My photography defines my current approach to scrapbooking. At the moment my grandchildren are young and I want them to have access to the photos that I make with my Fuji X-T and then store in Lightroom on my computer. This year, I am again focusing less on artsy pages for the sake of art and more on creating pages for another book using Anna’s templates.

I’m actually mixing templates from several albums for this year’s book, templates with informally arranged simple white frames, fotoblendz masks, stains, textures and white space. Sometimes I rearrange or switch out frames or masks. The similarity in template basics, i.e. frames, masks and elements, gives me lots of flexibility and makes my process for creating a two page spread much easier. However, every once in a while, I capture a photo I love so much that I want to include it in my book as a full page photo on one side of a two page spread with a template on the other side.

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2016-09-30_photoThat is the case for this photo. When I made this photo, I placed my granddaughter in the center of my camera frame anticipating that I would want space to crop the photo for 8×10 and 5×7 framed prints. However, photographers generally place a subject in the frame using the rule of thirds. After making an adjustment in exposure, I cropped and printed from Lightroom.

In order to add this photo to my book, I dragged the photo to a new 24×12 inch document. I enlarged the photo just a little to fit the 12 inch height of my page and adjusted it’s position using Photoshop’s guide lines. That meant part of the photo extended onto the right page. To cover the part that extended onto the right side, I placed solid paper 2 from ArtPlay Palette Take Flight above the photo.

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Next, I dragged the layers of page 12 from Travel Template Album No. 2 to the right side of my page. I added my title in the same position as the original title included with the template. Otherwise, I made no changes to this template.

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I clipped my photos to the frames, masks and stains. I clipped adjustment layers to the photos as needed to lighten and/or increase the contrast.

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Below all the template layers, I placed the pink stain and splatter from ArtPlay Mini Breeze (free with $5 purchase during the sale). I recolored the stain and adjusted the splatter’s color to blend with Kate’s tutu.

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I then placed additional stitching from ButtonThreadz No. 1, two buttons and a butterfly from ArtPlay Palette Studious. To mimic Kate’s butterfly wings, I clipped a hue and saturation layer and fotoglow from ArtPlay Mini Breeze (recolored) to the butterfly. I dragged another copy of the pink glow above those layers, reduced it’s size and clipped it to the butterfly. I attached a layer mask to retain the black body of the butterfly. Note: I also clipped that pink glow on linear light at 35% above the top two framed photos to intensify the pink.

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Once I finished both sides of my two page spread, I created a composite by pressing the keys command + option + shift + E. I then created two new 12×12 documents and dragged that composite on to those pages for my book and adjusted its position. I saved them by page number, pages 50 and 51, for this two page spread.

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I then imported those pages into Lightroom and placed them in a collection folder that I use for the book module. Note: the faint lines mark boundaries in Lightroom as a reminder to not place anything important on your page beyond those lines for printing purposes.

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I am planning on using this two page design with photos I captured of my grandsons in mid September as well. At the end of the year, when I have all my book pages ready, I will send the pages to Blurb through Lightroom. I could also use these 12×12 pages to publish a book through a different service.

The photographs and stories are all different, but I think these templates, light backgrounds, stitching, buttons, a consistent journaling font and informal titles on each two page spread will unify the final outcome. This is a project I am creating over a year so I don’t expect every page to look exactly the same. However, I think the style of templates, the white space and the informality will unify my book at the end of the year. Key to this photo book project is my emphasis on photography, wanting to share these photos is the reason I am creating these pages.