So we have a rule in our house: Christmas presents can be purchased, but birthday presents have to be homemade. One of my many weaknesses is having zero talent when it comes to fashioning things with my hands (drawing, painting, bedazzling, etc.) so I naturally lean on my photo crutch when I need to 'make' something. However, just taking a photo of my kids wouldn't really count, so this year I took it a step further: I made fake movie posters of my kids based on inside jokes my wife and I share.
Chase, my son and future male model, was about 5 months old for this shoot. My wife and I call him 'mittens' frequently because no matter how short his finger nails are, he still manages to scratch himself when he's upset. So we put mittens on his hands to protect him from himself. And sometimes socks. Hence, the nickname 'Mittens'.
The idea was pretty simple: put some boxing gloves on his hands, take a picture, and make a poster. Boxing gloves are oversized mittens, they'd look really funny on a baby, hilarity ensues. The first two steps were very straight forward. The lighting was actually pretty easy too (it's just two soft boxes on each side of him, gridsots inside each box, the shadow comes from his one glove blocking the light). The two real challenges were as follows: sneaking the kids out of the house without my wife suspecting anything (along with all of my camera and lighting equipment) and doing the graphic design work of designing the poster. The first challenge of sneaking out was actually way easier than doing the graphic design work.
How come? Because I'm not a graphic designer. Page Layout doesn't come easy to me. I don't see any harm in 'saying that out loud.' There are lots of things that 'click' with me, and lots of things that don't. Figuring out the best use of space for graphics to convey a message is a very challenging task in my opinion. This took me a great deal of effort: drawing the layout on paper, researching typefaces, figuring out how to do that 'movie credit' thing at the bottom, picking a 'color style'. All of that took me a great deal of time and I'm not even sure if it would be considered 'good' by a graphic designer's standards. Either way, I had fun with it, my wife loved it (the final product was a 20x30 framed poster), and I pushed myself to do something I don't do any other day of the year.