Need help with ideas for winter cards

Discussion in 'Photographic Aesthetics and Composition' started by Akki14, Sep 25, 2007.

  1. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I'm looking for some feedback and ideas for christmas/winter greeting cards. I sort of know what I want the final product to be (enlarged negative 4x5" cyanotype on watercolour paper, folded over to be a card) but I don't know what to do for a photo that looks cold and wintery because Southern England doesn't particularly get wintery and christmassy looking :confused: At least not for me as I'm from New England, USA originally... where's the snow? It's hard to even find ice to photograph!
    I resorted to trying to photograph cubes of ice in an old coffee maker jug... Some of them look quite nice but I don't think they look wintery... summery if anything (nice, icy cold drink!).

    I really don't want to do the cheesy pictures of me and my husband that everyone else seems to send out. As my husband just pointed out, we're hideously ugly, we wouldn't want to show everyone that :wink: :D
     

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  2. bjorke

    bjorke Member

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    pick a sentiment and run with it.

    why not include a cocktail recipe for christmas? :smile:
     
  3. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    We don't do snow any more; you're in the tropics now you know.:smile:
     
  4. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Ruddy well is! I have to go to Norway in December for a wedding (!) so I looked up the december tempertures... 40-35F average high and low... looked up the december tempertures for back home... about 10degrees colder. IT'S COLDER IN NEW HAMPSHIRE THAN NORWAY!! :surprised: :confused:
    I still remember the first time I came over here... it was December... and I was shocked by green, growing grass. That doesn't happen until April and stops around October/November where I'm from. Silly Gulf Stream effect...
     
  5. winger

    winger Subscriber

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    Well, even in Massachusetts, it didn't usually get going with lots of snow until right around Christmas. So one year, I used that fake spray snow on a branch of an evergreen with an ornament on it. Another year, I set up lights and small presents (ornaments from Pier 1) on a background on green and red paper. Neither idea would translate well to cyanotypes, but maybe they'll lead you somewhere?
     
  6. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    You could try and find a photogenic hoodie, and tone the print red. On the other hand they are few and far between.:sad:
     
  7. pentaxuser

    pentaxuser Subscriber

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    I have lived in Dave's part of England since 1978. The last and only time we had snow at Xmas( in fact just a week before Xmas) was 1978. In London forget it completely. Only Charles( Dickens that is) can remember any snow in London, along with Ebenezer and three ghosts.

    I don't know what cyanotypes are capable of but if ordinary scenes are OK some of the National Trust properties do Xmas fayres in December. Everyone looks Dickensian and jolly. A bit cheesy really but it depends to whom the cards will be sent i.e. how they see Xmas in England.

    If it's reality you want, try pics of 20somethings binge drinking with Santa Claus hats on. Xmas office parties usually start in early Dec.

    Alternatively and based on my rant above and Dickens there is always me with a bowl of gruel, saying Bah Humbug.

    pentaxuser
     
  8. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Wow, how do you turn cyanotypes red? :wink: Seriously though, I've not heard of that kind of toning...
     
  9. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Ooh I had a thought. I just remembered I found a recipe for making "frost" on windows with epsom salts mixed in with beer. I might try that out. I'll have to clean my windows first though...
     
  10. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    Cullen Skink

    That s a good idea Could you share that recipe? We will probably be sending cards to different people, so it should nt cause a problem ? :smile:

    A recipe for cullen skink would be appreciated if anyone over the pond has one handy....had some at the Royal McGregor in Edinburgh on a cold rainy night..that was a nice touch..
     
  11. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    One recipe i found said 3-4tablespoons of epsom salts per 1/2cup beer. Another just said keep adding the epsom salts until the beer can't take anymore :D The first recipe mentioned making swirls on glass with paper towel soaked in the solution. If my windows aren't clean now (or before hand), they probably will be after I've had to wipe on this stuff, then wipe it off a few hundred times before I get the right look...
     
  12. Struan Gray

    Struan Gray Member

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    You need to watch Wallace and Gromit's "Cracking Contraptions" for details of the Christmas Card-o-Matic.
     
  13. Black Dog

    Black Dog Member

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    ISTR gallic acid makes cyanotypes turn reddish/pink-a bit of digging should turn something up (maybe in Spirits of salts-R Webb & M Reed).
     
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  15. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

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    Doesn't help if you want to create cyanotypes, but my plan this year was to load some HIE and find some holly or christmassy looking conifers on a bright sunny day.

    Ian
     
  16. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I was considering shooting SFX and hoping the green landscape would go white enough (with the SFX filter) but I've not had good luck with my low-tech cameras and such :rolleyes:
    I was also considering taking some of my landscape pictures and just reversing it since they have white skies and dark ground so reversing it would just make them look like blue skies and white ground... Not sure how well it'd look though.
     
  17. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    The epsom salt + beer on glass is kinda neat. The crystals remind me more of the pattern on galvanised steel buckets than frost... its a bit coarser than the frost I remember on my bedroom windows... Pretty nonetheless and seems to photograph nicely with the macro lens + extension. Hubby said it looks like we got the windows egged... but like I said, the crystal pattern close up is nice. I'll try to get through a roll today and dev, scan & post later...
     
  18. Shmoo

    Shmoo Member

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    Do an emulsion lift from a polaroid Type 59. You can either scan and print the final image, or create individual images on cards. You can put them on watercolor cards (a lot of paper mfrs make them) with ready made envelopes. I did this one year and shot a bunch of xmas ornaments so that me and my 4x5 came out in the reflection...hilarious and fun, but not cheap.

    S
     
  19. johnnywalker

    johnnywalker Subscriber

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  20. Schlapp

    Schlapp Member

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    Hoodies everywhere up here Mr Miller. No ravens at all.
     
  21. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That all depends on where in Norway you are going.

    Where I live (Bergen area, west coast) it's quite warm, but inland and up north it can be bitterly cold.

    I think one of my old "alternative christmassy cards" is in the gallery here...

    Edit: It is: http://www.apug.org/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=4313&ppuser=124
     
  22. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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  23. Harrigan

    Harrigan Member

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    There is an imitation frost spray available in a can. We used it in July for the Christmas shoot. I have no idea what it's called the stylist had it taken care of.
     
  24. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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  25. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I don't get this joke :confused: Also that's the only one of my pictures with icky lensflare :sad:
     
  26. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Sorry Heather - it is the Kurt Vonnegut fan in me. See:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice-nine

    Matt