The above image was created using a "base" cell phone photo taken by a client. It is wonderfully simplistic. No elaborate props or backdrops...Just a sweet photo taken by his mother, who emailed it to me after discussing the goal of the end product. I digitally created the hand-rendered artwork using my computer, my wacom tablet and pen. No art plug-ins were incorporated during this process.
The global pandemic has undoubtedly wreaked havoc in our world, and how we interact socially, including those closest to us. For parents, creating a safe environment has resulted in unprecedented family time. More engagement with children, while potentially challenging and exhausting, has revealed unique and wonderful opportunities to create amazing memories with those we love and cherish.
When my kids were little (a set of twins and older daughter all under the age of three!) I had the opportunity to stay at home with them. Nothing made me happier than observing the kids play, surrounded by toys and wrapped in imagination. I had an inexpensive Canon and would sneak quietly around a corner to take candid shots of the children: My son, on his belly, wielding a matchbox car in his tiny hand; my daughter trying to feed her stuffed teddy bear a handful of Cherrios. I'd wait until my film roll was filled before taking it to the drug store in hopes that some of them turned out well. (I was a novice photographer, after all.)
ENTER SMART PHONES!
Never before has the technology allowed for great candid images. And we collect SO MANY (seriously, I have thousands!). Sadly, most images drift away in the cloud. It's time to pluck some of your prized picture and create unique pieces of artwork that reflects this truly remarkable year. While working with a photographer is the most ideal situation, social distancing has most definitely made this a challenge. However, working with a skilled photographic artist can enable you to transform cell phone images into story-telling works of art.
So, grab a shot from your phone, or follow some of the tipsbelow to lay the foundation for new, beautiful artwork for your home!
Tips for working with a professional in creating unique artwork for your home
Tip #1 - Start Low
We're talking ground level. Grab your cell phone and sit on the floor, eye level to your subject. Trust me, the results are the perfect base.
Tip #2 - Watch your Light
Place your subject near a window, if possible. Or have your kids play in open shade. Harsh light can make for a challenging image.
Tip #3 - Candid is Key
Give them the opportunity to engage in a candid "behavior", such as eating an ice-cream, or cheerios. Let them play with a favorite toy, doll or stuffed animal.
Tip #4 - But Planning can be Creative!
Work with your artist in creating the final "scene". Qualified and trained photographic artist can expertly weave together different elements, known as "compositing", to create the story you wish to tell. (I worked with a child where I wanted a bird to land in her hand. I simply posed her with some cheerios in her stretched out hand and had her count them. She stared at the cheerios and I quickly took the image. That's all I needed to work with other elements to create the final artwork.)
Most of all enjoy this time with your children!! It is the most special gift during this especially hard time. Stay safe everyone!