A couple of years ago, I made personalised tea bags using photos of the kids. The reaction from my grandparents was priceless! They LOVED it. Using the same concept, I decided to create a bookmark this year. The idea is to give the impression that the children are hanging from a rope. When I did the tea bags, I photographed the kids individually which was easier (you can see how I used individual photos for bookmarks in a post I wrote for Pumpkin Patch).
This year I wanted ALL the kids in the ONE photograph for the ONE bookmark but I knew it would be a little more challenging to photograph. However, it wasn’t as hard as I thought and the finished product…is…awesome! I keep looking at it and smiling, and I hope the recipients of our bookmarks will experience the same thing.
What you need
Many of the materials needed for this project are found in most homes now, like photo paper and a colour printer. The only thing I bought extra were tassels for a few dollars at Spotlight.
Craft Knife (or Stanley Knife)
Small Tassel (available from craft and discount stores)
Laminator / Laminator sheet (optional)
Printer / Camera
1. Take photo
Below are a few tips to keep in mind when taking the photograph.
a) Keep the body in proportion
Hold the camera directly in front of the subject so the body is in proportion. This usually means you’ll have to crouch down on your knees, especially if you’re taking a picture of a child much smaller than your standing height.
b) Set up
The idea is to capture the illusion of movement. Again, with one child, it’s easier, but I had to think about how to get the look I wanted with all four children. So, I looked for a place that had different levels (for example, a small retainer like our rock wall, stairs, a playground).
I had my eldest daughter stand on the edge of the garden, my second stood on a rock half way down, and the two younger kids stood on the ground. So funny! A little instruction on what each person had to do with their hands/feet plus feeding them the concept for interpretation meant we were done in about 10 minutes.
Illusion of Movement Tips to Try
- Lean in different directions
- Stand on tiptoes
- Stand on one leg and lean to one side
- Make funny faces
- Look up
- Try one hand in the air…or two!
- Look into the direction of the intended movement
- Set the scene with instruction like, “Pretend you’re hanging off a rope?”
Crop the picture around the subject and then insert the chosen photo into a program like Microsoft Word/Publisher. Adjust the size of the picture (by dragging the corner of the picture in) so the photograph is approximately half an A4 size (portrait) in height. Fit as many pictures on an A4 page as will allow. If the size is too big/small after printing, it’s easy to readjust the size and reprint. (Check by holding the picture up against the cover of an average book).
Print the document on A4 Photo Paper.
I used both small scissors and a craft knife for this part of the project.
- Frist, carefully cut around the body of the subject using scissors (avoid the tricky bits).
- Then, use the craft knife on a board to finish it off.
5. Laminate (optional)
A laminator machine is not expensive and I have one in our art space to use for all sorts of things, especially now the kids are in school. I laminated the cut-out photograph to prevent breakage and cut an oval shape around the photo using scissors.
If you don’t have a laminator, you could simply stick the cut-out photograph on a piece of white photo paper with glue and cut around the image into a bookmark shape.
- Make a small hole near the hands (carefully, using a sharp pair of scissors).
- Feed the tassel through the hole.
- Secure the tassel by threading the end part through the loop and tighten.
Date the back and add a message using a permanent marker.