When I think of decorating with your own outdoor photography, I am thinking of pictures that I or you have personally taken. I feel there is a sense of accomplishment from having your own decorating ideas with your own photographs. You worked hard or sat still for hours to capture that perfect shot. In some cases, if you are like me, you move with the target you are going after like an animal would stalk his prey.
Most people do not think of decorating their house with their own work because then they know it would be judged by their visitors who come regularly. Personally, I feel a sense of pleasure when other people see my work and it also gives me feedback on what I can improve on. Decorating your home with your art is a really easy concept. The hardest part is deciding what you want to use of the many pictures you have stashed away in your computer.
The other thing that comes to mind is pride in knowing that you did that great accomplishment. As I said in one of my earlier posts, it also helps for you to get your name out there to be able to get more jobs and to sell your art if you so choose to do so.
This DIY project for your home is the simplest of them all, I believe. The hardest part is going through and finding the pictures you want to use. A lot of the time that is the hardest part. As a photographer and artist, we want everything to be perfect. That will not always be the case because sometimes our subjects do not sit still long enough for us to get the perfect shot. An example of this I can use is when I spotted a Blue Heron several ears ago just out on a nature hike. I thought, I had to get that picture, it would look so great on my wall. Well after 3 days I still didn’t get the shot I wanted, but I did get one that was good enough for me to print out and frame. To say the least, I am really[proud of that picture. So when you are going through your pictures, remember, they do not have to be perfect, just perfect for you.
- Take about 10 of your best photographs and set them aside.
- Eliminate the 10 down to 5. It’s a hard choice I know.
- Print the 5 you have decided upon either at home on our printer or even take them to a store and have them printed off.
- You can either use photo paper or not. It just depends on the quality you would like to have. Unless someone comes in and takes the frame apart, they will never know the difference.
- Go buy you either some nice cheap picture frames on sale or go all out and get some really nice picture frames. Remember the frame will make your picture stand out in your home. You also want to get a color you would like to see day in and day out.
- End result – Pictures of your own in your house that have cost you little to nothing and nice conversation pieces when company comes over.
Pictures on Glass
Putting pictures on glass is easier than everyone might think it is. You have plenty of viable options from actually using glasses to finding and old window frame and using the glass in it for several pictures. This is also a project that can be used on wood, canvas, and fabric.
Mod Podge or Omni gel 8 oz. medium
Glass Panel (I used glass from a picture frame)
Photo–from book, magazine, or printed on laser jet printer
Wet Wash Cloth
- First, tape your glass down to the surface you are working on. This will help you center your photo transfer and keep the glass in one place while you work on it. Cover the face of the picture completely with the transfer medium. *Note, please keep in mind that this image transfer will be the reverse of the original, so don’t choose something that will look strange backward.
- Next, place the photo face down onto the glass. With the pads of your fingers, pressed down all parts of the photo and try to rub out any air bubbles or globs of gel. Allow it to dry completely. When it is dry, begin to remove the paper. The image will remain in the dried transfer gel. Use the wash cloth to soak the paper, and then start rubbing until all the paper is removed. This process takes some time! The paper comes off in layers, so let it dry and then come back to it and keep rubbing off the paper.
- The all you have to do is frame and display. You can also use this for glasses, jars, or anything that involves glass that you would like to put a picture on.
Transferring Images to Wood
Having your images transferred to wood is another way to decorate your home if you are looking to make a splash with more than framed photographs. It is surprisingly easy to do too. The hardest part of this work is getting the paper off completely and up to your specifications.
- Unfinished wood painting panel
- Photocopied Image on Regular Copy Paper (you must use a photocopy of your image or it will most likely not turn out correctly)
- Mod Podge
- Craft Paint ( It is up to you if you want to use the paint or just leave it the wood color it naturally is.)
- Sand Paper
- Clear glaze finishing spray
- Now to begin:
- Paint the edges of your wood panel. (Optional)
- Apply a generous amount of the transfer solution to the image. You’ll need a thick layer.
- Press the image, photo side down, onto the wood panel. Rub firmly to smooth out the image and remove air bubbles. Let it dry completely.
- Use a damp cloth or sponge to wet one section of the paper at a time. Begin rubbing gently to remove the paper and expose the transferred image below. It is easier to remove the top layer first, let it dry slightly, and then repeat the process as needed to remove any excess pieces of paper that were left behind.
- Once you are satisfied with the image, sand the edges lightly. Seal the photo to wood transfer with a finishing spray.
The end result is wonderful and makes the image look as if it was meant to be there and not just glued on top of it. There are also many other ways you can take this to the next level like by painting the wood. It just depends on how and what you would like as your home decor.
Getting it out There
These are just some DIY projects that you can use for your photographs to decorate with. There are many more out there and so may ways to do it with. You just have to take the pictures and then take the chance on yourself to make our house a wonderful place to live surrounded by nature even when you are inside. I have found that these projects really help during the winter when I am looking at my birds, trees, or even the waterfalls I so adore. It helps to keep the calmness down inside me, especially when cabin fever hits. Your options are limitless with ideas like these and there are so many more to come.
Try It Yourself
What do you have to lose? The worse that can happen is you mess up the first time and then you have to start over. Practice makes perfect and in any sense you will always have the photos so you can reprint them and try again. When we try something new, we always get nervous. Remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be yours and it will be something you have done yourself and can say you are proud of. This is also a great way to do birthday gifts and Christmas gifts for the holidays. It will show someone you took the time to put effort into their gift and they will cherish it more than you will ever know.