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Photos, Stories and Scrapbooking

Tag: stories (Page 1 of 2)

The Boat

In the spring of 1971, we bought a 21 foot inboard outboard Gulf Stream. Why would two teachers who lived in a tiny apartment need a boat? I guess a boat sounded like a fun thing to have for our summers. We hooked the boat to our yellow Plymouth Duster and set off for Lake Havasu, Isabella, Folsom and Orville. Despite the fact that owning a boat turned out to be a bit more complicated than we anticipated, there is no denying that the boat was a great value for the time we owned it. We made some wonderful memories with friends. However, all good things come to an end. By the end of the summer I was pregnant with our son. We sold the boat for a downpayment on our first home.

To create this page I clipped solid paper 3 from ArtPlay Palette Mountain High to the template’s large masks before dragging the layers of templates 7 and 8 from WaterColor Template Album No. 4 on to my page.

Note: I chose the square shape of the fotoblendz masks from template 7 because they suited the 3.5×3.5 snapshots so common in the 1970s. I duplicated one frame on the right instead of using the longer framed mask included in the template.

However, because I wanted to include as much of the square photo as possible, I added overlay 2 from FotoBlendz Overlays No. 7 below the template’s mask on the right to square the mask shape more.

I then clipped copies of the photo to the two masks and stains below.

Note: I extended the photo by blending in an edge on a separate layer in order to get rid of the trapped space in the template.

I clipped two additional photos to the fotoblendz masks on the left as well as the stains below that were included in the template.

I clipped my photos to the small framed masks, adjusting the exposure and look by duplicating copies and changing the blend mode.

Next, I placed overlay 1 and 2 from ArtPlay Palette Coastline below the fotoblendz masks and stains on the left. On the right, I rotated overlay 2 and placed it below the fotoblendz masks and stains.

Finally, I added layers of psd file 5 from Artsy Transfers Coastline on the left. I used the same layered psd file on the right, but rotated it and moved some layers.

Writing our story was the last step in creating this page. Oh what memories we have made together.

Family

“Strive to capture the heartbeat of love in this family: preserve and transplant it into the hearts of its members both present and future,” my grandfather said. His children, including my father, reflected that love of family and it’s history. That is what I wanted to capture with these two pages.

First, I extracted my parents from a photo with the Quick Selection tool using a layer mask and gave the masked result a shadow.

Note: I used the Clone Stamp tool on solid paper 4 from ArtPlay Palette Bravura so that I could erase the transfer on the paper to create a background for both pages.

Next, I placed the overlay from ArtPlay Palette Bravura and blended into the background another photo of my father. I changed the blend mode to Overlay blend mode at 60%.

I then placed a small frame from a template from WaterColor Template Album No. 7 to the left of my dad and clipped a photo of my dad with his siblings to the mask. Below the frame I placed a splatter and stain from the template.

I then positioned the layers of file 3 from MultiMedia Flowers No. 5 below my mother. To ground my parents, I also added file 6 from UrbanStitchez No. 1.

To finish the right side, I wrote my journaling in the textbox included in the template and added a title.

After placing the same solid paper on the left side, I dragged the layers of template 4 from WaterColor Template Album No. 7 onto the page. I clipped a photo to the templates’s fotoblendz mask and adjusted the focal photo by clipping duplicated copies to the original: black and white at 90%, Screen blend mode at 30% and Soft Light at 100%. I switched out one frame by duplicating the top one to accommodate my photos.

Note: I adjusted the size and position of the lower two text boxes.

I clipped my photos to the small frame masks. I added a button from the artplay palette.

Note: I initially adjusted these photos in Lightroom but added a duplicate copy of each and changed the blend mode to Soft Light.

Below the frames, I placed most of the layers of the layers of transfer 5 from Artsy Transfers Bravura.

Note: The splatter is part of the template.

Finally, I added the quote from my grandfather. I thought the word family summarizes what was most important in my dad’s family.

Alexander

Anna always packs a lot of information into her classes; last Friday was no exception. Although I want to view the recorded version of Heritage Live, I now have the format, based on a template provided in the class materials, for my anniversary project. I have already changed the first two pages that I had already completed to fit my new format.

I love the white border because it will unify my book no matter what color I use on the pages. This format will also provide more flexibility when it is time for me to publish the book. It took time to rework my original pages, adjusting the text especially, so I am going to begin each page with the template. It will be easier for me.

Bill taught biology and math; sometimes his students brought him critters that he would bring home as pets. While it was nice that our first pet was a good size for our small apartment, I really didn’t want a pet rat. The left side tells two stories: one about Alexander, our pet rat, and the second story about a rosy boa for which I don’t have a photo. However, as you read, you’ll see that the two stories are connected.

I began my page by clipping solid paper 3 from ArtPlay Palette Elysium to each large mask on the template.

Next I placed overlay 4 from FotoBlendz Overlays No. 12 on the left mask and clipped the photo of my husband, Bill, feeding our pet rat with an eye dropper. I masked out the background on the photo and clipped artsy paper 4, placed below the photo, to the overlay. I adjusted parts of the overlay with AnnaBlendz Artsy brushes.

Below the masked photo, I placed transfer 3 from ArtPlay Palette Elysium and the layers of transfer 3 from Artsy Transfers Elysium. I added a layer mask to hide a part of one layer that interfered with the text.

I clipped two photos to the frames from WaterColor Template Album No. 4. The thread was part of the template.

Finally, I added a button, title and wrote my journaling.

While I’ve added a bordered template, I am still using fotoblendz overlays and masks, small frames from template and artsy transfers. My project is not complicated; I like that when I’m attempting to create a book.

Pokemon Go

As part of my birthday celebration in February, I flew up to San Francisco to play Pokemon Go on Pier 39 with Adryane and Don. Besides finding enough Wailmer candies to evolve a Wailord, I captured the Dragonite in the screenshot and fought level 5 raids. We played, stopping only for photographs, lunch and dark chocolate, until I had to catch my flight back late that afternoon.

When I caught the screenshot of the Ferry Arch from inside the app and the photo of the Ferry Arch with my FujiX-T2, I was already thinking about making a page remembering the day. This was one of the easiest pages I’ve ever created. It involved combining two photos and some iPhone screenshots using artsy brushes on inverted masks. Directions for creating this page follow.

Create a sketch of the photo, change the blend mode to linear burn and duplicate. Add an inverted mask and use brushes from ArtsyPaint No. 14 and AnnaBlendz Artsy No. 10 to bring back the sketch.

Note: I used Topaz Simplify to create my sketch. You can also create a sketch with Photocopy in the Filter gallery.

Use the same brush sets on inverted masks to add color from the photo copies to the sketch. Place the top color layer on color burn at 100% and the layer below on linear burn at 100%. Use the same technique on the extension of the track.

Place textures 2 and 3 from PaperTextures No. 6 above the photo layers.

Stamp brushes from ArtsyPaint No. 14 on new blank layers in a light blue below the photo.

Place iPhone screenshots on the page, resize and give each a custom shadow. Add thread 9 from UrbanThreadz No. 15 above the cards. Add a Poke ball above the screenshots and give it a shadow.

Note: I found the Poke ball on the internet.

Place photo just below the Pokemon screen shots. Extract and give it a shadow.

Add title and journaling to finish the page.

I want to thank Adryane and her husband, Don for a fabulous day: talking, walking and playing Pokemon Go.

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Variety of Greens

There is usually a story behind every photo made. In this case after walking in the warm sunshine my sister, Glenda, and I enjoyed a salmon salad at the Farmhouse, a lovely open air bistro on the grounds of Roger’s Gardens. I suppose a photo of the salad might have marked our day better than these fake succulents, but this trip was filled with work days helping my daughter move. Once we found a little shade, I helped my sister photograph these with her new camera. Sometimes, I simply take what I get and fill in the details of the story in order to document an event. Sometimes, I just want to remember a time together.

This was a very simple layout to put together using Anna’s new release. I actually chose this photo to document our lunch based on the color scheme of the new ArtPlay Palette Notabilia. I placed transfer 1 from the new artplay palette on a new blank document and blended my photo into the transfer using an inverted layer mask.

Note: I adjusted the color in my photo with a hue and saturation adjustment layer, but I learned a valuable lesson on color as I worked with this page.

Next, I placed the layers of psd file 2 from MultiMedia Documents No. 2 to create a frame effect around my photo. I switched out the flower with one from the artplay palette and added word art from Notabilia WordART Mix No. 1. I clipped an extracted copy of the same photo I had clipped to the transfer to the paper layer for the document multimedia file.

While I liked the photo on the multimedia document, I did not think there was enough interest on my page. I then opened Artsy Layered Template No. 255 and dragged the layers below my multimedia layers and turned them off. First, I moved the frames, text boxes, splatter and art stroke above the document layers but below the succulent element, thread and word art. I reduced the size of the frames slightly and recolored them an off white. The white frames appeared too stark with the color scheme. I wrote my journaling and added a subtitle from Notabilia WordART Mix No. 1. I could have left my page as below, but it appeared incomplete to me.

I began turning on the template layers that I had grouped below the multimedia layers. I recolored some stains, adjusted the blend mode and deleted some layers until I though I had created a soft background for the document file. I especially liked the look of the textured paper on the left with the paper in the document file.

I though I was finished with this page, until I looked again at the lack of variation in color on my page. So I reopened the file, adjusted my framed photos a little more, recolored some of the template stains and reduced the opacity.

I like the more natural variety in greens on this page much better now. Too much matching of color is not always a good thing.

Feed the Goats If You Dare

You wouldn’t think that goats would be more agressive than deer to feed. However, they were. It looked so easy when Corbin held the seeds in his hand for the goats. They tried to eat Logan’s cup and seeds. Both Logan and Corbin just laughed at their antics.

Unfortunately, when Kate held up her cup of seeds, the goats knocked it to the ground. Poor Kate cried while mommy picked up the cup and gathered a few seeds to put back in Kate’s cup. Then Owen lectured the goats on their behavior.

After Corbin showed Kate how to line up some seeds on the railing, she started placing some on the wooden railing while the rest of the family kept the goats busy. Once she had placed some seeds, she waited for the goats to come over to eat them. Kate laughed when three goats battled for the seeds she had left on the railing.

Below are some of the pages that I’ve already finished. The book I am working on this year may not have as many pages as previous years. I’m not worried about the number of pages that I complete; I just want to document some of our stories.

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I am using a similar format for each page: a template, a light background, blending in the background, hand written font for the title. Today’s page is no different.

I placed template 2 from Hipster Plume Template Album No. 1 on the left with out making any changes other than stamping directly on the fotoblendz mask to darken areas to accommodate my photo. On the right, I placed template 8 but substituted the frames from template 4 to better fit my photos. On this side, I enlarged the fotoblendz mask and layers below about 15% so that it extended across the page gutter. I clipped my focal photos to the masks and stains below.

Next, I clipped additional photos to the small frames and attached a levels adjustment layer to each on soft light at 50%. I adjusted the exposure of some of the photos with the camera raw filter.

I created the sky by blending together two transfers from ArtPlay Palette Mountain High and pieces from Artsy Transfers Coastline. I used the same background paper, solid paper 1 from ArtPlay Palette Paraiso that I used for the photos that I captured the same day at Deer Park.

I switched out two urban threads for two included with the template, wrote my journaling and added a title. Finally, I added an arrow from eA Arrows No. 1 to connect the the title with photos and the story.

Combining photos and stories with a template make my process for creating the pages for my book simple and fast, just the way I like it.

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Happy Place

Now that the weather is warming up, Kate and I often walk to the park. With spring in full force here, this is where she wants to be: playing, climbing, sliding, swinging and jumping on the equipment. The park is Kate’s happy place and if there are other kids there, even more so because that gives her someone else with whom she can pretend and play besides me. That’s when I focus on making more photos.

There is no way that I can scrap all the photos that I capture while we are playing at the park, but I want Kate to remember how much she loved playing there. With Anna’s artsy templates, I can combine photos from several different trips to the park to create an artsy page for this year’s book telling the story of how much she loves this place. Yes, this story page will be part of another book.

After reading Ulla-May’s tutorial, Artsy Sketch Effect, I wondered if the instructions of the tutorial might work with some playground photos since I don’t have many cityscapes as recommended for this effect. However, the photos that I capture of my granddaughter Kate on the colorful playground equipment she loves so much are often bright and bold with strong lines.

Following Ulla-May’s directions to create a sketch, the screen below shows what I got with my first photo. I adjusted the opacity on a couple of layers and changed the blend mode of the color layer to hard light. Otherwise, I simply followed the directions. I created a composite of all the layers to use with the template’s mask and stains rather than drag all the layers over to a new document.

First, I dragged all the layers of template 6 from WaterColor Album Template No. 4 to the left side of a new 24×12 inch document. I replaced the fotoblendz mask with a mask from template 9 but clipped copies of the photo to stains from both template 6 and template 9 to better accommodate my photo.

I followed the same process to create an artsy sketch with two additional photos and clipped those to the fotoblendz masks of template 7 on the right side of my page.

I clipped other photos to the framed masks as provided in the templates, adjusting as needed with adjustment layers. I did not apply the sketch effect to those photos.

Finally, I added a title, a glow from MultiMedia Suns No. 2 and a scribble from ScribbleSun No. 1 to finish my page. This page is bright and cheerful, just like Kate at the park. The artsy sketches add to the fun. I’ll definitely repeat the sketch effect on another page in this year’s book.

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Fall Play

We had some beautiful warm days last week to rake leaves. Today, it didn’t get beyond 45° at mid afternoon. So I played inside this afternoon with last week’s photos, some of which are a little blurry because my granddaughter, Kate, moves quickly when playing in the leaves. Grandpa had three nice piles by the time she arrived to help. She didn’t ask him whether she could mess up his work, but loudly said as she wagged her finger for emphasis, “Grandma, you said I could play in one pile of leaves.”

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Since Grandpa is part of the story, I wanted to include him on this page for our book. However, I didn’t think the photos with a big trash worked. So I placed one of the photos of Grandpa and Kate cleaning up leaves above the fotoblendz mask of template 6 from Project Template Album No. 2 and roughly extracted grandpa.

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I worked with the fotoblendz masks from templates 5 and 6 visible. I didn’t need to extract more because the grass would cover his feet. I lowered the opacity of the photo.

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To extend the grass I used another fotoblendz mask from a template in the set, clipped a photo to it and adjusted the position. I then filled in the background by clipping photos to stains and hipster plumes, placing transfers 4, 5 and 6 from ArtPlay Palette Festal, and adding textures from Spackle Textures No. 5.

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To finish my page, I placed the psd layers from MultiMedia Branches No. 8 and MultiMedia Leaves No. 5 at the top of the layers panel. I moved some of the layers under the frames but left the leaves, shadows and stitching above the frames. I substituted a button from the art play palette for the buttons included with the multimedia files. On the right side I placed sprinkle 1 from LeafSprinkle No. 1.

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The title is an experiment with color and blend modes. I sampled a color from the leaf pile below and changed the blend mode to multiply. I adjusted the color with a hue and saturation layer to get the color more pink to match the transfers.

My balance seems a little heavier on the right side, but I think the large photo of my granddaughter and the background photo on the left both help to balance the two pages. I will call it a bit of tension and consider this page finished!!!

Anne Frank

When my sister suggested that we see the Anne Frank exhibit at the Museum of Tolerance while I am here in California, I thought that was an excellent idea. I had read the book years ago, but I enjoy museums and history.

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Anne was so young when her family had to go in hiding. She didn’t get to finish school, but she loved writing.

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There were a number of family photos in circle frames along the walls.

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The exhibit contains a beautiful, detailed replica of Anne’s original diary. Miep Geis, the woman who protected the family during the Nazi occupation, found the diary on the floor of the secret room after the Nazi soldiers found and arrested the family.  The Nazi soldiers had dumped the journal out of the family’s bag and replaced it with what they considered valuables.

Miep wasn’t taken only because an arresting solider from Austria recognized her Austrian accent as she spoke German. I would hope I had the courage Miep Geis did, bicycling 8 miles to fields outside the city in search of food not only for herself but also for those living in the secret room hidden by a bookcase built to conceal the entrance to the attic.

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Only Anne’s father, Otto, survived the Holocaust. Anne and her sister died of Typhus only weeks before they would have been liberated. There were walls of rolled fabric throughout the display. They changed from the gray and stripes to all black as a tribute to the darkness of the atrocities and to Anne’s death. Her journal is displayed in the circular container.

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However, in the next room, where a collection of published copies of Anne’s journal were displayed, the walls are covered in bright colored fabric from the clothing of the children. It marks hope, I was told by a guide. Upon Otto Franks’s return to Holland, Miep gave Otto the diary. It wasn’t long before he was encouraged to publish his daughter’s writing. Otto said that while he thought he knew his child, upon reading the diary, he was struck by how self-critical and reflective she was, revealing just how little he knew of her.

When I asked whether the diary had been edited, the woman said that Otto did edit the version that I read. Anne didn’t like some of the people with whom she lived, so she changed their names. There were also parts that described Anne’s difficult relationship with her mother. Those parts were taken out of the original book. In the last few years, an unedited version has been published. I’d love to find that edition.

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The photographer in me saw these mirrored walls as I walked behind my sister on the way out of the exhibit. I asked her to turn around before handing off my camera so that she could take my photo.

We stayed to listen to a Holocaust survivor share her poignant story of first losing her grandmother and then her mother as they were taken from Romania as a seven year old child. When she was finally liberated by Americans, she was sent to an orphanage in Sweden. Two years later, her father found her through the Red Cross. However, as a young college student in Budapest protesting the communists, she decided to immigrate to the United States.

One wonders how so much cruelty could have been allowed to occur. A statement, part of one recording, stayed with me as we walked through the rest of the exhibits: If you repeat the lies often enough people begin to believe them.

If you’re going to see the exhibit and want a nice salad, there is a Tender Greens not 5 miles away. However, I don’t recommend Google Maps. My navigator had difficulty getting us there until she made a telephone call. In addition, Google Maps provided a convoluted route on the way home. I thought we were going to take surface streets all the way from Culver City back to Fullerton before we finished all the right turn then left turn, right turn then left turn instructions.

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Organizing with Lightroom

In the future, my family will look at these photos from our trip and want to know the what, when, where and why of their pictures. My grandchildren are young; they will forget much about the memories we made together.

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One morning we bought containers of corn and seeds to feed the deer as we walked along paths with open fences allowing deer to freely roam among people walking the paths.

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Owen and Logan shook their closed containers of seeds to attract the deer and fed them just a few seeds at a time. Owen, almost twelve, placed seeds on the backs of the deer trying to get them to eat off one another. He and Logan weren’t afraid they would lose a finger by feeding the deer one piece at a time.

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However, Corbin and Kate had a little more trouble keeping a secure grasp on their containers. We had some tears as the deer gobbled up the corn spilled on the ground.

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2016-06-14 091803Kate wanted to feed the deer, but she wasn’t sure that she really liked them licking seeds off her hand. Kate smiled when her mom put some in Kate’s lap. Yet, she did not like that her dress got wet when the deer lapped up the corn and seeds!

Helping my grandchildren remember our time together is the reason why I make photos and take the time to create scrapbook pages as well as add metadata to my photos with Lightroom. With five years experience using Lightroom, I have found which options work for me and are worth my time.

One of the most important options in Lightroom is the ability to add keywords and captions to the metadata of my photos. My keyword list includes words clarifying who, what and where. I have categories for family and friends, foods, garden words, holidays, indoor activities, outdoor activities, places, weather and technology.

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As I went through my vacation photos, I first deleted those photos that I knew I wouldn’t use, photos with blurry faces and sharp backgrounds, photos obscured when someone walked into the view just as I was snapping the shot, photos that were poorly cropped. At the same time, I picked my favorites by pressing the “p” key which attaches a white flag. That indicates the photo is a keeper, a photo that speaks to me, a photo that I want to use on a page. I have given up attaching a numeric rating to photos. I found it wasn’t worth my time since I don’t choose photos based on a rating.

As I shared in a previous post, I also add captions to photos so that my thoughts about the photos become part of the metadata. Once I had those “picked” photos, I created a collection for them so that they are easily available for creating scrapbook pages.

Taking the time to organize photos by adding keywords and a few thoughts about the morning together before creating a collection of my favorites in Lightroom makes it much easier when I begin to create scrapbook pages for this year’s book.

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