Friday, August 24, 2007

How to Create a Good Looking Scrapbook Page Using a Poor Quality Photo

Sometimes no matter how long you work on editing a photo you can't make it look good. It's the old, "you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear", story. This is often the case with photos taken back in the 1960s and 1970s. Remember those Kodak Instamatic cameras that used 110 cartridge film? Many of us have a slew of poor quality photos taken with those once popular models.

Here is a picture of me taken in 1972 with a Kodak Instamatic camera using color slide film. You just can't make this photo sharp and crisp.

I can't go back and retake the photos of my teenage years. I'm stuck with the photos I have, poor quality though they may be. The photos are still precious to me because of the memories attached to them. So I'd still like to create a scrapbook page to capture the essence of those days. But what can I do about that poor quality photo?

The best thing I've found to do when scrapping with a poor quality photo is to only use a small portion of it (enough to jog the memory) and surround it with elements that will pull your eye away from the photo. Bright colors and or a busy layout will direct your eye around the page rather than focus on just the picture.

In the layout shown below, I used the "cookie cutter" tool in Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0 on my photo and "cut" it into a flower shape. Once the photo was cut out I layered it with two other flower elements to draw the eye out from the photo. When you have a great photo, you want your scrapbook page to emphasize it and set it off. But when you have a poor quality photo you may want to consider de-emphasizing it.

When you first look at this page your eye is naturally drawn to the photo. But it doesn't stay there. It's pulled away first to the bright orange flower that frames it and then further out to the peace sign, up the green ribbon to the bright yellow smiley flower, and then to the text areas.

So there you have it. A way to make a scrapbook page look good even with a poor quality photo. No excuses now... get busy and get creative with your genealogy!

[Scrapbook kit used: Hippy Chic by CanDesigns]

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