boggala has worked on a variety of art projects. When working with acrylic paintings on canvas, the simplest way to clean it is with a simple cotton cloth and soapy water. If the painting has amassed dust or grime after a few years, wiping the surface will restore its color. However, you must be gentle when it comes to cleaning up the paintings to prevent some of the paint from coming off. For best results, use an olive oil-based soap as it won’t damage the pigment.

Vinyl eraser

For minor stains, using a vinyl eraser can do the trick. If you want to do detailed cleaning, you can use a magnifying glass to spot unnoticed areas. Like the methods mentioned above, you also have to be gentle with the painting to prevent peeling and flaking.

It’s always refreshing to see paintings displayed. Artists and owners must regularly dust and clean the works to maintain the quality.

Vijaya Prakash Boggala works as a medical abstractor. He spends his free time expressing himself through art and photography. For more art-related updates, visit this Twitter page.