Guest post from Erin Odom
Looking for a new way to add life to your home? Why not try do-it-yourself alphabet photography art? Photography can be a cost-effective way to add personality to your home if you have just a few skills (or a great digital camera) and a little creativity.
The recently popular alphabet photography can also make unique homemade Christmas gifts that your loved ones will treasure for years to come.
My husband and I tackled our first photography art project while visiting Asheville, N.C. for our 5th anniversary. We spent our days trekking around the city and seeking out each letter of the alphabet.
Whether it was a curlicued “y” we spotted on a fancy light pole, a “m” from a church’s arched windows or an “o” left from a cut-off tree limb, we enjoyed our letter-hunting scavenger hunt around the city.
What is Alphabet Photography?
If you’re new to the concept, check out my pictures. Basically, you look for the letters of the alphabet “hidden” in the everyday. Cities are full of the lines and arches that make up various letters, but farm settings and even small towns are as well.
Telephone poles, stop lights, fancy doorknobs, old buildings, trees and other objects–both man-made and from nature–can yield the entire alphabet in just a few hours.
What Exactly Do You Do With the Letters?
Once printed, the photographs can become any word you want them to be! Many people combine them to form the names of loved ones, but you can also put together the name of your favorite city, your alma mater, an encouraging word (like “believe” or “love”) or the classic “ABC” for a child’s nursery or home school classroom.
We put together our children’s names, as well as our last name in a collage photo frame. We also gave our extended family members their last names framed as gifts for Christmas 2010.
Will it Save Money?
Yes! Making your own alphabet photography art is not only fun, but it also saves you money. Many retailers sell letters for up to $5 each, and that can really start to add up if you have a long name or special word you want to display. Considering that you can print many photos yourself for mere pennies, you could realistically pay less than a dollar for each word.
Taking your own pictures may require a time investment, but if you turn it into a date night, a girls’ night out with your friends or even as a field trip with your letter-learning children, the time spent won’t be time wasted–at all!
You can print your pictures at any local or online photo center or print shop. (Hey–take the opportunity to use those free credits!) And you can purchase the frames at a price that fits your budget.
Tips for Successful Photography Art
- Before you seek out the letters, try to form an idea of the words you want to form. That way, you can frame the pictures in your head as you’re taking them.
- Leave some space around the edges of the letters in case you need to crop or re-size the pictures.
- Don’t just settle for the first letter you spot. If you see two of the same letter, by all means, take both of them! You may have a word that has two “o’s,” and having two different versions of the same letter will keep things fresh.
- Check thrift, consignment and discount stores for bargain frames.
- Use a different frame for each letter or use collage frames for an entire word. Be creative!
Have you ever made your own alphabet photography art? Would you consider giving homemade alphabet photography art as a Christmas gift?
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