Morris Dancing Merriment

Blending a photo into a background paper

with-a-hey-nonny-nayA couple of Sundays ago we went to the 2nd Annual Kellybrook Cider Festival.

It was an absolute hoot, with lots of different ciders (mulled cider was definitely my favourite), wine, apple juice and lots of apple related food.

The event was held at Kellybrook Winery at Wonga Park (I’m not making that up) and on such a glorious Autumn day the attendance soon exceeded the car park space so we had to park our car in amongst the vines and walk up through the vineyard into the festival area. Very cool.

Anyway, amongst the entertainment there was a very good bush band and also several teams of Morris dancers.

Now for those who don’t know, Morris dancing is an English form of folk dancing. It is traditionally performed by men, although these days there are plenty of women who make up the teams and it involves a formation style dance with some quite complicated maneouvers, whilst wearing bells strapped to your legs and waving handkerchiefs around or attacking your fellow dancers with sticks.

Needless to say, it’s a lot of fun to watch and a level of fitness is required to be able to perform well. And I was inspired by all this rustic jocularity to create a scrapbook layout in honor of the Morris Dancers.

Tips for blending photos into your scrapbook background

When I’m creating a scrapbook layout with several photos of similar subjects I love to echo the photos by including an enlarged one blended into the background.

If you decide to give this a go yourself, here are a few tips you might like to try:

  • Choose a photo with plenty of ‘unimportant’ space around your subject(s) so you’ll be able to add the other elements on your scrapbook layout without covering too much of the main subject.
  • If the subject(s) are positioned over to one side that is even better for the arrangement of the rest of your scrapbook layout.
  • Don’t worry about the quality of the photo you choose for your background. By the time you have applied your blending techniques it won’t matter if it is a bit fuzzy to start with.
  • With that in mind, you can just drag the photo out to fit your scrapbook layout background without worrying about the resolution quality.
  • Choose a non-patterned background paper or one that just has a textured look rather than a busy pattern that will compete with the photo.
  • I also like to include a texture file in the blending mix, such as the creased leather one in the Hey Nonny No layout.
  • Experiment with your blending modes until you find the blending mix that works best for your layout. For my layout I used a blue brushstroke background paper from the Step by Step Digital Scrapbook Night over Rhone Kit as my base. I changed the color to make it more Autumnal. Then I added a creased leather texture file (also part of a Step by Step Digital Scrapbook complementary kit) which I stretched over the layout and changed the blending mode to Overlay. And finally I stretched out my photo over the layout and changed the blending mode to Darken.

I must say, I was pleased with how it turned out. I do find it a lot of fun to play around with photos and just spice them up a little.

And if you haven’t tried it, why not give it a go. It’s a lot of fun.

What about the paper scrapbookers?

I was trying to think how you might be able to do this if you are a paper scrapbooker.

And I thought perhaps you could change your photo to a monochrome color and print it out on a transparency. Then you can fix the transparency over your background paper and build the rest of your layout on top.

I reckon that could look pretty funky.

And here’s a tip if you want to try that, select the draft mode on your printer so that you don’t overload the transparency with ink. You want this to have a muted look remember.

So what do you think?

Do you blend photos to create really unique backgrounds for your scrapbook layouts? And do you have any tips you might like to share with us?

Other Related Articles:

Scrapbook a Patchwork Quilt

How to Use Textures in Scrapbook Layouts

Blending Your Own Scrapbook Backgrounds – Video Tutorial

Learn how to digital scrapbook so you too can make cool projects like this

Just click over to Step by Step Digital Scrapbook where you’ll find everything you need to know to get yourself started.

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6 Responses to Morris Dancing Merriment

  1. Joe Cheray aka wildheart4vr May 11, 2009 at 11:28 pm #

    I did a technique similar to this

    This can also be done in paint shop pro by copying and pasting the image as a new selection onto your background of choice then before you tick off select none lower the opacity of the image so that it blends into the material your working with.

  2. karooch May 12, 2009 at 12:30 pm #

    Thanks for the tip Joe. I always welcome extra tips that help PSP users because i don’t have any familiarity with the program myself.

  3. chicago custom suit May 13, 2009 at 5:49 am #

    I am actually trying to think of the best way to blend too. I was thinking about printing out many pictures and each picture gradually fading. Then I would cut them into little strips to give it a fading effect and make sure the distinction of pictures isn’t too noticeable.

    • karooch May 13, 2009 at 2:06 pm #

      That sounds like an interesting technique Hilary. I’d be very interested to hear how it goes and I think many of my paper scrapbooking readers would too. Let me know when you give it a try and perhaps send a picture and I’ll let everyone else know if it worked OK.

  4. Party Rentals Florida May 13, 2009 at 10:52 pm #

    First time seen such photo graphics skill, Thank you for tips.

  5. India Property May 27, 2009 at 8:35 pm #

    I like Adobe photoshop for this, It gives you many tools to mix pictures with great quality.