Camera dabbling

This time last year I was about to go on holiday to Barcelona. My Canon dslr and accoutrements had been weighing heavily for some time and I found I was leaving it at home more and more. Should I take it, or make do with my phone and a tiny compact?
Of course I started browsing for possibilities online and then went to town. The camera shop had a very good offer on an Olympus with two lenses, a camera that I knew took good photos, because a certain blogging friend has one. It was love at first sight and I wasn’t going home without it. With no time to get used to it, I left it on auto settings, with a bit of fun playing with the special effects on offer and the press of a button.
Since then life has been chaotic one way or the other, I still haven’t learnt how to use it and I’m going away soon. Never mind!
Today I was inspired by Sue, who creates stunning still life images and loves a bit of decay. So I gathered a few bits together and just tried a few of the automatic creative settings the camera has.
The first photo is just the normal auto setting, a bit dull?

Next a slideshow of various scene settings, a couple of which I like. If I hadn’t used the camera to get these effects, I might have tried some post processing, but that would be more time comsuming. What do you think, are both methods cheating? Is there an image that you like best?

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