Friday, August 9, 2013

Borders and Backgrounds To Begin Your Projects

Well, you've got to start somewhere.

Whether looking for something to enhance text or a photo in your project,  borders and backgrounds can lay the foundation. From scrapbooking to websites to creating invitations and cards, these types of illustrations can take a a design from simple to complete.

Though I work in an image-related industry, most of my creative use of said images is exercised in sporadic attempts at personal projects. I've made some invitations for showers and parties, greeting cards for friends and friends and cutesy t-shirts for kids and grandkids. And in most of these cases I've found the the right border will pull the project together. In some cases it's actually almost all you need.

To get you on your way,  I've gathered a few into this collection from iCLIPART.com. It's just a small sampling. If none of these are what you're looking for there are literally hundreds of others on the site.

iCLIPART.com Borders and Backgrounds

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Past in Photographs

Everything old is new again.

Stick around in life long enough and you know there is truth behind  these words. In the song by that title,  late Australian composer Peter Allen and Carole Bayer Sager remind:

"Don't throw the past away
You might need it some rainy day
Dreams can come true again
When everything old is new again"

From beads and bell-bottoms, to 20's fringe and paisley mod, fashion trends have come and gone,  and come again. From box socials to picnics and from a carriage ride with your sweetie to cuddling at a drive-in movie, a return to life's simple pleasures,  a break from the fast-paced environment we immerse ourselves in these days, is always greatly appreciated.

The sage will remind us that living in the past isn't healthy, that all that's important is where we are now, at each minute of each day, at this moment in time. But there's something comforting about images of simpler times, when romance was slow and easy, when fun was simple and pure, when needs were basic and plain.   Vintage photographs capture all of those elements. You will see some terrific examples on these sites:

iCLIPART.com Victorian Collection

iPHOTOS.com Victorian Photos

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Tips to Capture Great Campfire Pictures

There is a place where my husband would probably spend each and every lovely summer evening given the chance — sitting by a campfire. 

It can turn the longest day into the longest night for him,  it is the second wind he needs after exhausting hours of daylight labours.  Despite being tired, when he gets that backyard blaze started, he will sojourn there well past lights out once it's going.

Completely understandable of course.  Not only is there something completely mesmerizing about the snap and crackle of burning wood,  the dancing colours within the flickering flame,  but some of our best times with family and friends have been around a summer campfire.  There are fond memories of nights at our summer place years ago,  laughter and stories,  roasted dogs and brews filling the space between dusk and when we would finally yield to exhaustion and call it a day. 

While we've enjoyed many a great night socializing or just relaxing around a campfire at home too, there was one particular one that holds a special place in mind and heart.  Our grown children, along with some surprise guests, had been visiting one day and decided to stay.  As they all live fairly close (just not close enough for Mom)  this was a rarity. We capitalized on the situation by having a campfire.  It was a great night which, while enfolding, I did my best to photograph.

Problem is, that's a bit tricky. The black of night surrounding lively people with smiling faces, who in turn are surrounding the intense light of a fire,  can create a situation that requires a bit of expertise, something I was sorely lacking.  As a result while I managed to capture the moments for posterity, none were quality.

Now I wait for another one of these occasions to simply happen so I can try my hand at it again. Thanks to these tutorials I'm feeling far more confident in the results.

DPS Creating Fun Campfire Photos

ProNaturePhotographer The Perfect Campfire Scene

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Most Beautiful Images

When it comes to beautiful images there's probably none more so than the collections offered here in this particular blog. But before we get there, a little story.

It was a long, long time ago when a group of family members had gathered for a special occasion. Suddenly, in the middle of the festivities came an unexpected announcement from one couple regarding their teenage son. He was, they admitted in somewhat cautious tones, going to make them grandparents for the first time. 

The revelation was greeted with silence, until one of the cousins pointed out what should have been obvious to all of us — within a loving family babies are blessings, no matter how they get here.

Time proved her remark more than right.  That baby has now moved on to adulthood after enjoying a terrific upbringing with loving, committed parents.

Sure the story doesn't always end that way with young couples, but it can end badly with older and wiser ones too.  Many teenage moms have rocked the heck out of parenting, while many older academics have failed miserably.  Certainly there are people who should never have children, and sadly don't realize it.  And  the rest of us, well, we just fumble along to the best of our ability as parents.  There's no guidebook for parenting, nor any specific model of what makes the perfect parent. 

The only thing that is certain is that babies are a blessing and as long as the expectant couple aren't sociopaths or drug addicts, no one should diminish  the joy of pregnancy.

And here are those promised photos which beautifully capture that special time:

iCLIPART.com Labour of Love Photo Collection

iPHOTOS.com Pregnancy Photos

Acclaim Images Pregnancy Photos