From Ordinary Photo to Personalized Notecard

by Earl J Posted on April 06, 2012

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Diane and I were vacationing in Portugal a few years ago and relaxing outside of our apartment.  She spied this dormer, as seen in the first photo, and took a quick shot.  In my opinion it is an “OK” shot but it needs some editing help if it is to become a great photo.

The second picture shows what a few minutes of thoughtful editing can do (any photo editing software can be used).  In this case I cropped slightly, enriched the colors a tad, but the most important change was to straighten the dormer.

That might have been the end of my story, but a couple of years later Diane was wanted to get some note cards from Shutterfly and thought the dormer shot might make a good photo for the front panel of the card.

We followed through with that idea, so the third photo shows you how the dormer shot has been re-invented and used as a note-card subject.

Do you have any shots that could be tuned into personalized note cards?


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  1. Joey Says:

    Love the dormer shot, its so cute. I tend to use the sraighten tool a lot!
    I really like this idea to use as the front of a notecard. I have used some of my pictures on the frronts of cards I buy from Shutterfly. Its a really fun personal idea.
    Thanks for sharing this Earl. I was just going to email you to see how you have been – then i saw this blog from you.

    Well done

  2. AnnAbbott Says:

    Last year I made personalized cards for each one of my daughter’s teachers in elementary school for her to sign and say thank you as she was moving on to middle school. I took the picture of the first day of school for each grade and used it as the cover for each teacher. Needless to say they loved it.

  3. BarbaraJ Says:

    I agree and love to do this myself. Great article. Thank you my friend!

more about Earl J

I'm a long-time film photographer, starting with a darkroom in my parents' fruit-cellar when a teen-ager. I fought the change to digital at first, but no longer. I've become a convert and Shutterfly has been my on-line provider since 2002. Since then I've placed (as I write this) 135 orders for prints, enlargements, calendars for every year and 42 photo books in different sizes. I'm very pleased with the top quality of all Shutterfly products.

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