Going Analog

So finally the dust has settled from the holidays, and unless you’re my lazy neighbors, even the lights and decorations are put away.  So remember those photos you rushed to get so you could have a current photo on your Christmas cards?  Yeah, well you have the digital images, you’ve shared a few on Facebook, and tucked them away safely on your hard drive.  Now what, are you done with those forever?  Well don’t be, dust off the thumb drive and lets get analog!

You might be wondering what in the world I mean.  Let me explain.

Photography has come a long way, even in the last 15 years.  I remember in high school, we owned 1 digital camera that cost at $7000 and took pictures that could not even compare to my current iPhone.  And folks, I graduated in this millennia (barely).  Now, I have a camera that cost half that and can literally take a photo that would fit on a billboard, with no pixelation.  That my friends, is progress.  I LOVE digital.

You know who else loves it.  My clients. As a photographer if you are not offering digital, you are likely losing business.  I know that will push some buttons, and there was a time when it also pushed mine;  I am a print and product lover.  Not that I don’t love to have a great image on my phone, but I want my family to decorate my home.  I want to enjoy them every single day.  As an artist, I want my clients to do that same.  I cringe and the thought that my art could be sitting on a disk gathering dust under a pile of tax documents.

So behold this post, taking those digital files to the analog world.  So dust off that disk, and pop it in your disk drive and lets get busy.

Make a Photo Book

Gone are the days of glue sticks and glitter pens, todays scrapbooks are all digital.  I love making photo books, traditionally these are sold with wedding packages but I just love to make them for my family sessions and my milestone babies.  What a better keepsake then all your photos in the same place right at arms reach.  Of course I use a pro lab with a nice flush mounted album, but there are so many options for consumers to choose from.

Hop on over to The Daily Digi to check out her review of 12 different companies.  With countless vendors to choose from you are sure to find an amazing product that gets you exactly what you want.  If you want my opinion, I love blurb.  I made a coffee table style book for my grandmother a couple years back and it has amazing quality.  I have not used adoramapix before for Adorama is well known in the photography community.  And I LOVE LOVE LOVE Mpix.  While I personally have not ordered their photo books, their quality is unmatched (want to know a secret?  they are owned by a pro lab, MPix is just their consumer name).

Try an Image Transfer

This one is a bit vague because you can transfer and image to almost anything.  There are numerous pins on various ways to transfer images…if you need some inspiration check out my Pinterest board “Image Transfer”.

My favorite and only truly tested method is using a gel medium.  What you need:

  • Reversed photo printed on inkjet paper
  • Gel medium – I used Liquitex I found at Hobby Lobby, but amazon works great too.
  • What I will refer to as a “scrapper”
  • ModPodge
  • Wood or canvas to transfer your image to

First cover the surface of what you are transferring to with the gel medium.  Place you image face down (this is why it absolutely MUST be reversed).  Use a “scrapper” to smooth out your image to be sure there are no bubbles.  Since scrapper is ambiguous, something like a credit card or a dull knife should do the trick.  Let set for 24 hours.

After 24 hours, grab some warm water and a rag and begin to remove the paper.  Be careful not to scrub as the ink may come with it (trust me, I learned the hard way).  Once dry, cover with ModPodge!  Its really that simple.

If you need better instructions, there are many that exist.  I am about as good at writing instructions as a blind man describing a VanGough.  I have also seen (but have yet to try) wax transfer onto a candle.  I think you just print it on wax paper, wrap it around a candle and use some heat.  Probably google that if you want to give it a go.

Custom Wine Labels


I want to say that my brain was bursting with creativity while writing this, but the truth is I had a hard time coming up with ideas.  Then I remembered this wedding, where the favors were wine bottles with a photo from their engagement session.  How much fun

is that?  I went to my trusty resource – google – and found this amazing company, http://www.personalwine.com.  They have so many options for the wine enthusiast.  They sell single bottles and cases, in just about any variety you can imagine.  I am salivating just thinking about the amazing ways I can drink my face!

Not so much into the wine?  Check out Jones Soda, www.jonessoda.com.  They come in a 12 pack and some seriously delicious flavors.




You might be asking yourself, what is the world is inkodye?  Allow me to explain.

Inkodye is like screen printing, without all the crazy equipment.  Basically, its a dye that when exposed to sunlight it develops!  Super cool.  I cannot tell you how many projects my mind is creating.

While a family photo t-shirt is totally 1970’s family reunion cool…..think of your faces plastered on a canvas tote, a tea towel, a throw or my favorite a pillow!  How fun would it be to have a collection of pillows with your family photos on it.  On FAQ of their website, Inkodye says it can be used on the following materials:

Inkodye binds to any absorbent natural fiber such as cotton, linen, raw silk, jute, hemp, burlap, wool and even raw leather, suede, untreated wood and unglazed ceramics.

Here is the catch, you must use a black and white negative of your photo, because this develops like film did (remember film?  From the long long ago).  The easy part is they have an app for that.  No seriously, lumi – creator of said amazing product, will convert any photo on your phone to a 12×12 negative for you for only $10.  If you don’t really feel like forking over the dough…you can of course you most image editing software programs to convert your photo to a black and white negative.

I found this stuff at Hobby Lobby for about $30.  While I am currently writing this blog I have yet to actually begin creating.  I will most definitely be creating some exciting projects with this so stay tuned for a full on tutorial.

In the meantime head on over to lumi.co for a full tutorial, lookbook and other exciting goodies.

Photo Jewelry

I feel like there are 1000 ways to Sunday to make this a reality.  If you are super crafter and a DIYer then an epoxy mold just might be what you want.  I however have no idea how to use epoxy, and quite frankly even the name intimates me.  Thats where Etsy comes in.  The lovely shop owners here do many things that I am way to lazy to try.  Here are just a few that I LOVED!

Photo Jewelry Soldered Charm Personalized Pendant

Photo Jewelry Charm Bracelet with 8 photos

And not exactly jewelry, but super fun

Purse Hanger

This one does have a DIY component to it, but looks super easy and not intimidating in the least.

Snapfish, Personalization Mall and even Walmart have some fun jewelry options.  I personally prefer the handmade look that the vendors on Etsy have to offer; plus being a small biz, I like to support my fellow entrepreneurs.

Coloring Books

What is more precious than your children’s art?  And what do kids like to do more than look at themselves?  My 10 month old loves photos of himself, maybe he grows out of this?  Not sure but it does seem like kids are fascinated with their one photos.  More times than I can count I have had to take breaks during a session to show the children how they look; vanity starts young my friends (just kidding, their children, they don’t know what it means to be vain).

I just cannot think of a better way to keep a child entertained then coloring and creating artwork of their very own family.  Check out www.coloringpagecreator.com to create your own coloring pages.  They will even take photos from your smart phone.  Awesome.


That was fun right.  I have many more ideas, but I am going to save that for another blog post, otherwise this might literally sit in my draft folder for another 4 months.  What are some cool and fun things you have done with your digital images?