Sunday, December 19, 2010

I'm NOT a Photographer But I Like to Play One

I love taking pictures even though I don't know what I'm doing!!!  I'm too cheap to pay for a class and too impatient to read a I do the best I can with what I have to work with, so when my bonus daughter asked me if I would take her maternity pictures I was excited but nervous that I wouldn't be able to do what she wanted....but we would try with what we had and of course - 
Thank goodness for Photoshop Elements and!

I did not receive anything from either company and these are just my opinions of both. 
You can get Photoshop Elements for under $50, but there is a learning curve.  You can find tons of tutorials online and it can do a lot for altering photos. is FREE and is awesome.  I'm still learning all that it can do, but I haven't been disappointed so far.  You can pay for the Premium account, but I haven't seen the need yet.

This photo was done completely with  I used the Sepia effect and the matte effect (soft white edge)

I used Photoshop Elements first on this photo.  I turned it black and white in a second layer on top of a color layer and then used the eraser to erase the blk/wh layer where the flower was - letting the color from the first layer show through.  Then I loaded the picture into Picnik and used the matte effect for the soft white edge.   Amber is sitting on a very old, white comforter that her husband is holding up behind her.

This turned out to be one of my favorites!  I used Picnik for the whole thing.  Turned it black and white, used the focus effect so that the outer edges are blurred and the ultrasound is in focus and then vignette effect for the black soft edges.

 I used Photoshop Elements for this one.  I turned the picture black and white in a second layer over a full color layer. I used the lasso tool and outlined the ribbon and ballet slippers, then I took the eraser and erased the top blk/wh layer where the lasso had outline...leaving the ribbon and slippers in color.

I used Photoshop Elements for this one.   I turned a second layer black and white on top of a full color layer.  I used the lasso tool to outline the rose and then used the eraser to erase the blk/wh layer where the rose is.

 I used Photoshop Elements the same way as above, plus Picnik matte effect.

 I used Photoshop Elements as mentioned above, then I took a scroll frame from a digital scrapbook kit and colored it to match the slippers and reduced it to about 40%.

This one I used  First, I cropped the picture, then turned it black and white, then used the focus effect to slightly blur the outer edge and focus in on the's a very sutle effect, but I really like it! 

 This one I used the picture black and white and then used the vignette effect to add the soft black edge.

So, I'm not a photographer and I don't notice the little things that 'stand' out when you see the proofs....but I love taking them and I love 'playing' with them and I think my bonus daughter loves them too and that's all that matters :-) Not too bad for a wanna-be photographer - ha!

Camera used - mom-n-laws Canon Rebel
Having my bonus daughter text me 'they're perfect' = Pricele$$

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  1. If I didn't know you weren't a photographer, I would think these were done professionally!!! Very nice, and your daughter looks beautiful!

  2. What beautiful picyures. Fnatastic.

  3. The pictures are beautiful and something they will treasure forever. I loved your explanations but I'm still trying to figure out picnik. Thanks for explaining so well. I might continue to try.

  4. Absolutely beautiful. Some people don't need classes and book--such as you;-}

  5. Great photos! You have a cute belly (and NO STRETCH MARKS!!!) Lucky you!

  6. First of all, you probably don't feel this, but you look amazing!!! Just beautiful! The pink ribbon one with the ballerina shoes is my favorite.

    Great idea to take these shots. I have three babies and no pics of them in the belly. I now regret that. So good for you!

    Happy New Year and best of luck with your baby girl!

  7. Great suggestions and great work.....from a real photographer. It looks GREAT!

  8. Aw! Those little pink shoes are too cute! I also love the sonogram picture as well. Great work!

  9. Oh those are so sweet! You're daugter is lucky....those pictures are just the beginning of a gazillion more once that bundle of joy comes out! I love photography too - had the patience to read one book but didn't understand half of it! LOL - keep it up.

  10. Those photos are absolutely professional looking!! Beautiful job!!! Blogging certainly does bring out the "photographer-wannabe" in all of us, doesn't it? lol! But I would daresay --- you're there!! :)

    xoxo laurie

  11. GORGEOUS photos! I wish I would have done some pregnancy photos when I was pregnant. Thanks for linking up and sharing on Thrilling Thursday @ Paisley Passions. Hope you stop by again soon :)

  12. I REALLY enjoyed the steps you described! I'm new to elements and haven't played with layers yet. Thanks for the fab ideas! Your pics are wonderful!


  13. You did an amazing job. I am blown away! Very talented!

  14. you did a very gooood job ! I like all of them

  15. Great job! I am thinking though that this might be your son and daughter-in-law (Bonus Daughter)? How exciting! You did a great job with the photos and the editing is awesome. I've done quite a bit for my jewelry business with picnik and did pay for the premium, but am not sure I will again when it runs out. I have a great source that offers free and inexpensive layers that one can use with photographs, and use these in conjunction with my picnik. Great job on all of these different techniques and your explanations are so appreciated. Don't you just love photo editing?

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Please leave a comment because they are Pricele$$ to me!!