Archive for the ‘photoshop’ Category

Day 17: Christmas Card Photoshop Tutorial

Christmas Card Photoshop Tutorial //

Day 15 of my 50 DIY Days of Christmas: Christmas Card Photoshop Tutorial with Crystalyn of Flavor PinkThe Clone Stamp Tool in Photoshop is probably my FAVORITE out of ALL the tools. Did you take a photo and have a telephone poll standing out of the top of your head? Cloning Tool. Boom. It’s gone. A close second to the Clone Stamp is the Quick Selection Tool. I use both of these tools almost every time I work in Photoshop.

They’re both so handy and perfect for creating that unique Christmas card. I mean, I DO love a classic photo of the family together in front of the Christmas Tree, but I can’t seem to leave well-enough alone and I’m not the only one… Crystalyn shared the photo above in my Holiday Photo Challenge last year (and came in 2nd place). I asked her if I could share her photo for this tutorial and she said yes! I shared some of my own examples, plus some input from how Crystalyn set up her image, on how to use the Clone Stamp Tool + Quick Selection Tool to make your own unique Christmas (Valentine, Halloween, birthday, or whatever) card. Check it out below:

1. Crystalyn set up and planned the photos she wanted to take. She knew she wanted her family to be stacked up on their shoulders to create the “Christmas tree”. SO, she took photos of her, the hubs, and kids 2-at-a-time stacked on shoulders. Here’s what Crystalyn said about taking the photos with her family:

“Taking the pictures for this project was a ton of fun. I can’t stop looking at it, it makes me laugh. I lost track of how many photographs went into this, I think it was around 14. Little bits from here and there. Juniper took 65 photos of me getting up on Shaun’s shoulders. Maybe someday I’ll make an animated gif haha! I think the most amazing thing was the photo of Flynn on Juniper’s shoulders. I thought that was going to be the hardest part, but we got the perfect photo first try! Both kids looking at the camera with relatively happy expressions on their tiny faces? That almost never happens!! I did have to do a lot of reconstructing of Flynn’s torso to remove Shaun’s hands from his arm pits though.”

Clone Stamp Tool Tutorial //

Clone Stamp Tool Tutorial //

2. When her photos were shot, she got to work on the edits. When I start a big photoshop project, I always choose a “base photo”. This is usually the photo that will be in the “front” of the image. I would start with the image of Shaun (her husband) since his whole body will be shown in the photo.

3. Duplicate your base photo and work on the copy (I always work on a copy, just in case I mess up). Click on your duplicate copy layer and select the Clone Stamp Tool. Choose a “Soft Round” brush for the Clone Stamp Tool.

4. Find the area you’d like to make changes to. For the examples I’m using a photo of my kiddo on a sidewalk, I’m going to remove the lines in the sidewalk. Choose the part of the image you’d like to clone. In my kiddo’s photo I chose the blank portion of the sidewalk. Hold the Alt Key + Right Click and release. You’ve selected the cloned area. Right Click on the spot you’d like to fix (for me this was the line on the sidewalk). You’ve just cloned! (click on the image below to see a larger version)


5. Continue cloning out the portions of the photo you want to remove. An example for Crystalyn’s image: she needed to remove hands from under her son’s armpits and used the clone tool to clone his shirt and remove her husband’s hands. Below you can see how I cloned out the sidewalk lines in my kiddo’s photo.

Cloning Tool Tutorial //

6. Ok, the Cloning Stamp Tool is super cool, but how did she cut out the background out from each image? The Quick Selection Tool will do this. Use this tool to select the background of your image. There’s a + and – brush for this tool, so if you select MORE than just the background, use the – tool to deselect. Tip: Taking your photos in front of a blank/white wall helps a LOT when editing in Photoshop. When you’re ready, click on the “Refine Edge” option. Here you can adjust the smoothness of the Quick Selection Tool’s line. I tend to do about 25% feather, 60% contrast, and a little smoothing. Press ok.


7. Push the delete button on your keyboard to delete the background. yay! Now you have a cut out human.

Quick Selection Tool Tutorial //

8. Drag and drop the cut out human into the base photo and get to editing. Using your Clone Stamp Tool plus Quick Selection Tool will help you finish this project. Use your paintbrush + opacity to paint on “shadows” behind your newly cut out section.

Cloning Stamp Tool and Quick Selection Tool Tutorial //

I hope this quick Cloning Stamp Tool and Quick Selection Tool tutorial will help you on your quest to the perfect Christmas card!

- Chelsey & Crystalyn

To keep up with the series, click here or on the image below!

50 Diy Days of Christmas //

P.S. I do have a couple of spots open for the DIY Days, so if you think you have the perfect project to share send me an email. First, check out the DIY/Submission section in my FAQ’s for a bit of post submission info.  If you’d like to reminisce in the past 50 DIY Days of Christmas… here you are: 2011 & 2012. Reminder: all printables are for personal use only. Thanks!

This post is brought to you by,


Day 16: Christmas Photo Inspiration

Christmas Photo Inspiration //

Day 16 of my 50 DIY Days of Christmas: Christmas Photo Inspiration! It’s just about that time! Time to get your family/pets/whatever dressed up and ready for the annual Christmas photo!

This also means we are a couple days away from the start of my annual Holiday Photo Challenge! Yeah, this will be my 4th year hosting this challenge. Wow. So crazy going back and checking out the past entries. If you want to travel back in time and see previous photo entries for inspiration, click on these: 2010, 2011, & 2012.

We just finished shooting our photo for this year… the chickens were involved. Hee. More info coming soon about the challenge (including what prizes you can win).

The inspiration photos above are from last year’s winners, click on these links for larger views: One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten, Eleven.

- Chelsey

To keep up with the series, click here or on the image below!

50 Diy Days of Christmas //

P.S. I do have a couple of spots open for the DIY Days, so if you think you have the perfect project to share send me an email. First, check out the DIY/Submission section in my FAQ’s for a bit of post submission info.  If you’d like to reminisce in the past 50 DIY Days of Christmas… here you are: 2011 & 2012. Reminder: all printables are for personal use only. Thanks!

Valentine’s Card: You’re a reel catch!

You're a reel catch

My kiddo is in preschool…. SO that means Valentines cards! I know I’m more excited about these cards and this whole “holiday” than Miss R, but I know she’ll get more excited on the day. Why? Well, she’ll get a ton of candy. AND, in my kiddo’s world… candy = a good day.

The hardest part of this whole project: getting my child to participate and smile for this photo. She was happy one minute, then I mention taking her photo and it all went downhill. I eventually bribed her with a piece of chocolate. I got ONE sorta smile (see above) and MANY grumpy photos (see last photo).

You're a reel catch valentine

How to do it:

- Get your kiddo to hold a stick (maybe a broom) and take a photo. We had an old dowel, so that worked. This will help you place the fishing pole (aka stick).

- If you’d like, add the wording “You’re a reel catch!”, or “You’re reel neat!” to the image in photoshop or another photo editing program. OR, you can just handwrite this out on a piece of card stock and tape it to the photo.

- Use an x-acto knife to cut a couple slits to slip in the fishing pole (the sticks I had came from an old floral display). Tape the sticks on the back of the photo to make it more secure.

You're a Reel catch valentine

- Tie a string on the end of the fishing pole, and the other end of the string to a piece of candy. I purchased some swedish fish and individually wrapped them up in saran wrap.

you're a reel catch valentine

- Print out my free Trout Printout (right and left). Cut them out and tape them to each side of the swedish fish.

trout free printout

- Done!

The whole assembly of this project took about 1 hour (maybe a little longer since kiddo was “helping”). Cost was around $8 for 20 Valentines. Even though this photo below is super grumpy/sassy… I think it’s my favorite. This is pretty much a look she gives me EVERY day. We’ll save these special Valentines for her BFF’s. Hee.

youre a reel catch valentine

- Chelsey

P.S. if you make this Valentine, please share a photo link in the comments below! I’d love to see it.

Day 24: Rockwell style Christmas photo!

Day 24: Today I’m sharing how I created my Rockwell style Christmas card. It’s a bit complicated… and, WILL take some time. BUT, so worth it. Really. I absolutely love wandering back and looking at my past Christmas photos. Something I will have forever and get to enjoy with my family! Below is the intense amount of info on how I created this… P.S. don’t forget to enter the Holiday Photo Challenge here!

The image itself was created from 5 different photos. See below:

To blend these photos together, I layer the photos (one by one in Photoshop) on top of each other, and erase bits and pieces of each image… until I get the photo I’d like! If you need more info about this, here’s a tutorial I did a couple years ago on Paper Heart Camera. Here was my finished blended image (before photoshop color edits):

OK, onto the real fun…. How I created the Rockwell Style Photo (note: I use Photoshop CS5): 

1. When you have the photo you want, it’s time to do any brightness/contrast edits now (if you need to).

2. Duplicate your original photo.

3. Above all the other layers, create a New Adjustment Layer> Levels and increase the amount of dark black (the little black arrow on the left) into the photo by 7 to 12 (decide what you like best). Merge the Levels Layer down with the original photo copy. (click on image to enlarge).

4. Let’s add some contrast. Go to Filter> Other> High Pass and use a radius of 10 to 16 (your choice) and set that new layer to Overlay. (click on image to enlarge).

5. Click on your Background Layer (the original photo) and go to New Adjustment Layer> Brightness/Contrast. Set the Contrast setting to – 18 to -22 (your choice). (click on image to enlarge).

6. Above your Brightness/Contrast layer, add a new layer: New Adjustment Layer> Curves. For the Red Channel: increase highlights and decrease lowlights (creating an “S” shape). For the Green Channel: Increase the highlights, set the mid tones to neutral (set in the center), and decrease the lowlights. For the Blue Channel: Decrease the highlights and increase the lowlights (backwards “S” shape). (click on image to enlarge).

7. Above the Curves layer add a new layer: New Adjustment Layer> Solid Color. Choose a magenta color (my color # was: c14683). Set that layer to Screen, and reduce it’s opacity to 15 – 35% (your choice). (click on image to enlarge).

8. Click on your Background Layer (the original photo) and go to New Adjustment Layer> Hue/Saturation and move the Saturation to -20 to -30 (your choice). This will take out a bit of the pink/red from the skin. (click on image to enlarge).

9. Click on your Background Layer (the original photo) and duplicate that layer to create a Background Copy. Go to Filter> Noise> Add Noise. Add a bit of noise, this is completely up to you. I added just a TINY bit of noise (.19). Note: make sure Uniform is selected and Monochrome is deselected.

10. Staying on the Background Copy layer you just created, go to Filter> Lens Correction and in the Vignette section change the Amount to – 20 to – 50 (your choice) and the midpoint to +30 to +50 (your choice). This is to add a vignette. (click on image to enlarge).

11. This step is totally you! Adjust each layer. Maybe the numbers I shared weren’t really your taste, adjust opacities and numbers. Make it your own. Have fun!


- I was way too distracted by the background in this photo…. so, I replaced it with a grey solid background. I felt that was more Rockwell, anyway.

- Optional: add some rosy red spots to the cheeks. Adjust the opacity.

- Add extra bits and pieces. I added in a newspaper (to tell the photo’s story better), flames to the candles, and splashes to the mugs.

Now that you’re all done, time to enter my Holiday Photo Challenge to win some AHmazing prizes!

- Chelsey


To keep up with my 50 DIY Days, click here: