Photography Information

A New Way to Use Old Snapshots

If you're like me, you have hundreds of photographs sitting in envelopes. Pictures from birthday parties, weddings, family gatherings, anniversaries, the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas. You have already put the best snapshots into albums and these are leftovers. You don't want to throw them away, but you also don't know what to do with them.

Instead of letting your snapshots take up space and contribute to the clutter in your home, use them to make collages (at a cost of less than $10 each) that you can give as Christmas gifts to family and friends. Here's how:

  • Assess your collection of pictures. Do you have several dozen of your spouse or significant other? Your parents? Your children? Grandparents? A friend? A beloved pet? Decide which person would like to receive these pictures and divide them into groups accordingly.

  • Buy a picture frame with glass (either 5x7 or 8x10) for each collage you are going to make. Department stores sometimes have sales on picture frames, and you can often purchase a suitable frame for $5 or less.

  • Cut a sheet of paper (use cardstock, 24# paper or light cardboard) to match the size of the opening on the picture frame.

  • Cut out the background of the pictures, leaving just the people (or pets). Cut out enough pictures to cover the sheet of paper.

  • Arrange the cut-out pictures on the paper. Mix and match and experiment. Try placing the pictures at different angles.

  • After you have an idea of how you would like to arrange the pictures, glue them to the paper. (Check the label to make sure that you can use the glue with photographs.) Cover the entire sheet of paper with pictures.

  • When the glue is dry, insert the paper into the frame.

    Collages are not only a good way to use your old snapshots, but the recipients also will cherish them for years to come as a special and thoughtful gift.

    2003 LeAnn R. Ralph

    About The Author

    LeAnn R. Ralph is a freelance writer in Wisconsin, is the editor of the Wisconsin Regional Writer (the quarterly publication of the Wisconsin Regional Writers' Assoc.) and is the author of the book: Christmas In Dairyland (True Stories From a Wisconsin Farm) (August 2003; trade paperback)

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