Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Rush

Every year this time creeps up on me and attacks like a cat lying in wait behind the shower curtain. And this year, like all others, has me feeling the Christmas rush as I try to finish up designing several new scrapbook programs, deck the halls, and figure out what and where to get everybody's gifts {big surprise,  I'm a last minute shopper!?!}. The project du jour is the Caywood Family Christmas Card. It's always a big challenge - what style?, what photos to use?, themed?, not themed? On and on the process goes but this year it started with the photo shoot. Yes, our first family photo shoot, and let me say, there were over 600 photos taken and only 13 between two photographers were presentable! Of those precious 13, only 1 of the whole family (and there are only 4 of us) all facing the camera at the same time existed. After experiencing the Christmas chaos, I reflect on my childhood Christmasses and think, Dear God, how the hell did my parents do it?!?!  {I'd say lots of eggnog, but neither of them drink so it must have been some sort of Divine intervention.}

Anyway, feeling slightly nostalgic, I messed around with the thought of making our Christmas card look like the photos from the 60's-70's. You know drained of color but full of feeling. It hits me that the reason photos from that time are sooooo appealing because there was a specialness to each photo. With film, processing and the anticipation of those photos arriving at your local drug store after a minimum 2 week wait, the pictures were celebrated as much as the event that was captured by the light on the lens. Each held a special memory to the photographer or photographee. We are lucky to have digital photography at our fingertips giving us the ability to catch every moment and amusement, but do we really cherish every minute and does that dilute the specialness? It certainly affords us the resources to get a "perfect picture" but that may miss the mark of the perfect memory. I'm torn about the change but but I do know that old stained, torn, faded photos carry more emotion than spiffy brand spanking sparkling new digitals in many ways. Perhaps I need to reframe my thoughts on photos and picture taking in general.

It takes way more time and skill to make a photo look old than I thought but after much trial and play with photoshop, here's the result.

I hope the holiday season brings you all much cheer and memories of a more simplistic time when the biggest challenge was untangling the Christmas lights!

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