It's Kel again, and I've been scrapping for the first time in ages. It's always such a relief to get back to it.
A few years ago, there seemed to be a real boom in digital imagery - DSLR cameras were now priced within the reach of hobbyists and home editions of photo software were much better quality than in the past. On the back of that wave rose another, retro photography styles gained a cult following.
Many people are shooting film again, using unpredictable toy, vintage and reproduction cameras. People who shoot digital are using photoshop, other software and websites to vintage up their images. And the iphone has a huge group of retro-style photographers using a handful of very nifty apps. If the any of the words above are new to you, clicking on them will take you to a flickr gallery of images from that camera or app.
Whether you are playing with new images you have created, or bringing old family snaps to life, vintage colour photos pose several challenges. The colour is usually off, shifting towards yellows or blues. There can be a hazy dark border, called vignetting, around the edges. The subjects are often blurry and farther away than we are used to now.
Rather than avoiding these problems, we can embrace them. For many people, the colour shifting will cause the greatest problem. The simplest solution is to stick with neutral tones like the kraft above, but it is worth playing in your patterned paper and using the actual colours of your old photo like you would with any other. In the "Cooking in Japanese" layout, I tried patterned paper in the same greens and yellows as the colour shift in the photo, but the effect was a bit jaundiced and the photos didn't pop. In the end, peach paper proved the perfect background to those yellow-greens.
The vignetting poses a problem if you try and crop the photos, so it is just best to enjoy it. I had to ink the edges to stop the cut edges glaring white. The vignetting also enhances that sense of distance, so common before zoom lenses were pocket sized. I feel that photos tend to work best in multiples, building up a picture in pieces - a horizon, part of a car and a family group conjure up that picnic all those years ago in a way that no single image from that day may be able to.
With a little imagination and attention to the special characteristics of retro photos, you can adapt almost any style of scrapping to integrate them. One thing I would like to try is using vintage pics alongside new, crisp and shiny ones - no idea whether that will work at all.
If you've been scrapping pics like these, do leave us a linky and let us see!