Special Guest Blogger: Mandy Douglass

04/02/2010 at 8:10 am | Posted in fonts, General Inspiration, guest blogger, Holidays, How-Tos, product, technique, Uncategorized | 5 Comments
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Hey all my favorite CK Readers! It is me, Mandy Douglass! I don’t know about you, but I am so excited for this upcoming Easter holiday weekend. Now that I have two little boys, it just keeps getting more and more fun each year. I love easter egg hunts, easter baskets, easter bunnies, and those little peeks from the tulips that will soon turn into beautiful flowers.

Last year was the first year my son, Bryson, could start to understand the whole easter egg hunt idea. So today, I thought I would share a photo tip and a ribbon tip with you from this fun new page I created about his first hunt!

The Race is On by Mandy Douglass. Supplies: American Crafts.

Photo Tip:

Bryson was just learning to walk, and he really didn’t have enough balance to pick up eggs, so crawling was his only way to get those funny looking round things! I thought this photo was perfect to use on my layout, because it captures his perspective on the easter egg hunt. There weren’t a lot of kids around to “race” him for the eggs, but the faster he got them, the more excited he was. I challenge all you CK readers to get down in the grass this weekend and get some true perspective photographs!

Ribbon Tip:

Next is a fun tip a friend taught me a while back. I often find it hard to punch through a page or get a knotted ribbon to stay in place without gargantuan amounts of glue! So here are a few steps to show you how to get that cute ribbon knot to stay in place and avoid getting sticky.

First cut a piece of ribbon about 3″ long. Then staple it to the area of the page you would like the ribbon to be.

Then simply tie the knot (I usually only tie one knot and it stays in place).

 

Then cut off the remaining ribbon.

Simple, huh!

Bonus Gift-Bag Topper Tip:

I decided to use the same technique on some cute treat bags for Easter. (Not only did I get a cute bag out of it, but it also gave me a great excuse to open those Cadbury Mini Eggs that have been staring at me for a week!)

To make the bag topper, I made a simple flap using Sizzix’s scallop square die cut, then I folded it in half. I added some darling egg paper from the Dear Lizzy line by American Crafts and stapled the decorated flap to close the bag and keep the ribbon in place. 

Last, I made a cute little tag using a Quickutz oval die, some scallop scissors by Fiskars, and Dear Lizzy Dimensional Sticker. Then knotted it all in place! 

Such an easy way to do lots of Easter treat bags.

“Hop” that you all have a great holiday weekend!

Mandy Douglass, CK contributing writer

P.S. Don’t forget to download today’s font as part of Free Font Friday! This weeks’ font is CK Day Dream. Download it today at Creating Keepsakes.

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Special Guest Blogger: Deanna Dieudonné

02/19/2010 at 12:20 pm | Posted in guest blogger, technique | 11 Comments
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Happy Friday everyone! My name is Deanna Dieudonné, and I am very excited to be the guest blogger—yeah!

I have been scrapbooking for about five years and make a lot of handmade cards. I attended my first CKU convention a few years ago. Not only did I meet a wonderful group of people there, but I returned with a passion for all things related to photography.

I’m also a mother of two active little boys who are full of energy and always on the move. If they’re not running, jumping, or climbing outside, then it must be bedtime! But photographing kids on the move isn’t always easy. So in honor of the Olympics, I want to share tips on how you can capture some gold-medal moments on camera while your “little athletes” play outside.

Zoom In. Long gone are the times when my boys sat still and posed for a picture. Lately, my boys have a tendency to make a silly face if they think I’m taking their picture. My solution: use a zoom lens to get close-up shots from a distance. I like to use my zoom lens because I can take my boys’ pictures without feeling like I’m intruding in their playtime. This approach also allows me the ability to zoom in and out without having to switch lenses.

Shoot Continuously. If your camera allows for it, shoot using the “burst” function. I love using this function with the Sports mode (the running-man icon). This continuous mode allows me to take multiple pictures in rapid succession, and it’s perfect for taking candid photos. (It’s also perfect for capturing the movement of two active little boys.)

For the set of photos below, I caught my boys trying to walk on the balance beam. I positioned myself to the side and in front of my boys as they played. I had so much fun watching them laugh and fall off.

Think Ahead. Taking pictures is like scrapbooking: a little upfront thought and planning can produce a very creative and eye-appealing result. When taking your photos, think about what elements you want to capture. Are you trying to capture a laugh, a smile, or a whole scene? Also, position yourself either in the direction that your subjects will be moving toward or away from. For example, when I took the first photo below, my son was running around the track and chasing after a remote-control car. I could have zoomed in on just his face, but that wouldn’t capture the entire scene with the rest of my family in the background. And in the photo of the monkey bars, I wanted to capture the essence of the playground fun.

Snap Away. One wonderful aspect of digital cameras is that there’s no film and virtually no cost (except storage cost, which is pretty inexpensive). I never delete a photo unless I find it absolutely unusable. Just because it’s blurry doesn’t mean it’s not a good photo. Keep those blurry shots—sometimes they add a creative effect. 😉 I like to compile a bunch of my favorite action shots into collages. I made these collages using Picasa, the free software from Google.

Have Fun. Let your children do what comes naturally. During fall, as soon as my boys saw a big pile of leaves they attacked it—jumping, kicking, and laughing (see the collage above). Some of my favorite shots are those that were taken in the moment.

Taking candid shots gives my boys a chance to be spontaneous and silly.

Now it’s your turn. Go out and have fun and see what shots you can come up with. For more ideas, check out my blog.

—Deanna

P.S. Don’t miss this week’s free font download as part of Free Font Friday! You can download the CK font for free here!

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