Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How I select photos for my pages

I know that a couple people have asked me before how many pages I get done, where I print photos, etc. I though I'd share some of my process of photo selection. I try to keep it quick and simple. That's my theme.

I scrap in the moment, true--I pick recent photos to print so that I can make a page that I'm burning to create. When I'm doing a small number that's mostly made up of 4x6 photos, I use a local developer, National Camera Exchange. (They do mail order if you are interested.) I used to use Target, but the quality is SO much better at National Camera, and the online upload is much easier, IMO. They also print 8x12, which are pricey (5 bucks) but it's a size I love, so if I need one quick, that's convenient.

I am a sequential person, though, so I browse through, edit, and print my photos by months. Right now I'm working on November and December of last year. I find photos I love and events I want to scrap that I haven't yet. I even (GASP!) find a photo or two I want to turn into a digi page.

One of the last events from October (aside from Halloween, which I'd already scrapped), was Rowan's birthday. We spent it at Space Aliens in Albertville, which is not a great [lace to take phenomenal photos, but it was an event I wanted to scrap.

Here's where my major photo selection happens: I browse through the photos, trying to distinguish between my starring photos--the ones that will be my focal photos--and my supporting photos--the ones that round out what the event was about, who was there, what we did, etc. I call the former my BEST ACTOR photos and the latter my BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR photos. Best Actors are printed larger, Best Supporting Actors are printed smaller, ususally in the same size to make design easier.

(I resize my photos according to something I learned from Cathy Zielske's terrific post on Ali Edwards' Tuesday Tutorials. If you use PSE, this is a great place to start learning how to print small sizes on 4x6. It doesn't teach that specifically, but by changing the size of the canvas and the photo spots, you can do it.)

Here were my BEST ACTORS from the birthday:

A beauty shot.

A character shot.

And a location shot.

NOTE: I do some minor tweaking of my photos. I find the auto color correction and auto correct work pretty well, especially with flawed, indoor photos like these. I also tend to add actions like Pioneer Woman's and CoffeeShop's to add color and character and fix lighting. I use the same action for all the photos in the event, mostly. Here I think I used Pioneer Woman's Boost.

Once I pick, resize, and edit the starring shots, I select a few SUPPORTING ACTOR shots, pnes that show what we did and who was there. I have created and saved various sizes of templates for smaller shots on PSE; for this LO, I though 3x3 photos would work well. I saved two to a 4x6 print. Here's my supporting photos:

A guest (his brother) playing games and dad holding the prime tickets.

Birthday boys opening gifts and meeting an Alien.

Birthday boy showing off a gift and posing by a favorite game.

Birthday boy throwing some hoops and his brother looking happy.

I used the same Boost action on these photos.

These photos I sent to Scrapbook Pictures. I use them for bigger orders or ones with many larger photos, which are less expensive here.

Though I don't have the page designed, when I get these photos from the printer, I think it should be fairly easy to design the page, which will be 2 pages. I can picture the smaller photos in a line across the span and the three bigger photos in a line above them. And to make for a perfect moment, this line just came out in stores for me to use with this page.



Jessica said...

I'm not sure if you have a Costco near you, but their 8x12's are $1.49. I have been VERY happy with the quality of the prints I have had done there. Thanks for sharing your process, I find it very interesting reading what others do! :)

Keshet said...

Love this glimpse into your process!

Carolyn Wolff said...

Awesome tips.