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Thinking outside of the box this Mother’s Day

March 6, 2015
As we reminded you yesterday (and probably the day before, and the day before that), Mother’s Day is creeping up on us. But what do you get the Mum that has it all? Never fear – here at PhotoBox, we’ve come up with another extra-personalised gift idea that doubles up as a Mother’s Day card as well! We guarantee this will pull at your favourite lady’s heart strings this Mother’s Day.  Mother’s Day Canvas Message   Featuring some of the PhotoBox team with their lovely Mum’s   What you’ll need: A print of you with your Mum A camera Scrabble tiles / labels / a stamp kit / ink to write a message – you could even try magnetic letters, or cut them from a newspaper or magazine Scarves or material to use as a background Other decorations – we’ve used twine, mini pegs and fairy lights, but you could use flower petals, confetti, sequins – whatever you like Optional: A tripod Start by choosing your background – this could be absolutely anything you want. We’ve chosen fabrics that compliment the colours of the print, so for darker (or black & white prints) we’ve chosen a fairly dark background, and for a bright print we’ve gone for a polka dot patterned pastel blue. Lovely!   Next, you’ll want to position your print on the material. Play around with the composition until you’re happy. It is worth positioning the camera now, so you know how much space you have in the frame to fit your special message. You will also need to allow for around 1 inch of extra material in the photo, to account for the wrap around the edge of the canvas Decide what you want to say in your message – do you want to tell her she’s amazing, or let her know how much you love her? Remember to keep it short & sweet 🙂 When your message is in place, you can begin to add in any decorations you’d like. We’re big fans of the mini pegs & string, which make the photo look like it’s hanging on the canvas. This is a great chance for you to get really creative! Once you’re happy with the layout, it’s time to get snapping. We found the easiest way to take these shots was to position a tripod (on it’s shortest setting) on the table, looking down on our set-up. Finally, it’s time to start creating your canvas. Our pictures were perfect for our square 16’’ x 16’’ Classic Canvas. Simply upload the photo, position to your liking & remember to check that you have a green ‘good quality’ smiley face above your creation. It’s as simple as that, and can easily be recreated with bits and bobs that you already have in your house. Now all you have to do is sit back, wait for your order and watch the smile on your Mum’s face when she opens it on Mother’s Day! No need to thank us… Now that

Magnetic Mother’s Day Inspiration

March 5, 2015
You know that Mother’s Day comes around at pretty much the same time every year, but there’s always the eternal struggle of knowing what to buy her, especially if you want to stand out against your other siblings! We’ve come up with a few quick and very easy photo gifts that will leave her feeling special, and ensure that you stay her favourite until next year, at least. First up – photo magnets. ‘Mum’ Photo Magnets   To make these photo magnets, all you’ll need is a photo of you and your Mum, and some photos of letters, which is easier than it sounds… You can get as creative as you like with the letters – we took photos of a bedroom light and a sign in a cafe for the two ‘M’ magnets, and used a photo we found on Pinterest for the U. You could always draw the letters yourself and then take photos, use flowers to create letters, try scrabble tiles, street signs or even make the letters out of your Mum’s favourite food (pancakes for breakfast, anyone?). You’ll then just need to upload the photos to your PhotoBox account, and choose the best photo magnet size for you. We’ve gone with the square 8cm x 8cm, which fit our Instagram pics perfectly. Music credit: www.bensound.com Now that you’ve got an idea for a gift, head on over to our Mother’s Day Shop page – there’s even a chance to win an iPhone 6 in our #MyMumAndMe competition! 

Top 5 Couple Photography Tips

February 14, 2015
Now we’re all guilty of finding any excuse for taking a quick couple selfie whatever the occasion, with Valentine’s Day being no exception. But this year, we thought we’d shake things up a little by giving you some tips and tricks to taking couple photographs with a difference (that still contain the aww factor). 1) Before you set the scene, set yourselves Before you begin, think about what you’re both wearing. We don’t suggest you dress up in matching outfits or anything, but coordinate a little so that you’re not wearing clashing colours or patterns. If one of you wants to dress very formally and one casual – this could end up looking a little odd, so find a happy medium. 2) Get proppy Photo 1 source, Photo 2 source   Using props can really help to lighten the mood and break the ice, and ultimately encourage a more natural reaction. Do you like a certain type of flower? Do you want to include Rolo the dog? Do you support the same football team or share a hobby? Using some small props can help add personality and bring out your relationship’s unique personality. 3) Be creative Photo source Photos within photos make for a really interesting picture. We love the idea of using traditional prints, or digital photography to create a couple photograph with a twist. Perhaps you can show the progress of your relationship by holding a photo of when you first met, and taking a photo of your relationship today – you could even add in the kids. 4) For the camera-shy Photo source You don’t always need to take photographs of your teethy smiley faces. Why not take a photo of just your hands, or your shadows embracing, holding hands or having fun. 5) Location, location, location Think about where you want to take your photos. Natural sunlight, especially at dusk or dawn, can create amazing photos with rich colors and deep shadows. Location will often dictate your pose, for example if you’re near an interesting staircase, try sitting or standing on alternate steps. If you’re inside, think about background colours and textures – if you’re after a shot where you and your partner, your relationship is the main focus, look for a simple background with one primary colour and/or texture. We’d love to see your couple photos, so post them in the comments below or share your top tips with us. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.  

Valentine’s Day Blogger Challenge

February 13, 2015
Last month, we tweeted a call out for some love-struck bloggers, who don’t get squeamish at the thought of Valentine’s Day, to tell the story of their relationship using only photos. We gave them the choice of products, from colourful canvases and squashy photo cushions to modern acrylic photo blocks and sent them away to get creating. We love a challenge here at PhotoBox, and to add a little bit of competitive spirit, the winning blogger (judged by yours truly) will receive £50 of PhotoBox credit, as well as £100 worth of Red Letter Day vouchers to treat their partner with! The bloggers challenged were; All About A Mini Norris, One Dad, 3 Girls, Bakes, Books & My Boys and Blog Bay-Bee. Let’s take a look at the entries… Kerry – All About a Mini Norris Kerry chose a comfy photo cushion filled with her favourite memories. Speaking about the experience of creating the cushion, Kerry said ‘I couldn’t wait to jump at this opportunity as it gave me an excuse to browse all of our photographs which was a great experience in itself’. Our favourite photo on Kerry’s cushion has to be the top left: ‘’This was taken at the first party we threw in our first home that we bought together. Those days of partying hard are long gone. Although i’m pretty sure all we did was play on the wii fit and do the limbo.’’ Cute! Read the story behind all of Kerry’s lovely photos, here. Lucinda – Bakes, Books & My Boys Lucinda from ‘Bakes, Books & My Boys’ chose 5 of our photo acrylic blocks to tell her relationship story, ranging from their first holiday together, to their wedding, photos of their lovely boys & altogether as a family. ‘’Every time I look up now, light a fire, go to leave the room they catch my eye and cause me involuntary to smile’’ – we can certainly see why, Lucinda! You can see all of Lucinda’s photos on her blog, here. Steph – Blog Bay-Bee Steph from Blog Bay-Bee also chose a photo cushion to create a collage of her photos – ranging from her engagement & wedding photos, right up to the births of her three children. We love that Steph has chosen a black & white look for her cushion, making it fit in perfectly with the same theme in her newly decorated master bedroom. See more of Steph’s Valentine’s Day Challenge, here. Darren – One Dad, 3 Girls As the only male contestant, we were intrigued to see how Darren from ‘One Dad, 3 Girls’ would interpret the challenge – he certainly didn’t fail to make us ‘aww’ by featuring some lovely images of his daughters on our acrylic photo blocks. Explaining his choice, Darren said ‘’As this is for Valentine’s Day I’m sure you’re all expecting photos from 11 years ago when we got married or 14 years ago when we first starting dating, but to be honest we don’t have photos of ourselves

DIY: Spell it out this Valentine’s Day

February 6, 2015
Whether you’re loved up, or happily single, we’re sure you’re well aware that Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. At PhotoBox, we’re all about a personal gift – but it doesn’t necessarily have to break the bank. We’ve come up with a crafty Valentine’s Day project that will leave your one and only with no question about how you feel about them – and for the unorganised amongst you, it can be finished off in only a few hours and looks much better than a bunch of flowers from the petrol station (if we do say so ourselves). To make a DIY Valentine’s Day Letter, you’ll need… -Large letter of your partners initial, we chose an unpainted wooden version from The Wooden Letters Company, but using thick cardboard will work just as well -PVA Glue -Newspaper –Photo prints – from couple selfies to places you’ve visited together -Travel tickets, maps, cinema tickets etc Step 1:   Rip a few newspaper pages up into small sections and begin to glue and cover your wooden letter. This will give your prints and other bits and bobs a better base to grip on to. Alternatively, if you’re feeling really fancy, you could use coloured card or tissue paper, if you want to leave a few gaps between your prints. Pop on the kettle, put your feet up and leave to dry.   Step 2: Once your newspaper-y creation is dry, it’s time to start picking your favourite prints from your selection and adding them to your giant letter. Arrange your prints on top of the letter, to decide what order you’d like them to go in. Alternatively, you can go for a random ‘grab and stick’ approach, either will work well. Top Tip: In between the prints, why not add mementos from trips you’ve taken together? This can be anything from a train ticket to a stub from the first film you ever saw at the cinema together. Or, if you’re planning to take your other half on a special date on Valentine’s Day, you could include some hints and tips on the initial itself… Step 3: If there are any edges sticking over the side of the wooden / cardboard letter, trim these off with a craft knife (careful…!) or scissors. We also added a layer of PVA over the top of our final masterpiece, to add an extra shine and ensure the prints stay stuck down for years to come. Top Tip: You could use the giant letter as an alternative to a Valentine’s Day card by writing on the back, or go even bigger & add your initial in there, or even spell out their full name (or use a nickname if you date a Charlotte or a Benjamin!) Is this something you’d try? We’d love to see your attempts in the comments below…Happy Valentine’s Day, lovebirds!