Friday 14 July 2017

Photo Friday – Sometimes The Background Steals The Show!

For this particular Photo Friday I’d like to show a lovely picture taken by my hubby, some years ago.  At first glance it’s just a picture of a tree but  I think this photo can teach us a little about our card designs…

I hope you’ll agree, it’s an eye-catching picture…

Eye-catching it may be, but at the end of the day it’s just a picture of a tree.  A nicely shaped tree, yes, a very old twisted tree, but still, it’s just one tree among thousands.  So the question is, what makes this picture stand out?

The answer, as you’ve probably already guessed by the title of this blog entry, is THE BACKGROUND.

If this was a photo of a tree against a background of greenery, or yet more trees, it would be unexceptional.  But look at what is going on behind the tree; it’s a Winter’s day and the Sun is setting on the horizon at the bottom of the picture. In a couple of minutes the Sun will have gone and darkness will quickly creep in – but before that happens there is one final glorious encore of sunlight, lighting up the steel blue late afternoon Winter sky, highlighting the white clouds and putting the tree in silhouette. Absolutely marvellous, a lovely fleeting moment caught in time.  

So how does this help us when we come to design our cards?

I feel it’s a reminder that we should think of what’s going on in the background of our cards as well as the foreground.  For example, let’s say you’re making a Christmas card with Robin Redbreast.  So you put Robin front and centre of the card.  That’s great as far as it goes… but what is going on in the background of your card?  Nothing at all?  Or is Santa flying high in the sky on his sleigh in the distance, being pulled by Rudolph and his friends? Or is there a snow-covered village or church behind the Robin? Or maybe a frosty beautiful countryside scene of a patchwork of fields and hills?  

If you put interesting detail, no matter how small, into the background of your card, you might find people are drawn towards that detail and that becomes the reason why they think the card is so great… Robin Redbreast suddenly becomes merely a supporting actor and not the star of the show we all thought he was!   

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