Here is my original pic, opened up in Microsoft Digital Image Pro 7. I take my pics with Sony digital camera. Jonathan was almost 5 in the pic, he'd just found a huge butterfly on our front porch.
Then I clicked on "Effects" and then "Black and White". I love black and white photos, you really focus on the shapes and "the moment"!
Now I'm going to use a tool under "Effects" called the "Colorize Brush", this allows you to tint certain areas of your photo in the color of your choice. Unlike the Paint Brush, this adds transparent color over your image so you still see detail rather than just a big stroke of opaque yellow.
Select your color and drag your mouse across the areas you want to tint. Although I don't use a lot of yellow in my projects normally, it's such a happy color and I wanted to keep the integrity of the butterflies true color (both happened to be this buttery yellow) I will tie this color into all three photos, very appropriate for these golden moments!
Now to crop it! I selected the same size as my frame opening and dragged it around until I had both of the most important elements inside, his little profile and the butterfly.
After printing them out and trimming (I use Kodak photo paper and an hp printer), I wanted to create some vellum mats that would kick this frame up a notch to look like frosted glass panes and highlight parts of my images. (You know those expensive ones you see at Restoration hardware of Pottery Barn?) Here you can see I chose two Nestabilites dies, a classic rectangle and a square, doesn't that look cool having the two geometric shapes offset like that? (I placed the full peice of vellum on top, then placed my dies over that to figure out exactly where to cut) I love this spotlight it creates on his face, it's before he lost that beautiful "little boy roundness" to his features and those beautiful little curls (his hair is pretty straight now, sigh!) It's okay the openings cover up parts of his head and the butterfly, just get the important stuff in there! :) I stamped "free..." from my "The Best Things in Life" set in Memento Tuxedo Black ink. (Heat set or blot to make sure the ink's dry before moving so you don't smear it when stamping on vellum.
Below is my finished project hanging in the powder room of our master bath. It's a small space so it was hard to get the colors to photograph exactly true. "The best things are shared... free... priceless..." I love how each picture is matted differently, it's so unexpected, rather than a centered rectangle in the middle of each, (but the right angles in all the cut outs makes them all very harmonious, throwing in oval or circles cut outs with these would have a very different effect.) TIP: Save your cut outs, you can do some cool layering things with all these perfectly cut vellum squares and rectangles in another proejct (I'll share some ideas with them later!)
Here is a closeup of my beach boys. There wasn't any yellow in the original, but I tinted William's t-shirt and the tie dye burst on Jonathan's back with the same yellow. See how I offset my square cut out here to allow tons of my room for my quote below, but you can still make out their footprint trail and cast shadows behind it...
A closeup of Jonathan's...
and one of my sweet William, taken just a few months ago. This one I cut with my largest rectangle die.
I hope you enjoyed this photo tutorial. I was so pleased with how artsy, expensive-looking, and personal this turned out! Hope it inspires you to try dressing up your favorite photos with a little creative (strategic!) editing, stamping and papers before hanging them up! Projects like these would also make great gifts for friend and relatives, just ask them to email you their favorite photos! You can do this!!