August 10, 2011

Photo Fun: Come Indoors Where It Is Cool

Come on back to the family room.
It's so hot outside in the garden; let's go indoors where it is cool so that I can show you a decorating project that's fun and easy for anyone with a digital camera and a computer.

Every few years, I like to change the "art" on my walls. I use the word "art" in the sense of being creative with what's unique and original in my life, rather than owning any masterpieces. The photos that I've chosen make me smile.

Previously, I've used framed photos from our travels in Italy. Recently, I decided to swap out Italy photos with those from Paris, France.

Architecture is a favorite photographic subject of mine. I'm not a professional photographer, but there are favorite photos that please me enough to view on my walls. Color photos don't really work with our family room color scheme and furniture. Therefore, I use a little photo editing magic (iPhoto® on my MacBook®) to convert my photos to sepia tone for framing. I then upload my photos to Shutterfly® and purchase 8 x 10 prints for under $3.00 per print.

My frames were purchased in 2006, therefore, I didn't have to purchase new frames. All of my frames came from Pottery Barn® and were purchased on sale. The mats were included with the purchase of the frames.

Inexpensive. Unique. Original. Memories.

To decide which of your photos will work, the resolution must be sufficient for the size of the print you want. One of the reasons that I like Shutterfly® is because their software will tell you whether your photo has the quality (in pixels) to be printed anywhere from as large as a poster down to a postcard.

If you go this route, pay attention to the edges of the photos. Shutterfly will ask you if the cropping is okay. They automatically set the cropping, but you may shift your image within the allowed space to ensure that no parts are cut off. Always preview the cropped image online before you put the order in the shopping cart.

The Louvre original in color, before cropped.

The Louvre photo as sepia and cropped.

Just a few of my candidates for framing.
I created a side-by-side collage to use to decide
which photos to print. Not all were chosen.
When grouping photos I like for them to "relate" to each other. For example, a set of four photos are building facades. I also use parts of bridges as a set; steeples as a set; or, sculptures as a set. Here is an example of the four building facades used in a photo grouping.

Matted and framed:
Top (L to R): The Louvre; Notre Dame
Bottom: Saint-Michel; Sacre Coeur
Paris, France. 

The four photos shown on the wall
to the right of the family heirloom mirror.
On another wall, the photos are related
to three different bridges in Paris.
These frames are the standard "gallery" style
sold by Pottery Barn®.
Don't hesitate to use your photos to decorate your house. Whether you choose color, black and white, sepia or other special effects—your favorite photos reflect your experiences and memories. Go for what makes you happy!

Words and photos by Freda Cameron, Defining Your Home, Garden and Travel. All company or product or patented names mentioned are registered trademarks, copyrights, or patents owned by those respective companies or persons.
Freelance travel writer. My current fiction writing projects include a completed manuscript and several works in progress.

By the way, my name is pronounced fred-ah, not freed-ah. Thank you.

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