Please help me make this shot better than it is now!

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This is an exact 5x7 crop, which the parents want prints of. I just now learned how to do a vignette for the 1st time, using the eliptical marquee tool, fading & gaus blurring the white layer. With so much open frame at the top, I added this bit of text. Can I do something to improve this? I'm not thrilled with it the way it is now.
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PS, this is the original crop I started with:
View attachment 13153
 
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Please help on this one too:

Different shot, similar treatment.
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You asked, I'll answer: LOSE the second one - looks like "Babies in Space" esp with the arms out. Babies don't look good on black background, they're soft little angels and need soft treatment.

I made sure that my background was white and used LARGE eraser brush. This took away the harshness of the cut sides and allowed me to do custom work around the shapes of their heads. The text also needed to be softer and a colour that matched the picture. Hope this helps you..... BTW this is a very fast 30 second edit, if you need better, I can do.
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Babies in space? Sandi, that cracked me up!

I'm still crackin' up thinking about that one! So true! Fortunately, that's not the pic the mom chose, it was the 1st one. Absolutely love what you did with it, and so will the mom, but I don't know if I can pull that off. Will need more details, or even a tutorial.
Now, knowing it has to be a 5x7, should I increase the sides of the canvas to accomodate? Looks like you trimmed off some of the top, and I had it at exactly 5x7. fwiw, I think 5x7 is kind of a weird size.
 
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Steve, didn't trim anything off - just worked with the original shot. Just large text makes it look trimmed.
Open in Photoshop. On the foreground/background, make sure that white is the background. Take LARGE and soft eraser brush and erase around the picture. You might have to have a few goes at it to get the practise. You can even just touch the edge of the picture with the edge of the brush and you'll see it work. What the brush is doing is erasing the photograph and letting the white background show through.
I used the colour of the blanket as the colour of the text. Was going to do Michael in Blue and Jenna in pink but it looked farrrr too cutesy. If my instructions aren't clear, and you need more help, just holler.

And please, next time you're shooting babies, tell the mother to SLOWLY pull the dummies outta their mouths!! LOL In fact, if you wiggle the front of their chin with a finger and pull on the pacifier, the baby will let go. Once babies are asleep, they won't notice but it sure shows up in the photos if they don't!! LMAO
 
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OK, gonna do it right now!

Thanks so much for the tips. She's just down the street, and waiting for her prints! You know, I thought about doing his name in blue, & hers in pink, but thought better of it too. What about that drop shadow treatment? That's very cool too1
 
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Believe it or not, my 18 y.o

says he knows how to do it, but I'll go look at the link just the same. Thanks again! You saved the day! :lol:
 
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Why would anyone want a 5x7 eeeekkk

8x10 or bigger ..For me anyway.

Well I do some 5x7 for a small album to carry around. Some I give away.
So I guess there is some use.
 
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ok, with Sandi's (& my son's) help, the finished product

Betcha they're gonna want it in an 8x10 too now! :? THANKS SANDI!
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Hi Steve,

I really like how the image ended up with the help of Sandi and others. When you posted the original image, I liked the way that the kids were posed but the blanket was too dominant and looked harsh somewhat like burlap. I think it looks great now and the change in fonts was a huge plus as well. Thanks to some collaboration, the images are awesome and you are going to make a Mother very pleased.

I learned alot from this thread....Sandi, do you give seminars?
 
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For the right price (ie red wine), I'll give seminars!!! LOL

I agree, it reminded me of burlap, just the weave and the colouring, that's why I softened it right down and tried to remove it. Better than a yellow blanket though, yellow blankies and pink skin are hard to get just right. White blankets work best, esp with this treatment.

Anytime Steve! Just holler....
 
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