When you’re creating a product using an image from the public domain how do you get it to stand out from the others? I usually upload the image to Photoshop and using the color dropper icon I simply pick a color from the image to use as a background or frame.
In my Images of History store I started off with Catherine of Aragon and one of her older sisters Juana. The next image I used was of Anne Boleyn and then I had to decide whether to stick with the rest of the ‘Spanish’ women or the other wives of Henry VIII. I decided to do Henry VIII’s six wives first.
When I found an image of Catherine Parr it was tall and not very wide so didn’t sit well on a greeting card. I picked a color from the skirt of her gown and put that as a background with the image over the top. That just made the image look flat and just ‘not right’.
I took a color from her kirtle and added that as a very thin frame around the image, but the background still didn’t seem right it needed texture.
I created an image of just the background color and used one of the filters on Photoshop to give the background some texture and then added the original image with it’s frame onto it.
I have fallen in love with spotted turtle doves after they moved into my garden a few years ago, I have amassed so many spotted turtle dove pictures I knew I just had to show them off to people. I’ve created a few greeting cards with these gorgeous birds as the stars.
Let me tell you a little bit about my spotted turtle doves………maybe four or five years ago I spotted a couple of spotted doves playing out their courting ritual next to my pool, before this time I hadn’t seen any in my back garden.
I watched them court for a while and then for a few days I only saw one which I thought was a little sad until my husband was working in the garden around the pool that is. He called me out to have a look at what he’d found – my spotted turtle doves had a nest and one of them looked at me through the foliage as though to say, ‘excuse me, a little privacy please!’
I turned the photo of the spotted dove being a good parent into a greeting card –
I looked up spotted turtle doves online and found out that both parents take it in turn to sit on the nest and after a few days I noticed the change over. I also started photographing the nest each day and one parent would have it’s tail feather on display while the other parent would just be looking at me (as you see above). One day I noticed that no parent appeared to be on the nest……
There was a new addition to the spotted dove family. I had hoped to document the new chick as it grew up, but unfortunately I had to go away from home for a few weeks.
During the time that I was away our area was hit by some pretty bad storms and my husband found the nest on the ground, we’re hoping that the dove chick had already started to fly and was safe. The doves were still around, but we couldn’t see where they’d built a new nest too.
Finally I think I managed to isolate the area in a tree that their nest could have been in, but it was in my next door neighbor’s garden so I couldn’t confirm my theory. My neighbor has three young boys who are pretty inquisitive and very boisterous so it’s best not to mention a possible birds nest!
Fast forward a few years and I was sitting on the deck one day and suddenly realized how many spotted doves there were – I counted between 10 and 11 (they kept moving!). I have to think that they all originated from that first ‘couple’.
I would have been happy to continue just watching them from my deck , but that was before one of them decided to adopt us!
A couple of weeks ago my husband told me that one of ‘my birds’ – he calls all of the birds in our garden that because I always talk to them! – came right up to him when he was hanging out the washing and he was sure he would’ve been able to reach out and touch him if he tried. I just nodded and murmured something and thought nothing more of it.
The following day my hubby calls me into the kitchen and points out to our deck whispering I think that’s the bird from yesterday. I looked and saw it was a spotted dove and so I went outside with a couple of pumpkin seeds in my hand (they were a bit big, but they were in the trail mix I was eating at the time).
The dove decided to come onto my hand, then he looked at the seeds, looked at me again and I thought he was about to fly away. Instead he jumped further up my arm, twisted his head on one side to look at me before proceeding to walk up to my shoulder. I was a little in shock and after about a minute he flew off and headed towards my husband.
I went inside to get some bread and hand fed the cute little bird. The second day he got on my shoulder and decided to give me a couple of pecks on the lips (see the photo above). We see our ‘adopted’ bird every day and my husband insists s/he prefers crushed pieces of weetbix every day so feeds it that. I’ve found that our little birdie prefers pieces of bread from me so…..
Here’s a couple of greeting cards made with our little feathered friend as the star –