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I have wanted to get professional silhouettes done of both my boys for years, but I have simply not had the time or money. I know that they are not difficult to do, yet I wasn’t sure that I would do my sweet boys justice. I also wanted to have something that would last forever. Silhouettes capture such a sweet and innocent time that I personally don’t want to ever forget. My youngest son just turned 5, so I knew I was running out of time and needed to either make an appointment or do it myself.
When I was little, my school did silhouettes with a projector light, piece of black construction paper and chalk. I remember feeling very special when it was my turn to have my shadow traced. I loved the sweet details of my ponytail and eye lashes. It was a really simple project yet such a wonderful gift we later presented to our mothers as a school keep sake. They were simple, true to life, and my mother still has it to this day. As I have said, it is just something you hold onto.
Thinking back to that school experience made me realize that I didn’t need to pay for a silhouette, I could do this on my own. With the changes in technology from then to now, I knew I could simply take a photograph and cut it out. I also knew that Photoshop has the capabilities to do the same thing. I am no pro when it comes to Photoshop and I personally wanted to cut every strand of hair that stood up, their button noses and of course their eye lashes. I don’t know why that part gets me all choked up but it does.
Here is how I created my very own silhouettes:
- Take a photo of your child’s profile with a light background. I sat both my kids on the same stool in front of our white shuttered windows. It was a light background but it also allowed sunlight to come it.
- Print out the photos on card stock and size down to fit the frame you selected to display them it. I did 5 X 7 frames for my first “crafty” silhouette. Next time I am doing a much larger round frame so I will need to print out a 7.5 X11.
- Using an exacto knife/ small scissors, cut out your child’s profile. Get into the details of their hair and lashes. The personalized details really make each silhouette more realistic and special. This is a bit time consuming and ensure your knife is sharp and take a deep breath.
- I decided to go the “crafty” quick route with my fist silhouette, I simply turned over the paper (photo side down, white side up) and pasted it to a piece of craft paper. I still wanted the black and white theme but I didn’t want it to be traditional especially in my front foyer. I liked that it was a bit different and unexpected. The craft paper that I choose has a printed word pattern across it, which I love. It made it modern, fun and very different than your traditional silhouette. I also used a rectangular silver frame, again not the traditional round black frame you typically see. I personally think that it works well in my black and white casual foyer and home.
I really enjoyed this project and I am already working on my next silhouette project. This time I am going the traditional route. That means I will either need to play around in Photoshop or cut out a template and then trace their silhouette onto black card stock. This means double cutting, but I actually enjoy that part, so I think I am going to take the hands on approach. I would also love to add their monogram below so I cannot wait to show you how those turn out.