Photos, Stories and Scrapbooking

Category: Photography Page 2 of 15

Keep Calm

Am I anxious during this pandemic? My iPhone usage has gone up 30%. I’ve made lists. I’ve ordered from my lists for delivery and pick-up. This week I researched how to make a cotton mask on the web. That involved locating thread, elastic and cotton fabric. After a few failures, I’ve finally created a working mask design. I am waiting for shipments of elastic so that I can finish.

My iPhone asked me this morning whether I wanted to set limits on my usage. “No,” my inner voice yelled, “you’re keeping me organized so I can keep calm and carry on.

I am currently photographing close to home, i.e. sewing a cotton face mask. For this page:

This morning I wrote my journaling as I try to find order and a new routine, a bit of an oxymoron during a pandemic.

Just Like This

Six weeks ago, Adryane and I walked in the warm California sun, photographing art nestled in the brush along the path near her home. Across the bay we could see downtown San Francisco. Oh for more time just like this.

I’m currently staying home, but I look forward to life returning to normal. While I’m home, I’m playing with some of the photos that I made in February.

Artsy Transfer and Paper
  • Place solid paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Ordinaire on a new blank document.
  • Place the layers file 2 from Artsy Transfers Ordinaire above the solid paper.
  • Delete one transfer layer.
  • Place mask 3 from FramedMasks No. 6.
  • Clip black and white photo to mask. Add a color style to the photo and reduce the opacity.
Framed Mask
  • Place the layers of file 1 from FramedMasks No. 6 above the artsy transfer.
  • Clip art to framed mask.
  • Clip photo of scene to FotoBlendz mask and stains.
Embellish
  • Place layers of file 3 from MultiMedia Flowers No. 7 above the framed photo.
  • Add color overlay to darken the flower layer. Use mask to bring back in the green.
  • Adjust the ribbon with a color overlay.
  • Place word art from Everyday WordART Mix No. 1 over the blended photo.

Boat

My sister and I took the ferry across to Balboa Island in February. There were lots of beautiful boats to photograph. My favorite is the little red rowboat. Nearly 50 years ago, Bill and I had a boat, not one like any of these that I photographed at Balboa Island a few weeks ago, but a 17 foot inboard outboard for waterskiing. The hardest part of this layout was trying to blend an old photo with current photos.

Use a Template
  • Open template 6 from FotoInspired Template Pack No. 2M.
  • Drag the layers to a new blank 12×12 page.
  • Reduce the template size to 85%.
  • Adjust photos in Lightroom.
  • Clip photos to masks.
Use Artsy Transfers
  • Create composites of Artsy Transfers Sea Life, files 2 and 5 by clicking command+option+shift+E after selecting all layers of each psd file.
  • Clip each composite to mask below text and adjust position.
  • Place old photo and use blending brushes to blend it into the transfers.
Build a Cluster

Yes, that is me skiing behind our boat in the old blended photo below the text.

Magnolias

My week in California was wonderful, definitely an inspiration for my photography. I captured these magnolia blooms on a large old tree in a friend’s backyard; what an absolutely stunning display the blooms presented. I wanted to showcase one photo with a sun flare peaking through the blooms.

I generally prefer light backgrounds for my layouts but I’ve learned not to be afraid to experiment with Anna’s designs.

Clip Photo to a Frame
  • Open file 2 from FramedMasks No. 5 and place on solid paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Magoa.
  • Edit the photo in Lightroom before exporting it to Photoshop. Reduce the photo size and clip it to the mask.
  • Clip a larger copy of the same photo to the mask layer included in the psd file and line it up with the small photo.
Create Background for Framed Photo
  • Export a second photo of magnolias to Photoshop, a photo with a more distant perspective.
  • Add an inverted mask to the photo. Using brushes from ArtPlay Palette Magoa bring back in the right side of the photo. Using white as the foreground color reveals on a black mask.
  • Duplicate the photo and angle on the left side to create the effect of the tree. Add another inverted mask. Set the foreground color to white and use brushes from ArtPlay Palette Magoa to bring back in part of the branches.
Experiment

I spent most of my time working with this photo on a white background, but it wasn’t working. I experimented.

A change in the background color made all the difference for this photo.

January’s Color

It’s cold outside here; in fact about three or four inches of snow cover the ground. Our driveway hasn’t even been cleared yet. When the weather is snowy outside, a good place to make photographs is my favorite garden nursery, Mulhall’s. Outside, snow covered the ground, but inside the area that is covered with annuals in the spring, today was filled with hundreds of houseplants.

Aside from my favorite ferns, Maidenhair and Boston ferns, I found something new to me: Tillandsia or airplants, their more common name. This is a perennial flowering plant in the family Bromeliaceae.

The green species live mostly more in the shade. In contrast, most gray species live in precipitation-poor areas with high humidity. They prefer the full sun and can therefore be found growing on trees, rocks and even telephone poles.

I thought about taking home some Tillandsia. They looked so pretty in the white tear drop shaped vases. It didn’t look like I’d have to pamper them. But then I remembered how many house plants I’ve lost. So I just came home with some photographs and the feeling of how much I enjoyed myself.

Below is the template that I used to display the photos I captured. It is part of a set available in Anna’s store MonthReview Template Album No. 4. I did turn off the labels on my page. I especially like that they are laid out as two page spreads.

I can see a lot of uses for this series of templates besides just displaying photos taken during the month. Evaluating and deciding which photos to use on a template like this supported my learning about making photographs and how I use my camera. It’s always good when I spend time focusing on my photography.

Painting with Brushes and Transfers

Lauritzen Gardens is one of my favorite places to go at Christmas. The displays are always so creative. This year, along with gingerbread houses, large enough for kids to go inside, big red mushrooms were nestled among the poinsettias.

I began this page with solid paper 4 from ArtPlay Palette Tinselry. At the top of the layout I placed the layers from transfer 4 of Artsy Transfers Tinselry. Then I framed one of the photos I captured in the garden with a file from Distressed Frames No. 5.

In this post, I am going to share how I painted two photo sketches with brushes and transfers.

Paint a Sketch with Transfers and Brushes.
  • Create a sketch from a photo using the photocopy filter in Photoshop.
  • Stamp with Distress ToolSet No. 1 and AnnaBlendz Artsy brushes on new blank layers above the mushrooms in red to fill in the mushroom shapes. Change the blend mode of the red layers to Linear Burn.
  • Press E to access the Erase Tool. Use a hard round brush to stamp the round spots directly on the red painted layers. Adjust the shape as needed in the Brush Panel while stamping to fit the sketch dots.
Continue Painting with Brushes and Transfers
  • Duplicate the red transfer layer from file 4 of Artsy Transfers Tinselry. Reduce the size and warp as needed to fit the mushroom stems.
  • Arrange pieces of the holly and pine from Evergreen FotoBlendz No. 3 to fill in the area around the mushrooms. Recolor each layer a green to blend with the Artsy Transfer at the top of the layout.
  • Place stains from the Artsy Transfers below the holly.
  • Stamp splatters in black on new blank layers.
Repeat the Process
  • Repeat the process on the right side: stamping brushes on new blank layers and coloring stains, evergreens and mushrooms.
  • Reduce the size of the poinsettia from MultiMedia Holiday No. 2. Duplicate and arrange on the left.
  • Create a brush from the dimensional flower from MultiMedia Holiday No. 2. Stamp with your new brush on a new blank layer below the dimensional poinsettias

I enjoyed using a photo from a delightful display at Lauritzen Gardens to create this page. Painting with brushes and transfers was definitely a fun project.

Christmas Magic

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! I hope you find some time to create a little art with your holiday photos. After publishing two photo story books while on sabbatical the last three months, I am looking forward to simply creating some artsy pages with my photos and sharing them with you on this blog.

Do you have any photo traditions? I call this particular photo my favorite. I have handed off my camera for the last six years just to get this shot. Aren’t those pajamas adorable, I loved their matching outfits. Mom’s pajamas said “Mama Elf” and Dad’s “Papa Elf.” If you look at the small photo on the left, taken in 2013, there is a lot more space for everyone to sit. The two older ones were perched on the outer edges of the fireplace this year.

There really isn’t a lot of space in this room to photograph even a small group. That meant there wasn’t a lot of edge space around us in the photo for masking on a layout. In this post, I’m going to share what I did to solve that problem.

Use an Inverted Mask
  • Attach an inverted mask to the photo.
  • With AnnaBlendz Artsy Brushes, stamp on the black mask with white to reveal the photo.
Ground the Photo
  • Place paper texture 9 from PaperTextures No. 10 below the masked photo.
  • Place photo of carpet above the paper texture, add an inverted layer mask and reveal enough to cover the texture shape.
  • Place stains from Evergreen FotoBlendz No. 3 and recolor green.
Build Background

I rarely hand off my camera, but for this bit of magic, I am more than willing.

Sabbatical

I am on a three month sabbatical at the moment, focusing on my 50th Anniversary Project. I have finally finished the last story page for the book. I still need to edit the text on each page, add my wedding photos and create a cover. Below are some details about the editing process I use for publishing a book. Once all the pages are edited and exported from Lightroom, I will upload them to Picaboo for publishing.

Editing
  • Highlight the text, one text box at a time in Photoshop.
  • Copy text.
  • Open Pages (or another word processing program)
  • Paste into a blank document.
  • Edit content.
  • Correct spelling, grammar and punctuation.
  • Copy and paste back into the document inside Photoshop.
  • Save document back to Lightroom.
  • Return to folder with book pages inside Lightroom.
  • Export full size. 300 dpi, 24×12 inch print to a folder.

I will follow the same process with each page, editing and saving the pages to the folder labeled Picaboo. Once I have all the pages ready, I will upload them to Picaboo web site for printing.

In the End

There are times when a photo reminds me of something; I make a connection to something else. For example, I captured this photo in February while at the Japanese Tea House at the Huntington Library with my sister. The lack of clutter brings a feeling of calm. On this annual visit, I always resolve to find something else to throw out when I get home. This year we talked about two different authors on the idea of organization and decluttering.

I’m not sure which method for organization I like better: Marie Kondo’s idea to keep only what brings one joy or Margareta Magnusson’s Swedish death cleaning. I have rolled my t-shirts, socks and underwear per the Kondo method. My drawers do look nice that way; I guess that is a form of joy.

However, at my age, I think I might find more joy in Magnusson’s concept of death cleaning: getting rid of the abundance rather than leaving a mess for family to deal with after my death. I resized my birth stone ring for my daughter last Christmas. Her joy was priceless; the ring valuable to her. Yes, I am the type that finds joy in the process of decluttering, remembering what’s valuable and letting go of the rest.

Below are the details for how I created this page.

Clip Photo to Mask

Vertical photos don’t alway fit masks. Sometimes, I adjust the mask, but at other times I adjust the photo.

  • Place the layers of .psd file 4 from UrbanThreadz FotoBlendz No. 3 on a new blank document.
  • Clip a copy of the photo to the FotoBlendz mask.
  • Duplicate the photo and place above the original photo. Adjust the position so that it covers the left edge of the mask that wasn’t quite covered.
  • Attach an inverted mask and bring back in just enough of the color to fill the mask.
Place Transfer
  • Turn on the layers of the frame set.
  • Place Transfer 1 from ArtPlay Palette Ochre below the photo and frame layers.
Build Background
  • Place Transfer 4 on the left side.
  • Place Overlay 1 on the right side.
  • Above the Overlay, place Artstroke 2.
Embellish
Add Journaling and Title
  • Place word art from Onward WordART Mix No. 1 on the right side.
  • Place At Once word art from Onward WordART Mix No. 1 below the title and reduce the opacity to
  • Create two text boxes for journaling, placing one above and one below the title.
  • Add subtitle “Inspiration”.

If your photo doesn’t quite fit a mask, there are multiple ways to fix the problem. Shifting the position and masking a second photo is one way.

Little Lime Hydrangeas

Three years ago, I was looking for some hydrangeas that would live through the cold winters in Nebraska better than the Endless Summer variety I had grown in my yard until all but two died. I found this variety: Little Lime. The plants are no longer little but this green bloom changes to a beautiful rose color in the fall. And they live through long cold winters.

My hydrangeas are in full bloom right now, so I went out with my Fuji XT-3 and 60mm f/2.4 macro lens. In order to deal with a mild breeze, I set my shutter speed to 1000, put the ISO on 800 and placed the aperture at 2.4 so that I could blur the background. With my arms tucked close into my sides and patience, I captured some fairly sharp photos even with the large aperture.

As much as I love my little camera, including a very sharp LCD display, I went inside to upload the photos for viewing on my computer screen. I reviewed and then went back outside to photograph again and again, changing my angle and waiting for the still moments.

Template

Initially, I had already chosen a different template from FotoInspired Template Pack No. 2L to print and display my photos. I changed my mind. I decided to use template 8 from FotoInspired Template Pack No. 2L.

  • Open template 8 and place on a new blank layout.
  • Reduce the size to 85%.
  • Enlarge the mask on on the top left by dragging to the right.
  • Delete the mask to the right.

Note: At some point I will publish a book of flowers, all using the format of FotoInspired Templates. I have already completed nine pages.

Photos
  • Adjust Clarity and Saturation on photos in Lightroom to sharpen just a little. No other adjustments were made.
  • Clip the photos to masks, adjusting size and focusing on details.
  • Below the text, clip a blurred portion of a photo and place Transfer 5 from ArtPlay Palette Summer Days above it.

Note: I captured the photo on the right side of this 24×12 page on a white board on my deck where the lighting was different.

Add Color with Transfers
  • Place Transfer 4 from ArtPlay Palette Summer Breeze on the right.
  • Use the warp tool to arrange.
  • Duplicate the transfer, flip horizontally and place on the left side of the template.
  • Warp again.
Adapt MultiMedia
  • Open .psd file 2 of MultiMedia Spring No. 3. Place below the template layers on the right side.
  • Delete the flowers.
  • Recolor paint layers to blend with leaves in photos.
  • Erase lines as needed.
  • Above the template layers, place three copies of the brown art strokes and angle as desired.
  • Duplicate layers, placing set on the left.
Place Splatters
  • Place a copy of the splatter from ArtPlay Mountain High on the right below the leaf but above the green transfer.
  • On the left, rotate a copy of the splatter and arrange it on the left so that it looks different from the right side.
Embellish

I’m definitely going to have to create another page in the fall when the color of these hydrangeas changes.

Page 2 of 15

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén