Posts tagged photography
Micro Trend: Float Frames For Photography + Art

One trend I've spotted lately when it comes to wall art and photo framing is the gorgeous, light and airy-looking float frame. Have you noticed this too? Generally made of acrylic with brass bolts and screws, they are modern and clean -- just perfect for fine art photography, family photos or special documents or keepsakes. I've been spotting them around and noticed that Artifact Uprising rolled them out in five sizes just this week so I thought to highlight them as I really love this look and they carry them in 12x14, 17x20, 26x26, 24x30, and 30x42. C8e6qnFnMA2LZT9kW9VdiXV_xeRwYGAm87hSHAgE5lc,6sgRaTqJv1vG_BRozwiXNvJnKKl8FP18fbjg6jYpf8g,tRgTpXmV5Od6UE9aFumayzSulaDO4iOmwX1JdKwoYAo



What do you think of this look? I love it - such a nice change from traditional frames.

(Photographs: With permission from Artifact Uprising)

7 Great Ways To Display Photos At Home

Hi friends! I want to quickly share with you a project that I worked on for Canon Europe in 2013 that I can finally share publicly. It was for an advertorial that was seen in hundreds of magazines across Europe, the UK and Russia. I was asked to comment on and show ways to use photos for decorating the home. And of course, I had to take the photos, print them all out, and then style them in my home in a creative way. The ideas are still very current so I thought to share them with you today. Canon_09


1: GRID. I spent a day in the greenhouses at the Berggarten in Herrenhausen located in Hannover taking photos. It was amazing! Their orchid collection alone is one of the best in Europe. After a day shooting, I did some light post-processing in Lightroom and then printed my favorites out on Canon matte photo paper. I cut them all with a paper cutter. Then I pinned them in a grid format onto my mood board in my former work studio (I've moved since). This inspired me for a few months, I had my very own indoor botanical garden and it was so nice to look at each day.


2. CIRCLE. I thought that it could be fun to try using a wooden hoop from the craft store in a fun, new way other than for needlepoint. I took some of my photos and used double-sided tape on the back to fix them to the wooden hoop. I then hung the hoop on my wall and there you have it, a sweet display that you can easily update with new photos, too.


3. IN GLASS VESSELS. I started doing this with photos in 2006 using canning jars. On this fireplace mantle, I printed out photos I'd taken in London onto paper and just inserted them into vessels in various sizes. I don't suggest doing this with precious photos (vintage family stuff) because the photos will curve over time, but if you've printed them out yourself from your digital camera, there is no worry because you have the photos on your computer.


4. ON A DOOR FRAME. If you have a series of photos in a specific color or theme, you could try this by just tacking them up with double-sided tape, but keep them in a straight line and color match them to the nearest piece of furniture or colors in the existing room.


5. INSIDE OF WASHI TAPE FRAMES. This is such an easy way to show photos, and looks especially cute in a kid's room. Here, I printed out photos and used double-sided tape and fixed them to the wall, then used strips of washi tape from MT TAPE to frame them. I tried to coordinate the washi tape with the things on top of the dresser to keep everything color coordinated. I also mixed and matched the patterns on the tape and for some frames, I used wider tape and for some, I used two frames around one photo. It's fun to keep things interesting. I also printed out one photo and hand cut it "Polaroid Style" and used a single strip of tape to stick it on the wall (above the bird in the glass dome).



6. INSIDE OF FRAMES (no glass). I had fun with this project because I got to use some ugly old frames in a new way. I first removed the back and the glass, then lightly sanded and washed them well, then once dry, I painted them in Farrow & Ball "Arsenic". It's the best green ever, seriously, so cool! Once they were dry, I hung them on the wall and just taped photos inside that I printed out.


7. ON CLIPBOARDS. I picked up these nine clipboards from my friend Tinna years ago and put them above a makeshift desk I'd made using a deep LACK shelf from Ikea. I printed out 2 photos from my 2nd book, Decorate Workshop, taken by Debi Treloar along with some photos I'd taken, and just clipped one to each. Pretty, right?

Hope you like my ideas! I cannot believe how many years ago I styled this story, but it still feels fresh and I'm so happy I can finally share it with you.

(Photography: Close Focus Studios)


10 Styling + Photography Tips For Decor + Food

Hi readers, I can't wait to share the words and photos in this post today because I've got the fabulous Leela Cyd stopping in to teach us her tips and tricks on styling and photographing decor and food at parties. Are you ready to hear her 10 tips? Take it away, Leela! 168_Spiced Strawberry Balsamic Lassi

Hi decor8 readers, Leela here. The most important thing hosting a fete, be it for 2 or 20 people, is to remember that it's just really all about the company you keep -- not the perfection of the food or styling, so relax a little, embrace imperfections and make time just to enjoy the conversation and connection. So here are my tips for styling a party and photographing food! For all of these and more ideas on styling, pulling together your table to already create beautiful food moments, plus 85 easy recipes that celebrate friendship and fun, please check out my book -- FOOD WITH FRIENDS.

036_Setting the TAble

For Your Decor/Tablescape:

1) Decide On a Palette. You can unify a bunch of mis-matched linens and plates if there is a tonal relationship. An easy way to do this is to pick whites or greys and go for a monochromatic look of different items. It really shows off the food this way. An alternate, opposite approach, is to not worry at all about a palette -- because if nothing goes together, everything goes together! This wonky look is quite adorable too.

2) Create Place Settings. This is kinda old-school but a fun way to add a bit of flair to the table -- you can choose a chocolate, special little treat or even tiny bouquet along with a note card with your friend's name scribbled across, and that guest feels extra special and gets to take home a little treat (if she doesn't immediately pop it her mouth!)

3) Use Found Objects as Center Pieces. It doesn't have to cost a fortune to have a chic table -- I often clip little blossoms from my neighborhood or gather driftwood from the beach. Wherever you are, take a look around you, what are the natural items you could bring into your table for a pretty table addition. Often it takes absolutely no money, just a little care in gathering some pretty sea glass, pine cones, shells, branches, etc to festoon your table.

4) Flowers add a lot of beauty. By purchasing one grocery store bouquet and breaking it into many small jars, you can create a festive mood. Trim the ends short and fill up several small bottles or jars with just 1 or a few blossoms in each. Add a few bits of greenery from the garden and the effect will create a fresh, floral feeling at your gathering (again, spending very little money!)

5) Style the Plate. Often, I like to use smaller plates in general, this keeps portions looking abundant and allows guests to refill a few times - prolonging the meal and the company. I think of a plate of food as a painting, making sure there are some large shapes in lovely colors -- such as grains dotted with cheese and herbs, a big salad moment with shaved carrots or radishes, then smaller dollops of dips and pickley things, finally garnishing the entirety with a scattering of small herbs, cracked pepper and a delicious, fruity olive oil. Messy is ok!


001_Think Pink Faloodas-1

Photographing Your Food and Party

6) Your food will only ever be as beautiful as your ingredients. Choose high quality, pretty foods to photograph -- this means shopping and preparing food that is as seasonal as possible. Think of the difference between jewel-like farm-stand strawberries and the gigantic, barely red strawberries sold at Costco.

7) Natural light is your best friend. When creating a food spread you'd like to shoot, consider a brunch or lunch party rather than the darkness of dinner. It will be so much more appealing to shoot with indirect window light than the ambient light bulb light that comes on as the sun goes down. 8) Breathe Life into a scene with a person. To really activate your image of food, show a person interacting in some way with the food -- it can be just a tiny suggestion of a person, or it can be clearly of hands engaging in the act of eating or cooking -- either way, it's a sure-fire bet to give that food a story and a 'moment in time' feeling, making the image more relatable and emotional.

9) Look at the food in terms of color, texture, shape and scale. Think like a painter and ask yourself, is there enough variety of plates and glasses (shapes), a good mix of textiles and napkins (texture), is there a pop of vibrancy from the food or another prop somewhere (color) and are there differences in size to keep the viewers' eyes moving around the composition (scale)?

10) Add other interest to the scene. I love to show crumbs, the saucy bits at the bottom of the bowl, a few bites taken out of food, the crumbling sides of a pot on the stove. It's these little actions that help the food look loose, enjoyed and real, instead of staged.

Rhubarb Rose Floats1U9C9242

0001_Green Pea Soup with Chive Blossoms, Yogurt and Nigella

Triple Coconut Lamingtons_1U9C9710


For more tips along with lovely food and recipes, purchase FOOD WITH FRIENDS today! Thank you so much Leela for these wonderful tips and photographs, we love your book here at decor8 and are currently reading it and in love! Thank you again and best wishes on your lovely work.

(Photography, Styling, Text: Leela Cyd.)

Photography + Styling For Your Blog + Instagram

Hello everyone! How are you? I'm going to Hamburg this week to attend a design show, Blickfang, with my new French friend who is also working with me on partnerships and advertising for decor8. Not only does she have the perfect French name, Amelie, but she has the Garance Dore accent and this wonderful, positive spirit. I adore Amelie - we just started to work together a few weeks ago and it's been great having her around. So yes, I'm off to Hamburg soon and so I wonder, Hamburg experts, any good suggestions for shopping, eating, cafes, etc.? We'll have 5 hours to burn so we want to burn them wonderfully (wink). BYWInstagram1

Okay so onto the meat of this post. Blogging. What the heck is happening with blogs and the internet and what is the future? We can all speculate which is sorta fun but I firmly believe in one thing (the rest is a blur): that the folks behind blogs, Instagram, etc. for lifestyle categories, foodies, design, etc. only have a chance at reaching a certain status or level of success (or earning money) if they have great styling and photography. I could sit around and tell you it doesn't matter but I'd be a liar. It does matter. When I really put my all into my Instagram account (I'm @decor8 if you are curious and wanna follow me), I get hundreds of new followers overnight. When I flake out, like I have been the past few months because I'm working on my 4th book (I turn it in in Sunday, omg you guys!), my followers massively slow down when it comes to interacting with me, liking my pics... Not to mention how few new followers I see. So yeah, I can bs you and say photography and styling aren't important, just wing it, but that is not the case at all.

In the Blogging Your Way Instagram e-course earlier this year, I promised a follow-up to that class. In it, we taught the nitty gritty on how IG works from algorithms (yes really) to "the grid" and the importance of this, that and the other. Now it's time for the follow-up, for you to LEARN how to style (aka arrange stuff in a nice way) and compose your shot (like angles, SO important) and how to take photos way better than you thought you ever could. And we're not just including Instagram for this class but bloggers in general who want to also style and take better photos for their blog.

I've teamed up with Tina Fussell, Jack Fussell and Holly Marder who will tell you everything they know and I've already seen their lessons - GUYS YOU ARE IN FOR A TREAT. Take this class!

The e-course is self-paced and runs for three weeks from 15 November until 7 December. Then you have all of the holiday break and new year to practice your new skills on friends and family! Weeeee! You will also walk into the new year with your head high because you have major ammo, mega mojo and monster-size mad skills so you're not starting the new year thinking, "Oh my god, resolution time, I don't know where to begin!", rather you are beginning the year thinking, "I've got this, internet WATCH OUT".

This is the last one we'll be teaching on these topics until Fall/Winter 2016 so don't wait another year, too much time to not make any progress! Come learn with us - see you soon!

CLICK HERE for e-course outline and to sign up. It's like unicorn magic how that works.

(images: holly marder, tina fussell, jack fussell)

Give Yourself Permission To Grow

I love this time of the year when you wake up and it's suddenly Autumn. It happens literally overnight - the air turns crisp, the ground becomes a blanket of burnt ember, caramel and gold and wood burning in someone's stove conjures up imagines of log cabins, mountain holidays and foggy lakes... (I buy a candle to mark this time of year, every year, called Feu de Bois by Diptyque because it gives you your very own roaring fireplace at home.) I also love flowers in early Autumn... Rich, jewel-like colors and textures that melt your heart.RusticRomance_Becker1LOWRES

I have a photoshoot this weekend so in preparation, I've ordered the most beautiful flower bunches to create a lovely scene with. I can hardly wait to go pick them up and get creative with my bundles. I had a photoshoot earlier this week on Monday outdoors, and I was lucky because it happened to be on one of those perfect October days when the air is perfect and the sunlight trickles through the trees... I had no team with me, no photographer, but I had props and an open mind and my Canon 5D Mark III with two lenses, my trusty 50mm and my 35mm. I shot what I needed for over three hours, for my book (!), and walked away feeling better than ever. It was a real moment for me to not depend on anyone else and just do the work myself.

Have you ever felt an inner shift occur, out of the blue, that forever changed you?

That day was epic because I stopped being so damn hard on myself. I gave myself permission to not be perfect and to have fun. I allowed myself to extend the same compassion to me as I give to others who are unsure. It was when I found my voice and my confidence taking photos and now, I only want to advance and push myself in new directions so I can become better. I no longer have this negative voice in my head telling me that my photos are crap. When I sent my shots to my publisher in London, and my co-author Leslie, the replies were supportive and positive. Leslie replied saying, "LOVE LOVE LOVE." My heart jumped!

Lots of people look at a new year as the time of change. My changes have always occurred in Autumn. Usually October, both bad and good. It has been this way since I was a teenager and my parents split up - in October. After that, I always wanted October to feel nice and not sad. I always looked to the month as a starting point instead of an end - my parents both moved on with other partners and found happiness and are still married to their new partners for over 20 years now. I saw October as the beginning of something new and an end to something negative, always.

I wondered what my change, my shift, would be for October this year because each year it is always something. I like to begin the month with this feeling of, "Whatever happens, what if, let's see", and I walk into the golden month with eyes wide open and a curious nature. I wonder what it will be this year. By the end of the month, I always come up with something and it's usually big.

This time around, I found my happy place with photography and my photo taking insecurities evaporated. In one day, one shoot, poof! Gone. I even bought a new lens yesterday in celebration of this (an investment I was eager to make) and this weekend I will shoot a chapter for the book, all by myself. And you know what? A few weeks ago this would have terrified me. A few weeks ago I would have hired help because I thought I wasn't good enough.

October this year brought me courage in an area that I have long, long had a battle with - photo taking. I have been taking photos since I was very young and shot with a film camera until 2003. Once I made the switch to digital, it all felt so complicated to me and "technical" and I didn't get that involved. When I started doing books, I directed photographers and acted as art director on shoots and the same goes for magazine shoots and even working on things in-studio for clients. When I got on Flickr in 2005, I definitely loved taking photos but never felt that confident and working online all of these years made me more and more insecure because I constantly compared my work to the pros who have blogs and thought that though I had the eye for it, even a pro photographer told me I had a great eye and should advance myself... But still I could never imagine shooting for books or magazines because I'm not as technical with photography as everyone else appears to be.

Technical technical technical. Tech was totally holding me back.

I have recently worked with photographers who do great work, jaw-dropping, and they confessed that they know little about how to use a camera from a technical perspective - they have a formula and they stick to that. One said I was very talented and that I should try to take more photos and shoot for my book. I was shocked and just thought she was being polite. But it got my wheels turning, then I started to think about these women with the beautiful photos who aren't "that technical" and wondered why I had let the technical side overwhelm me so much? That perhaps I should just jump in and try shooting so I went and photographed a local design studio for my blog and that was a real starting point for me. But I still felt shaky-legged and afraid. I still felt like readers were just being nice when they said my photos were pretty.

Until now.

All of this created newfound confidence and courage that I want to build on from here. I want to go on a photography retreat next year (know of any good ones in Europe or Scandinavia???) to learn more - particularly lifestyle photography and portraits along with shooting in artificial light or when natural light is not optimal.

Where have you currently gained courage at? What have your given yourself permission to grow lately?

(image: holly becker for decor8)



Great Pose Ideas For Portrait Photography

If you want to take better photos of yourself or of others, then you need to know your camera but also your poses and angles. Every great photographer has signature poses that they use again and again that work beautifully for their clients. They often create a certain signature to their look this way. Interior photographers also have similar angles and ways they work with objects as they shoot to give their work a certain mood and when not with a stylist, many photographers style their own interiors "posing" objects in ways that look the best through their lens. poses1

With a small son, I'm always taking photos of him but recently noticed that I've been taking less and less and I wondered why... Then it dawned on me that I'm bored with my angles and poses - and also that he simply cannot be posed at his age so I have to rely more on creativity and on trying new things. If you have children or even shoot for your job, photograph products for your online shop, or are looking for new approaches for your Instagram feed it's a great idea tostart a Pinterest board where you pin poses that you like (if you are interested in taking better photos of others or yourself). For objects, products, etc. you can start a board that is only for pinning rooms and things. Look for photos that have a certain mood that you're going for, were shot at angles you like, or pictures that have something else special about them that you'd like to experiment with for your own work. Perhaps it's the focal length or lighting. As you pin, certain patterns will emerge that you'll pick up on after about 15-20 pins.

I started looking at my "poses" pin board earlier today and instantly thought of new ideas for photographing my son and also for some scenes I'll be shooting for my 4th book which is underway.









It's a good idea to use Pinterest to make you a more creative person instead of just aimlessly pinning and dreaming about the perfect life that often Pinterest seems to give the impression of -- that everyone is skinny, lives in a gorgeous home and eats beautiful food. Use Pinterest for something positive - to jump start your creativity, to improve a skill, to inspire you to do something for yourself that makes you happy, and further develop your photography skills, don't you agree?

Photography: Design Love Fest, Golden Swank, Jeanie Micheel, Kinfolk, Jody McKitrick, Handmade Charlotte, Alexandra Grablewski, Kirsten Rickert, Niki Gutierrez, Vogue.