Capturing Success and Struggle

While I am not a daily photographer, I enjoy capturing family moments with photos and stories that I will compile in a book at the end of the year. This page is about my granddaughter Kate and her reticence about learning to swim. It wasn’t that she didn’t like playing in the water or sliding down a water slide. She simply didn’t want anyone holding her in deeper water. She was afraid.

I took a little different approach on this page regarding combining photos and words. I used the photos to tell the story of her success and the words to tell the story of how she overcame her fear. I wrote wanting her to remember that success often involves struggle. Kate loves going to swim lessons now, but initially she cried as she clutched the bars of the bench on which she sat. It has taken her three months to get to the point that she’s happy about going to swim lessons.

I used Anna’s templates for this double page spread, specifically two templates from Simple FotoBlendz Template Album No. 3. The template design works well with other templates that I used for earlier pages, Serious About Play and Happy Place.

Except for a few changes to the fotoblendz masks on the templates, I used the templates as Anna designed them. On the large blended photo on the left, I added another copy of the photo above the fotoblendz layer and an inverted mask. With a brush from AnnaBlendz Artsy No. 8, I used white as my foreground color to reveal the rest of my granddaughter’s leg. I also used transfer 1 from ArtPlay Palette H2O to fill in the water over the area that I masked out. On the right side, I used an overlay from the same palette and masked out the parts I didn’t want to extend the water across both pages.

Next, I clipped the other photos to the smaller frames and added adjustment layers. I recolored some of the stains or clipped a transfer to them.

Finally, I added a title and fish element from ArtPlay Palette H2O before finishing my journaling.

I have finished one more page for my book, a page with a significant family story about success and what it sometimes takes to achieve success. I do not have a set number of pages planned for this book project. I’m trying to keep this project simple and relaxed this year. The templates are making it easy to put the pages together.



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  1. Peg Rogers

    I like the way you explain things.

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