We all have them…lurking in old photo binders, stuffed in photo safe boxes, tucked in a drawer or cupboard that rarely gets opened. Of course, I’m talking about actual photographs that were printed at your local film-processing store, Costco, and FotoMat (remember those little photo processing buildings?)
What could I do with all these old photographs that are taking up precious space in my home? Somehow, just *tossing them into the trash bin seemed too cruel for these precious memories, they still had some life in them. I knew there was an answer somewhere.
After browsing all around the internet, including Pinterest and other popular crafting and re-purposing sites, I could not find an idea that I liked. A friend told me about a man she once worked with who cut up his old photos and crafted them into a beautiful mountain scene, which he framed and had on his office wall. She said it looked nice, but I think that idea was out of my creative range. I guess I had to turn on my ‘thinker’ to come up with an idea on my own.
While going through my old photographs, I came across an envelope that held duplicate pictures of a river cruise I took with my sons several years ago. While taking a picture of a birds nest in a tree on the bank of the river, I captured the back of a fellow passenger’s head. (Not the photographs I wanted to remember for this adventure.) What caught my eye in this particular photo was the beautiful blue sky that took up most of the space. Bingo! My ‘thinker’ worked and I knew how I could re-purpose this picture! (This is also the teaser picture I posted earlier!)
I quickly took out my flower die, and place it over the blue sky, and created petals of a flower! The photo paper is thick enough and of such great quality that this flower was perfect to place on a greeting card!
Well, once I created this card, there was no stopping me! I looked through my dies to find ones that were thin enough to use on more photographs. One picture of a group of people with different colored clothing was perfect to use, however I did not want images of eyes or heads peering out of a flower or swirl. (Too creepy!)
I love this pretty swirl die cut from Di-Namics and decided it was perfect to use to create this note card. It was thin enough so the fragmented image of someone’s leg or head would not be seen at the end of a swirl!
The pictures of scenic views were more appropriate for thicker dies and cuts. Seeing a portion of a tree or river on a finished flower provided the right combination of colors, as you can see on this card I created. I adjusted the cuts of the scalloped pattern to balance the colors of the flower.
The different finishes on photographs (matte or glossy) can add some variety to this technique. I also thought about other dies I could use to create cards with my new idea. A rainbow die from Di-Namics was used to create this thank you card.
I also took the portions of photo paper left over from printing my own photos to use as the backgrounds or accent pieces on my cards. My post on Thank You Cards shows you how I used photo paper to make snowflakes, a snowman, and a snowflake wreath!
Since we camped several times when our boys were younger, I have many photos of trees. I used my Stampin’Up die cut to create some leaves from one of these camping pictures and created a nest for the bird. I needed a sympathy card, so I used the leaves to create this muted card.
Many times I have to control my urge to purchase more papers to add to my ever-growing collection. Now, I have added more ‘papers’ to my collection, in the form of these old photographs! Not a problem, as I am re-purposing these to create something useful!
So, what do you think of my idea? Would you re-purpose your old photographs using this technique? Do you have other ways to use old photographs? I would love to hear about the ideas you have!
Thank you for visiting my little creative corner. I hope you have a wonderful day in your creative world!
*Here is a link for ideas on how you can safely recycle old photographs, as some of the old photos and negatives contained harmful chemicals.