Photo Storify

Photos, Stories and Scrapbooking

Month: January 2018

Winter Walk

Hundreds of geese strutted in the fresh snow coverng the ground as we walked around Lakeside Park. There were even a few ducks. And my granddaughter, Kate, did everything a girl normally does in the snow: footprints, snowballs, snow angels and chased the geese. I’m going to make a two page spread with some of the other photos that I captured Thursday afternoon, but in the meantime, a new brush set by Anna Aspnes inspired my artplay this morning.

I began this page by stamping brush 6 from Trees No. 3 in a dark green in normal blend mode at 100%.

Next, I extracted Kate with the Quick Selection Tool. I added a black and white adjustment layer to erase the photo’s blue tones in her shadow across the snow. I gave her body a custom shadow and created two sketches of the photo to reconstruct her shadow from the original photo. I then added a levels adjustment layer and changed the blend mode to soft light at 50%.

To bring in the geese that Kate chased, I placed a photo below, resized it and changed the blend mode to linear burn at 100%. I added an inverted layer mask and brought back in just the geese with a brush.

Note: With linear burn blend mode, the white background disappeared, making it easy to bring back in only the geese, but it necessitated the use of two adjustment layers to lighten the geese.

To create the snow effect, I stamped several brushes from SnowSpray No. 4 in black. I then used an old Gesso style that I had. That turned the brushes white and added  dimension to the snow.

Next I placed the layers of psd file 5 from Artsy Transfers Brumal. I deleted two layers and recolored the stains a pink to match Kate’s jacket. I also stamped stain 6 from ArtsyStains No. 5 in the same pink on the left side of the page. I changed the blend mode to hard light just as the stain in the artsy transfer was.

To finish my scene, I placed glow 2 from FotoGlow Mix No. 1 and changed the blend mode to luminosity at 100%. I also placed a pink button from ArtPlay Palette Love Story, color adjusted with a hue and saturation layer, to balance my granddaughter and add a little dimension. I tacked it down with thread 5 from ButtonThreadz No. 3.

With a title and journaling, I finished my page.

I enjoyed every minute of my artplay this morning.

One Photo and an Artsy Paper

We were out playing Pokemon Go yesterday when I saw these geese, most sitting on the ice surrounding a few swimming in an unfrozen circle of water. That geese even winter here surprises me considering how long our cold winters are, but they do. Bill stopped the car and I jumped out with my iPhone in hand. The scene was beautiful as the sun was setting, although I don’t think my snapshot did justice to the view.

In this post, I share how I enhanced the color of one iPhone snapshot before clipping it to masks in order to blend it into an artsy paper from Anna’s new ArtPlay Palette Brumal.

Enhance Photo

Drag the photo onto a new blank 12×12 document. Resize to fit the page. To enhance the photo, duplicate the original and change the blend mode to Darker Color at 100%. Then reduce the opacity of the original to 75%. Add a Levels adjustment layer, blend mode Linear Light at 30%. Add another Levels adjustment layer, blend mode Linear Burn at 50%. Place a sketch layer above all the photo layers and change the blend mode to Multiply. Mask each layer as needed to emphasize and blend the color in the photo. Note: I created a composite of the layers to clip to a second mask.

Place Masks and Recolor

Place png masks 1 and 5 from Brumal FotoBlendz No. 1 just below the original photo. Note: I recolored the masks white so that I could use darkening blend modes on my photo, i.e. Color Burn, Multiply, Linear Burn.

Clip Layers to Masks

Clip the layers of photo to mask 1 and the composite to mask 5.

Place Artsy Paper

Place artsy paper 1 on Normal blend mode below the the photo layers. To intensify the color add a duplicate copy above on Multiply blend mode at 50%. Note: The design of the artsy paper creates a natural ending transition for the masks.

Add Glows

Above the photo layers, add the FotoGlow from file 7 of MultiMedia Branches No. 7 and glow 3 of WarmGlows No. 7 to enhance the setting sun in the photo.

Journaling, Button and Threadz

Add word art from Winter WordART Mix No 2, button from ArtPlay Palette Brumal, thread 5 from ButtonThreadz No. 2, thread 4 from HandStitchez No. 1. Complete journaling.

Not every page needs to be complicated to be effective. Sometimes one photo, a couple of glows and an artsy paper are enough.

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Christmas Colors?


It’s a tradition for me to hand my camera off and to sit with grandchildren on the fireplace for a quick snapshot at Christmas. This is my present to myself. Our Christmas isn’t fancy, just a meal together and watching the kids open gifts. From my perspective nothing more is needed to celebrate the birth of Christ than everyone being together again.

Having both Jeff and Jen together for Christmas this year brought back sweet memories of them as little kids. Hard to believe the black and white photo on the layout above was taken forty years ago. I miss those moments; maybe that’s why this Christmas with them both was so precious.

However, I struggled with this layout, specifically the colors. To begin, I moved two templates from Project Template Album No. 3 on to a new blank 24×12 document, I had already selected the photos I wanted to include on the page. I switched out the frames on the bottom left to accommodate the orientation of those photos.

Then I clipped my photos to the masks and frames. I wondered how I would create a Christmas page with the intense colors in our clothes. I tried changing the photos to black and white to help calm the page, but that didn’t look right either.

I finally settled on desaturating the color in each photo to soften the look a little. However, I was frustrated and walked away from this page for two days.

Returning to my page, I began experimenting with brushes to try to bring in more Christmas colors in an effort to tie the page together. I stamped a brush from Christmas Trees No. 1 on a new layer in a muted green in the gutter of the layout.

However, it wasn’t until a friend sent me a wreath that I knew how to solve my color problem. A bow from ArtPlay Palette Gentle Morning had been recolored a rusty red. That helped pull in the salmon pink of Kate’s outfit.

I sampled that color with the color picker and stamped brushes from ArtsyPaint No. 7 and ArtsyPaint No. 8 to fill in the background behind the photos. I adjusted the opacity and blend modes. I also added a button from ArtPlay Palette Merry Tree (color adjusted with hue and saturation layer) and ArtPlay Palette Joyeux and tacked them down with two threads from ButtonThreadz No. 2.

As much as I love these snapshots, the color scheme proved especially difficult for creating a Christmas layout. I have to admit that part of me wondered whether I should have reminded them to wear Christmas colors when I saw what I uploaded to Lightroom. I mean, it would have made for a prettier page if the colors were more harmonious. In the end, I can tell the snapshots on this layout were taken at Christmas. That’s enough for the individuals in my family!

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